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Letters from Motherless Daughters: Words of Courage, Grief, and Healing Paperback – May 1996

4.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Paperback, May 1996

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Product details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Delta; Ex-library edition (May 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0385315228
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385315227
  • Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 1.3 x 19 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,757,940 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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First Sentence
Not long ago, I was speaking to an audience of about eighty motherless daughters when a woman in the back of the room (we'll call her Allison) raised her hand. Read the first page
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Very moving, but beyond that, a provider of wonderful insights on this difficult subject.
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Format: Paperback
Received book quite quickly and in good condition. After losing my mum suddenly in April 14 I needed some help with my grief. This book has helped. Very moving. Thank you.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0x9af5bf48) out of 5 stars 33 reviews
19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9accbae0) out of 5 stars Empathetic, not sympathetic 13 July 1998
By Potter - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I am 19 years old and lost my mother to a brain tumor on March 27, 1997. Hope's "Motherless Daughters" was the third bereavement-help book I had read, and by far surpassed my expectations. Without this book, I would have never known that all the feelings I have been consumed by since her death--guilt, anger, sadness and an incredible sense of loss (not only of her, but of my family altogether)--were normal. This past year has been incredibly difficult since my father remarried in June, one year and three months after Mom died. Hope's book addressed this and other issues that my family, friends, and even those I feel closest to do not dare to confront. This is a book you will want close to you during those endless nights of sadness, tears and hopelessness. It is a book that justified the burning anger I feel every time I think of all the moments in my life my mother and I would have shared if she had not died so young. "Motherless Daughters& quot; is a comforting presence--written by one who knows what it's like just as well as anybody. Thank you, Hope. If you had not written the book, I know I would have later in life!
I love you, Mom. Kathy Louise Laird O'Brien November 19, 1952 - March 27, 1997
29 of 34 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9b946f84) out of 5 stars Required reading for motherless daughters but flawed. 12 May 1999
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is definitely required reading for motherless daughters, but it is somewhat flawed. Edelman concentrates too much on the memoirs of teenage and young adult motherless daughters. She doesn't ignore the younger motherless child, but it is obvious that these daughers neither responded to her questionnaire or to her request for interviews. I read it and its sequel last evening. Our mother died in 1954, our father died in 1962, and I'd always thought my sisters and I were unique. We take for granted that if one of us is out of touch for more than five minutes, she's assumed "dead in a ditch somewhere." Two of us were conviced we would die at age 47, the age our mother was when she died. Only one of us is married; none of us had children, despite securing promises from one another all through our girlhood that we'd raise each other's children. We were convinced that if we became mothers, one of us or all of us wouldn't live to raise our children and we couldn't bear to impose on any child the same sort of childhood we'd had. Thanks to Hope Edelman, now I realize we're hardly unique, just garden variety motherless daughters who were orphaned between the ages of 7 and 13. In one of the "types" she details, I was flabbergasted by how accurately my own life was portrayed on the page. It'd be more interesting if there were more samples from older women who were orphaned before the age of 13. Certainly the sequel "Letters,..." is mostly from women who lost mothers in their 20s, probably because those were the people who wrote to Edelman after "Motherless Daughters..." first came out. No one's life is perfect. Daughters with very alive mothers can be worse off and often are. Having a mother doesn't guarantee an easier life story; you just believe it would be easier. That's self-pity. Edelman is caught up in post-modern psychologizing and therapy-speak which revels needlessly in self-pity. The real value of "Motherless Daughers..." is letting adults who were motherless children discover that they've been coping all these years in fairly predictable ways.
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9accc678) out of 5 stars Good book. 25 Jan. 2004
By K Scheffler - Published on
Format: Paperback
Several years ago, Hope Edelman wrote a book that was supposed to help women deal with the loss of a mother. She did this so that other women would not have to go through the ordeal she did. Specifically, the ordeal of not having an adequate reference for dealing with such a tragedy.
Her efforts resulted in the widely popular Motherless Daughters.
With the publication of the book came a flood of letters from women who wanted to share their own experiences with Edelman.
In response, Edelman has compiled many of these letters into the compact Letters from Motherless Daughters. The purpose of this book is to show the many ways in which women have come to deal with their tragic losses.
After reading letter upon letter, I too realized something that she claimed she was at first unaware of: one never gets over the loss of an important person. All one can do is either choose to mourn and dwell on the past, or choose to grow from the loss and continue on with life.
Many of the letters are poignant, while others are heart-wrenching. Yet others display a true sense of courage, while some reflect the confusion and agony that has invaded the daughter's life.
Reading such letters is beneficial to a certain degree--they open one's eyes to the bitter reality of dealing with death, and they allow one to see that others have also experiences similar feelings.
Although these letters do serve a crucial purpose, they are only letters. Nothing can truly dissipate the trauma of enduring the loss of a mother--it is something that no one can ever be fully prepaired for.
Letters from Motherless Daughters is a book whose value has to be discovered by the person reading it.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9accbe7c) out of 5 stars Very powerful 10 April 1998
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback
It will be 12 years in Aug since my mother died of cancer. I was in denial for a couple of years. I could not speak her name or hear her name, even though I wanted so badly to talk about her, without going into a crying jag. I was 20 and had to go through very important events and stages in my life without my mother. About 4 years ago my mother-in-law gave me a book Motherless Daughters. I think I cried through the whole book. It has been a very important part of my healing process. I am not alone and I am not crazy! Not a day goes by that I don't think about Mom and the love she had for me. She is my guardian angel.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9accc264) out of 5 stars Trying to pick up the pieces after a loss... 27 Mar. 1998
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Hardcover
When my mom died, I could not function. I was
in shock. I spent days staring out a window
thinking about all of the "what if's", and
playing the whole scene over and over in my
head torturing myself. I had a family to take
care of, but when my mom died, I could not
think of anything but my best friend, my mom.

I knew my family needed me, so I tried to get
some information on people who are grieving
after losing a parent. I went to a six week
grief program/ support group for help and, I read many books. But the one that helped me the
most was "Motherless Daughters".
It comforted me to read about others who have
gone through a simalar loss.

It has been 10 months since my mom has died. I
still miss and think about her every single
day, but I am able to take care of my family
and slowly enjoy life again. It will take a
long time to heal I am sure, but when I am
feeling blue, I take out my book and start
I love you Mom, Love Diana
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