Building a New World: Habits and Practices of Healing Following the Death of a Child

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Abstract

The goal of this interpretive phenomenological study is to describe and understand significant habits and practices developed by families bereaved from the sudden and unexpected loss of their children. Data were primarily collected through the interviewing of 15 family members in seven families. At least four interviews were conducted with each family. Family members were interviewed both together and separately. The analysis of the data illuminated the development of significant and meaningful family practices. These practices acknowledged the death of the children, integrated their loss into the everyday lives of these families, allowed for continuing connection, and were of utter importance as they contributed to family healing.

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