The High Financial Cost of Depression

Depression is on the rise and it is not cheap.  While loneliness and the post pandemic world wrestle with the mental health issues that have added, individuals are beginning to see the rising cost of depression.  While only world wide, 5 percent suffer from depression, it still costs the world economy over 1 trillion dollars.  Also, for every dollar, it is important to note that additional funds go towards negative ways of coping.

The financial cost of depression and similar treatments are in the trillions of dollars worldwide


The article, “Depression is costing the global economy a ‘profound’ $1 trillion per year, warns U.S. Surgeon General” by Alexa Mikhail takes a closer look at these stats and how it is costing the global economy.  He states,

“As health officials continue to sound the alarm on the growing loneliness epidemic, U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy says the prevalence of depression is closely linked. Loneliness and social isolation increase the risk for mental health problems, including depression. About 280 million people—or 5% of adults globally—have depression, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).”

“Depression is costing the global economy a ‘profound’ $1 trillion per year, warns U.S. Surgeon General”. Mikhail, A. (2023). FortuneWell.

To review the entire article, please click here

In the United States, the cost for depression is over 250 million alone and it continues to rise as more become depressed through the years.  What is causing this? Many blame loneliness.  Some blame the pandemic as well.  Regardless, investment needs to be put into helping individuals cope better with loss and if depressed, find the right help and learn how to cope and find healing.   Remaining permanently dependent on medication is not the answer for everyone either.  Some severe cases may need long term, but those with minor cases need coping as well to balance the issue within the mind.  The high cost of pharmaceutical drugs is astounding and depression is only aspect of it.  In addition anxiety, OCD, ADHD and other minor disorders are constantly treated rising the price globally.

So in essence, it is important to find the reason why depression is increasing, treat it more cost effectively and help people return to normal with stronger coping mechanisms.

Healthcare expenses related to mental health

One of the primary financial costs of mental health is the healthcare expenses associated with diagnosis, treatment, and ongoing care. Mental health services, including therapy, medication, and hospitalization, can be prohibitively expensive for many individuals and families. Insurance coverage for mental health varies widely, with some plans offering limited coverage or high out-of-pocket costs. As a result, individuals often face significant financial strain when seeking the help they need.

Moreover, the lack of accessible and affordable mental healthcare options exacerbates the financial burden. Limited availability of mental health providers, especially in rural areas, means that individuals may have to travel long distances or pay exorbitant fees for specialized care. This further contributes to the hidden costs of mental health.

Lost productivity and economic impact

Another significant financial cost of mental health is the loss of productivity in the workforce. Mental health conditions can lead to decreased work performance, absenteeism, and even long-term disability. According to a study conducted by the World Health Organization, depression and anxiety disorders alone cost the global economy over $1 trillion in lost productivity each year.

Employers also bear the financial burden of mental health issues among their workforce. They face increased healthcare costs, decreased productivity, and higher turnover rates. Additionally, the stigma surrounding mental health often leads to a reluctance among employees to seek help, resulting in prolonged suffering and further financial strain.

The cost of untreated mental health conditions

Unaddressed mental health conditions can have severe consequences, both for individuals and society. Without proper diagnosis and treatment, these conditions often worsen over time, leading to increased healthcare costs and reduced quality of life. The cost of untreated mental health conditions extends beyond the individual, affecting families, communities, and the economy as a whole.

Individuals with untreated mental health conditions are more likely to engage in risky behaviors such as substance abuse, which further compounds the financial burden. The costs associated with addiction treatment, legal issues, and lost productivity due to substance abuse can be astronomical.

Financial burden on individuals and families

The financial burden of mental health falls heavily on individuals and their families. The cost of therapy sessions, medication, and other treatments can quickly add up, straining budgets and depleting savings. In some cases, individuals may be forced to choose between paying for mental healthcare and meeting other basic needs, such as housing or food.

Furthermore, the impact of mental health on employment can lead to job loss, reduced income, or increased healthcare expenses. This creates a cycle of financial instability and stress, exacerbating the mental health condition and making it even more challenging to seek help.

The role of insurance coverage in managing mental health costs

Insurance coverage plays a crucial role in managing the financial costs of mental health. The Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act, passed in the United States in 2008, requires insurance plans to provide equal coverage for mental health and substance abuse services. However, despite this legislation, many individuals still face significant barriers to accessing affordable mental healthcare.

Employers can play a vital role in ensuring comprehensive mental health coverage for their employees. Offering robust insurance plans that prioritize mental health services and provide adequate coverage can help alleviate the financial burden on individuals and families. Additionally, advocacy for broader insurance coverage for mental health treatments can contribute to a more inclusive and supportive healthcare system.

Strategies for reducing the financial burden of mental health

Addressing the hidden financial costs of mental health requires a multi-faceted approach. Here are some strategies that can help reduce the burden:

  1. Early intervention and prevention: Investing in early intervention programs and preventive measures can help identify and address mental health issues before they escalate. By providing accessible and affordable mental healthcare at the early stages, individuals can receive timely support, reducing the need for more extensive and costly treatments later on.
  2. Education and awareness: Raising awareness about mental health and destigmatizing seeking help is crucial. By promoting understanding and empathy, society can create an environment where individuals feel comfortable seeking treatment, reducing the financial burden associated with untreated conditions.
  3. Integration of mental health into primary care: Integrating mental health services into primary care settings can improve access and reduce costs. By offering mental health screenings and treatments in the same setting as physical health care, individuals can receive holistic care that addresses all aspects of their well-being.
  4. Community support and resources: Communities can play a vital role in supporting individuals with mental health conditions. By establishing support groups, providing resources, and fostering a sense of belonging, communities can help reduce the financial burden on individuals and families.

