Increasing Narrative Coherence in the Bereaved: The Effect of Narrative Review on Grief Reaction

Stefanie Suzon Boswell

Abstract

In order to investigate the utility of an experimental expressive writing intervention designed to increase narrative coherence (write about loss combined with review of previous narratives) as a potential bereavement intervention, it was compared to a standard expressive writing intervention (write about loss with no opportunity for review), and two trivial writing conditions (one with and one without opportunity for review). Although all writing groups experienced beneficial effects across time, participants in the experimental and standard conditions reported significantly greater personal growth as a function of time when compared to control participants.