Growing Through Grief


Gang Raped: Healing From the Pitch Black Closet

Ep. 9

Losing the love of his life 11 days after their 42nd wedding anniversary left Jay without ground under him. And although it wasn't an unexpected death, they did a lot of healing together and lived intensely in love all those years; Jay was saved by the tools he acquired from dealing with the grief of traumatic experiences in his childhood and early adult life. 

Jay Westbrook is a Clinical Director at Compassionate Journey, an End-of-Life Clinical and Education Service. Jay is a multiple-award winner Clinician and Speaker, Visiting Faculty Scholar at Harvard Medical School, and a specialist in End-of-Life care & education. He holds an M.S in Gerontology and a Nursing diploma from the University of Southern California. In addition, he is an advanced Grief Recovery Specialist, and he works with mature adults alcoholic/addicts to find and maintain sobriety and recovery.

In this episode, Jay shared countless nuggets of wisdom from his grief recovery journey, from victim to survivor, to thriver. We talked about the traumatic experiences that marked him and what he got from them, and how he recovered from the massive scars they left. Jay also talked about compassion, forgiveness, the allegedly healing properties of time, and the importance of learning to lose things. 

Tune in and listen to episode 9 of Growing Through Grief, buckle up, and get ready to capture some of Jay's massive and kind wisdom.

Some Questions I Ask:

  • You say there is no separation between the loss we experience as a child versus the loss we experience as an adult. Does it sort of activate the pain from the past? (4:46)
  • You mentioned that you had to do some massive work to heal the pain of gang rape and being beaten. Can you share with us what that work looks like for you? (26:06)
  • What do you mean when you talk about self-compassion? (35:18)

In This Episode, You Will Learn:

  • Two of Jay's most significant grief experiences (3:24)
  • The role of time in our healing process and in grief recovery (5:36)
  • A small price to pay for a long life love affair (8:29)
  • The intangible losses that people don't associate with grief (14:23)
  • The different paths of healing from rape (25:49)
  • Three steps of Jay's massive work on healing himself (26:21)


Connect with Jay:

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More Episodes


For the Shattered Heart | Meditate on This

Ep. 29
A few days ago, I met a young lady at the park. She had experienced the loss of her mother, and the words she used to describe how she felt inspired this episode. She shared her anguish, and among other things, she said she felt her heart shattered. These two words, shattered heart, are a combination none of us should have to use to describe how we feel, and still, sometimes, it is the truth.In this episode, we talk about the challenging task of picking up the tiny parts of a shattered heart. We explore some valuable techniques we can use to navigate this kind of excruciating pain, accelerate the recovery of losing a loved one, and use that momentum to grow. I also talk about the two things I shared with this young lady to help her deal with heart grief, and at the end, I offer a simple yet powerful meditation session.Tune in and listen to episode 29 of Growing Through Grief and learn about what can be done when we feel our heart is shattered into tiny pieces.In This Episode, You Will Learn:The lady with the shattered heart. Her pain and the wounds she was dealing with (2:24)What feelings come to mind when we hear those two words combined: shattered heart (5:53)The power of creating space (6:15)How being curious can help us go through pain (7:46)What are our options when we don't have anyone around to ask for help (10:59)A quick, short and sweet, and powerful meditation session (14:09)Let's Connect!FacebookTwitterInstagramLinkedInWebsiteFacebook Group - Growing Through Grief Together

Anticipatory Grief | End of Life

Ep. 28
Although all of us know deep down in our hearts that our parents will leave us at some point, it is still hard to deal with their loss. It is a tough call, even for grief and trauma specialists who have the tools to deal with grief more gracefully than someone unprepared.Visiting us today is the amazing Professor Theresa Agostinelli, a Certified Mental Health and Wellness Coach, Speaker, Teacher, Certified Psychotherapist, and a Trauma Recovery specialist. She is also CEO, Licensed Psychotherapist, and Professor at Glen Mills Coaching and Consulting, and Speaker, Coach, and Teacher at John Maxwell Team.Professor Theresa's mother is in the final stage of her life after battling for a couple of years with dementia. In this show, she kindly shared how she and her family are dealing and getting ready with her mother's transition. We go through the importance of dealing with trauma and grief to prevent some conditions, learning to accept and forgive, and human's need for looking for meaning in every life event. Theresa also talked about the interesting concept of developmental stages of grief and why it is essential to acknowledge the different ways people grieve at different ages.Tune in and listen to episode 28 of Growing Through Grief and take a close look at anticipatory grief and the best way to get ready for a loved one's transition.Some Questions I Ask:Would you like to share a little about yourself and then share a compelling grief story? (2:42)How does someone with your background deal with the transition of her mother? (5:40)In my mind, trauma happens first, then we grieve, and if we don't heal the grief, it could lead to mental illness. What's your perspective on that? (9:54)In This Episode, You Will Learn:What are some of the tools Professor Theresa is using to deal with her mother's transition (7:28)How can we transform grief into temporary suffering and not a chronic pain that sticks with us (13:18)How powerful acceptance and forgiveness can be (16:25)What are the developmental ages of grief (20:54)Resources:Glen Mills Coaching & Consulting websiteConnect with Theresa:LinkedInInstagramFacebookLet's Connect!FacebookTwitterInstagramLinkedInWebsiteFacebook Group - Growing Through Grief Together

Grief Moments | 5 Ways to SHIFT Instantly

Ep. 27
For the last couple of weeks, we've been talking about grief during holidays and how hard it is to go through the celebrations season without our loved ones. Today, we touch on this topic again, but from a new perspective; we look at it from a spiritual point of view.In this episode, continuing our series about grieving through holidays, we get access to a new tool to help us decide how we want to go through them. I believe that no one should grieve alone, so staying connected with those who can provide support is crucial to help us navigate through significant loss. Throughout this show, we discover S.H.I.F.T, the tool that will help us surrender to higher intelligence, whether we call it God, light, or love, and learn how to shift unwanted emotions during the holidays.Tune in and listen to episode 27 of Growing Through Grief and learn to use this powerful tool that will help you deal with significant loss during the holidays.In This Episode, You Will Learn:How to restore trust in the divinity that lives within ourselves (2:54)We can decide today what to do with unwanted emotions during the holidays (6:09)The four commitments that will make the difference when applying the S.H.I.F.T tool (7:55)What is the S.H.I.F.T tool, and how it can help us surrender to a higher self (12:01)Why we must learn to stop suppressing our feelings (24:18)Let's Connect!FacebookTwitterInstagramLinkedInWebsiteFacebook Group - Growing Through Grief Together