Grief and Book Recommendations

Sunday, November 18th, 2012

I just finished Melody Beattie’s Co-Dependent No More.  I highly recommend.  In fact, if you are reading this and you share a similar story to mine, there are two books that I ask you to take the time to read:  The before mentioned book as well as What to Do When Your Spouse Says I Don’t Love You Anymore by Dr. David Clarke.

I mentioned these two books in one of my groups this past week.  We subsequently did an anger exercise during the session (completely unrelated to the books).  One of the gals, as she was physically expressing her anger, mentioned how tired she is of these types of self-help books.  She said she was angry that she had to take the time to read them.  I get that, completely valid.  There are a ton out there and some are pretty much worthless, but not these two.

One of the things I enjoyed being reminded of while reading Beattie’s book was Kubler-Ross’s Five Stages of Grief.  The stages are listed below:

  1. Denial
  2. Anger
  3. Bargaining
  4. Depression
  5. Acceptance


Although this model was initially constructed to aid in the process that a person goes through while dying, it is also commonly used in the counseling field to help people understand the grieving process that they will go through when faced with tragedy.

Several things from this part of the book that really spoke to me:

“Denial isn’t lying.”  “Denial is the shock absorber for the soul.”

In regards to stage four, depression:  “This stage of the process begins when we humbly surrender…it will disappear…only when the process has been worked out and through.”

In regards to the process as a whole:  It’s a “necessary” process.  The process may take minutes or it may take years, depending on the severity of the situation.  It isn’t a linear model and it may be that you skip back and forth and repeat stages before completion.  And last, “the only way out is through.”

Last week, one of the wise souls in my support group made a comment that made so much sense to me:  she told me that I may grieve letting go of my career possibly forever.  She said for her, grieving the loss of her mom, she feels will be a lifelong process.

There was freedom in hearing this.  Those lies of “what’s wrong with me?” and “why can’t I get over this?” were replaced with the truth…that grieving is a process.  It looks different for everyone.  And there is no way around it.  We must work through it to live life to the fullest.

So, here’s to working through the grief process.  Whether it’s the death of your marriage, the death of a loved one, or shattered dreams of what you thought your life, in some way, really looked like.


One comment on “Grief and Book Recommendations

  1. Jamie

    April 4, 2018  |  08:52 am

    This was so good! So much insight in this post. I will be ordering this book ASAP.

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