Articles

  • Writer J.W. Basilo on Starting Fresh When the Old Guard is Gone

    October 1, 2014

    How can you use a death and a birth to foster a new culture of decency around the dinner table? This and more when memory artist Nancy Gershman talks with Chicago-based writer, performer, and director J.W Basilo. A National and World Poetry Slam finalist, Basilo is also a PushCart Prize Nominee, and co-host of the Uptown Poetry Slam. His work […]

  • Playwright Gary Rudoren on ‘Last Words’

    April 19, 2014

    What’s there to talk about in the 24 hours before “your son, the serial killer” heads to the electric chair? Besides confessions, are there other kinds of “last words” that should happen on our deathbeds? This and more when Gary Rudoren – playwright, director, actor and architect now based in Jerusalem – sits down with […]

  • Comic Steve Mittleman About Forgiving Hard Parents at End of Life

    April 8, 2014

    It’s easy to forgive the hardest parent when they thank you through tears with: “Nobody cared for me as much in my whole life!” Or when they write a letter that gets delivered to you on the day of their funeral. This and more, when memory artist, Nancy Gershman talks with comic, Steve Mittleman who travels […]

  • A Father’s Day Perspective

    June 16, 2013

    by Sandy Fox Happy Father’s Day to all fathers. Today is your day, and I hope you celebrate it with loved ones. Many fathers react differently to this day depending on where they are in their lives, especially a bereaved father. One bereaved father wrote this poem: As this day approaches, I wonder how I […]

  • Father Learns How to Deal with Holidays After Daughter’s Death

    November 24, 2012

    In early grief, it is difficult to find any meaning in pain. After my daughter Jeannine’s death in 2003, the pain I experienced in early grief was raw and something that I feared. If I had a choice, I would have avoided it at all costs.  However, as I have learned, we need to work […]

  • Crying is Okay, for Men Too

    July 14, 2012

    Many people today are talking about the loss of our freedoms and working opportunities. Loss of financial options. Loss of trust in the government, the banking system, the schools. And while loss is loss no matter how we cut it, those of us who lose loved ones suffer the most. And as the first anniversary […]

  • ‘Brotherhood’ of Fathers Who Have Lost Children

    March 17, 2012

    I had a unique experience last week while I was at work that took me a little off guard. To give you some background leading up to this experience, it started the Friday before New Year’s weekend and I was on the phone with someone (Mark) I had never spoken to before and we were […]

  • Grieving Men, Raising Boys

    February 18, 2012

    Last night I sat in a room filled with grieving men Some missing a parent or sibling but most a spouse For once not a minority sandwiched within a group of women, but a part of a group connected to one another by gender, death, and heartache. This morning as I looked into the eyes […]

  • Young Widow Watches Sons Grow into Men

    November 4, 2011

    I am a mom of two boys. I am mom to two boys who do not have their father around anymore as a model. I am a mom who, beyond words, loves being a mom of boys. When my husband died seven years ago, I knew that finding positive, male role models for my young sons would […]

  • Grief Styles: Women Verbalize, Men Internalize

    July 1, 2011

    Spread the diaper in the position of the diamond with you at bat.  Then fold second base down to home and set the baby on the pitcher’s mound.  Put first base and third together, bring up home plate and pin the three together.  Of course, in case of rain, you gotta call the game and […]

  • How to Support a Grieving Dad

    June 15, 2011

    I often hear from grieving dads who tell me they feel alone in their grief after the death of their child.  It amazes me that after going through something as profound as the death of a child, that these men feel so alone and isolated.  As much as it amazes me, I can relate because […]

  • For Men: Living a Regret-Free Life After Loss

    March 17, 2011

    Hands down, the strongest, most destructive part of grief is regret. That ever-present feeling that you could have done more. Regret can become so strong that everything else about life gets tossed aside. It is exactly what happened to me. The night before I lost my 17-year old son, Michael, in an auto accident, he […]

  • For Men: Letting Grief Out One Word at a Time

    December 20, 2010

    What do holidays and journal writing have in common?  They show how you feel.  And that is perhaps the toughest and roughest part of living life as a man — that homegrown instinct to bottle up the negativity in order to always show strength.   It means that feelings and emotions get trapped deep inside.  It […]

  • Men’s Grief: It’s Time to Get it Out

    August 25, 2010

    The emotions of grief are the same for men and women.  How and when these emotions surface is what defines each journey.  But what I am struck with the most in my practice as a psychotherapist is how powerful this journey is for men. Men fight showing their emotions under normal circumstances.  Now, they have […]

  • Bereaved Dad Defines ‘Courage’

    August 13, 2010

    Courage. It’s a word that paints many different images in our minds.  Each one of us has a different picture of what courage looks and feels like.  This may change for each one of us based on events we have experienced throughout our life.  I want to tell you a little bit about my recent […]

