The Benefits of Writing Through Your Grief

Writing through your grief, by keeping a journal of your feelings or writing about the loss of a loved one can be very helpful in working through your bereavement.

Many people write letters to the lost loved one as a way of expressing how they feel. Stephanie Ericsson puts this very well:

Writing letters is a way that we can express a part of ourselves that we can't seem to say out loud”

 From Companion through the Darkness - Inner dialogues on grief.

Some people say writing through their grief is the only way they have coped. And those who have written books or diaries and had them published say that it is the best way of keeping their loved one alive and making sense of the whole process. It is a permanent reminder of the loved one.

Writing Through Your Grief Can Be Therapeutic

You don't have to be a great writer, or get published. But writing may help you to sort out your thoughts and to express your emotions. You might like writing poems or short stories, or just a daily journal of your feelings. It might be a therapeutic thing to do, as after a few weeks, you can look back and be proud of the progress you are making.  You can just use a notebook or regular diary, but there are many specialised grief journals available these days with quotes, prompts and suggestions for where to start like the one above or this one:  

Grief Journaling 

Some of the best books on grief are by those who started writing a grief journal in order to cope with their loss.

Our friend, the well-known physiotherapist Sarah Key, suffered the tragic loss of her little boy Freddie at age 3 months. She started writing a bereavement journal and it became a wonderfully frank and honest account of her experience and how she got through it. It’s a painful story, but her brave attitude and strength can give hope to others who are in the same situation.

Research on Writing for Grief Therapy

There has been some research done on the benefits of writing through your grief. It says that, though you may feel pain or sadness immediately after writing about your grief, there are definite long-term health benefits associated with it. Only 15 minutes of journal writing a day, for four consecutive days has been shown to be good for the immune system. This is good news for those in grief, as it tends to be a time when you go down with colds and flu and infections.

More recently, researchers have looked into the best ways of doing grief journaling for maximum benefit. You can find out more about that here. 

Other Ways of Expressing Grief

Perhaps writing through your grief is not for you, as some people may not feel comfortable expressing themselves in words. You might like to turn to art, or music. You might feel better drawing or painting, or playing a musical instrument to get in touch with your emotions.

Read our page on expressing your grief through art, music, dance, theatre and writing. 
Grief Journal with Art, Poetry and MoreGrief Journal with Art by Christine Haldane

Related Pages: 

Grief Journal Prompts

Grief Poetry and Art Books

Books on Coping with Grief

10 Ways to Cope with Grief

Where to get help: 

Have You Considered One-on-One Online Grief Counseling? 

Get Expert and Effective Help in the Comfort of Your Own Home

The following information about online counseling is sponsored by 'Betterhelp' but all the opinions are our own. To be upfront, we do receive a commission when you sign up with 'Betterhelp', but we have total faith in their expertise and would never recommend something we didn't completely approve.  

Do you feel alone and sad with no support and no idea how to move forward?  It can be tough when you are stuck in grief to find the motivation to get the most out of your precious life. 

Online counseling can help by giving you that support so you don't feel so alone. You can have someone to talk to anytime you like, a kind and understanding person who will help you to find meaning in life again, to treasure the memories of your loved one without being overwhelmed and to enjoy your activities, family and friends again.

  • Simply fill out the online questionnaire and you will be assigned the expert grief counselor most suitable for you.  It only takes a few minutes and you don't even have to use your name.  
  • Pay an affordable FLAT FEE FOR UNLIMITED SESSIONS.  
  • Contact your counselor whenever you like by chat, messaging, video or phone. 
  • You can change counselor at any time if you wish.
  • Click here to find out more and get started immediately.
  • Or read more about how online counseling works here.  
Woman Crying. Get Started with Online Counselling

Sales from our pages result in a small commission to us which helps us to continue our work supporting the grieving.  

Hypnosis for Grief - 10 Ways It Can Help You

Try a gentle hypnotherapy track to relax the mind. Learn how self-hypnosis can help you cope with grief at any time of the day or night.  

Read more about it here. 

For Remembrance: 

Sales from our pages result in a small commission to us which helps us to continue our work supporting the grieving.  

Heart Shaped Sterling Silver Pendant for Cremation Ashes, Engraved Forever Loved

Memorial Jewelry to Honour a Loved One

Check out our lovely range of memorial jewelry for any lost loved one.  Pendants, necklaces, rings or bracelets, we have them all in all kinds of styles.  Choose for yourself or buy as a sympathy gift. 

Click here to see our selection

Create an Online Memorial Website

Honour your loved one with their own memorial website.  Share photos, videos, memories and more with your family and friends in a permanent online website.  Free for basic plan with no ads. 

Find out more here. 

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"The 10 Most Important Things You Can Do
To Survive Your Grief And Get On With Life"

Our free downloadable and printable document "The 10 Most Important Things You Can Do To Survive Your Grief And Get On With Life" will help you to be positive day to day.  

The 10 points are laid out like a poem on two pretty pages which you can pin on your fridge door to help you every day! 

All you have to do to receive this free document is fill in your email address below. 

You will also receive our newsletter which we send out from time to time with our newest comforting and helpful information.   You can unsubscribe any time you like, and don't worry, your email address is totally safe with us. 

NEW BONUS - Also receive a copy of our short eBook - '99 Ways to Spot a Great Grief Counselor'.  Available for instant download as soon as you sign up. Never waste money on poor counseling again! 

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