Family 411: The healing process of those in bereavement
It's a distinct group no one wants to join. Young adults whose significant others have died.
As Tara Morgan tells us, the loss takes the bereaved in uncharted territory as they begin to heal in this Family 411 report.
Jennifer Doucher thought she had a lifetime to make more memories with her husband Brian.
"We had a lot of just ideas of what we wanted."
Jennifer says they wanted careers first, before starting a family.
"I was getting my Masters, he was finishing up at law school."
Life as she knew it stopped Easter Day 2012.
When she got a call from the hospital.
"I mean he basically told me that he had taken pills."
A widow at 32.
A new chapter didn't begin for Jennifer, rather a whole new book.
"It went from being in a relationship for basically all of my 20's to being this single person in my 30's."
Sharla Wells-Di Gregorio guides the bereaved through the darkness.
"Depression a lot of role changes for the young adult. It's a lot of social changes."
Advanced preparation eases burdens when a couple is able to make end of life decisions together.
Sometimes, death comes when you least expect it.
"Everything that I had known of my life and moving forward had just been completely severed."
Everything becomes a new reality.
Juggling work, parenthood, finances.
"I've got to figure out how to get this mortgage in my name."
Wells-Di Gregorio suggests having a plan for how people you trust can step in.
"What kind of documents they might need. Do they know the passwords?"
There's no timetable for grief.
"It's not one day at a time, it's one breath at a time."
She carries her husband's memory, down her path toward healing.
"I loved Brian. My grief is unique to my journey."
Jennifer now shares her experience with young widows to help them with their journey.
Wells-Di Gregorio says counseling is key for the adult but equally important for any child in the home who may experience regression or begin to act out.