Conclusion: Investing in mental health for a healthier and wealthier society

The financial costs of mental health are often hidden behind the emotional and psychological toll that these conditions take on individuals and their loved ones. However, addressing these costs is essential for creating a healthier and wealthier society. By investing in accessible and affordable mental healthcare, promoting early intervention and prevention, and reducing the stigma surrounding mental health, we can alleviate the financial burden on individuals, families, and communities. It is time to recognize and prioritize mental health as an integral part of overall well-being and work towards a future where everyone has equal access to the support they need.

Depression care has numerous costs. Please also review AIHCP’s Grief Counseling Certification


Please also review AIHCP’s Grief Counseling Certification.  Grief Counselors can better help individuals cope with loss and take workload from LPCs and other necessity of medicative needs.  While certified Grief Counselors can only help with basic loss and not depression or more severe maladies, they can play a key role in helping those suffering.  Some Grief Counselors are also LPC’s though and with a certification in Grief Counseling can confidently help those with depression.


“The Economic Cost of Depression is Increasing; Direct Costs are Only a Small Part”. (2021). American Psychiatric Association. Access here

“How Much Does Depression Cost?”. Cherney, K. (2020). Healthline.  Access here

“The Costs of Depression”. Kessler, R. (2012). National Library of Medicine.  Access here

“Depression Cost the US $326 Billion Per Year Pre-Pandemic, a 38% Increase Since 2010”. (2021). Cision.  Access here


Postpartum Depression Video

After the birth of a child, it should be a celebratory time, but for some, postpartum depression can strip one of the joy of a newborn and as well limit one in the new responsibilities of infant care.  If symptoms persist for longer than a week, it is important to contact a mental health care professional who better help one with diagnosis and proper steps to correct the issue.  Primarily a woman issue, men can also fall victim to it, so it is important that partners watch each other after the following days of child birth to ensure each are properly coping with excitement but also stress that comes with a new born child.

Postpartum depression can rob one of the excitement of a child. Please also review AIHCP’s Grief Counseling Certification


Please also review AIHCP’s Grief Counseling Certification and see if it meets your academic and professional goals.  The program is online and independent study and open to qualified professionals.


Please also review AIHCP’s video on Postpartum Depression


SAD or Seasonal Affective Disorder is a type of depression that coincides with the change of seasons.  It can be during any type of season but primarily occurs during the Winter months.  It is quite different than the Winter Blues in that it is consistent every year.  It is hard enough without longer days and sunlight to function but with Winter, especially after the Holidays, many will fall into SAD.

The change of the season can have a depressing effect on many. Please also review AIHCP’s Grief Counseling Certification


Individuals can find help, medication, as well as light therapy to help.  It is important to identify if you do have SAD and find the appropriate help from a licensed counselor who can guide you in the right direction.  SAD is more than being upset about the weather but a type of depression that needs professional care.  Please also review AIHCP’s Grief Counseling Certification.  While certified grief counselors who are not licensed counselors as well cannot treat depression, they do have the training to spot it and send you to a professional counselor who can treat it.

AIHCP’s Grief Counseling Certification is online and independent study and open to qualified professionals.  Please review the program and see if it meets your academic and professional goals.


Please review AIHCP’s video below

Toxic Positivity and Grief Counseling

Those who enter into the human service fields quickly learn that helping individuals is not about necessarily fixing them but more so guiding them and walking with them.  It would be so nice to be able to magically make the hurt go away or the problem vanish but the reality is problems never go away in life.  Life is about coping and overcoming issues and learning to live with them. So when someone appears with a fix it all approach to life, then that particular someone should be avoided or at least not enter into the helping fields.

Toxic Positivity ignores the painful reality and prevents healing.


Individuals who think a phrase or few words can make someone forget the love of their life, or something extremely important obviously have not loss anything important yet.  Sometimes life teaches the hard lessons for those even in the helping professions.  Many times, the solution is listening and sojourning, perhaps even offering a few coping strategies, but never is their a solution or a fix to loss or pain in life.  When something bad happens, the loss of a family member, the loss of a job, or the loss of a pet, the pain is real.  The pain is real because what is lost mattered.  No words can fix that except a return to the pre-loss state.  In this world, there is no return to the pre-loss state, so one must learn to cope and adjust to the loss.  Those in the helping fields, counseling, human services and social work understand that listening, offering solicited advice and sojourning are how one performs one’s professional duty.

When one tries to fix, then one ultimately misses the importance of the loss.  When one tries to fix, one obviously has never lost anything oneself.  Hence any short cuts or attempts to lessen the loss or invoke recovery goes against the healing process of grief itself.  Many well intentioned individuals offer a plentitude of sayings or quotes to help fix, but these rarely help.  Professionals know, or at least should know, that there is no magic word to heal loss itself.

One of the quick fixes that many employ is toxic positivity.  This type of attitude is toxic because it is not real and does more damage to the griever or mourner.  Instead it insults the loss, insults the pain, and ignores the reality.  It hopes to make the situation lighter or less extreme but by doing so it becomes a lie.  This type of lie stunts healing growth and disenfranchises the loss of the griever.  Many times, “grief bullies” a term used in our blogs below, will attempt to enforce a false and toxic positivity  or spin on a loss and become irritated when a mourner refuses to accept the silver lining.  Hence it is important to identify what toxic positivity is, correct those who utilize it and remove it from anyone’s practice in grief counseling.

