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Grief Writing

Written by Memorial Mortuary & Cemeteries in-house grief counselor, Amanda Nelsen:

Writing can be a powerful tool in helping you process your grief.  I often recommend daily journal writing as a way to assist you in working through the loss of a loved one.  You can write in a notebook, on a computer, or even on your phone.  I like hand writing, as I believe it helps our brain process differently, but any way you prefer to write works.

You may want to create rituals around your writing.  Some people write the same time every day or light candles before they begin.

You can look at your writings as a container for your grief.  Some people write letters and leave them at their loved one’s grave; others throw away or burn their writings; some share their writings, but most keep them private.  There is no wrong way to write about grief.

Below are some prompts that might give you a place to start writing if you are unsure how to begin.



How did your loved one die?

If you could talk to your loved one again, what would you tell them?

Write about a joyful memory with your deceased loved one.

I wish I had told you…

Write a letter to your loved one.

Write a letter to your past or future self. 

My grief today looks like…My grief today looks like….

These are just a few ideas to get you started, but you can write about anything that comes to your mind.  You might want to start with 5-10 minutes a day and then find an amount of time that feels comfortable for you.  I hope writing can bring you peace in your grief journey.

Amanda is a Clinical Mental Health Counselor, specializing in individual and family therapy for people of varying backgrounds. She works for Memorial Estates, running their Grief & Loss Counseling program.

She has extensive experience working with adolescents and families in the community. Amanda received her Master’s Degree in Educational Psychology from the University of Utah. There she focused on Multicultural and Client Centered Counseling.

Amanda started her career working for Salt Lake County Youth Services, serving families from all backgrounds and with a wide variety of issues. She further developed her passion for helping people recover and heal from trauma and loss.

In counseling, Amanda values the trust and safety of the therapeutic relationship. She creates a counseling environment full of compassion, safety, empathy, and understanding. She constantly strives to help to cultivate strong relationships and assist families to cope with the loss of a loved one. Through her open attitude, and the warm environment that she facilitates, families can begin to feel peace as they work through their bereavement.

Memorial Utah, with the help of Amanda Nelsen, is committed to helping you through the loss of your loved one. You may contact Amanda at (801) 718-1520 or

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