Living Well and Dying Well: tales of counselling older people
by Helen Kewell
Foreword by Emmy can Deurzen
Older people rarely feature in counselling literature, and the very old barely at all. In this resonant collection of case studies, Helen Kewell describes her encounters with some of the old and very old clients with whom she has worked as a counsellor.
Among them, we meet Maggie, for whom death is very close and whose day-to-day experiencing is diminished to a few hours of wakefulness. We meet Alice and Kate, for whom reawakened feelings from long ago and the challenge to explore strongly held beliefs prove too much and unwelcome, and Bobby, who valiantly engages in reassessing and reconstructing his life narrative and through this finds some release.
The common thread throughout is the recognition of the human potential for growth, change and acceptance, regardless of age and ill health. Woven into each account are the theoretical and philosophical works that have guided Helen in this largely undocumented and uncharted territory.