Grief Course to be Relaunched Spring 2018

Our long-time and well-regarded grief course, The First Year of Grief: Help for the Journey, will be re-launched in the Spring of 2018.  Many people have emailed us to request we make this course available again. So we are in the process of uploading Marty Tousley’s course lessons to a newer course delivery system and we are adding additional content to an already wonderfully supportive course.

This course was the first grief-healing course offered online. It was authored by nationally certified grief counselor, Marty Tousley and developed with Self Healing Expressions in 2000. The course was then published in 2001 and has been lovingly maintained with constant updates for nearly 2 decades.

first year of grief course

The First Year of Grief: Help for the Journey by grief counselor, Marty Tousley. This popular Self Healing Expressions course has helped thousands of people navigate grief, in the privacy and comfort of their own homes since 2001.

We are working as fast as we can to make this grief course available again. If we can make it available sooner, we will. We realize the need is great for those of you writing in.

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Wishes for healing and peace, 

June Cook

Co-founder of

P.S.  Testimonials from past students of this grief course:

For those of you who are new to our site, we thought we’d share some comments from past students of this grief course.

…None of us are immune from loss

“Marty, I wrote you last week about taking the online course. My Dad died 8 months ago. Thank you for responding to my letter. I have read your reply many times. I have so much gratitude for your insight and thoughtfulness in responding. I almost feel like I have won some sort of contest and finding you on the internet is the prize. I am sure that sounds very strange to you but I don’t even know how else to say it.

Well, here’s the thing, I ended up joining the online course. I have found that it really can apply not only to the first year but at any time. Thanks for pointing that out! It is so awesome. I really, really enjoy reading the information. And even more than that, I feel that it has already helped me sort out some of the stuff in my head. My mom and I are doing it together. I have noticed a difference in her as well. Just realizing that I am not “crazy” is the biggest relief. When you said none of my issues seem abnormal, that made my day… As you said, “None of us are immune from loss.” Or as my mom says it, “None of us are getting out of here alive!” I can’t believe she actually says that! Take good care Marty and thank you again.” Tracy Dresser


Absolutely love how every word hits home…

“I am halfway through this course and it has been very helpful to me! I opted to receive the emails every day and for me, it isn’t too fast. I absolutely love how every word hits home and is so helpful!” Lori S., California


My parents passed away within 15 months of each other…

“It is going on my second year anniversary of my mother’s death and the first year of my fathers. I didn’t know where else to turn to. I had tried an actual counselor who was not sympathetic with my feelings. These feelings are actually real and it may take ‘a lot’ of time. Marty’s lessons make sense. I sometimes think that she can read my mind. I would recommend this site to anyone.” Elizabeth Owens, Virginia


“During the early months of my loss, I heard from my hospice grief counselor that there was an online e-course offered by our very own Marty that deals with the first year of grief. I was so devastated that I thought anything at that point couldn’t hurt so I signed up for the e-course. It was a decision that started me on my journey of healing. I had never, ever felt despair and pain like I was experiencing. The loss of my Jim (married for forty years) was more than I could bear. I was a mess. I had no hope of dealing with this loss. But those feelings began to change. It took months but I began to see a glimmer of light.

I began the e-course with a bit of skepticism but…

after the first month I began to look forward to the e-lessons coming to my e-mail twice a month. I was very glad that I chose that time because I needed the in-between time to digest the material given and read the links included in each lesson.

I am telling those of you who are so new to your grief that there is a healthy way to move through this grief you find yourself in right now. Your feelings and thoughts will change as you begin to understand that the feelings and thoughts are just that ~ they don’t control you unless you allow them to. Marty’s e-course changed my perspective and gave me some of the tools I needed to manage my grief. It is your work but there is help for those who don’t know where to begin. I am not giving a pitch for this e-course only giving you one tool that helped me and may help you begin to manage your grief.

The e-course is titled: “The First Year of Grief: Help on Your Journey.” I am almost two years into this journey and I am better than I was in the beginning. I was frozen the first three or four months after Jim’s death. Everything seemed so dark. I could not even listen to others who tried to tell me that things would change. It took me three months before I called for a grief counselor. It took me as long to come to this forum. I don’t like not having my Jim physically with me, but I am learning how to live knowing that he is still with me as I move through my day.” Anne, forum post (used with permission)


This course is helping me by…

“This course has validated much of what I’ve been feeling allowing me to accept my feelings as normal and productive. Although I have more than a few supportive people in my life, none of them understand how losing my daughter has changed my life so completely. This course is helping me by addressing the issues I’m facing.” Ellen Forrest, Canada