Children, Teen & Young Adult Resources
- Blackburn, L I Know I made it Happen. NE: Centering Corporation, 1991.
- Buscaglia, L. The fall of Freddie the Leaf. NY: Henry Holt & Co., 1982
- Cary, E., Steelsmith, S. When You're Mad and You Know It. NE: Parenting Press Inc.
- Cohen, C. Heiney, J. Daddy’s Promise. MO: Promise Publications, 1997.
- Ferguson, D. A Bunch of Balloons. NE: Centering Corporation, 1992.
- Hanson, W. The Next Place. ME: Waldman House Press, 1997.
- Heegaard, M. When Someone Very Special Dies. MN: Woodland Press, 1998.
- Johnson, M, Johnson, J. Where’s Jess? NE: Centering Corporation, 1992.
- Leghorn, L. Proud of Our Feelings. Washington, DC: Magination Press, 1995.
- Mundy, M. Mad Isn’t Bad. IN: One Caring Place Abbey Press, 1999.
- Powell, S. Geranium Morning. MN: Carol Rhoda Books, Inc., 1990.
- Prestine, J. Someone Special Died. CA: Fearon Teacher Aids, 1993.
- Rogers, F. When a Pet Dies. NY: G.P. Putnam & Sons, 1988.
- Schwiebert, Pat and DeKlyen, Chuck. Tear Soup, Grief Watch, 1999.
- Spelman, C. After Charlotte’s Mom Died. IL: Albert Whitman and Company, 1996.
- Varley, S. Badger’s Parting Gifts. NY: William Morrow & Co. Inc., 1984.
- Vigna, Judith. Saying Goodbye to Daddy. IL: Albert Whitman & Co., 1991.
- Viorst, J. The Tenth Good Thing about Barney. NY: Simon and Schuster Children’s Publishing Division, 1971.
Pathfinders-Hospice of Eastern Maine
885 Union St., Suite 220
EM Healthcare Mall
Bangor, ME 04401
Contact:Linda Boyle, Bereave. Coord.
The Center for Grieving Children
P.O. Box 1438
Portland, ME 04104
Contact: Anne Lynch, Exec. Director
Linda Kelly, Prog. Director
Patricia Ellen, Outreach & Ed.
Transitions - Hospice Volunteers
45 Baribeau Drive
Brunswick, ME 04011
Contact: Margaret Pelletier, Prog. Coord.
The Grieving Children & Teen Program
Hospice Volunteers of Kennebec Valley
ME General Medical Center
150 Dresden Avenue
Gardiner, ME 04345
Contact: Tina DeRaps, Prog. Coord.
Program for Grieving Children & Teens
P.O. Box 819
Lewiston, ME 04243-0819
Contact:Jake Larivierre, Program Coor.
Hospice of Hancock County
14 McKenzie Ave.
Ellsworth, ME 04605
Contact: Barbara Clark, Exec. Director
Mary-Carol Griffen, Ber. Coord.
Grieving Children's Program
Hospice Volunteers of Somerset County
PO Box 3069
Skowhegan, ME 04976
Contact: Linda Burkhart, Director
Andrea Smith, Prog Coor.
Hospice Volunteers of Somerset County, Inc.
25 Pleasant Street
PO Box 3069
Skowhegan, ME 04976
Hospice Vol. of Waterville Area & Came Ray of Hope
304 Main St.
P.O. Box 200
Waterville, ME 04903
Contact: Dale Marie Clark, Exec Dir.
10 Hampton Road
Exeter, NH 03833
Toll Free 800/416-9207
Contact: Meg Kerr, Ber. Coord.
1 Webb Place Suite 6
Dover, NH 03820
Contact: Jan Arsenault, Prog. Mgr.
Grieving Assistance Program for Students
36 Springfield Estates
Rochester, NH 03867
Contact: Monique Bruce
The Circle, a newsletter for those who work with and care about grieving children, is published 2-3 times per year by Suzanne Bowman. Subscription contributions are $5 and can be mailed to:
Suzanne Bowman, Editor
16 Old Ferry Lane
Kittery, ME 03904
Teens and young adults grieve differently than young children. It can be difficult for you to express your feelings or to even know how you are feeling. Friends do not typically understand your grief and loss. Finding a safe place to confidentially share your feelings and receive support from other teens experiencing loss can be an important step in your healing process.
