Dealing with grief is not easy. We have compiled this list of books and videos on grief that may help you learn how you and your children can cope in a healthy way.
Books and Videos for Children and Teens
THE FALL OF FREDDIE THE LEAF by Dr. Leo Buscaglia – A metaphorical story of life and death, and the changing seasons of life.
I HEARD YOUR MOMMY DIED by Mark Scrivant – Children ages two to six can relate to this book. Children know they can cry, be sad, play, and remember Mommy. Their love never dies.
LIFETIMES by Bryan Mellonie & Robert Ingpen – Explains life and death in a beautiful and caring way, and is directed towards younger children. LIFETIMES tells about beginnings, ending, and the living in between, and the fact that dying is a part of living.
WHAT ON EARTH DO YOU DO WHEN SOMEONE DIES? by Trevor Romain – When Trevor Romain’s father died, he didn’t know what to do, say, or feel. He began writing about his experiences and feelings, and he talks directly to kids about death and how to cope.
STRAIGHT TALK ABOUT DEATH FOR TEENAGERS: How to Cope with Losing Someone You Love by Earl A. Grollman – Speaks directly to the hearts and minds of teenagers who are coping with the death of a family member or friend. Excellent advice and wisdom from an author who understands both grief and teenagers.
WHEN A FRIEND DIES by Marilyn E. Gootman, Ed.D. – Directed towards teens, this book focuses on the specific emotions and turmoil they feel after losing a friend. Also ideal for parents and teachers of grieving teens.
AARVY AARDVARK FINDS HOPE (video) – Aarvy’s family has all been taken far, far away, and Aarvy is full of despair and hopelessness. Ralphie Rabbit befriends Aarvy and helps him learn about the strengths within himself.
STANDING TALL (video) – Seven teenagers share their stories of dealing with a loved one’s death. They tell how they heard the news, how they felt, and how they coped and moved on. Included in their stories: deaths of a grandfather, father, mother, brother, sister, cousin, and aunt.
Books and Videos for Adults
LIVING WHEN A LOVED ONE HAS DIED by Earl A. Grollman – In this best-selling guide to coping with grief, easy-to-read meditations help us cope with denial, anger, loss, letting go, and moving on.
REMEMBERING WITH LOVE by E. Levang and S. Lise – The messages of hope are short, readable pages that affirm, support, and teach about loss and love.
HELPING THE GRIEVING STUDENT: A Guide for Teachers by The Dougy Center – Discusses the grieving process that occurs in every age group from toddlers to teens. Each section lists common behaviors to expect and gives advice on helping each age group cope. Special focus is placed on helping school-aged children cope with death.
HOW CAN I HELP? By June Cerza Kolf – Offers expert advice on the grieving process. A hospice coordinator and bereavement director, Kolf shares real-life stories and walks readers through the grieving process, step-by-step.
LOSING A PARENT by Fiona Marshall – Explores in detail the emotional impact such as depression, sibling conflict, guilt, even physical distress that a parent’s death may cause.
WHY ARE THE CASSEROLES ALWAYS TUNA? by Darcie D. Simms – A loving look at the lighter side of grief that affirms the normalcy of grief again and again through laughter as well as tears.
HELP, COMFORT AND HOPE AFTER LOSING YOUR BABY IN PREGNANCY OR THE FIRST YEAR by Hannah Lothrop – Part One speaks to those who have lost a child through miscarriage, stillbirth, neonatal death, sudden infant death, or termination of pregnancy, and guides parents through the experience of bereavement. Part Two provides information for caregivers who are helping parents through this difficult time, such as funeral directors, ministers, hospital staff, and support group members.
EMPTY CRADLE, BROKEN HEART by Deborah L. Davis – Comprehensive and sensitive book showing a wide range of experiences following the death of a baby and offering ways to cope.
AFTER YOU SAY GOODBYE – When Someone You Love Dies of AIDS by Paul Kent Froman, Ph.D. – Focuses on the unique problems and emotions that affect those left behind after someone has died of AIDS. Separate sections are devoted to dealing with the individual problems of parents, lovers, and friends as they deal with fear, anger, and discrimination.
SURVIVORS OF SUICIDE by Rita Robinson – No one is ever prepared for suicide, but this book can help both survivors and the general public acknowledge and cope with it.
HOW WILL I GET THROUGH THE HOLIDAYS? by James E. Miller – Helps bereaved people get through the emotionally charged holiday season while coping with the death of a loved one. Offers twelve ideas for navigating through such periods with many specific suggestions, and includes several thoughtful, time-honored quotations.
HEAVEN’S NOT A CRYING PLACE by Joey O’Connor – Answers some tough questions that push parents out of their comfort zones. If our children are to develop a healthy understanding of life and death, we must be willing to answer their innocent questions about eternal matters. Book and video available.
TEAR SOUP by Pat Schwiebert & Chuck DeKlyen – A recipe for healing after loss. After Grandy suffers a loss, she cooks up her own batch of tear soup. Gives you a glimpse into Grandy’s life as she blends different ingredients into her own grief process.
NOBODY’S CHILD ANYMORE – Grieving, Caring, and Comforting When Parents Die by Barbara Bartocci – Stories from the author’s experience of mourning the loss of two parents, as well as dozens of other stories. She leads us through four stages that most adult experience at some time: caring for a dying parent, mourning the loss, caring for the parent left behind, and finding new meaning beyond grief.
COWBELLS AND COURAGE by Patrick W. Page – Pat Page’s wife died after almost fifty years of marriage. Now he sits and talks with men about everything from dating to cooking to anger to tears. An essential for all men.