A new face has appeared in an old debate. The new face: Ruth Davis Konigsberg, author of the recently published book The Truth About Grief. The old debate: the art of caring for people in grief versus the supposed science of bereavement.
Konigsberg, a journalist who has written for popular magazines such as Glamour and ELLE, takes issue with the need for grief counseling. She informs readers of her new book that science is beginning to prove that most people are resilient enough to get through loss on their own. She questions the efficacy of grief counseling and suggests that it can actually be harmful. In the book, she refers to those of us who support people in grief as a “cottage industry” and, in referencing my body of contributions to death education and counseling, lays claim to my motivations. She conjectures that those of us who became caregivers to people in grief because we suffered prior losses in our own lives do not have the objectivity to embrace a more scientific approach to grief care.