Why is it important to start taking care of your mental health as a college student? Because statistically, the transition period between high school and college is a time when young adults are at risk for mental health challenges due to stress and significant change.
Finding good care early on can teach you the coping skills and resiliency that you need for college and as an adult.
In my real-life grown-up job, I run a suicide prevention program. This means I spend quite a bit of time researching resources about grief, suicide loss, mental health, wellness, etc. If I recommend a resource, it means I have not only read it, but I probably use it and refer people to it regularly.
Here is a current list of my top 5 grief books:
I don’t hide the fact I love Nora McInerny. She’s as real about grief as it gets. If you have ever experienced grief in your life, I encourage you to read No Happy Endings https://amzn.to/2UyhU01
It’s OK That You’re Not OK by Megan Devine. https://amzn.to/3cOPhSr This book is for EVERYONE. Whether you are grieving or you are supporting someone through grief, this book is a must read. I run a suicide prevention program and we include this book in our grief kits. She also has an amazing website that has fantastic resources https://refugeingrief.com/
If you are a suicide survivor of loss, this book, No Time to Say Goodbye Surviving the Suicide of a Loved One by Carla Fine https://amzn.to/2YlYvQP speaks specifically to suicide grief.
My favorite grief book for children…but really anyone grieving can find value in reading this gem, The Invisible String by Patrice Karst https://amzn.to/2UwMdnD
This page is under constant revision since I am continuously finding great material. Check back here for updates!
*Please note, the links on this page are affiliate links and I do earn a commission on each sale. I appreciate your support for A Thief Called Grief.*
How to do I adequately convey my love for podcasts? It’s just not possible to sum it up in words. I started listening to podcasts years ago when a colleague, who is an ER doc, shared with me his favorite podcast he listens to while running, cleaning, etc. I pretended to know what the hell a podcast was, but retreated to my office to type in the words “What is a podcast” in Google. Oy. Anyway, fast forward to now and I not only listen to podcasts daily, but I listen to so many that I have categories. I love podcasts because A.) they allow me to easily explore my various interests. I listen to medical podcasts, business podcasts, running podcasts, and grief podcasts to name a few. B.) you can get valuable information in easy-to-digest sound bites. Some podcasts are hours (shoutout to Armchair Expert https://armchairexpertpod.com/) or less than 20 minutes (https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-simplicity-parenting-podcast-with-kim-john-payne/id1407320921). C.) you can listen while doing other tasks like cleaning your bathroom or cooking supper.
Today, I want to share one of the first grief podcasts I subscribed to, Terrible, Thanks for Asking https://www.ttfa.org/. Terrible, Thanks for Asking or TTFA for short, was started by a fellow native Minnesotan, Nora McInerny. I first learned about Nora when her husband’s obituary went viral https://www.startribune.com/obituaries/detail/51565/. I had a brand-new, still smells like a newborn, newborn and found myself reading Aaron’s obituary while nursing my baby at 3 AM. Perhaps it was the hormones, or the fact that I am a Highly Sensitive Person (it’s a real thing, seriously), but I found myself drawn to Nora and her story. Nora lost her dad, her husband, and had a miscarriage in less than 2 months. I mean, I couldn’t process that information, let alone be the one to live it. That is a tremendous amount of grief to throw at one person.
TTFA is a weekly podcast that introduces the listener to stories of real people, going through real shit. Sometimes the stories hit home personally, and sometimes they don’t. But every time I listen, I gain perspective on what people are going through on a daily basis. I also cry every episode. You’d think I’d stop crying after 100 episodes, but alas I will always be.that.person.
Why do I recommend TTFA?
If you are someone who feels like you are struggling alone in your grief or life, you will come away understanding that there are many people grieving and living, just like you.
You will learn about other culture’s and how they grieve. Nora interviews people from all walks of life and as someone who works in behavioral health, I find it interesting to hear how other culture’s support or don’t support grief.
Shit gets real. There is real talk about grief. There’s no let’s-make-it-fluffy so others don’t feel uncomfortable. If you are someone that get’s super-duper squirmy when people talk about real emotions, I encourage you to listen. This will make you a better human. And friend. And colleague.