Death, Dying and Grief in an Online Universe: Interview with Carla Sofka

At the annual ADEC Conference, I had the opportunity to speak with Carla Sofka and discuss with her how to deal with grief.

Carla is the editor of the book Dying, Death, and Grief In An Online Universe. This book looks at grieving in an online world and talks about how it is affecting the way we grieve, and the way people are getting their information about the loss of a loved one or friend.

In the interview below, Carla and I discuss how the process of dealing with death, dying, and grief is changing in today’s connected world.

Here are some key takeaways from the video:

  • Today’s technology has changed the way we deal with death and grief, particularly in the way people are sharing their grief very publicly using social media.
  • Carla suggests talking with your children and having a plan in place for how to get the message across on social media in the event that something tragic happened to them.
  • Carla says it’s also important to talk with others who have used social media to deal with grief and learn how they used it. There are incredible ways to use it for survivor advocacy, and it’s also an amazing resource for support.
  • Social media is a great way to keep the memory of loved ones alive by sharing stories about them, and in sharing stories with others you’re also supporting each other through the grief.
  • Carla cautions that social media is very public, and sometimes people who didn’t personally know your loved one might post something in reaction to misinformation.
  • Another thing that’s changing due to social media is how fast news travels, which means people may hear about the death of loved ones on social media before hearing the news first hand.
  • Blogging can also be very therapeutic during a time of grief because it offers you a platform to share stories about your loved one

For more video interviews like this one, please see the Open to Hope YouTube channel.

Gloria Horsley

More Articles Written by Gloria

Dr. Gloria Horsley is an internationally known grief expert, psychotherapist, and bereaved parent. She started "Open to Hope" to help the millions in the world with grief. She is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and Clinical Nurse Specialist, and has worked in the field of family therapy for over 20 years. Dr. Horsley hosts the syndicated internet radio show, The Grief Blog which is one of the top ranked shows on Health Voice America. She serves the Compassionate Friends in a number of roles including as a Board of Directors, chapter leader, workshop facilitator, and frequently serves as media spokesperson. Dr. Horsley is often called on to present seminars throughout the country. She has made appearances on numerous television and radio programs including "The Today Show," "Montel Williams," and "Sallie Jessie Raphael." In addition, she has authored a number of articles and written several books including Teen Grief Relief with Dr. Heidi Horlsey, and The In-Law Survival Guide.

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