Four Books on Grief and Loss

Grief and loss are universal experiences. The loss of a loved one is excruciating.

There is no one right way to grieve. Everyone’s experience with grief is unique and equally valid.

Some people may read books to understand why they feel the way they do, how long it lasts, and how to outgrow this distressing phase.

These four books here have different perspectives and approaches. They are written in diverse styles.

We hope you find the one book that resonates with you and helps you the most on your journey through grief and loss.

best books on grief and loss
Photo by Maisie Kane, Pexels

1. It’s OK That You’re Not OK

it's ok that you're not ok - book on grief

The opening lines of the first chapter, The Reality of Loss, reads like someone who understands your pain:

Here’s what I most want you to know: this really is as bad as you think.

No matter what anyone else says, this sucks. What has happened cannot be made right. What is lost cannot be restored. There is no beauty here, inside this central fact.

Acknowledgment is everything.

You’re in pain, It can’t be made better.

The reality of grief is far different from what others see it from the outside. There is pain in this world that you can’t be cheered out of.

You don’t need solutions. You don’t need to move on from your grief. You need someone to see your grief, to acknowledge it. You need someone to hold your hands while you stand there in blinking horror, staring at the hole that was your life.

Some things cannot be fixed. They can only be carried.

2. Grief Is Love: Living with Loss

grief is love - book on grief

I found these lines from the book Grief Is Love so insightful:

Whether you’re a witness to slow death or the death of person was sudden, few people are going to actively encourage your grief, at least not after the funeral. Not because they don’t love you, but because, as human beings, we have a natural inclination to do whatever we can to help people “shake off” negative emotions and move on to a more “positive” place. When people see you sad or brokenhearted or angry when grieving, they will be inclined to want to help fix it, to take it away. But sometimes that isn’t possible. You should not feel guilty for your grieving. You love the person you lost or are losing, and grief will likely be with you in some form for the rest of your life.

We often feel guilt about grief because there is always this sense that we’re not supposed to do it, we’re not doing it right, or we’re doing it too much; but when you’re grieving, nothing feels quite right. Give yourself permission to approach grief however it feels right to you, however it shows up.

3. Bearing the Unbearable

bearing the unbearable - book on grief

Bearing the Unbearable is a Foreword INDIES Award-Winner — Gold Medal for Self-Help.

A few lines from the book:

It almost seems that the only way to eradicate our grief would be to relinquish the love we feel—to disassemble our loved one’s place in our lives. But checking in with the wisdom of our heart, we see that is impossible.

Grief and love occur in tandem.

This book is an invaluable read not just for the bereaved, but also for grief counselors, therapists, social workers, educators, and medical professionals.

4. Your Grief, Your Way

your grief your way - book on grief

The January 7 entry in Your Grief, Your Way book reads as:

“Grief is a story that must be told, over and over.” — Sallie Tisdale

We tell the story of our grief for two reasons: first, to solidify in our brains and hearts that life without our loved one is our new reality; and second, to realize that we are not alone. Just as grief is not a one-time event, telling the story of our loss is not an one-time event, either. We must share the story of what happened, to make sense of it for ourselves and to connect with others who are experiencing similar pain.

Final Words

it's ok to grieve your way (PIN)

Grief is a personal journey, and there is no single right way to experience it.

If you can’t find a book that speaks to you, talk to a trusted grief counselor.


√ Also Read: Stoic Way of Handling Grief And Loss: Timeless Wisdom

√ Please spread the word if you found this helpful.

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