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Military Widow: A Survival Guide Paperback – June 8, 2006


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Military Widow: A Survival Guide + When Children Grieve: For Adults to Help Children Deal with Death, Divorce, Pet Loss, Moving, and Other Losses
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Naval Institute Press (June 8, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1591148340
  • ISBN-13: 978-1591148340
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6.1 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,612,831 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Joanne M. Steen, the widow of a naval aviator killed in the line of duty, is a nationally certified counselor and certified strategic planner, crisis responder, instructor, and speaker on military loss.

M. Regina Asaro is a psychiatric nurse certified in death and bereavement and a crisis responder who worked with a team in Oklahoma City in the aftermath of the bombing and with the families of victims of the massacre in Srebrenica. She has presented many workshops on the impact of violent crime, grief, and traumatic loss.

More About the Author

Joanne Steen is the co-author of "Military Widow: A Survival Guide" (Naval Institute Press, 2006) and the US Naval Institute's 2007 Distinguished Author of the Year. A military widow and former Navy instructor, Joanne is knowledgeable of the military, its culture, and the unique issues military service presents.

A nationally certified counselor with an emphasis on traumatic loss and grief, Joanne has taught over 5000 military and civilian personnel who work with the families of America's fallen warriors.

Joanne is currently working on "Military Parents: We regret to inform you," a book for parents who have lost a son or daughter in the line of duty.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By tietack on July 22, 2006
Format: Paperback
I've read over a dozen books to help me in my journey through grief, and none are as succinct and clear as Joanne Steen's "Military Widow: A Survival Guide."

The chapters are short, the coverage is excellent, and the "lessons learned" from other military widows stand out. Every word was written with the care of someone who has lived through the pain.

Many of the "lessons learned" in this book can help non-military widows and widowers. It helped me. I believe this book can even help non-widows understand the terrible burden of the military widow.

Part one: "Life and Death in the military," bring us into the diverse lives of widows in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, and the Coast Guard. Military widowhood (and the focus is on the widow) is especially difficult. Joanne understands: "Protecting America does have its price, and for me, it was my husband's life."

Part Two is entitled: "Military grief is complex." It's usually associated with young widowhood, far from family and home towns. The circumstances of military death, when they died for a cause, when bodies are unavailable, when the mission is classified, makes things more difficult. The publicity around the death, as well as the funeral, often forces the military widow into the public eye.

Military widowhood comes without warning. Part Three: "When your husband dies suddenly," contrasts the circumstances of anticipated and sudden deaths. It dispels popular notions on how we should grieve. It encourages us to do the grief work necessary to move forward in the lives we never wanted. It describes how counseling and getting together with other widows can validate our feelings, with the experience of others. Special military grief issues include delays related to deployment.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By John Matlock on August 16, 2006
Format: Paperback
There is so much good about this book that it is hard to know where to start.

First, I guess, is the fact that this is a book for military widows, written by a military widow. Joanne Steen is the widow of a Navy helicopter pilot whose machine came apart in the air killing everyone on board.

Second, it is published by Naval Institute Press. The US Naval Institute has been around a long time and will remain around. They can (and I hope they will) keep this book available for a long time.

Third, while there is a lot of coverage in the press about the war in Iraq, most military people are killed in ordinary everyday ways. This includes heart attacks, automobile accidents, all the things that kill non-service people.

Fourth, the book covers every aspect you can imagine from the funeral to the kids.

I could go on, but by now you should have the picture. This is a book that every military chaplain, every casualty officer should have, read, study and give copies to the widows. Perhaps two copies, one immediately, and another in a month or so when they have had time to recover a bit.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By William H. Johnson on May 19, 2009
Format: Paperback
As a retired Navy Captain, and 2-time Casualty Assistance Calls Officer, I read this book in continual head-nodding agreement, and with extraordinary admiration for the authors. There is enough useful information in this slim volume that any Naval officer - any Navy leader - will be remiss if they do not, at least, skim the material. Being aware of this book will make life much easier if/when tragedy does strike.

The diction and grammar make for easy reading, but the content (the 'real, live stuff' not covered in procedural manuals or instruction) requires reflection and study. This information is not available anywhere else; every wardroom, Chief's Mess, and Chaplain need a copy, and it should be provided to every family enduring the loss of a sailor or Marine.

This book is a force-multiplier.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By D. Atkins on October 6, 2006
Format: Paperback
Military Widow: A Survival Guide shows tremendous insight into the challenges a young military widow experiences. I desperately needed this book when my husband, a Navy pilot, was killed in an A-6 crash. Joanne Steen and Regina Asaro give validity to the unspoken thoughts and feelings that many military widows go through. The book gives practical suggestions for dealing with difficult situations and contains great references to survive and manage the months and years after a traumatic loss. In addition to being an unmatched resource for widows, "Military Widow" is a must-read for her family and friends and a practical tool for the professionals working with her.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By D.B. on July 20, 2011
Format: Paperback
I first received a copy of this book from a woman (I do not remember who she was) who greeted me as I waited to be escorted to the airfield of Dover Air Force Base. I was there to receive my husband's remains home to American soil and witness the Dignified Transfer. He was killed in Afghanistan in Sept 2010. Barely 24 hours after I received a knock on my door, the title of the book hit me like a ton of bricks.

I have read reviews that mentioned the book would have been helpful during the first days and weeks. Honestly, I do not think any book would be helpful so early. I just cannot imagine being able to sit and read and comprehend during a time when the mind is still spinning from the emotional trauma. But, everyone is different.

I think this book is much better suited at helping others understand what a military widow may be experiencing. Friends, family, CAOs, Rear Detachments, etc. I, however, did not feel I needed to read a bunch of stories about what I was experiencing and how it is "normal". I know what I am experiencing. I do not need to read somebody telling me what I am experiencing.

I gave this book four stars because it is well done and it is a great resource for those hoping to gain insight into the world of a military widow. I did not give it five stars because as a widow I did not find it helpful to read what I already know.
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