Men Don't Cry...Women Do: Transcending
Gender Sterotypes of Grief
(Series in Death, Dying, and Bereavement)
Terry L. Martin, Kenneth J. Doka
Once again, this time joined with Terry Martin, we have Kenneth Doka giving us breakthrough news and researched documentation that not only expresses how we grieve, but how we might be more effectively present with those who mourn.
We are breaking down, ever so slowly, the barriers of labels. Age. Gender. Racial makeup. In a community that is 34% Hispanics, I keep hearing the phrase, "How Hispanics grieve." We label. We judge. And we miss the story!
This helpful book, essential for counselors and caregivers, but stated clearly enough for many bereaved to read themselves, moves away from men and women to characteristics of mourners or patterns of grieving. It no longer serves (not that it ever was a service) to say that men are strong, silent, busy in their workplaces as they find "suitable" ways to grieve. Women are "more in touch with their feelings." Interesting. A client came to me the other day who was a woman, but she would not or could not mourn openly because, in her words, "I must be strong for the children." The children were all adults.
The intuitive pattern includes an intensely experienced sorrow. There can be times of confusion, inability to concentrate and patterns of confusion. The instrumental pattern finds itself most comfortable in matters of environment, task, energy output. Blended grievers balance (or juggle) the intuitive with the instrumental.
There are many other significant contributions to this book, including their Grief Pattern Inventory.
The Rev. Richard B. Gilbert, D.Min., Executive Director, The World Pastoral Care Center