The article, “What Is Toxic Positivity?” by Chloe Carmichael looks the problems of toxic positivity not so just from the point of the griever but also the person who may employ it for one’s own life views.  She states,

“Toxic positivity can sound like a confusing phrase at first: After all, positivity is supposed to be positive, right? However, just like even something as innocent and healthy-sounding as jogging can become toxic if taken to an extreme, so can positivity. Taken to an extreme, positivity becomes toxic and deprives us of the motivation to make healthy changes that the awareness of a negative, uncomfortable reality would otherwise stimulate us to make”

“What Is Toxic Positivity?”. Carmichael, C. (2021). Psychology Today

To access the full article, please click here


When individuals utilize toxic positivity they do so to protect themselves from hurt and pain.  They do not wish to face the issue at hand so they attempt to silver coat everything.  In doing so, they lose the true reality of life.  They create a false veil of happiness.  This silver lining attitude is not only false to the life narrative but can have harmful effects on the grieving process.  In other cases, individuals may fear to face conflict, or wish to minimize discomfort because they do not wish to offend another person.  This keeps many individuals in unhealthy relationships as they create alternative realities not anchored in reality. Many would rather exist in a false reality without conflict or anger.  They see anger or emotion as something to be avoided at all costs, even to the point of giving up one’s own happiness.

Many who exhibit toxic positivity ignore “bad” feelings, confrontation, or hope to put a false spin on something bad to protect feelings


Those who are trapped in this attitude need reminded gently that it is OK to be true to oneself.  It is OK to sometimes express anger, or grief.  In fact it is healthy to express these feelings and part of being a human being.  Those who resort to avoidance or creating a false narrative harm themselves and also keep themselves trapped in horrible relationships and situations.  Individuals need told they can express themselves but also need to be shown sometimes the reality and ugliness of human life and to accept it.  By accepting it, one can finally move forward and find true solutions.  If the truth is ignored with false positivity, then the problem will never receive the solution it needs.

Again, there are those who are not only victims of their own toxic positivity, but also victims of others hoping to impose their narratives on them.  Individuals who try to cheer others up with pithy sayings when individuals are grieving are sharing a form of toxic positivity.   The famous saying to make lemonaide when life gives you lemons is healthy advice, but if given in the acute and intense moment of grief, then it is very toxic.  It ignores the “lemons”.  It is important to acknowledge the “lemons” before one can heal.  Others may remark that negativity only begets negativity, but they forget that sometimes one must first acknowledge the negativity before one can heal from it and find positivity.  Imposing positivity too soon can be harmful to one’s healing process. Instead of trying to fix or present solutions, simply acknowledge the loss and listen.  This is more helpful in the overall healing to a person than trying to fix them with an imposed positivity that is way too soon to help someone heal.

Hence while, “at least he or she…” or “he or she is in a better place” type comments are well intended, they can cause more damage than good.  Avoid bully phrases as “good vibes only”, “it could be worse”, or “things happen for a reason” and replace them with ” I am here”, “bad things happen and how can I help”, or ” This must really be hard”.


Positivity is important in life but when it is forced to ignore reality or an issue it can be detrimental.  Whether one is trying to sell it or buys it, it needs to be properly utilized.  When in acute pain or in a bad situation, it is OK to be sad or mad and it is definitely OK to focus on it.  Positive spins on bad situations are not needed when true solutions of facing the issue is needed.\

It is best to acknowledge the bad and the good truthfully in life. Please also review AIHCP’s Grief Counseling Certification


Please also review AICHP’s Grief Counseling Certification and see if it meets your academic and professional goals.  The program is online and independent study and open to qualified professionals seeking a four year certification.

As certified grief counselors or anyone in the human service field, remember to be there not to fix a loss but to help one through it via acknowledgement and listening.

Additional Resources

“Toxic Positivity—Why It’s Harmful and What to Say Instead”. Cherry, K.  (2023). VeryWellMind.  Access here

“Toxic Positivity: Definition, Examples And What To Say Instead”. Mona, B. Forbes Health.  Access here

“What to know about toxic positivity”. Villines, Z.  (2021). Medical News Today.  Access here

“How Positivity Can Turn Toxic”. Davis, T. (2022).  Psychology Today.  Access here



What is “High Functioning” Depression?

A interesting term gaining momentum in mental health is “high functioning” depression.  It is not a new type of depression.  Major Depressive Disorder which last up to 2 weeks, or Season Affective Disorder which coincides with the season, or even Persistent Depressive Disorder which is chronic are all major types of depression seen in individuals.  Whether one is high functioning or unable to function does not differentiate the type, but it does point out towards a person’s attitude towards being depressed and possibly the intensity of the one experiencing depression.

High Functioning Depression is not a type of depression but an attitude that looks to ignore the symptoms despite the mental health risks


The article, “High-Functioning Depression: the Symptoms and Treatments” by Paul Wynn takes a closer look at this type of depression.  Again, he reiterates that there is no clinical term for high functioning depression but merely more of an attitude towards it.  He states,

“The American Psychiatric Association’s official diagnostic handbook does not recognize high-functioning depression as a clinical disorder. It’s also not a common term used among doctors to classify patients; High-functioning depression is one way people talk about having a depressive disorder to friends and family. “When speaking to my patients, I never describe them as a person with high-functioning depression; it’s just not a term we use around the office,” says Dr. Lorenzo Norris, associate professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences and chief wellness officer at the GW School of Medicine and Health Sciences in Washington, D.C.”

