Books by and for Parents with No Surviving Children

Note: All books listed here are written by bereaved parents who are childless. Clicking on the book title will take you to where you can purchase the book, unless purchase options are described at the end of the book description.


  • But, Should the Angels Call for Him: A Mother’s Journey Through Grief and Discovery by Glenda Pearson: The author does a courageous job of sharing her story and how she has coped with the death of her only child.
  • Crossing the Horizon by Deanna Bailey: As I wrote Crossing the Horizon, the boys struggled with the very same issues I was facing.  They dealt with separation and silence in a whole new world. They struggled to communicate with me and Chris back home. They needed to find new ways to communicate safely with one another.  When they realized they couldn’t simply talk to Chris and me, they eventually found they could communicate with us in other ways.
  • First You Die: Learn to Live after the Death of Your Child by Marie Levine: Marie shares her heart-wrenching story of the death of her 22 year old son. She writes about anger and various feelings that now childless parents have and also about relationships.
  • Grief Healings by R. Glenn Kelly: Wisdom to assist you to move forward in your grief journey.
  • Grief In The Workplace by R. Glenn Kelly: Helpful solutions for employers dealing with employees experiencing grief.
  • I Have No Intention of Saying Good-Bye by Sandy Fox: Sandy interviewed single parents and couples whose only child/all children have died. She also included parents with surviving children. Sandy is the mother of a deceased only child.
  • I’ll See You in the Sunrise by Penny Young: Penny takes you through the first two years of bereavement with her poetry. Ray & Penny are now childless since the death of their son, Matthew. Send a $12 check to Penny Young  921 Bliss Avenue, Clovis, CA 93611.
  • Keeping Clarke by Stephanie Benbenek: A heartbreaking but honest and uplifting memoir that reveals the depth of grief and survival as a parent of an only child.
  • Letters to My Departed Son – Dear Brandon by Constance Spight: The book is a heartfelt volume of personal letters to my son, Brandon Spight, who passed away in 2007 after being diagnosed with an arteriovenous malformation in his brain. It provides a poignant glimpse into his extraordinary life. The letters lead others through an extremely challenging time that begins with Brandon’s diagnosis at age seventeen and ends with my reflection about the journey through unthinkable grief to eventual acceptance and healing. It not only demonstrates the power of unconditional love, but also the power of a young man’s exceptional ability to positively impact others not just in life but in death.
  • More than Surviving by Kelly Osmont: This book tells a bereaved parent how to care for oneself while one grieves. It addresses grief concerning all types of losses. Practical healing tips and specific ways grievers can prevent illnesses and isolation are discussed.
  • Not So Small a Circle by Rita Stout: This book is a must for now childless parents to read and add to your library.
  • Parting is not Goodbye by Kelly Osmont: This book gives insight into a single mother’s grief. Aaron, an only child was killed when he was kicked by a horse.
  • Rainbows after the Storm by Sherry Boyd Neu: Sherry shares her struggles and triumphs after the death of her daughter, an only child.
  • Saying Olin To Say Goodbye by Donald Hackett: An outstanding book about a father’s grief.
  • Sometimes I Cry In The Shower by R. Glenn Kelly: Ron ‘Glenn’ Kelly takes us on his journey of grief when his 16 year old son, Jonathan died unexpectedly during heart surgery.  He shares his emotional, physical and spiritual journey with which everyone can relate.  It is definitely a book that bereaved fathers need to read.
  • Swan Lessons by Joyce A. Harvey. Joyce’s book is an outstanding example of the struggles many single bereaved parents experience, yet all bereaved parents will readily relate to her grief journey. Joyce’s daughter, Jen, died as a result of suicide following harassment in the military. This is a current topic and concern. Professionals and support group leaders will learn lessons of how to assist those with whom they encourage in their work. Her metaphors of grief, honest feelings of regret, courage to find validation, a means of forgiving herself and various avenues of growth on her healing journey will inspire others to continue to find the ‘Swan Lessons’ on their journeys.
  • The Griefcase by R. Glenn Kelly: A men’s grief guide to healing and moving forward in grief.
  • The Poems by Sascha Wagner: A book of poems written by Sascha that are inspirational and beloved by now childless parents.
  • Triumph over Tragedy by Cheryl Rottman: In “Triumph over Tragedy,” Cheryl Rottman bravely opens up about the devastating loss of her daughter, Lisa Marie Rose. Through raw and emotional storytelling, she guides readers through the depths of grief, the challenges of seeking closure, and the long journey to healing and forgiveness (only found in Jesus). This powerful book is a heartfelt tribute to Lisa and a profound reminder of the strength of the human spirit in times of adversity. With unwavering courage and grace, Cheryl shows us that love, memories, and forgiveness have the power to conquer even the most painful sorrow.
  • Turning Your Scars into Stars: A Journey from Mourning to Joy by Dr. Sue Hamby: This intent of this book was to help others navigate through the seas of sorrow into the seas of acceptance and then into the seas of joy. All proceeds for the book go to Neema Village, a baby rescue center in Tanzania. The book provided an outlet for journaling for the author, and related TV interviews by the author can be found on YouTube by typing in “Dr. Sue Hamby”.
  • What Forever Means after the Death of a Child by Kay Talbot: This book is written from the perspective of a bereaved parent of an only child and psychotherapist. Kay describes the trauma and multiple secondary losses experienced by bereaved parents. She provides examples of what helps and what hinders bereaved parents as their grief and loss evolve.
  • For a general list of bereavement books that are not necessarily written by childless parents, click here.

If you know of any now childless parents who have published a book about bereavement please let us know so we can include it in this list.

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