After viewing the case with Sally and Mike it is apparent that Sally is having difficulty letting go of her son. Looking at the way that Mike has handled the death of their son, he has accepted and moved on. For starters Mike has to be made to understand that everyone handles death differently and especially the loss of a child. There is one issue that I do have with this case; it hasn’t been stated how much time has passed since the death of the child, there for trying to figure out what stage Sally should in her grief is kind of hard to pinpoint.
According to Kubler-Ross there are five stages of death and they are; denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance. It appears that Sally is stuck in the depression, bargaining and the guilt stage, which is keeping her from moving forward. In Sally’s case, I would start with the counseling, trying to find out what the death of her child has meant to her.
Letting her know that her feelings are valid and it is okay for her to feel such pain with her loss.
I would ask Sally “thinks of all they special moments that she did have, embrace her memories and it is okay to hurt, but with time the pain will ease and she will be able to move on. I would use the “C” method from the “ABC Model”, by trying to find different ways for Sally to cope with her sons’ death. I would suggest that she join a support group for a parent’s whose children died from a terminal illness. Joining a group with others that have had the same experience could give Sally the support she needs.
In Mikes case I would suggest that he attend some meetings with Sally to show support, with Sally being so fragile and having difficulty if she were to attend these meetings on her own it could end their marriage if they aren’t on the same page (which at the moment they aren’t), I also think that family therapy would also be a good thing also, so that Sally and Mike can have someone to listen to them both, where they can be taught to comminute in a better way that will lend a hand in helping them understand why they are in two different places concerning the death of their son.