For someone in college or high school, loss adds terribly to the many other new experiences and changes. 

Instead of school being a time of fitting in and belonging to familiar groups, now we are different:  we have lost someone or something very special. 

Besides the pain, there are millions of emotions we might be feeling.  For example, we can feel resentful and jealous of those who aren’t going through this huge pain, or who have their family intact, or their health strong, or their life still as they’ve always known it.  This can make us feel confused and guilty, cause us to avoid social settings, and make us miss our loved one even more.

It is possible to move through this unwanted, painful time… and emerge so much wiser, stronger, and deeper.  We can learn how to keep our current, very important friendships, and we can learn ways to handle our school assignments when it seems it is impossible to think.  We CAN heal and, at the very same time, keep with us forever the cherished memories and lessons of our past. 

Whether you are grieving or you know someone who is and you would like to help them:

  • Explore the National Students of Ailing Mothers and Fathers Support Network website.  David Fajgenbaum was a college student in October 2004 when his mother, Anne Marie, passed away.  While there was counseling available through his school, there was no peer support… so David created a group.  His AMF Support Network has blossomed because, unfortunately, there is such a need.  As David writes:  “35-48% of college students have lost a family member or close friend within the last 2 years.”   

You are not alone.

His website has a wealth of information specific to college students (high school students also will relate).  You’ll be able to connect with others who are experiencing the same emotions.  If you would like to start a support chapter in your school, there are four easy steps shown on

  • Learn as much as possible about what is actually happening in your brain when someone or something so special is lost. 

My presentations and my coaching explain why it hurts so much - and what we can do about it. I know the way the pain feels.  I wish I didn’t.  I promise you - the edges of the pain DO soften, if you let them.  And, it is okay to let those edges soften. 

Healing takes more than just time; it doesn’t happen on its own.  It is the choices we make that is important.  If you are grieving, please - make the choice to do something healthy and healing right now.




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