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Where Do You Keep Your Un-Cried Tears? Learning To Live With Grief


Grief. It comes to fill our hollows of loss. To accompany our loneliness. To be with our pain.

So when you’ve lost someone important in your life, by death or distance; or if you’ve lost a certain hope for the future; you may find a sense of grief. Or maybe it finds you

It’s all a bit of an enigma sometimes. For grief is a something in the middle of a new nothing. A heaviness in the emptiness.

And, often, with grief can come tears. Even if you don’t always let yourself cry them…

At this time of year, with all the special occasions and anniversaries and expectations, all those un-cried tears – both old and new – can make themselves felt all the more.

So where do you keep yours?

Where do you actually carry them, your un-cried tears*?

If you sit for a moment, just you and your sorrow in some stillness, whereabouts in your body do you sense that sadness residing just now?

And what might it be like not to feel under pressure to fix or placate or silence or hide it? But just to acknowledge it? Just to see it? Maybe even to accept it?

How might you and your grief help one another through this loss?

It seems an odd question, I know.

But even though it’s a bit counter-intuitive, sometimes it’s worth getting closer to your grief like this.

For though grief can seem painful from a distance, like something to steer well clear of, when you actually give yourself a chance to get to know it better, your grief – and your tears – can also offer you a path towards healing. At whatever pace feels right for you…


*Thanks to my friend Jo for sharing the term “un-cried tears” with me
Text and photo copyright: Gabrielle Gawne-Kelnar
Gabrielle Gawne-Kelnar (Grad Dip Counselling & Psychotherapy) is a writer, blogger and Sydney psychotherapist in private practice at One Life Counselling & Psychotherapy. Gabrielle also facilitates telephone support groups for people who are living with cancer, for their carers, and for people who have been bereaved through a cancer experience. She was the former editor of a journal on counselling and psychotherapy and she provides regular therapeutic updates on facebook and Twitter @OneLifeTherapy.
Where Do You Keep Your Un-Cried Tears? Learning To Live With Grief

Gabrielle Gawne-Kelnar

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APA Reference
Gawne-Kelnar, G. (2011). Where Do You Keep Your Un-Cried Tears? Learning To Live With Grief. Psych Central. Retrieved on January 27, 2020, from


Last updated: 19 Dec 2011
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