“High-Functioning Depression: the Symptoms and Treatments”. Wynn, P. (2022). US News.

To read the entire article, please click here


Like any depression, one who experiences it, still faces the basic symptoms.  Those with high functioning depression are no different.  Individuals suffer from low self esteem, lack of energy, increased irritability, loss of interest, preferred isolation, and overall apathy.  The difference is how they manage it and react to it.  The ability to still perform tasks,  go to school or work, or still manage to be seen, stems more towards the severity of the depression itself, or the attitude towards it.  Numerous individuals who still keep functioning despite depression, usually are suffering from a more mild form of Major Depressive Disorder but many also have certain attitudes or feelings towards mental illness.

Some individuals may see mental health as something of a stigma or something to be ignored.  They may come from families where mental health issues are a sign of weakness and that individuals should work through their feelings and not permit them to affect their everyday work.  These types of individuals may see depression as an excuse or a weakness within character that others employ to escape reality.  They do not wish to be seen as weak or unable to cope

This is the case with many in business who feel they cannot be seen as weak or unable to perform tasks.  Instead of dealing with the emotions, they bury them and proceed forward.  Others may see they do not have the time to be mentally ill and need to focus on tasks and others under their care.  Hence an image and responsibility overtakes these types of individuals where they feel the need to hide the emotions, or dismiss them so that they can continue to operate at a high level.  These types of individuals may also ignore other health issues, but mental health is definitely something they do not have time to worry about.

Helping Those Who Do Not Want Help

Those around colleagues or family members will see the signs of depression. While the person remains seen, functioning and performing duties, the person still will manifest signs of depression.  Increased irritability and lack of patience in daily tasks will mount over time.  Disorganization, emotional outbursts and more fatigue may also start to manifest.  Maybe, the individual will also express less interest in hobbies, or activities outside of work or school.  They may not find interest in things that usually excite them.  For this reason, only those closest can truly tell if someone who is high functionally and depressed needs help.  Others from a distance will not know the individual well enough to pinpoint the exact issue.

Those close the person, can better see the wearing of depression upon an individual and look to help the person find help.


Once something is noticed, the closest within the circle and have an intervention and discuss the issues.  This may not be the most pleasant discussion but an emotional inventory needs to be completed.  The individual may finally admit to not feeling his or her best and finally admit certain feelings.  It is critical to identify these feelings so the person may receive the counseling or medication necessary to prevent further worsening of the condition and mental decline.  When individuals ignore mental symptoms of a larger problem, they do not usually disappear but only worsen.  This will not only negatively effect the person’s health but also eventually wear down on the ability of the person to function.


High Functioning Depression is not a different type of depression but a type of depression combined with a particular person’s attitudes about mental health. It may have to do some with severity of the depression but it usually has to do with a person’s attitude about mental health or the person’s roles that he or she feels cannot be put to the side.  It is hence important for individuals close to the person to help the person realize the importance of finding treatment and educating them on the issues that surround untreated depression itself.

Many individuals see depression as a sign of weakness. Please also review AIHCP’S Grief Counseling Program


Grief Counselors, as well as licensed counselors can help individuals find the help they need.  Grief Counselors can direct clients to licensed therapists who can better help those with any type of depression find the balance and counseling they need to better cope with it.  Please also review AIHCP’s Grief Counseling Certification and see if it matches your academic and professional goals.  The program is online and independent study and open to qualified professionals seeking a four year certification in Grief Counseling.

Additional Resources

“What is high-functioning depression?”. Coelho, S. (2020). Medical News Today.  Access here

“What Is ‘High-Functioning’ Depression?”, Gupta, S. (2022). VeryWellMind. Access here

“What does ‘high-functioning depression’ mean? We asked experts”. Chiu, A. (2022).  The Washington Post. Access here

“Please Stop Thinking My High-Functioning Depression Makes Me Lazy”. Shannon-Karasik, C. (2019). HealthLine.  Access here


Grief Counseling Human Development Video

As human beings, we reach certain points in social development that are key to a successful life.  From a mere toddler to teenage years and from midlife to elderly days, we need to meet certain goals and points.  Erick Erickson listed numerous points of achievement that need to be completed within the human life span.  When these goals are not met, individuals regress or unable to find satisfaction in life.

Social development that is delayed can lead to future grief issues. Review AIHCP’s Grief Counseling Certification


This obviously has alot to do with individuals and their overall happiness or unhappiness in life.  Many grieve a life that has not met one’s aspirations.  This is due many times because individuals did not develop socially.  They look back with sadness or inability to move forward.  They have regrets and remain stagnant in life.  Grief Counselors through an understanding of a person’s life narrative, can better address abstract grief in an individual and help diagnose where the grief is coming from by understanding a person’s life story.

Please also review AIHCP’s Grief Counseling Certification.  The program is online and independent study and open to qualified professionals seeking a four year certification in grief counseling.


