Life with a Grief Monster

This is my grief monster. He was born the day my mother died. I was really frightened of him at first and I thought the best thing I could do was avoid him.  For a long time I tried really hard to keep him locked up in the darkest corner of my mind, but he always found a way to get out.  


Eventually I realized that, no matter how hard I tried to ignore him, my grief monster wasn’t going anywhere – so I decided to invite him in. Once we got to talking I realized that we actually had a lot in common – we both really missed my mom and we both really wanted to remember her.miss mom

After that, I let my grief monster go everywhere with me.  Even though he still made me sad sometimes, I knew he meant well. 

shop with mom

For a long time I thought I was the only one walking around with a grief monster, but then I met Litsa.  GMB

And she told me she had a grief monster too

The funny thing about grief monsters is that a lot of people have them, but you don’t know they exist until they’re introduced.


Although it seems scary, acknowledging your grief monster is an important part of grieving.  True they will cause you pain, but they become far less terrifying when you face them in the light of day.  Actually, grief monsters can also help you to grow and do new things.  For example, our grief monsters pushed us to start What’s Your Grief three years ago and now we connect with people and grief monsters all over the world.

your monster



Although we hope we’ve improved overall grief-monster relations, we’d be happy just knowing we’ve made you feel a little less alone.

July 18, 2018

12 responses on "Life with a Grief Monster"

  1. You save me !!!I found you in podcast 5 days after my Mother died .She died 13 March 2018 the day that my monster born. I was in my darkest moment and I could not find any help in my language so I put the word grief in podcast and I saw you guys. literally I listened all the podcast since that day and thank to you I feel that I didn’t went in the wrong way in this time of my life. You don’t know how much you do to help others over the world. I am Mexican living in the Netherlands and everyday I thankful for you and your work.

  2. I met my grief monster when my precious Mama passed Feb. 22, 2018. I hate living with it. It shows up at work and makes me a mess. It shows up at the worst times. What do I do with that?! I feel like I am locked up in a room alone with it. I appreciate that you guys are there though. Thank you.

  3. My mom died last year on October 7 2016.. 3 days after her birthday.My Mom was the only person that understood me. Knew the feelings I felt. I was really sad and I would cry and cry for about 2 months. I didn’t want to go to school for a while but my dad made me and that made me super uncomfortable. I am especially sad because she missed all the fun things my family was doing. She was always wanted to go places and she would have loved and dreamt of going to the places we went. I love my mom and life is not the same without her around. I even thought of killing myself when she died. I stopped myself thankfully. But now it’s one day before her birthday (it’s October 3rd 2017 when I’m writing this). Life is changed in the bad way. But to be honest she would not be fond of what’s happening in the world if she was still alive so she is in wonderful heaven and is now in peace while she doesn’t have to experience anything bad like the U.S. on the brink of war, LA attacks, Hurricane Irma, and hurricane Maria. Thank you for reading this.

  4. My grief monster is my mom. She passed away a year and a half ago unexpectedly. Out of nowhere I’ll just start crying uncontrollably because I miss her so much. As amazing as my fiancé is, there will just never be anyone that understands me as much as my mom

  5. The grief monster is always with me since losing my husband and soul mate two months ago. Thanks so much for this site!

  6. I’ve been calling it the grief monster since about a week after my dad died, when I felt this constant crushing weight on my chest and didn’t know how else to describe it. I’d say to my boyfriend “the grief monster is fierce today” or “the grief monster is extra sneaky today…I thought I was fine and then *bam* there it is and I’m sobbing” and things like that. It’s nice to know I’m not the only one that feels like it’s a monster.

  7. My grief monster has been with me since Jan 31st 2014. Today is our second anniversary. I have learned to let the grief monster in when it comes and know it will be with me forever.

    • It is so true. This past November 11th was the third year anniversary of my wife’s death. Usually we go to the Rememberence Day service at cenotaph in, at City Hall in Toronto.

      I do like to see friends but this year when the grief monster came a-courting me I could not stand the thought of so many people in the rain, many grieving. I threw in the towel, had a massage and a dinner party with close friends.

      It turned out to be perfect, the perfect time of alone time and time connecting to the people who were closest to me when she died as we really all experienced it together. She was only 35 and it was a huge shock to us. We all have our own monsters since that day so at least we all went to a party together!

  8. Thank you for being so generous with your time with the blogs you set out. Your site has been useful to me. I recently lost my husband (July 2015) in an accident leaving our two young sons behind as well as myself. It’s been very difficult explaining our loss to the boys as they are 3 and 5. The youngest suggests he is trying to bring Daddy back for us. Bless him. The eldest says to me try not to think about it Mum when he sees that I am sad. I’m blessed to have the boys but it’s such hard work knowing that I cannot change their grief for them. It’s been 5 months since the accident. I’m holding onto the thought that the pain will lessen over time and I hope I can give the boys confidence that we will be okay.
    I really just wanted to say thank you, I read your posts as they come through. It’s some comfort that others have survived the pain grief causes.


    • Kate,

      I am so sorry. I can’t imagine what it must be like to parent young children through such a profound loss for them and you both. That being said, though, you are not alone and sadly there are so many others who have been through the pain of grief and loss. Keep holding onto the hope that the pain will lessen. Although the loss is always present, I do think that the emotions become more tolerable and over time grief turns into something a little easier to live with.

      Hang in there,

  9. I love this it’s amazing! And I guess I have multiple grief monsters, we laugh, we cry and sometimes they help me take out the garage! Well done you guys!

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