Surviving Loss - Maryann Manelski

Maryann spent 10 years caregiving her father who had Parkinson's Disease and her sister who had multiple cancer diagnoses until their deaths just three years apart. From her deep experience with grief and loss, she began connecting with other grievers and uncovered the archetypal journey that loss takes through our lives when someone we love dies. Whether you're a griever who has lost someone dear or a person who counsels and comforts those living the Grief Monomyth, there is something here to help you with your grieving work.

If You’re Grieving…

Grief can be lonely but there are many things you can do towards working through your pain. For the price of paperback, we offer a three-month rental of the Secret Map of Surviving Loss, a one-hour documentary in 8 parts that you can watch in the privacy of your own home. Our companion workbook, available for free on our website, provides you with exercises to help you process your grief and truly understand how normal it is to feel anxiety, isolation, and disorientation as well as sadness after a loss. Whether you’re on your own or using the film to supplement grief counseling, we hope you endeavor to discover the secret map out of grief hidden inside you.

If You’re a Grief Counselor (Lay, Professional, or In-Training)…

We offer this program, the Secret Maps Project, available on DVD or to stream online, to bereavement counselors of all stripes. With 3 films, you can run groups with it AND learn how to run groups with it. Previously, it was only available to Social Work and Human Services programs at the college and university level for the training of Social Workers but in order to support all the grief workers we can, it is now accessible for everyone. Check out the trailer, see the Frequently Asked Questions, and contact us if you have questions of your own or would like to preview the films online.

For Colleges and Universities (Social Work or Human Services Teaching)

This 2-film DVD is made for use in clinician training. It contains the 60-minute documentary feature, the Secret Map of Surviving Loss, which takes clinicians intimately through the patient/client’s experience of grief in a way they cannot experience outside of actual counseling. Also included is the half-hour short film, Good Grieving: A Guide to Group Facilitation, a development tool focused on the framework of group counseling that clinicians-in-training may undertake.

Q:  Why should my Social Work, Psychology, or Human Services Department be using the Secret Map of Surviving Loss to teach students about grief and bereavement therapy?

A:  The main reason that professors should be using the Secret Map of Surviving Loss is that it uniquely provides what we call “the man in the hole” experience. The subjects in the film, while very articulate, are in the full rawness of grief after their losses. If your students will be doing any kind of work with the bereaved, they will not be able to get a closer first-hand experience of what their work will be like without actual live practice with clients for some time. When your students actually get to field practice, having viewed this film will make that practice all the more better for both your students and their future clients.

For more on “man in the hole” aspect of the film, please read this short essay.

Or see more in our Frequently Asked Questions for colleges & universities.