• Acute Anticipatory Grief: What a Surprise!

    May 24, 2018

    Anticipatory grief isn’t new to me. I’ve studied it for years, written articles about it, and co-authored a book about it. That’s why I was surprised when I burst into tears sparked by anticipatory grief. The attack, if it can be called that, happened just before surgery. For three months I experienced odd symptoms. Because […]

  • Death by Hospital Error: What are your rights?

    April 2, 2018

    Reading several articles in the Wall Street Journal Health and Wellness section recently sent a chill through me as my husband of 57 years, Phil, is recovering from cervical surgery and recently survived some of the life threating health care facility acquired diseases mentioned in the article; all in the course of four weeks.  He […]

  • The Fear of Forgetting

    March 11, 2018

    This is the 11th year without my daughter Helen. I still miss her, still love her, and still remember her. But I’m worried. When I try to imagine Helen’s face in my mind, the image isn’t as clear as it used to be, and I don’t think of her as often. I have a fear […]

  • Reaching Grieving People in Communities of Color

    March 7, 2018

    Brianne Overton is a grief counselor in the St. Louis metro area, and recently spoke with Dr. Heidi Horsley at the Association of Death Education and Counseling conference. Overton specializes in working with kids and teens, particularly in marginalized and under-represented demographics. She welcomes patients in her office, but is also very active in community […]

  • Elsa Aguilera: Grief and Culture

    November 10, 2017

    Dr. Gloria Horsley of The Open to Hope Foundation spoke with Elsa Aguilera during the Association for Death Education and Counseling conference. Aguilera’s mother is an immigrant, and she considers herself a first generation American. She noticed some big differences in grief between both sides of her family. On her mother’s side, grieving is very […]

  • Mateo Gomez: Grief (en espanol)

    November 8, 2017

    John Rampton, de Open to Hope, habla con Mateo Gomez en este segmento acerca de cómo se le puede ayudar a los dolientes después de una pérdida de un ser querido. Esta entrevista esa enfocada a aquellos de cultura Hispana, ya que ellos enfrentan diferentes obstáculos en lo que es el duelo. Gomez tiene experiencia […]

  • Dr. Anasuya Tegathesan: Grieving and the Hindu Culture

    October 25, 2017

      Dr. Gloria Horsley spoke with Dr. Anasuya Tegathesan during the Association for Death Education and Counseling 2015 conference about the many grieving rituals in Hindu culture. Dr. Tegathesan is a Senior Lecturer at the Hope University of Malaysia, a prominent researcher and is happy to share her culture’s traditions with Open to Hope. One […]

  • Hope in a Jar, a Loving Gift for the Bereaved

    October 16, 2017

      What should you say to a grieving friend? What shouldn’t you say? Finding the right words may be so hard that you decide to send a sympathy card. “Well, that’s done,” you mutter to yourself.  Later, though, you may wish you had talked to your friend face-to-face. Of course, this isn’t always possible. Instead […]

  • Carlos Blessing: Grief and Diversity in Nicaragua

    October 11, 2017

    Carlos Blessing traveled from Nicaragua to attend the 2015 Association for Death Education and Counseling conference, where he spoke with Dr. Gloria Horsley about men and grieving. “We live in a very machismo culture,” he explains. “Men take care of everything.” The desire to look strong and seemingly emotionless is steeped deep into Nicaraguan culture, […]

  • How to Own Your Winter Grief

    October 9, 2017

    💨 🕶🍲☕🎃🎄☃ Something many of us learn through the course of years, losses and grief is that it’s far better to take control and OWN YOUR WINTERS, rather than to allow your winters own you. The seasons change & winters come (and go) in the midst of grief, ready or not. And long winters days and nights can […]

  • David Moller: Cultural Competency Among Health Professionals

    October 1, 2017

    David Moller of the Truman Medical Center spoke with Dr. Gloria Horsley during the 2015 Annual Association for Death Education and Counseling conference.  Currently, Moller is working with a group to create training on cultural competence for the medical staff at Truman. “We’re extending their learning out and into the neighborhood,” he explains. Hospice home […]

  • End-of-Life in the LGBT Community: Interview with Doneley Meris

    September 12, 2017

    At the annual ADEC (Association of Death Education and Counseling), I spoke with Doneley Meris about the struggles and discrepancies those in the LGBT community deal with during end of life. Individuals who identify gay, bisexual, lesbian, or transgendered, are still looked at differently at the end of their lives despite the fact that there’s […]

