Thesis Title

Bereaved Adults' Art Therapy Group

Graduation Date

Spring 2013

Document Type

Master's Thesis

Document Form


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy

Degree Granting Institution

Notre Dame de Namur University

Program Name

Art Therapy


John Lemmon, PhD

First Reader

Richard Carolan, EdD, ATR-BC

Second Reader

Gwen Sanders, MFT, ART-BC


Grief and loss are inevitable experiences in life. Often, bereavement support can be helpful following the death of a loved one to help facilitate the grieving process. This paper first examines the prevalence of grief and the emotional experience of bereavement. The need for grief support and current treatment options are briefly reviewed. A discussion on the history and development of grief theory follows, including a brief review of specific psychotherapy theoretical views of bereavement. Finally, specific treatment modalities, group therapy and art therapy, are discussed - why and how the two are applied - before a specific treatment modality, group art therapy, is applied to bereavement and the possible benefits are discussed.