My husband and I attended this wonderful retreat with other couples who have lost a child. It was incredibly powerful for us, and a HUGE step toward healing. It is led by bereaved parents, Nancy and David Guthrie.
RESPITE is a weekend for married couples to spend unhurried time with other couples who understand the devastation of losing a child, to learn from each other, encourage each other, and experience together renewed hope for the future.
Respite is for couples with strong marriages, and for those whose marriages are struggling under the load of grief. It’s for those whose faith has grown through this loss, and for those who have lingering questions. It’s for those who want to talk about their experience and their child, and for those who are tired of talking. It’s for couples whose loss is fresh, and for those who’ve been walking down this road for a while.
The Dougy Center – The National Center for Grieving Children and Families
The mission of The Dougy Center is to provide support in a safe place where children, teens, young adults and their families grieving a death can share their experiences.
The Dougy Center, the first center in the United States to provide peer support groups for grieving children, was founded in 1982. A courageous boy named Dougy Turno died of an inoperable brain tumor at the age of 13. In the two months prior to his death, he was a patient at Oregon Health Sciences University, where Beverly Chappell, at the request of Swiss psychiatrist and pioneer in the field of death, dying and bereavement, Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, supported Dougy and his family during his treatment. Bev quickly observed Dougy’s ability to bond with other teens facing serious medical issues, how he intuitively knew he was dying, and how he helped other kids talk about their fears. After his death, Bev envisioned a place where children, teens, and their parents coping with the death of a family member, could share their experience with others who understood, who didn’t tell them to “get over it” or judge how they chose to grieve. The first grief support groups met in Bev’s home and has grown from that grassroots effort to become a sought after resource for children and families who are grieving. It is still the only year-round child-centered program offering peer support groups to grieving families in our community.
Every day families across America experience the agony that accompanies the death of a child. We help them Smile Again.
Smile Again Ministries (SAM) helps families deal with the grief and struggles that follow the death of a child. Since 1998 SAM has helped several moms and dads and surviving siblings cope with their loss and pain. Whitetail Lodge – located near Crosslake, Minnesota – is a retreat center for grieving families. This is a safe place to deal with your shattered emotions. A place where healing can begin. It doesn’t matter what age your child was when he or she died – we have found the pain suffered by parents is deep no matter how old your child was.