  • Daniela Silva: Coping with Grief in the Brazilian Culture

    August 12, 2017

    Daniela Silva of Brazil recently spoke with Dr. Gloria Horsley of the Open to Hope Foundation during the Association for Death Education and Counseling conference about the difference in grieving between Brazilian and US cultures. In Brazil, Silva explains that the extended family is very involved with the grieving process. However, the idea of talking […]

  • Ana Bendana: Bereavement and Culture in Nicaragua

    August 8, 2017

    “Culture makes a difference,” says Ana Bendana when interviewed by Dr. Gloria Horsley at the Association for Death Education and Counseling 2015 conference. Bendana came to the conference from Nicaragua to learn and share how grieving differs around the world. She says so many third world or developing countries have suffered and survived so many […]

  • Doneley Meris: Diversity and Grief

    July 30, 2017

    A psychotherapist in New York City, Doneley Meris’ mother was a nurse and he was exposed to death and dying from a very young age. “I love what I do,” he tells Dr. Heidi Horsley during the Association for Death Education and Counseling 2015 conference. Working in the field of death and grieving for 34 […]

  • Shades of Grief: Culture Shapes Our Mourning

    July 30, 2017

      Apple recently developed a screen with a billion different colors and advertised it as an improvement. It may be on iPad, or iMac, or both. But who cares? We already own screens with plenty of colors. We didn’t buy them for the colors. We bought them for data processing, mainly words, and news. News […]

  • Grief 101: Is There Value In Suffering?

    July 17, 2017

    Grief 101 is the title of my presentation at the Compassionate Friends Conference on July 28, 2017 in Orlando, Florida.  It will be a very heartfelt conference and will be attended by over one thousand bereaved parents, siblings and grandparents as well as other friends and family.  As I prepare my workshop I ask myself […]

  • Why Summer is a Bittersweet Time

    June 21, 2017

    I’m originally from Long Island, New York. When I was growing up, most of the towns along the shore were boat towns. Residents had small fishing boats, motor boats, and a variety of sailboats. Ever since he was little, my brother was interested in sailing. When he was a teenager, my parents bought him a […]

  • Ana Bendana: Bereavement and Culture in Nicaragua (in Spanish)

    May 28, 2017

    John Rampton de Open to Hope habla con Ana Bendana acerca del tema de la muerte. La muerte en Latinoamérica, como en cualquier otra región, es parte de lo que pasa todos los días. Aunque en Latinoamérica puede que se vea un poco más debido a la pobreza que existe en estos países y las […]

  • I Need to Say Her Name: Surviving the Holidays

    December 21, 2016

    In 2007 my elder daughter died from the injuries she received in a car crash. Helen loved Christmas and the first one without her was indescribably painful. I thought the second Christmas without Helen would be easier for me. It wasn’t. In fact, my grief seemed worse. While my grief has eased during the passing […]

  • December is the Longest Month of Grief

    December 6, 2016

    December is the most difficult time of year for those of us who have children who are physically no longer with us. For me it begins in late September, with the anniversary of the day my son Richard died. Followed by Halloween. Richard loved Halloween…he took a lot of pleasure in introducing his youngest daughter to […]

  • Grief’s Linking Objects: The Winnowing Process

    November 12, 2016

    Linking objects–things that belonged to a deceased loved one–are reminders of experiences and feelings. A bereaved son may wear his father’s watch, for example, and a bereaved daughter may use her mother’s dishes. At holiday time I put mother’s cut glass water decanter on the dinner table,  a reminder of her love, guidance, and all […]

  • My Ten-Year Journey After Losing My Daughter

    September 18, 2016

    I experienced the saddest moments of my life, as the unthinkable happened to my family, when Samar, my 18-year-old daughter died ten years ago. I never thought that what happened to some parents would ever happen to us. But it did. The death of my youngest daughter was the biggest blow I had in my […]

  • Ode to an Urn Maker: Commemorative Urns of Eliza Thomas

    July 18, 2016

    Ceramic artist Eliza Thomas has a unique practice of creating commemorative urns and offering them to those grieving a loss. Hearing of this work, I was intrigued, and tried to track her down. When we finally meet at Caffe Borrone in Menlo Park, we are just a short walk from Stanford University. Next door neighbors […]

  • What Do We Really Believe About Death?

