Joan DelFattore writes about living single
in a couples-oriented culture, with emphasis on improving access to health care
for adults who are divorced, separated, widowed, or never married. A
peer-reviewed scholarly article was published in the New England Journal
of Medicine, and personal essays have appeared in the Washington Post, Herald Tribune, Psychology Today, and many
more. She gave a TedX talk, "Sick While Single Don't Die
of Discrimination," as well as doing a podcast for Cure
and an interview for All
Her earlier publications include three
books with Yale University Press and dozens of articles, mostly about freedom
of speech. Her work has won awards from the American Library Association, the
American Educational Research Association, and the Spencer Foundation, among
others. In addition to speaking at conferences and events throughout the
country, she's appeared on dozens of talk shows, notably 20/20, Radio
Times, Fresh Air, Talk of the Nation, All Things
Considered, and the Diane Rehm Show. She holds a Ph.D. in
English and an M.S. in clinical psychology from Penn State University, and was
a professor at the University of Delaware for more than thirty years.
After retiring in 2014, DelFattore
established a Writing as Healing program at the Christiana Care Health System
in Delaware, teaching research-based techniques for using writing to reduce
stress and improve quality of life. The program has served more than 600
patients, caregivers, and staff, and in 2017, she added narrative medicine
workshops for physicians. She has also created a Reflective
Healing website offering a brief explanation of therapeutic uses of
reflective writing, thoughtful reading of literature, and story-telling. The
website also provides links to podcasts, videos, books, medical and
psychological studies, and other resources.
DelFattore is an active member of the
Cosmos Club, the Wilmington (Delaware) Rotary Club, the International Women's
Forum, Mystery Writers of America (New York chapter), and the Authors Guild.
She divides her time between her home in Newark, Delaware, and New York
(2019). Death by Stereotype?
Cancer Treatment in Unmarried Patients. New England Journal of Medicine,
381(10), pp. 982-985. DOI: 10.1056/NEJMms1902657.
Physician Bias Against Unmarried Patients with Cancer"
(podcast). Cure. September 26, 2019.
with Sarah Williams. i3Health News and Perspectives. 12 Sept. 2019.
with Bella DePaulo, Ph.D. Single at Heart. Psych Central, 9 Sept.
"How to Find
the Right Specialist." Folks Magazine. 28 Feb. 2019.
of Departure." Pulse: Voices from the Heart of Medicine. 8 April 2019.
Single People are Shortchanged in the Health Care System." Co-authored
with Bella DePaulo, Ph.D. Living Single. Psychology Today. 10 March
Cancer Treatment Can Differ for Those Who Aren't Married" (radio
interview). All Things Considered. NPR. December 9, 2018.
Single with Cancer, You May Get Less Aggressive Treatment Than a Married Person.”
Washington Post, 30 November 2018.
in American Medicine." Co-authored with Bella DePaulo, Ph.D. The
Health Psychologist, 13 November 2018.
to Retro: Reading, Then Meeting, Erica Jong." Living Single. Psychology
Today. 13 November 2018.
"Life After The
Sell-By Date." Folks Magazine. 24 August 2018.
"When Singlism Wears a White Coat: Discrimination Against Singles in the Health Care System." Living Single. Psychology Today. 21 March 2018.
"Stop Asking People Whether They're Married -- Even as an Icebreaker." Co-authored with Bella DePaulo, PhD. Quartz. 21 Sept. 2017.
"We're Single, So What" Singular Magazine, August 3, 2017. Reprinted as "What Solo Travelers Do Not Need or Want." Single at Heart. Psych Central, 14 Sept. 2017.
"Confronting Singlism in the Psychology Classroom." Living Single. Psychology Today. 2 May 2017.
"Please, Doctor, Don't Rush on My Account." KevinMD. Medpage Today, 31 Jan. 2017.
"Good God, The Swine Have Got Daddy." Mystery Writers of America (New York Chapter), 30 Jan. 2017.
"It's Time for Singles to Stop Subsidizing Couples." Single at Heart. Psych Central, 22 Jan. 2017.
"I'm 70 and Single. I Have a Strong Support System. But When I Got Sick, It Wasn't Enough." Solo-ish. Washington Post, 22 Nov. 2016; reprinted as "Medical System Could Be More Singles-Friendly," Herald Tribune, 29 Nov. 2016.
"Patients without Partners, and the Doctors Who Stereotype Us." KevinMD. Medpage Today, 21 Nov. 2016; reprinted in The Medical Republic, 23 Nov. 2016.
"Why I'm Single, Then and Now." Living Single. Psychology Today, 12 Nov. 2016.
"In a Hospital, Friends Are Not People." Single at Heart. Psych Central, 31 Oct. 2016.