Ruthless Grieving: The Journey to Acceptance and Beyond
  A Combination of Personal Memoir and 
Therapeutic Advice From a Clinical Psychologist

Dr. Susan Powers Takes Us Beyond the Five Stages of Grief 
And Explores the Intensive Emotional Work for Surviving Traumatic Loss


“In helping us mobilize that ruthless part of ourselves, Dr. Powers offers hope and healing, a way in and a way out. She takes the reader by the hand and leads them through their own darkness and back into the light.”  ~ Dr. Tian Dayton



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Ruthless Grieving is not judging anyone for how they deal with loss.  Everyone grieves differently and in their own way.  It is allowing for that in the people around you and with yourself.


Ruthless Grieving is not purposely hurting anyone for any reason.  It is taking careful care of yourself when you are at a loss.   Other people may not like some of those actions, like going back to work right away or taking a trip or taking to bed for a while, but you do them anyway.


Ruthless Grieving is not cruel or dark.  It is the extreme of self care and is about being permissive to oneself.


Ruthless Grieving is not caretaking others to the extreme, so that your needs don’t get met.  It is meeting your needs no matter what.


Ruthless Grieving is not diving into drugs or alcohol or isolation.  It is facing up to the pain and going through it.


Ruthless Grieving is not avoiding the journey of grief, but staying with it as much as you can.


Ruthless Grieving is not having a negative attitude.  It is positive and proactive.  It is not self pitying, but knowing that you are heading toward something better and that shit happens.


Ruthless Grieving is not taking actions by rote or according to strict tradition.  It is being creative and intuitive and doing things the way you feel guided to do them whether it's a funeral or memorial service.


SAG HARBOR, NY – July 31, 2015   

In 2001, Susan Powers, Ph.D. lost her husband to cancer and three months late rher daughter to a heroin overdose.  She was flattened by what she describes as an emotional “shock and awe” and post-traumatic stress. She quickly learned that she had to be proactive and single-minded in her attempts to recover by matching her grief with her own zealous action.  


Dr. Powers’ creates the concept of ruthless grieving.  “Grief takes hold of you and doesn’t let go until it is complete,” she writes.  “I found that I had to tap into the ruthless parts of myself in order to push back and through to the other side of loss.”  It meant “being on your own side” and sustaining a practice of self-care, ruthlessly, no matter what!  Ruthless Grieving is filled with emotional wisdom as well as practical suggestions to guide anyone through deep loss and grief.


The author shares the experience of her daughter’s heroin overdose, or what she calls the “unheroic death” from alcoholism, addiction or suicide.   Her stories reflect the anger, people pleasing, co-dependency, guilt and very complex nature of traumatic grief.  Dr. Powers found that to confront the personal shame and blame she had to give herself permission to feel, to speak the truth, and tell her daughter’s story of addiction.  The book offers inspiration to families struggling with unresolved grief and the sense of betrayal from the unfortunate passing of their loved one.


Ruthless Grieving: The Journey to Acceptance and Beyond is about finding your own creative and unique ways to move through the pain towards acceptance.  It is an emotional guidepost on how to show up for the transformation and even thrive in the face of loss.  



Susan Powers is a clinical psychologist who has been in private practice in New York City and the East End of Long Island for over thirty years.  After receiving her Ph.D. from Fordham University in the Bronx, she studied Gestalt Synergy with Ilana Rubenfelf.  She has led workshops on Recovery from Codependency and also on Grieving for many years.  Dr. Powers has been a workshop leader at Onsite in Tennessee and at the Caron Foundation in Pennsylvania, two major codependency treatment centers.  She has studied Psychdrama with Tian Dayton and Experiential Therapy with Sharon Wegheider-Cruse.  Susan lives in New York City and in Sag Harbor on the East End of Long Island.


Ruthless Grieving: The Journey to Acceptance and Beyond
By Susan Powers, Ph. D.
Mystic Mermaid Publishing
Publication Date:  September 15, 2015
Price: $15.00
Pages: 264
ISBN # 978-0-69250-843-5


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