    July 1, 2016

    This is the second of four articles based on concepts, research and experiences shared in, LOVE NEVER DIES by Elizabeth Horwin WHAT IS DEATH? After studying the religions and cultures of this world for most of my life, what I have found is that an individual’s belief regarding death is deeply rooted in the belief […]

  • How to Recognize Your Coping Style When Dealing with Loss or Change

    June 29, 2016

    If you are struggling with an addiction (of any variety), it may well be that you have not yet fully developed the coping strategies that provide a way to handle various stressful situations. Certainly everyone handles loss and stress differently – and this way of doing things is known as their coping style. If you […]

  • Solomon R. Benatar: Living and Dying in Today’s Globalizing World

    June 8, 2016

    The Association for Death Education and Counseling (ADEC) features Dr. Solomon Benatar discussing how living and dying has changed in a globalized world. At the Joint Centre for Bioethics, Dr. Benatar is revered as a leader in the industry. He also teaches at the University of Cape Town and the University of Toronto. What are […]

  • Reflecting on Mother’s Day, Yesterday and Today

    May 7, 2016

    When our daughter died, all hope seemed to be erased from my body, mind and spirit.  Wherever I looked, whomever I spoke with, seemed to emphasize the despair I felt within and without. I truly believed that I was the ONLY person on the planet who had lost a child to suicide. Mother’s Day in […]

  • Webinar: How to Manage the Easter Holiday

    March 23, 2016

    Holidays can be a challenging time for those who have lost a loved one, and with Easter right around the corner, Dr. Gloria Horsley with the Open to Hope Foundation and Alan Pederson with Compassionate Friends have released a special webinar on handling this particular event. This webinar will also feature guest Kay Warren, founder […]

  • Makiko Matsumoto: Grief Support for Children in Japan

    March 10, 2016

    At the National Alliance for Grieving Children conference, Dr. Gloria Horsley connects with Makiko Matsumoto from Tokyo, Japan. Last year, she went to The Dougy Center in Portland and decided to start a similar grief support group in Japan. So far, the efforts have been great. However, it’s difficult to communicate with the members and […]

  • Vonceil Levine: Grieving and Cultural Sensitivity

    November 11, 2015

    At the National Alliance for Grieving Children conference, Dr. Gloria Horsley discusses cultural sensitivity with Vonceil Levine, who works with Haven House in Florida. Being sensitive to the cultural needs of an African American requires being open and available. You work from the family and community base, so you may need to take the services […]

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

    September 10, 2015

    The author of Death, Dying, and Grief in an Online Universe, Carla Sofka, talked with Dr. Gloria Horsley at the 2015 Association for Death Education and Counseling conference about her research and experience in the Digital Era. It’s aimed at therapists, and Dr. Horsley contributed to the content. The access to an online world has […]

  • Grief and Culture with Dr. Andy Ho

    August 15, 2015

    Dr. Gloria Horsley talks with Dr. Andy Ho at the 2015 Association for Death Education and Counseling conference. As a researcher in Hong Kong, Dr. Ho notes that there are still a lot of superstitions in the Chinese culture. This means that some generations, especially the middle aged, avoid talking about death altogether. However, older […]

  • How Grief Groups Can Help

    August 15, 2015

    Alan Pederson, the Executive Director of The Compassionate Friends, spoke with Dr. David Fajgenbaum about his work with college students and how they handle grief. The two connected at the 2015 Association for Death Education and Counseling conference, which Dr. Fajgenbaum was attending in order to share his research and findings. Losing a loved one […]

  • Hospice in the Latino Community with Deborah Gonzalez

    August 9, 2015

    Dr. Gloria Horsley connected with Deborah Gonzalez during the 2015 Association for Death Education and Counseling conference, where they discussed the relationship between hospice systems and the Latino community. What kind of cultural effect does hospice have on this demographic? Gonzalez notes that the Latino community is under-served in hospice care, and she works diligently […]

  • Dr. Andy Ho: Grief and Cultural Differences

    August 6, 2015

    At the 2015 Association of Death Education and Counseling (ADEC) conference, Dr. Gloria Horsley discusses cultural differences in grief with Dr. Andy Ho. He notes there are tremendous differences in grieving within the Chinese culture, with older generations in particular thinking many elements of death are bad luck. This has led to a communication meltdown […]