Please review the video below

C.S Lewis and Grief

C.S Lewis is a classical English writer of the 20th Century.  His observations on grief are insightful as well intense as he documents the grief felt of losing the wife, H.  Throughout, his work, “A Grief Observed” (originally published in 1961),  the loss torments the writer as he proceeds through the various struggles of an English Christian husband who lost a wife.   His struggle includes the intensity of the pain of the grief and its many adjectives and similes, as well as the outward feelings towards others, his past, his beliefs, his anger, his desolation, and finally his renewal.  In it one sees the numerous phases and oscillations of the messy roadmap of mourning. It is not only an emotional journey, but also a philosophical one that questions pain and suffering and how it can co-exist with a good God.  It captures the the progress and regression of how one laments one day but rejoices the next, curses another but venerates later.  It is in essence a progression of grief that illustrates the despair, the anger, and ultimately the adjustment to the loss.  It does not offer a true happy ending but an appeasement and contentment that naturally overtime proceeds from loss.  One never truly heals from loss but learns to live without but with a sprinkle of hope.


C.S Lewis masterfully captures some of the raw emotion associated with intense and acute grief following loss.  He states, “Noone ever told me that grief felt so like fear. I am not afraid, but the sensation is like being afraid.  The same fluttering in the stomach, the same restlessness, the yawning and swallowing” (Lewis, C.S, p. 1).   He continues that it sometimes feels like “invisible blanket between the world and me” (Lewis, C.S. p. 1).

C.S Lewis masterfully captures the raw pain and existential crisis caused by the loss of a loved one. Please also review AIHCP’s Christian Grief Certification


Lewis mentions the continual acute phases of grief that overtake him.  He feels fatigue that prevents him from doing the littlest things, such as even shaving (Lewis, C.S. p.3).    In the grief, he feels the shame of being seen by others in public.  He comments how some wish to walk away, or others try to say the right thing or how an younger married couple may think that he is a symbol of their future (Lewis, C.S. p. 10-11).   He also fears publics places he once ventured.  He is afraid to return too soon to places where he and H. once shared good times.  He compares it to as “sending a pilot up again as soon as possible after he’s had a crash” (Lewis, C.S. p. 11).   He in particular takes offense to the good willed sayings of others within the congregation who remark that H. is now in God’s hands.  This only frustrates him more, as he asks, if she is in God’s hands, how can it be any better, if she was in God’s hands on Earth and suffered? (Lewis, C.S. p. 27).   This is an excellent example of how in grief counseling, individuals should not try to fix the bereaved but sojourn with them and acknowledge the pain instead of trying to lift it.

A great fear of most grievers is losing the memory of a beloved.  Lewis is haunted by the fear of losing her memory.   He states, “I have no photograph of her that’s any good. I cannot even see her face distinctly in my imagination” (Lewis, C.S. p. 15).   Others tell him, she will live in your memory, but he laments that idea of living.   He exclaims in fear and anguish, “What’s left?  A corpse, a memory and (in some versions) a ghost? All mockeries or horrors.  Three more ways of spelling the word dead” (Lewis, C.S. p. 20). He further revels in the fear of those who have finally come to peace with loss.  He remarks how he cannot envision how a man with a hoe and watering pot visiting the churchyard, happily exclaimed it was time to visit “mum”.   Lewis remarks, “A six-by-three foot flower-bed has become mum” (Lewis, C.S. p.21).  Yet, Lewis is not yet at the point to understand the continuation of bonds.  The pain is still too raw, too soon, and too painful.

Wishing to see her again also, sways him back from grief to guilt.  He wishes to see her but then sees this wish to bring her back is a selfish love.  He corrects himself and realizes that this self pity is horribly selfish and to wish her back is a cruel endeavor, especially with the suffering she endured to escape this world.  He speculates, “They call Stephen the first martyr. Hadn’t Lazarus the rawer deal? (Lewis, C.S., p. 41).

He reviews within his mind a mixed guilt of possibly getting over something too soon.  Someone truly does not recover from such an operation.  He compares this grief to someone losing a leg.  One learns to adjust, but it forever affects oneself.  When one awakes, or dresses, the reality is always there, even if one finds joy in day to day situations.

He also asks himself though, if there is shame in finding happiness, or if one is obligated to prolong one’s own unhappiness (Lewis, C.S. p.52-53).  This is classical in grieving.  One feels an obligation to grieve a certain time.  Grief has no time table and each individual needs to process the grief and then without guilt, heal. It is obvious that Lewis understands this concept but poetically displays the inner pain of those who suffer loss.


Within the initial shockwaves of pain, Lewis articulates his frustration and anger with God.  He points out that God is always around when one is happy, but when you need Him, he refers to it as ” a door slammed in your face” (Lewis, C.S. p.6).  He does not fully come to any conclusion to deny the existence of God, although he does question the goodness of God.  He points out that Christ too was forsaken, but does that make it easier to understand? (Lewis, C.S. p.6).  He begins to view God as being who really does not care.  In later chapters, he reflects on this anger. He states, “All that stuff about the Cosmic Sadist was not so much the expression of thought as of hatred.  I was getting from it the only pleasure a man can get; the pleasure of hitting back”.  He continues that what he thought he knew was not true, but felt that at least it might offed him or other worshippers (Lewis, C.S. p. 40)

Many become angry with God in the initial phases of grief but according to Lewis the door is never slammed shut and bolted. He is always with us


Philosophically, Lewis does not dismiss the existence of God, but in acute grief, comments how one may believe God is far from good.  He points out that “Is it rational to believe in a bad God?  Anyway, in a God so bad as all that?  The Cosmic Sadist, the spiteful imbecile? (Lewis, C.S, p.30).  He wonders if this is good, then how is God good?  He later reprimands himself for feeling this, but continues to question the reason for this cruel suffering.   He laughs at himself how once he could tell those who suffered loss that their beloved one is in a better place.   He remarks that he knew bad things could happen and even warned and prepared himself not to place happiness in the world, but he points out that once it happens to you, it is far different.   Once being a source of faith, he know sees his faith as a house that has collapsed.  He states, “If my house has collapsed at one blow, that is because it a house of cards” (Lewis, C.J. p. 37).  He mocks how he once so easily gave advice, but now cannot it for himself.  Was it because he truly did not care about others, or that he never truly understood the severity of it?


Stemming from the long suffering and pain, Lewis slowly begins to heal.  He begins to realize his love remains and he can even sometimes hear his wife in a different way.  He remarks his great fear of losing her memory, but now has a sense of her.  He comments, “She seems to meet me everywhere.  Meet is far too strong a word.  I don’t mean anything remotely like an apparition or voice.  I don’t mean even any strikingly emotional experience at any particular moment.  Rather, a sort of unobtrusive but massive sense that she is, just as much as ever, a fact to be taken into account” (Lewis, C.S, p. 51). He also remembers how easily he could misjudge a man in a similar situation who now has happiness despite the loss. He remarks, ” I might have said, ‘He’s got over it.  He’s forgotten his wife’. but the truth was, ‘He remembers her better because he has partly got over it'”(Lewis, C.S., p.45).


Lewis learns that healing is not forgetting but remembering in a healthy way.  Please also review AIHCP’s Grief and Christian Grief Counseling Certifications


He further remarks that even with God, he no longer feels the door is slammed shut.  He states that sometimes God is there but one is too frantic to hear or be saved, as if a drowning man kicking and screaming (Lewis, C.S. p 46).   He asks if God is the vet or the vivisector (Lewis, C.S. p. 40).  Is God truly healing and helping the person through the pain into a better life. Lewis ultimately understands that God does not wish suffering but walks with the sufferers and relieves them of the pain and transforms them into life.  While those on Earth, may not understand the ultimate mystery, and may refuse to hear, God is not the sadist, he thought in anger, but a rescuer.   He sees God as the giver and H. as the gift.  H. becomes the garden and God the gardener, or H. the sword and God the smith.  God perfects His gifts in the next life and this gives Lewis comfort (Lewis, C.S. p. 62-63).

He confirms to himself that the road to H. is through God, but he also corrects himself and reminds himself that God should never be a means to an end.  He realizes that through loving God, he loves H. and they will find union in that love together (Lewis, C.S., p. 68-69).   He furthermore realizes that God no longer did not answer his knocking of the door or reject his needs.  Lewis states, “it is not the locked door.  It is more like a silent, certainly not uncompassionate, gaze. As through He shook His head not in refusal but waiving the question.  Like, ‘Peace, child; you don’t understand'”(Lewis, C.S. p. 69).


From a Christian perspective, Lewis explains the emotional pain of losing someone and still being a believer.  He triumphantly captures the nature of grief but also adds elements of Christian grieving.  He proceeds through the phases and oscillations of grief and faces many existential questions.  While reading the words, one truly can start to prepare or recall the true abandonment one can face in the pain of grief and how hard it is again to find solace and peace.

Please also review AIHCP’s Christian Grief Counseling Program.  Those who are already Grief certified are eligible for the specialty program.  Like the Grief Counseling Certification, the Christian Grief Counseling Certification is online and independent study.


“A Grief Observed”. Lewis, C.S. (1961).  Harper Collins Publishers. (1994)

Additional Resources

“C.S. Lewis”. (2021). Biography.  Access here

“C. S. Lewis”. Wikipedia.  Access here

“A GRIEF OBSERVED”. Harmon, J. (2013). C.S Lewis Institute.  Access here

“The boredom and the fear of grief”. Grady, C. (2021). Vox. Access here

The Loss of a Job and Grief

Losing a job is a loss.  It has many elements that lead to grief, sadness, loss of identity, pride and numerous secondary financial implications.   One can lose a sense of hope when one loses the financial security a good job provides and lead one into despair and poor coping.  It is important, as in any loss, to maintain good coping strategies and remain optimistic and confident in one self.  One needs to find the ability, despite the pain, fear and grief, to proceed forward with courage and optimism to find a new job.

Losing a job is emotional. It can be a loss of self, plus the numerous secondary financial, healthcare related, and family care related issues that come with it


The article, “Job loss, grief and professional identity” by Mark Carey takes a closer look at the implications surrounding job loss.  He notes the initial shock and anger associated with it but also pushes the reader to find hope and cope in healthy ways to find a new job.  He does not dismiss the pain or secondary issues surrounding job loss, but looks to provide some guidance in better responding to the loss itself.  He states,

“Losing a job can also become an unforeseen positive transformation and I have seen clients over the years pivot successfully without losing a sense of self-identity. Many clients do not buy into the idea that their job is who they are. These clients transition between jobs without falling apart and making huge leaps forward in a way thought impossible before the termination. One door closes and another opens. I have to say that most clients I have worked with actually find better paying and more personally satisfying jobs after being terminated or laid off.”

“Job loss, grief and professional identity”. Carey, M. (2023). Westfair Business Journal. Access here


Job loss involves numerous losses.  Albeit many of them do not need to define one or prevent one from reaching even better positions with other employers.  Still, the loss for some can be very overbearing.  One element is sense of self.  Some individuals, who even retire, have the issue of not knowing who they are outside their profession.  A life long cop may have issues retiring or being let go.  Likewise, helping professions and skilled laborers who are defined by these professional talents may feel they no longer matter without those positions or responsibilities.  While a career plays a big role in what we do and love, we cannot equate a job identically to oneself.  Individuals are more than what they do and it is important to understand that.  Also, there are transitions in life, when one position in life transitions into another and while our positions change, we still remain ourselves. They are accidental qualities.  While some positions in life mean more than others, we are still simply us.  It is important during job loss, retirement, or transition, that we are more than what we do, even if what we do matters alot.

Losing a job affects numerous aspects of self and life itself. Please also review AIHCP’S Grief Counseling Program


Beyond loss of identity, many individuals also suffer from change itself.  The change of finding a new place to work.  The change of new co-workers.  The change of new work schedules or new training skills.  Others have a difficulty emotionally.  Maybe they feel betrayed, or upset over the termination.  Maybe they feel angry over the job loss.  During the transition, negative emotions may limit their ability to cope and lead to a down time of bad decisions involving drugs, or excessive sleep.  Individuals may let themselves physically and mentally lose focus and neglect their physical and mental health.

Still others may be haunted by the financial and secondary losses of job loss.  The worry of rent, or house payments, or car payments, or basic utilities.  They may worry over the loss of certain life styles, or even the fear of caring for their family and children.  Some children may need healthcare or need funds for school.  These worries become very real very fast when a financial line is suddenly cut.

Coping through Job Loss

While job loss presents so many issues as noted above, individuals can still proceed forward and find new employment.  Skilled workers rarely remain unemployed and unskilled workers can still find supplemental jobs that may not be as good but may fill the gap till a better job comes along.  Individuals need to remain in contact with family and friends and utilize their support system to maintain confidence and self esteem.  They should work on building a resume and preparing for job interviews.  With optimism, energy should be put into a job search.

Maintaining a positive outlook and creating a plan are key coping strategies during job loss


In addition, the individual should maintain mental and physical care of oneself.  Self care is key during this period.  Exercise and gym are pivotal to maintaining the schedule one once had.  Bad habits can easily creep into life and derail an individuals hard work ethic.  There are sometimes some good at that can come out of it.  Sometimes, it opens doors to a better job and sometimes it also gives one time, especially if laid off, to find a little bit of rest for a short period of time.  Try to find positives while finding a new job.

For those retiring, it may be good to look maybe to a hobby or finding volunteer work that can fill the void.  Those in human service rarely are able to stop helping people and many who retire eventually doing side projects and volunteer work.  Others should take the time to enjoy family and vacation or at least a new hobby.

Some may not cope well and feel depressed or even enter into depression.  If so, one should seek help from a licensed professional counselor with emphasis in grief counseling to help one through the dark period of time.


Job loss or retirement is a transition or change.  As a change it can cause grief and distress. It is clearly a loss because it takes something away.  It can take away self image, or self value, but it can also take away life style by limiting one’s financial or social status.  While a job is not who one is, it very much plays a big role in what one does and is able to do in life.  It plays a large role in a person’s sense of purpose.

Please also review AIHCP’s Grief Counseling Certification


Please also review AIHCP’s Grief Counseling Certification and see if it matches your academic and professional goals.  The program is online and independent study and open to qualified professionals seeking a four year certification in Grief Counseling.


Additional Resources

“Job Loss and the Stages of Grief: Coping and Recovering”. McLaren, P. (2020). PsychReg.  Access here

“The 5 Stages of Grief After a Loss”. Health Essentials. (2022). Cleveland Clinic.  Access here

“How to Handle Being Laid Off”. Smith, L. (2021). WebMed. Access here

“How to Support Clients With Job Loss Depression & Stress”. Latif, S. (2022). Positive Psychology.  Access here


Parenting While Grieving

Parenting is not an easy vocation to start but when extra issues in life pile up, then parenting can become even more difficult.  When stressors, losses, illness, or problems arise, parents still need to be able to fulfill their duties to their children. There are no days off when it comes to helping the kids with school, taking them places, cooking, caring and spending time with them but sometimes parents can feel the weight of life, especially during loss and grief.  When grieving and mourning enter into a parent’s life, mother or father do not have the luxury to call off work, or not the children to school, or skip dinner or not wash clothes.  Parents are called to march forward.  This is critical but it can also be bad for grieving and mental health.

Parenting is challenging but when a parent is grieving it is even more difficult. Please also review AIHCP’s Grief Counseling Certification


The mental health for a parent is extremely important.  Like in an airplane, when the steward or stewardess explains that in an emergency, adults should place the oxygen mask on first before applying to a child, it is for a reason.  If a parent falls, the child or children will also fall.  So while duty is critical, it is also critical for parents to find the space and time needed to grieve or mourn.  In this blog, we will look closer at the difficult times, when parents have to grieve and still perform at high levels for the welfare of their children.

Mental Health and Support

In times of loss, mental health care and support are so important.  While to many of us, our parents appeared as super powered beings, the reality is they suffered the same emotions we suffer as adults.  They had good and bad days.  They did not always choose the right decision and had to learn the hard way and they also dealt with loss.  As younger children, we may not have noticed this, or maybe even very rarely, but our childhood image of our parents is due to their excellent ability to care.  Unfortunately, some individuals may have negative experiences with parents.  Their parents may have fallen victim to drinking and abuse, or vanished when loss occurred.  They may have spoken nothing of loss or pain and hid it to their own detriment.

For some, family support is available, for others it is lacking. However, the importance of a family that can grieve together and communicate cannot be over emphasized


Our experiences with our parents can easily shape our own when parenting-for good and bad.  It is important when grieving to find a balance.  It is OK to show vulnerability to a child but also to ensure that the child still feels secure.   So when dealing with grief and loss, parents need to be able to balance their own feelings and the need to maintain the security and welfare of their children.  This involves allowing oneself time to mourn.  The grief needs to be processed and experienced. If the grief persists and intensifies, then one should seek help from a grief counselor, and if it becomes pathological, one should seek the aid of a licensed professional counselor,

Some parents have better support than others.  Some have a spouse to help lean on, while others have a bigger family to share the grief.  Some parents though may be single parents, or have little or no family support.  They may be over worked and have a full schedule that prohibits time.  These over bearing responsibilities may compound the grief.  So while some may be able to find the help they need or take time off, others live in a colder reality.  Whether blessed, supported or alone and over worked, one can still find basic help services and as well as find time.  Time may need carved out of the day, but one needs to find the time to process the loss, mourn, and be able to express it outwardly.  If one does not find time to re-generate, whether through a walk, meditation, spiritual journey, exercise, or a discussion with a good friend, then the grief will only become stronger and parental burnout may occur.

Sharing Emotion within the Family Unit

Families may tend to be overtly open with emotion or introvert in regards to expressing it.  Grief myths that dictate time schedules, or expression of grief, or sharing grief with children, can only fracture the family unit more.  Instead, express grief with a spouse, or the children.  Communicate that daddy or mommy are very sad.  Reassure to the children that this will not affect their security but share with them the reality that you are going through grief and loss.  This is an excellent way for children to learn to express empathy.  Children will hug and listen and in their own way express grief too.  The grief may very well be affecting not just you but the children as well.  Hence it is important to discuss the loss and include the children in discussion of the loss with real and concrete words about the nature of death.  Let the children partake in rituals and ceremonies and allow them to comfort you.

Communicating feelings and grief not only helps the parent but also teaches the child empathy and proper grieving and coping


For most parents, the loss in all probability is of a parent, or tragically a sibling.  These types of losses are extremely painful and children will also experience a shared loss.  While it may be your parent you lost, it still their grandparent.  Hence, it is important to share grief with the child or children and both mutually heal from each other.  This not only helps heal but it also passes on good mourning skills.  Many children inherit bad mourning skills.  They learn to hide emotion, or turn to improper coping methods to curb grief through imitation of mom or dad.

Families can also grow together closer through grief.  While also expressing, they can also memorialize loss and remember together the person over time.  In addition, they can build relationships that are stronger through this shared experience of loss.  Parents can be good grieving examples to their children and children can be good and empathetic listeners when they are permitted into a circle.  Excluding them can have negative effects on yourself but also their development.

The Loss of a Child

If a mother miscarries, or the couple lose a child already born, this has life long ramifications.  It is in itself, its own blog, but this is when parents need to not only grieve for the loss but also help the child grieve the loss of his/her sibling.  It is so important to involve the child in the rituals and to let the child speak verbally or through play.  Monitoring the child and ensuring they are exhibiting no magical thinking is important.  If the child has guilt for the death, then it needs dismissed.  So while the parent grieves, the parent also is ensuring that the surviving child still heals properly from the loss.  Again this is why it is so critical that the family grieves together and proper grieving styles are passed on to the next generation.


Parenting not easy but when grief and loss are thrown into the middle, it becomes far more difficult.  Parents need to not only care for their own mental health but they also need to express loss and grief to their children to ensure security for the child but also an understanding of what grief is and how to share it and be empathetic.

Please also review AIHCP’s Grief Counseling Certification as well as its specialty program in Child and Adolescent Grief Counseling


Please also review AIHCP’s Grief Counseling Certification, as well as its Child and Adolescent Grief Counseling Certification and see if the programs meet your academic and professional goals.  The program is online and independent study and open to qualified professionals seeking a four year certification.  The Child and Adolescent Grief Program is a specialty program that is only available for already those certified in Grief Counseling.

Additional Resources

“Can Parenting While Grieving Force You to Heal?”. Cytrynbaum, P. (2013).  Psychology Today.  Access here

“Parenting While Grieving”. Haley, E. (2015). Whats Your Grief.  Access here

“Grieving While Parenting”. Eiseman, J. (2019). Mental Health Match.  Access here

“Parenting while grieving”. Hetter, K. (2011). CNN.  Access here

Grief Counseling and Eating Disorders

Eating disorders stem from within.  The person has a low self image or utilizes eating as a coping mechanism to deal with loss, stress or trauma.  Some starve themselves, while others over-eat to escape the pain.   Individuals with low self image of themselves have a inaccurate view and are obsessed due to low self esteem to starve oneself and an attempt to find a never attainable weight.  While those who face pain and loss, may cope by binge eating.  Both extremes are unhealthy and can lead to multiple health issues.

Eating disorders stem from within due to loss, depression, and low self image.  They lead to poor coping strategies that are far from healthy. Please also review AIHCP’s Grief Counseling Certification


Counseling and proper coping are key to remove poor self image and poor coping strategies.  Grief Counseling and therapy from a licensed counselor can help.  Licensed counselors who are also certified in Grief Counseling can also help.  Please review AIHCP’s Grief Counseling Certification and see if it meets your academic and professional goals.


Please review the video below