Skip to Content4 ways to cope with grief this summer

Screw school pamphlets, unhelpful grief groups, and people saying “sorry for your loss.” It’s time to get real about grief. We’re in this together.

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4 ways to cope with grief in the summer
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How can I celebrate graduation when I’m grieving?
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What do I say when someone asks (unknowingly) about my dead family member?
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I’m worried another family member might die
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How grief shaped my life
How grief shaped my life

We love this response from award-winning producer Jack Antonoff (who's worked with Taylor Swift, Forence and the Machine, Lana Del Rey and many more artists) when asked how grief has shaped his life:

"My sister died when I was 18, but she was sick since I was five. So it was a big part of my life.

The thing about sick people, people who are unsure how long they'll get to live, especially kids in that position, is the lack of cynicism. The obsession with creation, joy, love, family. When you might not have a lot of time on earth, you don't define yourself by the things you hate, put very simply. And so that just lives in me."

See full interview here.

"Inside Out 2" Quotes We Love
"Inside Out 2" Quotes We Love

Why we love it: When we think about feelings that surround the grief journey, many of us think “sad” first, and also possibly “anger,” “regret,” “frustration,” etc. We tend to forget about “joy” and “nostalgia” and “love” and the other positive feels, which can show up too when we least expect it. Shout-out to Pixar’s “Inside Out” movies for reminding us about all the emotions that come and go, sometimes overlapping.

A few of our favorite quotes from Inside Out 2:

“Where can I put my stuff?” — Anxiety (settling in, carrying six full suitcases)

“I’ll just tell Anxiety not to worry so much anymore. And then she’ll say ‘Wow, Joy! I didn’t think of that, thank you!!'” —Joy

And our favorite new exclamation that can be used when someone says something awful to us while we’re grieving: “Jimminy mother lung toaster strudel!”—Joy

And a few grief-y quotes we loved from the original “Inside Out”:

“Crying helps me slow down and obsess over the weight of life’s problems.” —Sadness

“We’re taking the Train of Thought.” — Bing Bong. Adds Joy: “The train! Of course. That is so much faster — but how do we catch it?” Bing Bong: “Well, it kind of goes all over the place.”

Here’s to all the feelings—even those we’d prefer not to have (ummm, we’re looking at you, fear, anxiety, sadness, disgust, boredom, envy). We obviously prefer hanging out with joy whenever possible but thanks, Pixar, for reminding us that all the feels belong and that our train of thoughts go all over the place. It's quite a ride.

Dancing in the Sky
Dancing in the Sky

by Grayson, age 16

I love "Dancing in the Sky" by Dani and Lizzy, which handles grief very well - it talks about both the sadness of missing our person and the hope that many people have, believing they are in a better place. The song is able to show how our grief can be represented by many different emotions. Dani and Lizzy wrote this song after a close friend of Lizzy's died.

"I hope you're dancing in the sky

And I hope you're singing in the angel's choir

And I hope the angels know what they have

I'll bet it's so nice up in Heaven since you arrived"

These lyrics show how the artists hope their friend is safe and have moved on to a better place. They miss their person so deeply that they can only wish that they are happy where they are now. That hope that things are at least better for your loved one is a hope I think everyone has when going through grief, simply wanted to believe that life is better now for their loved one.

"Cause here on Earth it feels like everything

Good is missing since you left

And here on Earth everything's different

There's an emptiness"

In these lyrics however, they sing about how empty they feel now that their friend is gone. They feel lost, like everything has changed. This again, is a similar feeling that people can have when grieving, where you feel like nothing can ever be the same and that you will always be missing something, or someone.


Why we still talk about them
Why we still talk about them

We love this sentiment written by @empowered_through_grief:

"I talk about him because I am the 

memory keeper of a life that exists only in my mind.

I talk about him to remember & honour

who he was and his impact in this world.

I will always talk about him because for 

me, he's still here, weaved into 

everything I am and do."

Yes, yes, yes! And if you happen to be a non-griever reading this: if you are uncomfortable when we grievers bring up our person who died, please know that we are honoring that person and our relationship with them. Please make space for this, even if makes you a little uncomforable.

"Even when you're going through such pain, there's beauty, comfort, and community all around you if you open up to the fact that grief doesn't have to be such an isolating experience."

– -Dan Levy, actor and writer
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