An essential tool for parents, educators and clinicians to help process loss with a young child.
Riley and Milo: A puppy’s story coping with grief and loss
Processing death with a child is not an easy task. In fact, many people find it overwhelming and do not know how to initiate the conversation with young children. Using books, or bibliotherapy, as a method of explaining loss and grief is an effective tool for complex conversations. The book Riley and Milo leads young readers through the stages of grief such as: denial, anger, bargaining, sadness and acceptance. As the puppy Riley is processing the death of her best friend Milo, she explains her feelings and the impact of Milo’s death on her life. This book was created to help naturalize the emotions and experiences of young readers who are coping with grief and loss.
Meet the Author
Cassie L. D’Addeo, is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and Certified School Counselor residing in Manatee County, Florida. When moving to Florida three years ago, Cassie opened Green Couch Counseling, LLC a private counseling practice servicing children, adolescents and adults. Cassie has a passion for helping people and dedicated her life work to assisting people through life’s most difficult challenges.
This book was created as a graduate school project while completing an internship with Broward County Public Schools. In January 2010 prior to graduation, the earthquake in Haiti occurred bringing hundreds of children from Haiti to the Fort Lauderdale area. Many young children were experiencing extreme loss and grief from the aftermath of the earthquake. Cassie used bibliotherapy as a means of communicating and processing grief with the children. At this time, the first draft of the manuscript was created. Cassie graduated Nova Southeastern University with a masters degree in Marriage and Family Therapy and went on to provide clinical services in outpatient, residential, home-based, and in the school setting.
In May 2020, Cassie experienced her own loss, after tragically losing her canine companion, Riley. Riley was born in Wisconsin, May 2013, and started training to be a clinical therapy dog at eight weeks old. Within her first year of life, Riley completed her training, certification and her clinical internship with Youth and Family Counseling in Libertyville, Illinois. Riley served many years as Cassie’s co-therapist. In the Fall of 2020, Cassie’s mom suggested that she finish the project she started 10 years ago in honor of her canine co-therapist, Riley. After revisions and name changes, the final manuscript was completed. Riley and Milo: A puppy’s story of coping with grief and loss is Cassie’s first children’s book publication.