Annual Emily Schindler Lecture explores ambiguous loss

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Dr. Carla Dahl will discuss ambiguous grief when she presents “Here But Not Here, Not Here But Here: Understanding and Managing Ambiguous Losses,” at the 14th annual Emily Schindler Memorial Lecture,

Chesapeake Life Center invites the community to the 14th annual Emily Schindler Memorial Lecture, “Here But Not Here, Not Here But Here: Understanding and Managing Ambiguous Losses,” presented by Dr. Carla Dahl, of St. Paul, Minnesota. The lecture will be held from 9 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. Wednesday, May 1, at Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center in the Asthma & Allergy Center’s Richard A. Grossi Auditorium, 5501 Hopkins Bayview Circle, Baltimore.

Ambiguous losses are perhaps the most challenging kind of loss, because it is not marked by a physical death. Examples of conditions that might cause this kind of loss include loved ones dealing with substance misuse, dementia, depression and other conditions where their identity changes before their death. When a person is physically absent yet psychologically present, or physically present yet psychologically absent, loved ones cannot get clarity about the loss. Family processes become complicated and grief may become frozen. Understanding the effects of this ambiguity can help us better support families and caregivers in maintaining hope and resilience. In this workshop, Dahl will explore research-based guidelines for working with families experiencing ambiguous loss.

This annual lecture was created in 2005 through a gift to the Schindler family from the Saint Agnes Cancer Center. Emily Schindler was an 18-year-old freshman at Frostburg State University and a member of the SPY swim team in Severna Park, Maryland, when she was tragically killed in a car accident in 2004.

Registration begins at 8:30 a.m. and a light breakfast will be provided. Maryland Board social workers can earn three Category 1 continuing education credits and counselors and therapists in Maryland can earn three Category A continuing education units. Preregistration is required and can be completed at The cost is $40, plus a $2.99 online fee.

For details, call 888-501-7077 or email

About the presenter: 

Dr. Carla Dahl is professor of Congregational and Community Care at Luther Seminary in St. Paul, Minnesota. She has trained therapists and clergy since 1993 and has a private counseling and consulting practice, working with individuals, couples and groups around issues of grief, spirituality, relationships and life transitions. Dahl has studied the effects of ambiguous loss for 30 years and has coauthored several chapters on how to support individuals and families in dealing with this stressful experience.

The Maryland Board of Social Work Examiners certifies that this program meets the criteria for 3.0 credit hours of Category 1 continuing education for Social Workers in Maryland. The Maryland Board of Professional Counselors and Therapists certifies that this program meets the criteria for 3.0 credit hours of Category A continuing education for Counselors and Therapists in Maryland.


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