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New book tackles teens and bereavement

Author Clare Shaw has drawn on her own experience in putting together a new book to help teenagers and young adults dealing with bereavement.

“Having published Love Will Never Die to help younger children through bereavement back in 2017, I have attended many conferences and events and been asked if I had anything for teens along similar lines.,” she explains.

“I was repeatedly told that there was ‘nothing out there’, that there was a ‘huge gap in the market’ and our teenagers were being forgotten about. My research soon showed this to be true.

“I came across three startling, yet interesting facts around bereavement in young people:

  • 41% of young offenders have suffered a bereavement
  • 25% of under 20s who die by suicide have experienced bereavement
  • 78% of 11-16 year-olds experience at least one of their close relatives or friends dying*

“We can help with the first two figures by supporting those who are grieving and allowing them the tools to do this safely. When you look at the final figure, it just goes to show how many teens need that support.

“Having been a teenager when trying to navigate my own grief, I could remember just how hard that was. It was something that I did not deal with well at the time and have suffered for throughout my adult life. The whole reason I wrote Love Will Never Die was to help children going through what I went through. Why not do something to help the older children too?

Having been a teenager when trying to navigate my own grief,
I could remember just how hard that was

“If I’m honest, I was a little scared of writing for teenagers – until my eldest son became one and I realised they’re really not as scary as I first thought! So, after years of research and writing notes, on 9 June I published A Mind Full of Grief: A bereavement guide for teenagers and young adults.

“My son helped me enormously. He read the book at every stage to ensure I was staying in tune with my audience. His help has been invaluable.

“During the last phases of editing, the book was sent to a wide range of people for comment and edits. As part of the process, the book went to a few focus groups via bereavement charities that I had worked with previously. This was a wonderful exercise as the feedback that came was completely anonymous and therefore incredibly honest. Here are a few examples:

“Having two teenagers, finding something that talks to them at their level (not a child, not an adult) is very refreshing.”
“I liked the general format of the book because it was interactive as well as informative.”
“I really like it; it is a good summary of all the things to be ready for and ways of coping. I think it is good that it tells teens about grief without sugar coating it too much.”

This is the blurb on the book jacket:

When someone you love dies, what happens next?
As a teenager or young adult, this can be such a confusing time. So many emotions you may not have felt before.
So much confusion.
This book will help you through. Filled with practical and honest information but without overloading.
Covering everything from grief and the funeral to the future in the most straightforward way.

For some, one of the hardest things when someone has died is telling other people. Inside the back cover is a flap containing a few leaflets to help the reader explain to teachers, colleagues and friends what has happened. It reads:

“Use these leaflets, if you need to, to let people know what has happened and guide those around you in how best to support you. Fill in as much detail as you’re comfortable with.
Your feelings may alter over time, you can always let people know if anything changes.
You may choose to use them all. You may choose to use none.”


The book is available at with 40% off rrp as an introductory offer if you use the code DDA25 at checkout. If you wish to buy multiple copies, or discuss a trade account, please email

* Professor Sir Al Aynsley-Green



This is a preview of a feature article.

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