ALS Grief Resources

When a person’s journey has ended with ALS, close friends and family members will begin a bereavement process through which they will mourn and face a future without their loved one.

These ALS grief resources are designed to provide family members with tools, resources, and information about grief and the bereavement process and to assist you during this difficult, emotional and often frightening journey.

Rebekah Albert, Bereavement Services Coordinator

ALS Grief Support Group Meetings

ALS Northwest offers monthly grief support groups and individual support to adults who have lost a loved one to ALS. The support groups serve as opportunities for surviving caregivers and other adult family members of people with ALS to connect with others within safe spaces for feeling, healing and remembering. The groups are facilitated by Rebekah Albert, Bereavement Services Coordinator. With more than three decades of experience in the nonprofit sector, Rebekah has focused on development and delivery of support services for individuals and families experiencing trauma and loss. She brings a passion for service and personal connection to ALS Northwest, with a mission to strengthen and expand our Grief Support Services.

Adult Grief Support Group (virtual)
Meets on the 3rd Wednesday of each month from 5 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. Virtually.

Adult Grief Support Group (in-person)
Meets on the 2nd Thursday of each month, from 1 p.m.- 2 p.m. at the Lake Oswego Adult Community Center. Check out our calendar for upcoming meetings in the Portland-metro area.

To sign up for the group, or for more information about it, please contact Rebekah Albert at (503) 238-5559 Ext. 125 or at rebekah.albert@alsoregon.org 

A Time to Remember

Watch our community remembrance presentation to honor those lost to ALS in 2022.

Remembering Our Loved Ones

We invite families who have lost a loved one to ALS* to participate in our Remembering Our Loved Ones 2024 program. All photos received before MARCH 1, 2024, will be respectfully displayed on banners displayed during annual events such as the Walk ALS. Remembering our Loved Ones application forms are available here. You can email your high-resolution photo (min of 1 MB; 300 dpi resolution) and completed form to: careservices@alsnorthwest.org OR mail your photo and form to: 

ALS Northwest

Attn: Care Services 

825 NE Multnomah St. Suite 940 

Portland, OR 97232 

 

*We can only include photos for deceased people with ALS who received services from ALS Northwest (previously The ALS Association of Oregon and SW Washington Chapter).

 

ALS Grief Resources

5 Ways to Practice Self-Care After a Loss | Psychology Today

“Immediately after your loved one dies, you may feel like you're in a fog, and this is normal. Chances are you were busy with activities (i.e., planning a memorial gathering) which directed some of your attention away from your sorrow. And now that the reality and weight of your loss are starting to sink in, you may be struggling with knowing just how to take care of yourself.”

How the Brain Rewires as We Grieve | Psychology Today

“In recent decades, neuroscience has revealed fascinating information about our relationships and what happens in our brains when we grieve for a loved one who is dead or gone. When a devoted spouse dies or a beloved partner unilaterally ends a relationship, our grieving brain has an enormous rewiring job to do.”

Walking Through Grief and Healing | Psychology Today

In the depths of grief, it can be difficult to muster the energy to take care of yourself. Getting some exercise is a step in the right direction, and it’s important to start slowly and take it easy on yourself.

How to Rediscover Purpose After the Loss of a Spouse | Psychology Today

“Grief is accompanied by a cascade of secondary losses—including, often, the loss of our sense of purpose.  It can deprive us of our sense of purpose which is what propels us out of bed in the morning, for a time, our purpose might just become incorporating our grief.”

Stages of Grief: The Harmful Myth That Refuses to Die | Psychology Today

The "5 Stages of Grief", developed by Elizabeth Kubler-Ross in the 1960s, was based on interviews with the dying and intended to describe how people come to terms with their own impending death. Applied to the bereaved, this model is a myth that does harm, bringing unnecessary suffering when grievers who may worry that they aren't conforming. Because grief obeys its own trajectory, there is no timetable for feelings of pain after loss; nor is it possible to avoid suffering altogether.

Six Needs of Grieving PDF

Dr. David Kessler defines “6 needs of grieving:” getting support of others, expressing feelings, releasing guilt, being released from old wounds, integrating pain with love and finding meaning after loss.

Anticipatory Grief: Mourning Before a Loss

This PDF from PsychCentral covers anticipatory grief, which refers to feelings of grief from the knowledge that a loved one is dying, and suggests ways to cope.