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Some 'shut out' of bereavement

Sept. 24, 2007 at 12:00 PM

NEW YORK, Sept. 24 (UPI) -- With more and more U.S. single parents, blended families and step and half-siblings, some are "shut-out" of an illness or funeral, a U.S. expert said.

Diana Nash, a professor of psychology at Marymount Manhattan College in New York and a counselor specializing in grief and bereavement, said ex-spouses and first children of the deceased can be left out of an illness and funeral because the new family doesn’t want them around.

"Imagine how a child might feel not being able to say goodbye or express their grief at a parent’s funeral or an ex-spouse who, regardless of the split, might need to grieve themselves or be there for their children," Nash said in a statement.

"Imagine the emotions the new family might experience with the additional burden of the exes being around during their time of grief. This is a horrible set of modern-day circumstances that can and should be managed with care so as not to lead to a much lengthier and less healthy grieving process."

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