Student_Wk_03_Age_01 - Week Three: Age and Gender, Part One...

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Week Three: Age and Gender, Part One Question: Today’s class is on gender, age and cultural views of when (and how) it is developmentally appropriate to talk about dying, death and bereavement. DR: not much literature available on gender and dying/death -see DeSpelder and Strickland (2005) 1 : still little data on gender -women attempt suicide more often, but more men die that way -women now outliving men -study of 55000 widows: -after one year: high rate of depression BUT -after 3 years: marked improvement -Do women adjust better due to social connectedness? -cite Kastelbaum: women have higher death anxiety scores than men -but is this because men are less conscious of it?! -DR: good area for future research -can see different views on gender in other cultures -is intersection of class and gender -ex: practice of suttee (death is short-cut to beauty of afterlife) -in Bali: princess and attendants led to troughs, stabbed -or drugged and immolated -Brahmans: not necessary for soul’s ascendance to next level -poor: do not practice suttee Cultures have different beliefs about when it is developmentally appropriate to tell children about death or allow them to be near dead. US: variable; Daniel Schaefer (1988) 2 -funeral director: 1978-1988: studied presence of children at funerals, wakes -replies of 1800 sets of parents, 3600 children -parents uneasy to talk about death, but willing if prepared -parents build protective wall around children -Schaefer recommends as basis: -children need to know what ‘sad’ is – and it is okay to feel sad -good explanation of death: when body stops working -this is machine metaphor – more later in semester Schaefer recommends age-appropriate explanation -ages 3-6: child sees death as reversible; assume people will come back -pop culture has added to this: Mr. Hooper, Sesame Street (1978) -parents: realize that reversible death concept is normal -children see connections to unrelated events – so be careful -will all people die when going to sleep? -ages 6-9: death is final, but children still think that dead person can return 1 DeSpelder, Lynne, and Albert Strickland. 2005. The Last Dance: Encountering Death and Dying. New York: McGraw Hill. 2 Schaefer, Daniel. 1988. Communication Among Children, Parents, and Funeral Directors. In Annual Editions 2005-2006 (8 th ed.) Pp. 31-35.
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Week Three: Age and Gender, Part One -parents: distinguish between fatal illness and being sick -ages 9-12: closer to adult recognition -need more emotional support -need to know their feelings are acceptable -teens: parents should share some of their feelings with teens -For all children: Prepare children for what they will see at funeral home -even drapes, etc. -children will feel place is not strange…
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This note was uploaded on 04/02/2008 for the course ASB 353 taught by Professor Repp during the Spring '08 term at ASU.

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Student_Wk_03_Age_01 - Week Three: Age and Gender, Part One...

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