photo of Debbie AugenthalerDebbie Augenthaler, LMHC, NCC

Debbie is a psychotherapist in private practice in New York City. Her husband, Jim, died suddenly in her arms when she was only 36 years old. He had been healthy and vibrant – the doctors compared the probability of his death by heart attack to being struck by lightning. That lightning strike ended her life as she knew it and thus began the “baptism by fire” that brought her to her new future.

Debbie’s award-winning book, You Are Not Alone, is the book she wishes she’d had when she was grieving, and is glad to have now to offer clients experiencing life-altering losses. With the connection of a shared experience, Debbie guides the reader through grief to transformation and a new beginning. You Are Not Alone is the 2018 Winner of the Foreword INDIES 2018 Book Awards, Grief/Grieving, and an Award Finalist in Health: Psychology/Mental Health for the 2019 International Book Awards.

As a psychotherapist specializing in trauma, grief, and loss, Debbie’s clinical training is steeped in Western traditions of healing. Interweaving the knowledge gained from her graduate studies, clinical training, working with many clients, and her life experiences has made her very curious and interested in how people have been dealing with grief and loss since the beginning of time. She has been on a wonderful journey of studying Eastern philosophy, energy healing, and exploring spiritual practices from cultures around the world, learning about the wisdom of the ages and the many different ways people have ritualized grief and healing. Ancient healing traditions incorporate the connection to that which is beyond our physical world, the connection to spirit, to earth, to all that is. To Love. She is building a bridge between the two traditions, using time-honored practices to inform her work with clients.

Debbie helps normalize common feelings and experiences for people who are grieving, and holds space for each of us to experience grief in our own way and time, because grief is not linear. There are many gifts that accompany loss, including spiritual awakenings, discovering the connection with forever love, developing deep compassion, and grateful appreciation for the blessings along the way from grief to healing to transformation and joy. Debbie has walked this path throughout her life and wants to help you on your path from grief to joy.

I believe we are all connected. No one should feel alone in their grief, their sorrow, their hope, their healing, their transformation.

Debbie has an MA in Counseling for Mental Health and Wellness from New York University. She completed a two year post graduate Advanced Trauma Studies program from the Institute of Contemporary Psychotherapy and is trained in various modalities that inform a holistically based practice including EMDR, Internal Family Systems, Sensorimotor Psychotherapy, Energy Psychology, and Hypnosis.

In 2012 she received the NYU Steinhardt Award for Outstanding Clinical Service.

Debbie speaks regularly in the New York area, and is available to give workshops, trainings and talks to professionals, grief support groups, and books groups around the country. To book Debbie, please visit her Workshops & Talks page.

She has also been featured in numerous interviews, articles, and podcasts. Visit her Press Page to learn more.

