Customer Reviews: The Grief Recovery Handbook : The Action Program for Moving Beyond Death Divorce, and Other Losses
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on September 1, 2004
I first found this book almost 2 years ago. At the time I was looking for something to help my sister who had endured 13 major losses in less than 5 years and was in the depths of hell. She was barely able to get herself dressed every day and was so devestated she was not able to work because she couldn't stop crying. I picked this book up just hoping it held a "gem" of knowledge that I could use to help her. I was so blown away by the book that I asked her if she'd go to a workshop (she couldn't concentrate well enough to read the book). She agreed to go (she would have done anything to get rid of the pain). I put her on a plane to the next available workshop. Four days later she walked out of the workshop with a song in her heart and wings on her feet. She came home and enrolled in college full time and found 2 part-time jobs that worked around her college classes. I sent another sister to a workshop earlier this year. They are both happier than they've ever been in their lives and they tell me how peaceful they feel. They look forward to each new day with joy. I recently attended a workshop and have just been certified to begin an Outreach Program. Because of this book, many of my family members will know what to do whenever a loss occurs. For those people who can concentrate enough to read, this book may be what they need. But if they need more, please encourage them to find a Grief Recovery Outreach Program in their area. The Grief Recovery Institute's website is [...] and they are very helpful to griever's who call them. Thank you John James and Russell Friedman for all the work you do to share your knowledge with grievers.
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on November 14, 1999
Essential for anyone who is experiencing grief, whether from arecent loss or one many years ago. Shows one how to complete theprocess and begin enjoying life anew. I can't recommend it highly enough. Please try it if you are "locked in limbo" and unable to experience real joy in your life.
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on October 1, 2005
Grief is a terrible and unpleasant situation to work through. This book gives a lot of information and background, in addition to the "workbook" techniques that allows the reader to actually work through the grief process and finally let it go.

I was suprised to find, when I purchased this book after the recent death of a loved one, that another loss, another death, came to mind most often when reading the book.

In working through the workbook techniques, I have been able to release the death of my recently lost loved one, as well as several other losses (and not all of them death - some are loss of jobs, of relatonships, which also involve grief). I remain impressed about the wealth of information in this book and how helpful it is for any kind of loss.

If I could wave my "magic wand", I would have everyone read this book and work the "workbook" part, so that we all can be better at dealing with grief in our lives, as well as helping others who are going through a grief process. I know for myself if I had been better supported through at least two other grief moments in my life the recent death of my loved one would have been much easier to go through (and the other grief moments themselves easier to go through as well).

I highly recommend this book to anyone going through any kind of grief, whether it be death, divorce, a relationship breakup, a move, a job layoff/ firing/ quitting or anything that causes unhappiness, sadness, or heartache no matter how "signficiant" or "insignificant" society tells us that incident should be.

I would be HONORED to partner with anyone willing to go through the workbook exercises - for them more than me, as I know how hard (yet helpful) it can be to find a willing partner - and I know, after having just gone through a death & a grief healing process, how important it is to go through the grief process "correctly" so you can heal yourself and move on, to continue to open your heart & arms to life and all that it has to offer.

This book can help you do just that - solo or with a partner.
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on October 20, 1999
This book and these men have helped thousands of people heal wounds I never thought could be healed. The put a stop to the adage "time heals" by reminding us that time just passes and it's our action that heals. There is a way to get rid of the PAIN of a loss. I'm living proof.
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on October 18, 1999
The Grief Recovery Handbook is the first book I picked up that actually gave me the specific guidelines necessary to move beyond the emotional "pain in my chest" after my father died. I was almost convinced that I would never feel happiness or joy again when I drove away from the cemetery the day we buried him. That lasted for almost two years. When I went through the process in this book, I realized many things about myself, as well as my relationship with my father, and I have put him to rest in peace and I have my life back. Thank you John, Frank, and Russell.
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on October 22, 2001
It was refreshing to finaly find a book that touched my heart and gave me the specific steps that I needed to follow to heal my heart after the "death" of the relationship with my Dad. I only wish I had found The Grief Recovery Handbook years ago. The practical information makes sense and works. Now I am free to have access to the fond memories my Dad and I once shared.
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on October 10, 2001
My brother sent me a copy of this book. Within 3 chapters I found that everything they talked about was true. I continued even though I was apprehensive from time to time. The result was like a 500 pound anvil had been lifted off my neck.
I have recommended this book and given copies to others. I have found that some people are more willing to do difficult emotional work than others. Those who do the work get better those who don't get smaller.
I am writing at this time due to the WTC mess. I am also letting you know if you don't already that I found the Handbook in Spanish. This has proven helpful for several of my employees.
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on June 23, 1998
My name is "Laurie" Murphy. I am one of the golf buddies acknowledged in the back of the book by co-author Russell Friedman. On Tuesday, a couple of weeks ago Russell gave me a signed copy of the book as a gift. While I was thrilled to receive it, I had no urgent need to read it, not having experienced any major losses in the past several years. On Tuesday night, out of a sense of courtesy to Russell, I sat down to "scan" it, so I could at least tell him that I had looked at it. I am normally a person who reads full length books in a couple of hours, as I tend to scan-read. Imagine my surprize, when I found myself reading every single word. And, even though I had no recent losses, I could not put the book down. I noticed almost immediately that the book was comfortable to read, that is, I didn't feel "talked down to." Later, as the book started giving examples and instructions, I found myself participating in the exercises, if not unwillingly, at least unwittingly. The book had gently induced me to participate in a process of discovery. I found myself thinking about events and people that I hadn't thought about in many years. I am now going to do as the book suggests, and not rest on just reading; I am going to take the actions outlined in the book. The other major awareness I had was about many of the things I have said to grieving people that may not have been helpful to them, even though my intentions were honorable. At the same time, I remembered how many times I had not appreciated some of the comments made to me following my own loss experiences. I found the information in the book to be very illuminating, and I already feel more comfortable, knowing that I am a little better prepared when I talk to someone who has just experienced a loss of any kind. To sum it up; I was reading the book out of a sense of obligation to a friend, and wound up reading it for myself. I found it eye-opening and heart-opening in the most positive sense. I have no dou! bt that anyone who has recently experienced a loss will benefit from the book and actions it will help them take. LM 6-24-98.
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on August 19, 2001
I started reading and working through the exercises in this book before my father became really ill. During his decline, I was able to keep a loving presence because I'd completed my relationship with him (through the exercises) and could show up as myself without any significant baggage. After he died, I was able to filter out all the unhelpful things which people say after a death, as I knew what to expect. In addition to helping me with the loss of my dad, this book has helped me be a better human being - walking around in the world and noticing when people are grieving and giving them the safe space to talk. It's a wonderful book, and I found it to be easy to read, given the subject.
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on July 24, 2006
I found this handbook to be helpful, informative, and full of "aha" moments. There was much that I could relate to, especially the lists of commonly heard advice (misinformed, though well-meaning) intended by others as consolation. For example, I was comforted to learn that I wasn't the only one who found the comment "They lived a long life" to be insipid, irritating, and irrelevant. I really liked the authors' simple writing style and clear, concise instructions. The only potential downside to this book is that its effectiveness will be limited if you are working through your grief alone. Many of the exercises are intended to be done with a partner, and although the authors revised the book to include alternatives for those working alone, it's just not the same. As in PTSD work, much of the healing comes from the act of verbalizing thoughts and feelings to a trusted ally. Unfortunately, many of us - especially those who have been ostracized or have chosen a path of isolation - do not have this luxury. Still, I would recommend adding this book to your grief toolbox.
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