Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog

Editor: Gerry W. Beyer
Texas Tech Univ. School of Law

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Do Men Grieve Differently?


Making wrong assumptions when clients are grieving could take a chunk out of your practice.  You may assume men grieve differently from women but the findings of two noted psychologists indicate that neither sex grieves in a particular way.

What they found were two grieving styles that crossed gender boundaries.  “Instrumental” grievers cope by understanding facts and taking actions.  They are more likely to go it alone, clean out the closet soon after the funeral, and set up a memorial fund.  More men than women are instrumental grievers.

“Intuitive” grievers cope by talking through their feelings.  These emotion-based grievers are more likely to leave the closet untouched and go to support groups.  More women than men are intuitive grievers. 

Of course, we are all on a continuum between these two styles.  However, it is important you honor a client’s preference and not judge how they are going to grieve based on gender. 

See Amy Florian, Do Men Grieve Differently Than Women?, Producers Web, March 4, 2014.

Special thanks to Jim Hillhouse (Professional Legal Marketing (PLM, Inc.)) for bringing this article to my attention.


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