children illustrations

How I Coped When Mommy Died

This inspiring video was created by 13-year-old Brett Hardy Blake, after losing his mother to breast cancer when he was 10. With mature insight and engaging humor, Brett presents his story in a deeply moving but not maudlin way. Outstanding original music, animated video sequences, photographs and artwork illustrate the teenager's experiences, thoughts, and feelings, while his narrative takes the viewer on a personal journey through several years of his life.

Brett talks openly about his feelings, from his fears during his mother's illness (she was first diagnosed when he was only three) to his feeling of numbness after her death. But he notes that "This film is not just about my mother dying—it's about a life, a love, and just going on and being helped." Most of all, it's about how, with the right support, individuals can survive and grow through the most tragic of circumstances.

Co-produced with Brett's adoptive mother, Lori Hope, herself an Emmy-winning filmmaker, How I Coped When Mommy Died is important viewing for anyone who has had to deal with a loss—and for anyone caring for or supporting someone who is grieving a death, divorce or other personal tragedy. It will be especially valuable for older children and teens, but the filmmakers recommend that adults discuss the content with young people before watching.

With Eyes Open (KQED's program about caregiving, grief, difficult decisions and what may lie beyond death.) (support groups and camps for grieving children, college students and adults) (American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry) (Association for Death Education and Counseling) (Barr-Harris Children's Grief Center) (Bereavement: A Magazine of Hope and Healing) (Centering Corporation - a publisher of books, tapes and videos about death for children and adults) (The Dougy Center - the first grieving children's center established in the U.S.) (Good Grief Groups - provide training for teacher, administrators, group leaders, parents and published a workbook to help those who are grieving.) (the leading on-line communty for end-of-life care)

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