  • Using Music When Grieving Divorce

    August 11, 2010

    When we hear someone is grieving, we tend to think it is the result of loss brought on by the death of a loved one. But there are other losses that cause people to suffer grief. There is loss of health that can paralyze one’s independence and quality of life. There is the loss of […]

  • Overcoming Sadness Essential for Venturing into Vibrant Future

    July 29, 2010

    No, I did not see Toy Story 3; but, recently, my wife and two daughters did. When my wife came home, she shared with me the premise of the story. As she told it to me, I felt an overwhelming sense of sadness. Similar to the bubbling over sensation when we uncontrollably belly laugh, I […]

  • For Fathers, Loss of a Child Carries Special Burdens

    June 15, 2010

    Men go through all kinds of identity changes when they experience the loss of a child, especially a child who is older and has lived long enough to create established memories with his or her father. A man identifies himself by mainly two things:  the job he has and the family he has.  When a […]

  • Men and Grief: Surrounded by Love, Blinded by Pride

    April 10, 2010

    “I couldn’t care less.”  That’s how I felt in the months and years after I lost my 17-year old son, Michael.  I felt like the life was taken out of me.  I was stripped down on the outside, torn apart on the inside, and utterly vulnerable to the world. In short, my very essence, my […]

  • The Insults of Aging: Why Young People Get it Wrong

    April 9, 2010

    Incredible things are heard when nobody thinks you’re listening. Recently, in downtown San Francisco, I was walking behind a 20-something–year-old couple. They were forced to reduce their fast pace as they approached an elderly man slowly walking in the same direction. Unable to go around him because foot traffic was heavy, they exchanged annoyed expressions, […]

  • Death of ‘Neon Man’ Inspires Friend to Help Others

    March 25, 2010

    In 2004, I got a call that my best friend died.  Mark Jamison was a neon artist from Roanoke, Virginia, who was electrocuted after he was blown into a power line while hanging a neon sign. He was only 35. A month after he died, his girlfriend discovered she was pregnant. Mark and I had been friends for nearly 18 […]

  • Man Writes Poetry as Medicine for Grief

    March 24, 2010

    Ed Gray of Howell, Michigan, is reaching out to others by sharing his story, a bereavement story of both sadness and triumph.  He lost his parents and his wife in just over one year’s time.  His mother grew tired fighting a 37-year battle with breast cancer and stopped her treatment.  His father died about four months […]

  • Stuffing Emotions Isn’t a Good Grief Strategy

    March 23, 2010

    When we’ve lost someone we love, grief is a journey we can’t avoid.  But that doesn’t stop many of us (particularly men) from trying.  Perhaps we’re afraid that such intense emotions will overwhelm us.  Or maybe we hope that if we pretend to be okay, that fantasy will somehow come true. While mourning the loss […]

  • Coming Out of a ‘Cold Winter of Grief’

    March 18, 2010

    For three months this winter, the mid-Atlantic was locked in a hard freeze. The ground was solid, trees bare, and the flower beds were buried under dirt-encrusted snow. Birds were mobbing the feeder out back, and I wondered how they manage to survive weather like that. At this season, in the months after my Bonnie […]

  • Prostate Cancer, Research Funding, and Male Vanity

    March 14, 2010

    As someone who’s living with prostate cancer, I applauded Louis Gossett Jr.’s testimony in Congress on the importance of prostate cancer research funding. If Congress was listening, maybe I’ll live long enough for something else to kill me. But according to the American Cancer Society statistics, I shouldn’t hold my breath. Fifty times more money […]

  • A Poetic Look at Men and Grieving

    March 4, 2010

    My wife died of ALS; during her final 13 months, my mom and dad also died.  It was almost overwhelming, and I learned more grieving than I ever thought I would.  My most effective way of dealing with this was writing and the strongest feelings emerged as poetry. In the months following, I worked with […]

  • How Couples Grieve Differently After a Child-Loss

    January 11, 2010

    A friend of mine told me recently that she is moving on with her life after her only son died 2 1/2 years ago. Her voice sounded upbeat. Her spirits were soaring. Only good things are happening now, and she is enjoying what she has to look forward to: grandchildren growing up, graduating, marrying, a […]

  • When Death Steals Your Holidays

    December 12, 2009

    We all have images about how life should look, and those images are never more powerful than when we look ahead to a holiday. My wife, Bonnie, loved Christmas. The fall when she was dying of cancer, she ordered presents by phone and online, sent our daughter Rebecca to stores, and had me pack presents […]

  • Stress and Grief: To Fight or Befriend

    December 11, 2009

    By Tom Golden As I watched our local TV news the other day, I was saddened to see a brief clip about a little, seven-year-old boy who had been hit by a car and killed. The tragedy happened not far from the boy’s home. The news cameras focused on the bereaved mother, sitting in her […]

  • Is Widower Ready for a New Relationship?

