How long does sadness last? A book review

With the book "How long does it take to be sad?" [1] Maria Farm writes a guide on the topic of saying goodbye, Loss and grief, which, due to the extremely simple language and the goal-oriented formulations with understandable metaphors as a foundation, is suitable reading and effective help not only for grieving children and young people, but also for adults in grief situations. Because these mourners - whether old or young - usually lack the strength to familiarize themselves with complicated or difficult to understand specialist literature.

On 128 pages, Maria Farm manages to lighten the burden of grief with beautiful illustrations and the grieving phases "Shock, reaction phase, processing and reorientation" [2] to explain lifelike without technical ballast. She works skilfully using examples, comforting imagery and advice, as well as exercises in each phase up to "complete mourning" - which is like background music - [ 3] to endow the reader with a starlight "which is said to help in difficult situations" - similar to the powerful Galadriel in "The Lord of the Rings", who presents a starlight to the hobbit Frodo in preparation for the dangers of the adventure yet to come [4].

However, in the first few chapters, Maria Farm also demonstrates that grief should not be viewed in isolation, but that it is also important to understand what exactly happens when someone dies or when we are exposed to bereavement. Specifically, she couples this work of understanding with facts about death and dying without losing the ease of her language or getting lost in a weighty complexity. It provides scientific insights and explanations and seems to be able to empathize with what the reader must suffer at every stage.

Overall, Maria Farm's Guide for Children and Teens feels like a deep and empathetic look into the soul that makes the reader feel recognized. Who picks up the person reading exactly where they are with their grief and provides meaningful explanations that answer those essential questions that fall in a torrent on grieving people.

[1] First published in 2022 at Oetinger

[2] From "How long does sadness last?" by Maria Farm (Oetinger) - Page 63

[2] From "How long does sadness last?" by Maria Farm (Oetinger) - Page 99

[2] From "How long does sadness last?" by Maria Farm (Oetinger) - Page 81