Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Synthesizing Theories of Traumatic Grief: Using Applied Theory to Create a New Theory of Grief Shame
by Salomonson, Robert G., Psy.D., Capella University, 2018, 103; 10824247
Abstract (Summary)

This applied theoretical paper suggests a new theory for shame due to grieving a traumatic loss. Changes in worldview, the undermining of self-efficacies, complex trauma, soul-wounding and the impacts of traumatic memory resulting from grief are explored. Grief shame, as it is proposed, is a result of bereaved victims recognizing through self-labeling that their grief behaviors violate societal feeling rules and expression norms. This provokes social consequences and forms of sanctioning (exclusion) for those demonstrating traumatic grief behaviors; they are perceived to endanger society’s sense of wellbeing, which impedes cultural meaning making. This is noted to occur through differences in the definition of what is considered natural grief that is driven by medicalization of the experience. Being a griever rather than being observed to grieve is the catalyst for the present-day expectations of grief that grief is a something to recuperate from, driving the grief shame experience and the condition for bereaved victimization that there is something wrong with those who grieve beyond standards of grief behavior set by Western society. The shame experience itself may cause the griever to experience an attack on self, which separates shame from guilt, leading to withdraw from the shame influence (society) with soul wounding social/emotional consequence.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Husenits, Kimberely
Commitee: Donovan, Amy, Myers, Susan
School: Capella University
Department: Social and Behavioral Sciences
School Location: United States -- Minnesota
Source: DAI-B 79/10(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Clinical psychology
Keywords: Bereavement, Self-labeling, Shame, Social interactionism, Traumatic grief, Worldview
Publication Number: 10824247
ISBN: 978-0-438-01591-3
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