March 17, 2019

It’s OK That You’re Not OK: Meeting Grief and Loss in a Culture That Doesn't Understand by Megan Devine

When a painful loss or life-shattering event upends your world, here is the first thing to know: there is nothing wrong with grief. “Grief is simply love in its most wild and painful form,” says Megan Devine. “It is a natural and sane response to loss.” So why does our culture treat grief like a disease to be cured as quickly as possible?
In It’s OK That You’re Not OK, Devine offers a profound new approach to both the experience of grief and the way we try to help others who have endured tragedy. Having experienced grief from both sides—as both a therapist and as a woman who witnessed the accidental drowning of her beloved partner—Devine writes with deep insight about the unspoken truths of loss, love, and healing. She debunks the culturally prescribed goal of returning to a normal, “happy” life, replacing it with a far healthier middle path, one that invites us to build a life alongside grief rather than seeking to overcome it. In this compelling and heartful book, you’ll learn
• Why well-meaning advice, therapy, and spiritual wisdom so often end up making it harder for people in grief
• How challenging the myths of grief—doing away with stages, timetables, and unrealistic ideals about how grief should unfold—allows us to accept grief as a mystery to be honored instead of a problem to solve
• Practical guidance for managing stress, improving sleep, and decreasing anxiety without trying to “fix” your pain
• How to help the people you love—with essays to teach us the best skills, checklists, and suggestions for supporting and comforting others through the grieving process
Many people who have suffered a loss feel judged, dismissed, and misunderstood by a culture that wants to “solve” grief. Devine writes, “Grief no more needs a solution than love needs a solution.” Through stories, research, life tips, and creative and mindfulness-based practices, she offers a unique guide through an experience we all must face—in our personal lives, in the lives of those we love, and in the wider world.
It’s OK That You’re Not OK is a book for grieving people, those who love them, and all those seeking to love themselves—and each other—better.

Grief is such a monster. It treats everyone differently, hits at different times, and hurts in the worst way possible. You can’t predict how you’re going to feel day to day. Once you’re in grief, it never really goes away. You just find a way to life with it.

I honestly can’t say enough about this book. It came into my life exactly when I needed it, and I think I’ll probably end up reading it a few more times.

I would recommend it to anyone dealing with grief, anyone trying to comfort someone in grief, and everyone else. I think it provides info on a way to look at situations from a different viewpoint. Treat people with more empathy and care before you just don’t know what they’re going through.

This book is beautifully written and has plenty of the writer’s own experiences sprinkled throughout to show what has helped her and what was very unhelpful as she dealt with the loss of her husband.

If you’re looking for a book for yourself – pick this up. Give this book as a gift. Have this book available to anyone who needs it. It is important and it is validating.

5/5 Stars

Memorable Quotes: “If we commit to loving, we will inevitably know Loss and grief. If we try to avoid loss and grief, we will never truly know love.”

“There are losses that rearrange the world. Deaths that change the way you see everything, grief that tears everything down. Pain that transports you to an entirely different universe, even while everyone else thinks nothing has really changed.”

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