  • Patti Anewalt: Hospice and the Latino Community

    July 24, 2015

    Patti Anewalt of Hospice and Community Care in Pennsylvania spoke with Dr. Gloria Horsley about hospices and Latino culture during the 2015 Association for Death Education and Counseling conference. “The most important way to reach out to other cultures is to hire staff from that culture,” Anewalt explains. Thanks to a grant, the organization was […]

  • James Richardson: Men and Grief

    July 18, 2015

    James Richardson with the Emerging Beyond non-profit organization spoke with Dr. Heidi Horsley during the 2015 Association for Death Education and Counseling conference. Dr. Horsley points out that Richardson has a lot of diversity in his own life, having served 29 years in the military and as an African American-Portuguese male. It’s important to note […]

  • Doneley Meris: AIDS and Grief

    July 17, 2015

    On 2015’s National AIDS Day, Drs. Gloria and Heidi Horsley talked with Doneley Meris on the Open to Hope Radio show. Meris is a grief psychotherapist and training educator, adjunct faculty member at New York University where he’s chair of the People of Color/Multi-Cultural Committee of the Association for Death Education and Counseling, and the […]

  • Damita SunWolf LaRue: Enhancing Resiliency While Healing from Loss as a Native American

    July 14, 2015

    Dr. Gloria Horsley connects with Damita SunWolf LaRue, MA, LPA at the Association for Death Education and Counseling conference 2015. LaRue is a member of the Cherokee Nation and a doctoral student studying Clinical Psychology at the Chicago School of Professional Psychology. She’s also an Indian Health Services Scholar, specializing in serving culturally diverse communities […]

  • Dr. Jon Reid: Chinese Culture and Grief

    July 8, 2015

    Dr. Jon Reid is a past president of the Association for Death Education and Counseling (ADEC), and he spoke with Dr. Gloria Horsley during the 2015 ADEC conference about Chinese culture and grief. “There’s a much greater reluctance to talk about death and dying in Chinese culture, mostly because it’s considered bad luck,” Dr. Reid […]

  • Cartoonist Keith Knight on How Words Live On

    February 9, 2015

    Keith Knight is a “gentleman cartoonist” whose various, nationally syndicated comics are published in the Washington Post, MAD, Daily Kos,, and the Funny Times. Visit Keef on his website and watch the documentary on his work. A vet’s rates don’t come down just because it’s a dying rat Don’t rate a deathbed experience by the number of words exchanged Use a smart […]

  • Remember Anyway

    January 15, 2015

    Remembering bears a weight of great responsibility and sometimes feels like a constant struggle to do justice to the memory of loved ones and all that they mean(t) to one’s life. Do we remember with painful grief? Do we seek healing to pay homage to the sanctity of life and those we have lost? Do […]

  • Celebrity Deaths Remind Us We Are All Mortal

    December 8, 2010

    Celebrities often appear bigger than life, untouched by the everyday challenges of “regular people.” So, when their lives come to an end, it is a stark reminder that we are all mortal, and no amount of fame and fortune can change that fact. Collectively, we seem to mourn celebrity losses because of the mutual admiration […]

  • For the Ones Left Behind: A Guide for Helping Loved Ones After a Death

    May 23, 2016

    A death can shatter the lives of those left behind. Now, there are so many things to do. Who do you call? Where do you start? How can you help? Managing to survive in the aftermath of a loved one’s death is a daunting task. For the Ones Left Behind, A Guide for Helping Loved […]

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  • Episode 42: Saving At Risk Children

    May 7, 2015

    On this show Dr. Gloria Horsley and Dr. Heidi Horsley interview Tashel Bordere Ph.D., CT regarding her work in death, dying and bereavement with black families. A video clip is shown featuring Harlem Mother’s S.A.V.E. followed by an interview with founder Jackie Rowe-Adams bereaved mother of Anthony and Tyrone who lost their lives to gun […]

  • Episode 36: Diversity and Grief

    November 30, 2014

    On this show Dr. Gloria and Dr. Heidi Horsley discuss Diversity and Grief with Doneley Meris Founder & Executive Director at HIV Arts Network and Capathia Jenkins actor, singer and board of directors of Covenant House. A video with Dr. Andy Ho of Hong Kong University discusses Chinese responses to death.  The show closes with […]

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