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Motherless Daughters

Healing From Early Mother Loss

1440 Multiversity 800 Bethany Drive Scotts Valley,CA 95066

The mother-daughter bond is a primal one—losing it to death at a young age can be profoundly disruptive. Unable to grieve as children and teens, motherless daughters often experience lifelong feelings of shame, guilt, and alienation.

Join grief and loss counselor Hope Edelman, MA, and licensed therapist Claire Bidwell Smith, LCPC, to explore the common long-term effects of early mother loss and find meaningful ways to reconnect with your mother.

You will gain a greater understanding of the ties between present and past through journaling, experiential activities, journal writing exercises, and small-group work. Designed especially for daughters who lost their mother before the age of 20, you will:

  • Reexamine the concept of so-called “normal” adult femininity and what feels comfortable and appropriate for you
  • Understand that you are not alone in your experiences and that much of what you’ve faced in life is a common outcome of early mother loss
  • Revisit coping skills you relied on as a child—necessary for survival then—and avenues to letting go of old approaches and re-authoring your life story
  • Experience re-membering (a narrative therapy practice), letter writing, and guided visualizations to put your new learning into practice.

You will leave with new self-care tools, new ways to cope with the daily stresses of life, and new insights into present-day relationships. The program will be tailored to the unique needs of the group.

Hope Edelman, MA | Claire Bidwell Smith, LCPC

January 28 - February 2, 2018
Sunday-Friday , 5 nights

$425 Tuition

Plus 5 nights all-inclusive accommodations priced separately below.

Register

Program Description

The mother-daughter bond is a primal one—losing it to death at a young age can be profoundly disruptive. Unable to grieve as children and teens, motherless daughters often experience lifelong feelings of shame, guilt, and alienation.

Join grief and loss counselor Hope Edelman, MA, and licensed therapist Claire Bidwell Smith, LCPC, to explore the common long-term effects of early mother loss and find meaningful ways to reconnect with your mother.

You will gain a greater understanding of the ties between present and past through journaling, experiential activities, journal writing exercises, and small-group work. Designed especially for daughters who lost their mother before the age of 20, you will:

  • Reexamine the concept of so-called “normal” adult femininity and what feels comfortable and appropriate for you
  • Understand that you are not alone in your experiences and that much of what you’ve faced in life is a common outcome of early mother loss
  • Revisit coping skills you relied on as a child—necessary for survival then—and avenues to letting go of old approaches and re-authoring your life story
  • Experience re-membering (a narrative therapy practice), letter writing, and guided visualizations to put your new learning into practice.

You will leave with new self-care tools, new ways to cope with the daily stresses of life, and new insights into present-day relationships. The program will be tailored to the unique needs of the group.

Faculty Bio

Hope Edelman, MA

Hope Edelman is the internationally best-selling author of Motherless Daughters, Motherless Mothers, and the memoir The Possibility of Everything. Her therapy practice is centered on helping other women heal from the lifelong effects of early parent loss.

Her work has inspired more than 40 Motherless Daughters groups and annual luncheons worldwide, and she has developed and co-led Motherless Daughters Retreats with author and therapist Claire Bidwell Smith since 2016.

Hope holds a master’s degree in nonfiction writing from the University of Iowa, and has been teaching memoir writing for more than 20 years, most recently in the master’s of fine arts program at Antioch University, Los Angeles. Hope is also a Martha Beck-trained life coach specializing in grief and loss.

Her writing has appeared in magazines, newspapers, and anthologies ranging from the New York Times to Real Simple to CNN.com. She is an Alumni Fellow at the University of Iowa and an inductee in the Medill Hall of Achievement at Northwestern University, where she received her undergraduate journalism degree.

 

Claire Bidwell Smith, LCPC

Claire Bidwell Smith is a therapist specializing in grief, and the author of two books about grief and loss. Published in 17 countries, The Rules of Inheritance, a coming-of-age memoir about grief, was a Books for a Better Life Award nominee and a Barnes and Noble Discover Great New Writers selection. After This: When Life Is Over Where Do We Go? chronicles Claire’s journey as a grief therapist searching for meaning as she explores various beliefs about the afterlife.

Claire has a bachelor’s degree from The New School university and a master’s degree in clinical psychology from Antioch University. She works as a writing coach and manuscript consultant, providing clients with writing direction, editing, and publishing tips.

She has a private practice in Los Angeles, California, and leads grief and writing workshops and retreats around the country. She has written for numerous publications, including the New York Times, The Huffington Post, Salon.com, Slate, Psychology Today, Yoga Journal, and Chicago Public Radio.

Why Attend

  • Explore the lifelong effects of early mother loss in a community of like-minded women in a safe space to cry, laugh, stretch, and grow.

  • Join a nationwide sisterhood of women who understand the particular needs of early mother loss, and share your fears, challenges, hopes, and triumphs.

  • Empower yourself with new communication skills for interacting with family members, and find a new sense of connection to your mother, no matter how long she has been gone.

Things to Know

  • Program Schedule

    Download a sample schedule.

  • Prerequisites

    Open to women of any age who lost mothers to death during childhood and adolescence (up to and including age 20).

  • Experience Level

    None required.

  • What to Wear

    Comfortable clothes, including exercise clothing for a yoga class

  • Recommended Reading

    Motherless Daughters, Hope Edelman
    The Rules of Inheritance, Claire Bidwell Smith

  • Special Interest to

    Helping professionals who work with women and/or are motherless daughters themselves

Accommodations

Standard Double
Affordable comfort with a hall bathroom.
Weeknight rates from $160 per person per night based on double occupancy.*

Standard Single
Affordable solo comfort with a shared hall bathroom.**
Weeknight rates from $175.

Traditional Double
Tastefully designed rooms with a range of bed sizes.
Weeknight rates from $190 per person per night based on double occupancy.*

Suites
Spacious rooms with additional seating and special touches.
Weeknight rates from $330 per person per night based on double occupancy.*

Pods
Modern, Asian-style sleeping space for 8 with twin beds.
Available for booking in mid-February 2018.
Weeknight rates from $140 per person per night.*

Commuter Pass
Register for a program without spending the night. Includes all meals + use of campus amenities. Limited availability.
Weeknight rates from $95 per program night.***

Accommodation rates include more than just the bed you sleep in. Per-person per-night rates include:

  • nourishing farm-to-table meals
  • daily meditation and yoga classes
  • non-ticketed evening events
  • use of all facilities, including the fitness center, steam rooms, and whirlpool.

Guests also enjoy access woodland trails, and enjoy cafés, shops, and evening programs.

*Plus tax. Includes meals, activities, and services. There is an additional charge to book a room privately.
**Plus tax. Includes meals, activities, and services. Limited availability.
***Plus tax. A program night starts upon check-in and goes through lunchtime of the following day (roughly 24 hrs).

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