Instagram post 18090333049075246 Do you know why we use butterflies as a symbol of transformation? A caterpillar’s world is turned upside down, literally—it hangs from a twig or leaf and spins a cocoon, or molts into a chrysalis. Once it’s safely encased, the caterpillar digests itself, dissolving all its tissues. But the cells, the essence of the caterpillar, remain and reassemble, developing into a butterfly. When the transformation is complete, the butterfly emerges from the chrysalis. It’s amazing to watch. The butterfly is tentative at first, hanging upside down, letting its wilted wings dry and begin to firm. Then its wings start to flutter, and eventually it gains the strength to fly away.⁠
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#grieftogratitude #youarenotalone #debbieaugenthaler⁠
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Purchase the book 'You Are Not Alone: A Heartfelt Guide to Grief, Healing, and Hope' by Debbie Augenthaler. ⁠
LINK is in our profile. ⁠
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#wuvip #giftsofloss #griefandhealing #griefandloss #butterfly #butterflymedicine #findingstrength #takeyourtime #itsokaytogrieve #debbieaugenthalerauthor #youarenotalonebook #grief #grieving #grieveinyourownway #griefsupport #griefshare #griefisajourney #griefisaprocess #griefprocess #griefcounseling #therapy #therapyworks #healing #transformationquotes #transformation #griefquotes
Instagram post 17847247399608480 September 11th shows us the power of what happens when we come together in a shared experience of grief, humanity, and love. Together, we shoulder grief and we carry it together - this is how we get through it.
We are all connected, and in times like this, we remember.
Instagram post 17853106255537657 Remember, grief is not linear. You will go back and forth between all the phases of anger and denial and bargaining and depression and acceptance. Sometimes in one day. Sometimes in one hour. So as you stumble and stride and stop to gather strength along the way towards healing, be compassionate toward yourself.⁠
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#grieftogratitude #youarenotalone #debbieaugenthaler⁠
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Purchase the book 'You Are Not Alone: A Heartfelt Guide to Grief, Healing, and Hope' by Debbie Augenthaler. ⁠
LINK is in our profile. ⁠
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#wuvip #grievehoweveryougrieve #griefandhealing #griefandloss #debbieaugenthalerauthor #youarenotalonebook #grief #grieving #grieveinyourownway
Instagram post 17907081076356494 I felt I was supposed to be further along in my grieving because it had been a year. Not that people said this directly, but I know they thought it. This is not a criticism. If you’ve never suffered a devastating loss you can’t know how it feels—even though everyone will at some point in their lives. I felt like I was failing an unwritten rulebook of grief: wow, it’s been a year already and you’re still so steeped in it?⁠
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I was exhausted from trying to hold back my feelings so as not to make others uncomfortable. I was lucky to have the support of close loved ones and my therapist, but even so, I felt self-conscious and thought I was never going to feel okay again. Many of my clients have felt this way, and you might be feeling it, too. You will feel better, but you need to take the time you need. It’s okay to not be okay. And if you’re feeling much better, that’s okay, too. There is no rulebook! Remember, grief is not linear, and there is no timetable.⁠
#grieftogratitude #youarenotalone #debbieaugenthaler⁠
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Purchase the book 'You Are Not Alone: A Heartfelt Guide to Grief, Healing, and Hope' by Debbie Augenthaler. ⁠
LINK is in our profile. ⁠
⁠
#wuvip #grieftakestime #griefandhealing #griefandloss #takeallthetimeyouneed #itsokaytogrieve #debbieaugenthalerauthor #youarenotalonebook #grief #grieving #grieveinyourownway #griefsupport #griefshare #griefisajourney #griefisaprocess #griefprocess #griefcounseling #therapy #therapyworks #healing⁠
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Instagram post 17843024782621997 I see Dan before he sees me. I am walking along Main Street in our small suburban town on my way to the stationery store to buy thank you cards. Dan is less than two blocks away, his bright red parka contrasting with the piles of grey snow lining the sidewalks. I see him look up as he shifts his gaze from the sidewalk to my eyes. In that instant of recognition, I lift my hand to wave to him, but he is already looking back down at the pavement and stops walking. He turns to his right, looks both ways, and crosses the street. Away from me, away from the reminder I represent that his close friend is dead, pretending not to see me.⁠
Dan cries every time he sees me or talks to me on the phone. Other people do, too, but for Dan it seems to cut deeper and reminds him of the first days, and he has trouble moving beyond it. I stand there on this cold winter day and watch him cross the street. I feel rejected. When people see me in the post office, at the stores in our town, on the train going to and from work, they don’t see me as Debbie. I feel like they see me as the woman who carries grief with her and might pass it on to them like a disease.⁠
And so I stand here, on the central street in this small town, watching Dan’s red parka disappear into his safe place where grief won’t touch him this Saturday morning. I stand on the cold concrete, holding my grief and his grief too. I feel sorrow for his sadness. I understand my presence can make others uncomfortable. Instead of seeing me, they see what can so easily happen to them too. This awareness doesn’t make it any easier.⁠
Later, at home, I think of how difficult it is for some people to look into my eyes because they might see a woman trying to hold bits and pieces of herself together. For some, my eyes might reflect back the kind of pain they cannot bear to see.⁠
I have to remember that Dan is walking the walk of grief his own way, too. Sometimes this walk means avoiding the pain and crossing the street.⁠
I go to a friend’s house later that afternoon, a friend who can hold my gaze and has the strength to look at all of it with me, who lets me tell the same story over and over, and doesn’t pretend I’m not there.⁠
Instagram post 17910357160341284 It seems nothing teaches us about grief but grief itself.⁠
#grieftogratitude #youarenotalone #debbieaugenthaler⁠
Instagram post 18092193550005388 If someone can’t be there for you the way you need them to be, find someone who can and will.⁠
Continue to let others help you while you take the space and time you need. As much as you can, surround yourself with those who can hold you, hug you, love you, and listen.⁠
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#grieftogratitude #youarenotalone #debbieaugenthaler⁠
🦋⁠
🦋⁠
🦋⁠
🦋⁠
🦋⁠
Purchase the book 'You Are Not Alone: A Heartfelt Guide to Grief, Healing, and Hope' by Debbie Augenthaler. ⁠
LINK is in our profile. ⁠
⁠
#wuvip #griefandhealing #griefandloss #loveliveson #loveisforever #rememberwhoyouare #itsokaytogrieve #debbieaugenthalerauthor #youarenotalonebook #grief #grieving #grieveinyourownway #griefsupport #griefshare #griefisajourney #griefisaprocess #griefprocess #griefcounseling #therapy #therapyworks #healing
Instagram post 18067923151123816 Remember, grief is not linear. You will go back and forth between all the phases of anger and denial and bargaining and depression and acceptance. Sometimes in one day. Sometimes in one hour. So as you stumble and stride and stop to gather strength along the way towards healing, be compassionate toward yourself.⁠
⁠
⁠
#grieftogratitude #youarenotalone #debbieaugenthaler⁠
🦋⁠
🦋⁠
🦋⁠
🦋⁠
🦋⁠
Purchase the book 'You Are Not Alone: A Heartfelt Guide to Grief, Healing, and Hope' by Debbie Augenthaler. ⁠
LINK is in our profile. ⁠
⁠
#wuvip #giftsofloss #griefandhealing #griefandloss #gratitude #debbieaugenthalerauthor #youarenotalonebook #grief #grieving #grieveinyourownway #griefsupport #griefshare #griefisajourney #griefisaprocess #griefprocess
Instagram post 18045616522175080 I shared this on my Facebook page this week and a follower commented: 'It's amazing how everything we need is with us'⁠
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It is truly amazing. It can be difficult to hear this or to remember this when we are in deep grief, and that's okay. It's okay to not be okay. And I hope that today this serves as a gentle reminder. Deep within is the doorway to peace. Thank you Rumi for reminding us all. 🙏⁠
#grieftogratitude #youarenotalone #debbieaugenthaler #rumi⁠
🦋⁠
🦋⁠
🦋⁠
🦋⁠
🦋⁠
Purchase the book 'You Are Not Alone: A Heartfelt Guide to Grief, Healing, and Hope' by Debbie Augenthaler. ⁠
LINK is in our profile. ⁠
⁠
#wuvip #giftsofloss #griefandhealing #griefandloss #gratitude #thedoortothesanctuaryisinsideyou #rumiquotes #pain #healing #debbieaugenthalerauthor #youarenotalonebook #grief #grieving #itsokaytonotbeokay #grieveinyourownway #griefsupport
Instagram post 17866528885442143 When Jim first died, my Great Aunt Olga told me the pain doesn't go away, but you will learn how to live with it. This has been my experience. Other people have a different experience, telling me the pain does go away. For some, like me, it does not. It lessens, it integrates, and you learn how to live with it. It does not mean you have not healed, it means you’ve healed as much as you can. Everyone experiences loss in their own way. People love differently, heal differently, feel differently, cope differently.⁠
Grieving is complicated. It’s like a maze. You go back and forth, sometimes surprised to find yourself almost back where you started. So you take another step and start another path through the maze. You’ll try this way or that way until you find the way right for you. You may not see the end yet, the way out yet, but know it is there. The only way out of grief is to go through it.⁠
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An excerpt from You Are Not Alone: A Heartfelt Guide for Grief, Healing, and Hope by Debbie Augenthaler.⁠
Order your copy via the link in our profile.⁠
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#grieftogratitude #youarenotalone #debbieaugenthaler⁠
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#wuvip #learning #griefandhealing #griefandloss #gratitude #painfullessons #itsokaytogrieve #debbieaugenthalerauthor #youarenotalonebook #grief #grieving #grieveinyourownway #griefsupport #griefisajourney #griefprocess #griefcounseling #therapy #healing
Instagram post 18075154090073758 You will discover more losses along the way to healing. It will feel like a fresh new wound, for each loss merits its own mourning.⁠
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It’s important each loss is recognized and mourned. There’s no right way or wrong way; often it’s just knowing that, “Yes, feeling like I don’t know who I am anymore is all a natural part of this.” ⁠
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Take a deep breath. Whenever you feel like you can’t breathe, stop what you are doing and inhale deeply, as deeply as you can. Exhale. And then take another deep breath. Continue doing so until you feel you can breathe more easily. ⁠
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Give yourself time. Be compassionate and kind to yourself. And let people help you. Let them help bolster and support you. Whether it is a family member, a friend, or a professional, it’s immensely helpful to have someone to lean on, who will listen with love and support.⁠
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When you’re ready, grieve each loss in your own way, one that feels right for you.⁠
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An excerpt from You Are Not Alone: A Heartfelt Guide for Grief, Healing, and Hope by Debbie Augenthaler.⁠
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Order your copy via the link in our profile.⁠
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Wishing you light and peace 🦋
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“Your heart and my heart are very, very old friends”

