Grief is Love | Mental Health Monday

With Marisa Renee Lee

Originally Aired on Monday, June 13, 2022 @ 11:00 am PST

Grief is Love with Marisa Renee Lee

Marisa Renee Lee has an eye-popping resume: Harvard grad, Wall Street whiz kid, staffer in the Obama Administration (She worked on racial equity and small business affairs, and helped lead its My Brother’s Keeper campaign for young men/boys of color). That’s the story that her bio tells, in part… but starting at age 13, she was also on a very different journey– she was also one of the primary caretakers for her mother, who lived with multiple sclerosis for twelve years and breast cancer for four before passing away in 2008. Marisa was twenty-six then. She spent fully half of her life caring for her mom, while still a half-formed person herself. The waves of grief that flowed from that experience have shaped her in indelible ways.

In her debut book, Grief is Love, Marisa unspools the story of her life with grief in all of its strange, surprising manifestations, offering up what she’s learned as a sort of compass for others navigating loss. She also laments the difficulty of Black people to access the physical/psychological safety required to be emotionally vulnerable and therefore grieve in full. Marisa remains no stranger to grief: she lost her young cousin to COVID last year, and she and her husband experienced the loss of a much wanted pregnancy. Sifting through her emotions around these traumas — personal and collective, racial and familial — Marisa arrives at a powerful conclusion: grief is our expression of unrequited love for those we’ve lost.

During this engaging session of #MentalHealthMonday Marisa will help us learn:

  • How grief is our expression of unrequited love for those we’ve lost.
  • Why grief “stages” and “timelines” are not only inaccurate; they’re unhelpful.
  • How being a black woman shapes her grief experience


Marisa Renee Lee is a called-upon advocate, writer, and speaker on coping with grief. Her acclaimed debut Grief is Love (April 2022) unspools the story of her own grief journey and offers a compass to others navigating loss. She is a rabble-rouser of social healing: former managing director of My Brother’s Keeper Alliance; co-founder of the digital platform Supportal; and founder of The Pink Agenda; a national organization dedicated to raising money for breast cancer care, research, and awareness. She is a regular contributor to Glamour, Vogue, MSNBC, and CNN. She is a graduate of Harvard and an avid home cook. She lives with her husband Matt, their newborn son Bennett, and their dog, Sadie.






We believe that when women heal, families heal, and communities do too.

The SHE RECOVERS Foundation Weekly #MentalHealthMonday Educational Series is composed of hour-long, live, recovery-focused educational sessions featuring today’s leaders in women’s wellness, mental health, and addiction recovery.

All #MentalHealthMonday sessions are broadcasted on Facebook and added to our Youtube Channel for future viewing.

With Great Thanks

This series is made possible by Alkermes.

The SHE RECOVERS Foundation was awarded funding in 2021 as part of the Alkermes Inspiration Grants® program to re-launch #MentalHealthMonday in the fall of 2021. This critical grant support will help us to continue delivering our innovative #MentalHealthMonday Educational series and better meet the increasingly diverse needs of our growing community. We are humbled, grateful, and invigorated by this honor.

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