A new book aiming to help aid the bereavement process of losing a spouse has been released on . The book, Losing a Spouse – On love, grief and recovery, was written by to Icelanders who have both experienced the loss of a partner.
The authors are two Icelandic women, who have both suffered the loss of their husbands, Guðfinna‘s husband from a heart attack and Anna‘s husband from cancer. Guðfinna Eydal is a clinical psychologist who has worked in her profession for over thirty years and published several books; Anna Ingolfs is a writer and a yoga teacher, who has also published two children‘s books.
In the book, Anna and Guðfinna discuss the seriousness of mental and physical health for the surviving partner after the loss of a partner, based on their own personal experiences. The authors discuss various stages of the bereavement process including regret and how it can test the surviving partner when he/she becomes a single parent.
The authors write about a difference in responses between genders; how many men deal with their grief by staying active, whilst many women give more time to their feelings. Importantly, they talk about the attitude towards solitude and the importance of learning to be alone with oneself.
Anna and Guðfinna state that the discussion of death itself is a taboo in many societies. The book’s blurb says, “Grief comes knocking at everyone‘s door, but it seems to us a faraway land until our own journey leads us there. When loss is a fact, the nearness of grief is inescapable…. We don‘t know what to do, we don‘t know how to be. Everything is turned on its head.“
The book is divided into three catergories, each delving into different aspects of the bereavement process.
First, the reader is informed of the psychological explanations and given an insight on how grief touches the bereaved deeply, when experiencing the passing of a partner.
Secondly, the reader is taken on a journey on love, loss and bereavement through deep and personal journals written by Anna Ingolfs. These journals were written during the time of her husband’s illness and passing, and give the reader insight into Anna‘s life as a young widow – a surviving partner with three young children.
Finally, the reader will receive support in the grieving process with self-compassion, connection with nature and self-awareness through assignments and meditations in order to gradually find a new path in life.
More information about the book can be found via the website , which features excerpts from the book.