Why Do Therapists Warn the Bereaved that they Will Divorce?

Dr. Gloria Horsley responds:

You got me. I have been a therapist for many years and have repeatedly been told that, parents who lose children divorce. Let’s see, Phil and I have been married for over forty years and it has been over twenty since our son was killed. Memories of our dear Scott seem to bring us closer rather than driving us apart. That is not to say we didn’t have our down times. I remember on Scott’s eighteenth birthday, I had a pizza party for all of his friends.? I had about twenty kids in the house and we laughed and shared memories of Scott. Phil and Heather, age fourteen, stayed in the kitchen and chatted together. They didn’t mind that I had the party; it just was not their thing.



Gloria Horsley

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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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  • Donna Codell says:

    We lost our daughter to Cystic Fibrosis and was married for 47 years when my husband passed away. When my daughter was diagnosed at age 2 1/2 it brought us closer together. When you have a child with a disease you either get closer or grow apart. We chose to stick together and live our life as normal as possible. There was never a time we were going to give up on each other!