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Addressing forms of pandemic grief

Jaime Elizabeth Blackmon and Teresa Schreiber Werth appear on "Connections with Evan Dawson" on Friday, April 22, 2022.
Megan Mack
/
WXXI News
Jaime Elizabeth Blackmon and Teresa Schreiber Werth appear on "Connections with Evan Dawson" on Friday, April 22, 2022.
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The recent debate in federal court over a mask mandate for public transit has highlighted a polarizing question related to the pandemic: is it time to "move on?" While some people are ready to resume life as it was pre-pandemic, others say it's too soon, the risks are too great, and the losses have been too much to bear. Meanwhile, psychiatrists have added a new disorder to their field's diagnostic manual: prolonged grief disorder. The New York Times reports that the addition comes as experts are predicting a wave of severe bereavement.

This hour, we discuss pandemic-related grief, the forms it may take, and how local artists and creative professionals are working to help people process grief. Our guests:

  • Annalisa Barron, artist and filmmaker in the College of Art and Design at RIT, and residency curator at Writers & Books 
  • Jaime Elizabeth Blackmon, psychology intern at Rochester Regional Health, and doctoral candidate at the University of Connecticut
  • Susan Begy, interdisciplinary artist, and artist in residence at Writers & Books
  • Teresa Schreiber Werth, writer, editor of "Navigating the Pandemic: Stories of Hope and Resilience," and certified funeral and wedding celebrant 
Evan Dawson is the host of "Connections with Evan Dawson." He joined WXXI in January 2014 after working at 13WHAM-TV, where he served as morning news anchor. He was hired as a reporter for 13WHAM-TV in 2003 before being promoted to anchor in 2007.
Megan Mack is the executive producer of "Connections with Evan Dawson" and live/televised engagement programming.
Emmarae Stein is the production assistant for "Connections with Evan Dawson."