— Hafiz

If you are in need of support, please CLICK HERE for a list of resources.

Crisis Resources

Emergency: 911

These numbers are provided for informational purposes only and may be subject to change.
All numbers are valid for the United States.

To find a qualified therapist, go to Psychology Today’s website, and follow the simple steps to find a therapist in your area. Here’s the link: https://www.psychologytoday.com/us    This is a world-wide resource. If you’re not in the US, go to the upper right hand corner of the page and change the country.

  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline:

1 (800) 273-8255

  • National Domestic Violence Hotline:

1 (800) 799-7233

  • Family Violence Helpline:

1 (800) 966-6228

  • National Hopeline Network:

1 (800) 784-2433

  • Self-Harm Hotline:

1 (800) 366-8288

  • Planned Parenthood Hotline:

1 (800) 230-7526

  • American Association of Poison Control Centers:

1 (800) 222-1222

  • Alcoholism & Drug Dependency Hope Line:

1 (800) 622-2255

  • National Crisis Line, Anorexia and Bulimia:

1 (800) 233-4357

  • GLBT Hotline:

1 (888) 843-4564

  • TREVOR Crisis Hotline:

1 (866) 488-7386

  • AIDS Crisis Line:

1 (800) 221-7044

  • Lifeline Crisis Chat:

(Online live messaging): http://www.crisischat.org/

  • Crisis Text Line:

Text “START” TO 741-741

  • Veterans Crisis

Live chat https://www.veteranscrisisline.net/,
Call 1-800-273-8255 (press 1)
Text 838-255

*This page and my website are not a substitute for psychotherapy or other forms of professional support.

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