    September 23, 2009

    DKT writes in: I met a man on Match.com. We are in our 50’s. He divorced his first wife after 20 years of marriage. He was married to his second wife for about 5 years before she was killed in a car accident in January 2009, just 9 months ago. We have been on several […]

  • When and How to Use Medicine for Grief

    September 14, 2009

    It was a typical meeting of Compassionate Friends, the organization for parents who have lost a child. We were discussing what helped us cope with the death of our child. Joanna, a quiet lady who seldom spoke, suddenly blurted out, “I take Prozac. I couldn’t have made it without it, and I don’t care what […]

  • The Grieving Father

    July 29, 2009

    by Sandy Fox Fathers grieve differently with different emotions in the loss of a child. I believe this to be true. Here is some of the information that has been gathered on men losing a child. According to research, bereaved fathers put their grief into a compartment separate from the rest of their lives. Because […]

  • A final farewell…

    July 10, 2009

    As most of the world viewed Michael Jackson’s funeral on TV, it was truly a larger than life experience for a larger than life entertainer.  It is really strange when a celebrity dies in this country.  I think people finally understand, “Hey we really all are human.  Death is going to happen to each one […]

  • A beautiful sunrise…

    July 6, 2009

    My Dad was always one to get up in the morning and when I say morning, we are talking the 5 AM-5:15AM variety.  His routine usually consisted of working at the kitchen table, shaving, and sometimes sitting and admiring the dawn of a new day.  I never understood why sitting there seemed so peaceful until […]

  • Being a Successful Single Dad

    July 2, 2009

    Being a single dad is tough. Even though it is the 21st century and there’s a diversity of family configurations, being a single dad is tough. It can be rewarding and gratifying too. But it’s nonetheless tough. It is tough because one person is on for the all of the responsibilities. There are schedules to organize […]

  • Celebrity Deaths Create ‘Spectacular’ Grief

    June 27, 2009

    By Mitch Carmody – When I hear of the death of a high profile individual, it always turns my head. But do I mourn?? Do I lament? Do I cry in public?? In most cases, I do not. I am far enough detached from the individual that I do not personally lament the loss.  The […]

  • Learn to Die and You Will Learn to Live

    June 27, 2009

    By Stan Goldberg – My life is tethered to a number that few people have ever heard of: a Gleason score of 7. It’s a measure of prostate cancer severity that ranges from a forgettable 1 to a terminal 9. My lucky 7 places me on the cusp of living and dying. Not a particularly […]

  • A Wife Marvels at a Father’s Grief for His Daughter

    June 19, 2009

    By Harriet Hodgson – The death of a child is a lifetime loss and parents never recover from it.  Instead, they learn to live with it.  A popular belief is that men don’t cry; they hold their feelings inside.  But my husband is not like that.  Our daughter’s sudden death at age 45 from the […]

  • Mother Learns How to Comfort Bereaved Son

    June 18, 2009

    By Nina Bennett – I was used to fixing the problems Timothy, my youngest son, encountered when he was a child. If his older brother knocked down his castle of blocks, I helped him rebuild it. When he fell down learning to walk, I could pick him up. When he tumbled off his bike, I […]

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  • Dr. Bob Baugher; Men and Grief

    October 25, 2012

    Dr. Bob Baugher, Ph.D. is a Psychology Instructor at Highline Community College in Des Moines, Washington where he teaches courses in Psychology and Death Education. He is a much sought after speaker and has written articles and seven books on the bereavement process. He is currently finishing a video titled, “Men & Their Grief: 20 […]

  • Gerald J. Schaefer; Spouse Loss: Repairing Your Life

    September 6, 2012

    Gerald J. Schaefer lost his wife to breast cancer and was left  a single parent with two young sons. He has been a large capital Project Manager in the paper, pharmaceutical and utility industry and has a chemical engineering degree from the University of Wisconsin. He is the author of  The Widower’s Toolbox: Repairing Your […]

  • Kelly Farley; Grieving Dad

    August 18, 2011

    Kelly Farley, lost two babes, Katie Elizabeth and Noah James, in an 18 month period due to severe genetic and chromosomal fetal anomalies.  In response to his grief Kelly was surprised to find that people did not feel comfortable with an openly grieving dad.  This realization inspired him to reach out and establish the Grieving Dads Project […]

  • Ed Gray: Becoming a Widower

    April 29, 2010

    When Ed Gray’s wife died of Lou Gehrig disease he was faced with becoming a widower, hear how he went on to find hope and meaning. Ed’s bio

  • Steve Harris; Men and Grief

    April 8, 2010

    Steve Harris’ wife died of breast cancer, and he shares his story of grief and hope. Steve’s bio.

  • Eric Hipple: Men and Depression

    October 26, 2009

    Eric Hipple talks about teen suicide as well as men and depression.