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Expressive Storytelling

Expressive Storytelling

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Presented by

Linta Eapen Mathew, Ed.D.

English Language Arts &

Mental Health Support Teacher

Calgary, Alberta, Canada

USD$99 for 3-hour module

Life-changing loss, especially in its tragic forms, can break life stories as well as hearts.  Expressive Storytelling supports a bereaved person’s adaptation to loss by gathering the shattered pieces, placing them on a chronological timeline, and retelling the crucial details through a therapeutic writing structure that encourages reconciliation and healing.

After my father’s death, I undertook an autoethnographic study to test whether written, first-person narrative storytelling could help me actively process and effectively move through my crippling, complicated grief.  My data consisted of 41 short stories that disclosed the cultural interactions that occurred before, during, and after my father’s death while narrating the wildness of my prolonged grief.  The results of this deeply personal experience led to the formulation of clear guidelines for constructing therapeutic narratives of loss, focusing on the art of storytelling and the four cornerstones of grief stories.

This module describes the structure, language, drafting, and revision of transformative stories of bereavement, drawing on personal, relational and spiritual insights generated through my own practice.  These are then communicated practically through guided exercises in which learners will experience the power of therapeutic writing while developing greater mastery of its use in the context of grief.  The result is a step-by-step framework for written storytelling that practitioners can use to support the bereaved in processing and healing the pain of tragic loss.


  • Describe trauma’s effect on grieving brains and bodies;

  • Review new findings on therapeutic writing and discuss its effectiveness in adult and child bereavement; and 

  • Implement a step-by-step format for Expressive Storytelling to support adaptation to loss.

Note:  Completion of this program and return of the Responsive Journal satisfies 1 Technique Module required for Certification in Grief Therapy as Meaning Reconstruction, Certification in Art-Assisted Grief TherapyCertification in Family-Focused Grief Therapy or Certification in Grief Therapy for Non-Death Losses.


This program contains the following video segments:

  1. Healing Stories:  Conceptual and Empirical Foundations (43 mins)
  2. The Four Cornerstones of Grief Stories:  Guidelines for Narrative Practice (42 mins)

  3. The 5 Steps of G.R.I.E.F. Writing:  An Experiential Practice (49 mins)

  4. Expressive Storytelling in Child Bereavement:  Using Freytag’s Pyramid (46 mins)



Linita Eapen Mathew, Ed.D., is an English Language Arts and Mental Health Support teacher from Calgary, Alberta. She obtained her Doctor of Education from the University of Calgary, writing an autoethnographic dissertation that explored the effect of storytelling on bereavement for which she received the Canadian Association of Teacher Education (2021) thesis and dissertation award. Linita created and has led numerous Writing Through Grief workshops for educators and bereavement support centers across North America. Apart from being an educator, she is a writer at heart and the symposium co-editor for the British Journal of Guidance and Counselling.  Her books, Life: To Be Given Back Again to Whence It Came (2021) and The Revelations of Eapen (2022), reveal her intimate journey through prolonged grief and how she used storytelling to reconcile her father’s death. After completing her Reiki Master training in 2016, she opened PRANA, a thriving Reiki energy healing center based in Calgary where she uses her understanding of spirituality to support others in finding spiritual solutions to physical, emotional, and psychological problems.

Linita Eapen Mathew, Ed.D.

Photo - Linita Mathew.jpg

USD$99 for 3-hour module

For other enquiries, simply email Carolyn.

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