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Reviewed by Asher Syed for Readers' Favorite
Grief: It's NOT Supposed To Be OK! by Ron Skinner and Jeff Kirk is a non-fiction self-help guide for readers who are navigating some of life's most heartbreaking moments, those who are looking ahead in preparation for the inevitable, and those who are trying to understand what a grieving loved one might be going through. Expanding on this, the book will work incredibly well as a companion to professional counselors and others in the profession of aiding individuals through a crisis. The guide is incredibly detailed and covers a wide range of topics such as the five stages of grief, recognizing grief and reacting, helping children and loved ones, the practicalities of what to do “after”, struggles, isolation, loneliness, the types of grief, and very specific sections on the different types of loss, among many other topics. “We cannot return to life as it once was. It no longer exists. Therefore, we have one option: learning to function and even thrive in this new life without them.”
As I move into the second half of my life [if I'm lucky to have as much time left], I find myself inching closer to a time when the loss of loved ones will become more frequent but no less heart-breaking. I have lost along the way, but now the hurt has started reaching into my immediate circle, and this is why I picked up Grief: It's NOT Supposed To Be OK! Ron Skinner and Jeff Kirk write with clarity and compassion that is conversational in style, empathetic in tone, and straightforward for complete understanding. There are personal touches that make a reader feel like a friend is there with them, encouraging them to take the time to heal, accepting that everything they are going through is natural, and that as long as we do the work to try to see ourselves through, Skinner and Kirk will help to make it a little less confusing. The part for me that stood out is a section on the relief that death may bring after one has spent years as a caretaker. When my wife's grandfather passed away, one of the first things his wife did after the funeral was to take a cruise to Alaska. She was so tired and while she was desperately heartbroken by the loss of a man who had stood beside her for over 60 years, I was so glad when she got on a plane and said, “Nobody talk to me for 10 days...” We all deal with loss in different ways and it is a comfort to know that books like this are here for when it happens. Very highly recommended.