Four Phases of Grief

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John Doe was born on January 28, 1924, in Rhinelander, Wisconsin. John Doe began the conversation by telling me when he was four years of age his older brother woke him up while holding a shot gun in his hand. John Doe’s brother began to tell him he needs to get up but quietly so he does not wake his parents. He and his brother went out to the cornfields near his house and lay on the ground. John Doe said with a smile, “I can still hear my brother whisper in my ear that we were going to get dinner for the family.” John Doe looks up and sees two deer in the fields, his brother, only five years old, raises the gun and kills one.

His brother pulls out a knife from his pocket and instructs John Doe to start gutting the deer. John Doe stated, “I was only four years old, I didn’t know what I was doing. I have only watched my father do this from a distance.” He began to tell me how he closed his eyes and pulled out anything and everything from the deer’s body. The two of them dragged the deer from the cornfield to the barn where the found his father standing by the door with his arms folded. John Doe stated that he knew at that moment his father was not happy they brought home “dinner.” John Doe laughed while telling me that he can still feel the pain on his behind from all the whippings he got from his father but they did end up eating that deer for dinner. John Doe told me that he felt he had to grow up at a young age due to his family falling below the poverty line. He said that is why he and his brother felt they needed to help get dinner.

John Doe began to tell me that he was very close with his brother throughout life. When he turned 17 he joined the air force to be with his brother during World War Two. He showed me picture...

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...mic theory by trying to recover from his losses by starting a family of his own or by rearranging furniture. From interviewing John Doe, he made it seemed like he always tried to cover up his feels by keeping his mind busy throughout his life. John Doe did not display that he was truly able to let go of the losses in his life.

Attachment Theory

Bowlby identified four phases of grief: numbing, yearning and searching, disorganization and despair, and reorganization (Litsa, 2013). The following list will describe Bowlby’s stages of grief:

1. Numbness. This is the phase where there is a sense the loss is not real and seems impossible to accept. John Doe displayed this first stage by when he came back from the war and he did not want to believe his brother was killed. John Doe started his own life and family without fully accepting the fact that he lost his brother.
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