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John James, founder of The Grief Recovery Institute

John W. James

Founder of The Grief Recovery Institute®
Co-Author of The Grief Recovery
Handbook & When Children Grieve

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Russell Friedman, Executive Director of The Grief Recovery Institute

Russell Friedman

Executive Director
Co-Author of The Grief Recovery
Handbook & When Children Grieve

Featured Article

Memorial Day, 150 Years Later. Lest We Forget!

Memorial Day as we know it today began as Decoration Day in 1866, in upstate New York, after the cessation of the Civil War. First conceived as an homage to those who had given their lives, it soon evolved to also honor those who had survived. Within two years it was renamed Memorial Day, and over time came to symbolize our community need to stay ever mindful of those who had sacrificed their lives for our freedoms. Although the official birth of this annual event was in the North, the Southern states had parallel ceremonies, which were eventually joined as the national holiday we commemorate every year.

A tremendous amount has transpired in the intervening 150 years.

For millions of us, September 11, 2001, and subsequent events signaled the end of our metaphorical Disneyland. The fantasy that all is okay in our world has given way to the terrifying survival reality that is a daily diet for people in many corners of the globe. Sadly, we must face up to that reality. With all of this going on, the need for a Memorial Day is as important as ever. Since 9/11, we have been forced to re-examine how we live our daily lives, how we travel, and how we observe the normal events that swirl around our public movements. And with the death of Osama Bin Laden, we were reminded that we are still under potential daily assault by terrorists.

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Ask John & Russell – It's not uncommon for grieving parents to struggle with pain and jealousy when they see children at family events. (Published 5/24/2016)


I lost my son to SIDS a year and a half ago. I feel horrible and jealous when I see other kids in the family having birthdays, and at Christmas and other holidays. When will I ever be able to look at other families' children and not feel this way?

Russell Friedman Replies:

Hi Renee,

Thanks for your note and question.

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Find Local Support

If you or someone important to you wants help with grief: Look for a Certified Grief Recovery Specialist℠ in your community. The Grief Recovery Institute ® trains and mentors Certified Grief Recovery Specialists℠ throughout the United States & Canada.

See Russell and John's blog at Psychology Today

Workshops & Training Schedule

The Grief Recovery Institute ® offers Certification Training programs for those who wish to help grievers.

    May 2016
    Dallas, TX - May 13-16, 2016
    Princeton, NJ - May 13-16, 2016
    Seattle, WA - May 20-23, 2016
    Los Angeles, CA - May 20-23, 2016
    Regina, SK Canada - May 20-23, 2016

    June 2016
    Pittsburgh, PA - June 3-6, 2016
    Birmingham, AL - June 10-13, 2016
    Boston, MA - June 10-13, 2016
    San Francisco, CA - June 24-27, 2016
    St. Louis, MO - June 24-27, 2016
    Toronto, ON Canada - June 24-27, 2016

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