Jan 23, 2023

It’s Okay That You’re Not Okay: Coping with Grief and Loss with Megan Devine

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Bereavement, Grief, Loss, Mental Health, Pain


Join me for a thoughtful conversation with Megan Devine: best-selling author, psychotherapist, and grief advocate. With over 20 years in the field – and deep personal experience of grief – she is the go-to authority for grievers, supporters, and industry professionals. Her pioneering work provides a professional, inclusive, and realistic approach to grief, one that goes beyond pathology-based, reductive models. If you’re currently feeling the deep pain of loss or are looking to support someone who is, this episode is for you.

Megan’s book It’s OK that You’re Not OK  has sold over 250K copies and is available in 16 languages. New York magazine’s The Strategist named the book in their “Top 16 Grief Books Recommended by Psychologists in 2021.” Her animated short, “How to Help a Grieving Friend,” has been viewed over 70 million times and is used in training programs worldwide. She’s been published in Psychology Today, The New York Times, and The Washington Post and has served as a grief expert for major media outlets, including NPR, iHeartRadio, and the PBS documentary, Speaking Grief.


  • Megan’s personal experience with grief
  • What not to say to someone who is grieving and how to be truly supportive instead
  • The problematic way society responds to pain and grief and how this contributes to rising loneliness, substance abuse and suicide rates
  • Why looking for the silver lining in a painful experience, while well-intentioned, isn’t helpful

00:00 Intro 

01:20 Megan’s story

07:09 How society responds to grief 

09:11 You don’t need to find the silver lining

13:03 Movies modelling the happy ending

15:17 The fallacy of suffering as punishment

20:25 The “nobility” of suffering

24:33 The history of dealing with pain

31:21 How medicine handles grief

36:43 Timeline of grief

38:16 Why do we avoid sadness?

43:54 How to actually support someone who’s grieving

47:46 Expanding your idea of what grief is