JENNIE: Dr. Andrew Menger on the importance of grief support and human connections

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"In this time we've lost connection, and human beings desperately need connections- some at a greater level, some at a lesser -but to be a healthy human you must have human connections at some level." ~Dr. Andrew Menger

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF)– It’s the thing we don’t want to talk about, you don’t want to let your mind go there, but it’s a reality during this pandemic: our loved ones forced to spend their final days, and even their final hours alone in hospitals and nursing homes.

Like many of you, I have lost loved ones during this quarantine. Two funerals, 3 weeks apart, both in North Carolina. I attended “virtually”- watching the Facebook live feed of the services. I visited my cousin, Tony, in November… having no idea it would be the last time I would ever see him. I do not remember life without him. My Aunt Sandra, my mother’s sister, was buried Sunday. My cousins are devastated because they weren’t allowed to visit their mother in the hospital the last three weeks she was there. Their biggest fear was that she would die alone. And sadly, she did.

Many of you are going through the same thing.

It’s so hard to accept loss when we can’t have those goodbyes. There’s a good reason we don’t have closure right now- and it has to do with rituals.

The Rev. Dr. Andrew Menger is a scholar in world religions, a gifted counselor, and he serves at Augusta’s Church of the Good Shepherd.

He leads a grief support group that could be very helpful to anyone trying to find closure.

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