Wellness Matters NewsletterAn Experience in Creative Journaling

Courtesy of Life Esteem, Published by Simmonds Publications

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Here are some of the typical lifetime losses that we experience:

  • Separation-individuation
The infant must inevitably break the early bond formed with a parent. Young children, to be healthy, must see themselves as separate beings with their own sense of identity. The separation-individuation phase is the child's first introduction to loss. If it is facilitated by a supportive parent, the child may be able to handle future losses more adaptively.

  • Sibling rivalry
Little babies have a special place in the life of a family. They get lots of attention. Older children may feel abandoned when their place in the family has been replaced by a younger sibling, and they may show aggression toward the infant or signs of withdrawal and depression.

  • Adolescence
As we grow into teenagers, we lose the old family bonds we have always known. We may begin to give more attention to our friends than to our families. Adolescence is a time of tremendous growth with the acquisition of new social skills and life responsibilities, but it is at this time that we must necessarily say goodbye to the play, the pleasures and the nurturance of childhood.

  • Friends
Friends leave - especially in our mobile society. They move, or marry, or sometimes they just drift away from us. The loss of a close friend, one who has seen us through life's ups and downs, can be devastating. We may feel that a lost friendship will never be replaced, but our challenge is to appreciate what we had in our old friendship, to retain our memories, and to carry our skills into other friendships in the future.

  • Marriage
Those who marry normally shift their attention and allegiance from the family they grew up in to creation of a new family. Modifying the old ties to family and friends can create a severe crisis, but there is a world of exciting new possibilities to replace this loss.

  • Letting go of children
When parents watch their children grow into adulthood, they lose a part of their old sense of identity and purpose. To cling to the old parental roles past their time is to invite conflict, yet many endure this conflict rather than grieve their loss.



This newsletter is intended to offer general information only and recognizes that individual issues may differ from these broad guidelines. Personal issues should be addressed within a therapeutic context with a professional familiar with the details of the problems.

La Jolla, CA 92037

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