Your town may be close enough to access the services of Pathfinders or other grieving program.. If your local area does not have a support program, we are hopeful the information on this website will be helpful; particularly the recommended reading lists and resource links.
The program is designed to provide support to children as well as teens and young adults. They are provided their own confidential environment to share with their peers that have experienced the loss of a loved one.
1. Who goes to Pathfinders?
If you are grieving the death of an important person in your life and are between the ages of 4 and 21, you and your family/caregivers are welcome at Pathfinders. Children, teens and young adults are assigned to different groups depending on age. Adults have their own groups.
2. How do I get to go to Pathfinders?
After the person you know dies, your parent(s) or caregiver(s) can call the Pathfinders Program Coordinator to schedule an intake interview. Once you and your family meet with the coordinator and the program is explained in detail, answering any questions, you and your family can decide if Pathfinders will be right for you.
3. I am a teen. Someone important to me died, but my parents didn't know the person very well. May I attend by myself?
Absolutely. Teens may attend Pathfinders without an adult as long as a signed permission slip by the parent(s) is provided. The teen may want the parent(s) to attend the first evening and the last evening of Pathfinders. Teens need to go through the same intake interview process as a child and family would be
expected to do.
4. Is Pathfinders a sad place to be?
No. Pathfinders is a support group where grieving children, teens and families come to talk and share feelings about the people in their lives who died. Most of the time, Pathfinders is a very lively, happy, fun-filled place to be. Sometimes memories and stories are shared and feelings of sadness are experienced. However, it is okay to be sad, even cry, if it helps in feeling better. Pathfinders is a safe place to share all kinds of feelings.
5. Is going to Pathfinders like therapy or counseling?
No. Each group at Pathfinders is lead by two facilitators who assist everyone in the group. Group members are peers who are encouraged to provide support to one another. You cannot get a group experience one-on-one with a counselor. Facilitators do not counsel or advise in therapeutic matters. The facilitators' job is to assist in helping the group stay focused, provide safe boundaries, educate in children's/teen grief and support each participant.
6. Are facilitators like teachers?
Not really. Facilitators have had training to help make sure conversation flows fairly and people in the group are treated with respect and kindness. They have learned a lot about the differences and similarities in children's grief and adult grief. They do teach the vocabulary around grief to help families keep talking and caring for one another. Facilitators are probably best at listening. They know there is no right or wrong way to grieve; we each do it our own way. We can learn from and help one another.
7. What happens at Pathfinders?
Much activity, talking and fun happens at Pathfinders. New friends are made and ideas and emotions are expressed in a safe place. Everyone at Pathfinders is grieving. Children learn more about adult grief and adults learn how children grieve. Adults and children alike learn how to cope with the emotions grief brings, how to live with the changes that death forces upon a family and how to express feelings in healthy ways while taking care of themselves and each other.
8. What kinds of activities do kids do?
Kids at Pathfinders have made impressive clay sculptures, masks and sand art, torn up phone books and thrown eggs, made treasure boxes, stress balls, dream catchers, pillows, Zen gardens, garden stones, scrapbooks and journals. Often kids bring in their own ideas about creatively expressing themselves and honoring the persons in their lives who have died.
9. Do teens do the same kinds of "activities" that the younger kids do?
Teens tend to want to just hang out and talk. Discussion is an important part of group. Confidentiality is highly stressed. Videos are shown occasionally so that teens can more easily identify with other kids their own age who are experiencing what they perceive to be "their world falling apart" after a death. Teen group facilitators act as boundary keepers, guides and listeners. Once the group has found its' own "group identity", facilitators tend to encourage the group to support one another and surrender to "group driven activities". Certainly any activity that the younger ages partake in can also be adapted to have equal meaning for the teens. Music is extremely effective when used with teens in giving them voice to what they are feeling.
10. What have other kids said about attending Pathfinders?
At Pathfinders I learned: