DiscoverThe Silent WhyLet's Chat... Grieving brains
Let's Chat... Grieving brains

Let's Chat... Grieving brains

Update: 2023-01-24


#063. What is actually going on in the brain when we grieve? And how do grief and science work together?

This Let’s Chat episode explores the affect of grief on the brain and whether science can help us understand grief and love, or even prepare for loss.

These Let’s Chat… episodes pop-up every now and then instead our 101 loss episodes, as I (Claire Sandys) chat to a guest who has lived-experience or expertise in a particular area that can help us deal with, or prepare for, loss.

In this Let’s Chat I’m talking to Mary-Frances O'Connor, an Associate Professor of Clinical Psychology and Psychiatry at the University of Arizona, and author of the book 'The Grieving Brain: The surprising science of how we learn from love and loss'.

Mary-Frances conducts studies into understanding the grief process from a psychological and physiological point of view. 

Last year, a friend sent me an interview with Mary-Frances for The British Psychological Society and the headline was - 'You can't really study grief without studying love' - I instantly knew I needed to talk to Mary-Frances on the podcast about this, and when I asked her, she said 'yes!' (my favourite answer). 

Interview link:

Mary-Frances brings a new perspective to loss, the part love plays in grief, why going through love and then loss is still better than not loving at all, and the distinction between grief and grieving, as she chats from from a viewpoint we haven’t really tackled yet on the podcast - science.

For more about Mary-Frances and her book visit:

To buy 'The Grieving Brain': (paperback due out Feb 2023)

And you can find her on social media at:

And with each Let’s Chat… guest I'm building a tool shed (metaphorically) of tools to help you face and get through loss. So let’s see what Mary-Frances adds to my growing


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More about the hosts, our childless journey, photos of guests, blog, and official 101 losses list:

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Tips on how to help and talk to griefy people:

Episode transcripts and support the show:

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Let's Chat... Grieving brains

Let's Chat... Grieving brains

Claire Sandys, Mary-Frances O'Connor