28 - A Conversation About Life After Sudden Death: an Interview With Acclaimed Author and Psychotherapist Dr. Pamela D. Blair

Show Notes - Interview with Dr. Pamela Blair

In today’s podcast I interview the Reverend Dr. Pamela Blair, perhaps best known for the book she co-authored that was first published the year 2000 entitled “I Wasn’t Ready to Say Goodbye: Surviving, Coping & Healing after the sudden death of a loved one.” Dr. Blair is a retired psychotherapist who specialized in working with individuals grieving the loss of a loved one especially after a sudden death. Although retired, Dr. Blair continues to lead grief support groups and write. In today’s podcast interview she shares her personal grief story, highlights the impact her book “I was not ready to say goodbye” had on those she worked with and explores excerpts from her new book – The Long Grief Journey.  Together we delve into the concept of long-term grief, ways to cope with continued loss that occur throughout the grief continuum, how to experience happiness within the context of grief and the notion of holding hope during grief.


Key Points:

Pamela’s book, I Wasn’t Ready to Say Goodbye, has been the most consistent resource I recommend to any client who has recently experienced a sudden or unexpected death.  This book is a comprehensive guide for individuals and families who are living with a sudden death and provides information on different types of loss, for different family members at different points of time.

The Long Grief Journey by Pamela Blair and Bradie McCabe is an excellent resource that covers so many of the challenges long-term grievers encounters and provides exercises you use to work through many of the areas where you may be feeling stuck.

Pamela discusses hope when it comes to grief.  So many people have trouble finding hope again after a sudden death. She talks about finding hope in the support you get from family, friends, or support group members and about finding hope in new growth in nature. 

Her thoughts brought me back to the interview I had with Kim Cantin, who described finding happiness in new, simpler things in life, mainly with connections to people where she experienced joy in their presence.  I encourage those of you struggling to find hope in your life right now after the devastating sudden loss of a loved one to examine how you are defining hope.  Perhaps you are still using definitions of hope from the life you lived prior to your unexpected death.  It may be time to redefine your concept of “hope” in a way that matches your current experiences.

If you want an opportunity to connect with Dr. Pamela Blair, please join our Facebook group “Talking about the Podcast Untethered with Dr. Levin.”  The Facebook group for this week’s podcast also contains the reference for the book on continuing bonds discussed in this podcast by Dr. Denis Klass as well Dr. Blair's website and information about her new book – The Long Grief Journey. For more information on Dr. Pamela D. Blair, please visit http://www.pamblairbooks.com.

Thank you so much for joining today’s episode of Untethered Healing the Pain After a Sudden Death.   Our podcast is now hosted on my website www.therapyheals.com.

Our next podcast will be on June 7th and will feature Dr. Tina Payne Bryson, LCSW, PhD, Founder and CEO of The Center for Connection; author of New York Times Bestsellers The Whole-Brain Child & No-Drama Discipline.

To learn more about hope and guidance after sudden or unexpected death please visit therapyheals.com and sign up for my monthly newsletter Guidance in Grief at www.therapyheals.com. Bye for now.


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