Grief Denied


A Vietnam Widow’s Story

“Grief Denied tells the riveting story of how Pauline Laurent came out from under the suffocating weight of her own awful silence to find personal expression and a sense of liberation. If somehow or other you never did appreciate how Vietnam got to the heart of America, then this book ought to be at the top of your list of books to read. And if you are thinking of writing a memoir to express your seemingly inexpressible pain, then this book is also for you.”

Jonah Raskin | The Press Democrat

Read more reviews below…



Will deepen your compassion toward others

“Pauline Laurent’s “Grief Denied: A Vietnam Widow’s Story” struck me more profoundly than any book I’ve ever read. I have dealt with grief in my own life and that of others, but never have I been moved to such outpouring of tears. The book hit a deep emotional chord as I read of the non-embraced grief that Pauline endured through years when society was angry and rejecting of anything related to the Vietnam War. I mourned for Pauline’s loss and for her fatherless daughter. And I mourned in personal shame how righteously intolerant I was during that era. Pauline’s story is about more than grief. It is about courage, resilience, and recovery. This book is poignant and gripping; it will live in your heart.”

By Michael DeMarchi | Hospice Volunteer

A Must Read

“Pauline Laurent’s Grief Denied, A Vietnam Widow’s Story is a must read for all of us who in some way experienced the Vietnam War. As a combat veteran who survived the war, I had never considered, much less appreciated what the loved ones of those killed in action have gone through. Pauline’s compelling story takes the reader from an innocent war bride to a young, overwhelmed war widow, filled with the unborn child of her first love, through the depths of self-doubt and depression to emerge finally as a complete person secure in her womanhood. We can all benefit from reading Pauline’s story as she takes us on the ride of her life, sometimes gently, sometimes shockingly, but always gripping. Every American will benefit from reading this experience of a war bride turned war widow and the struggles she encounters being both mother and father to the most important thing left behind by her war hero husband who died leading his fellow soldiers across a bridge in Gia Dinh province on May 10, 1968.”

By Timothy R. Lickness

“Grief Denied: A Vietnam Widow’s Story”

“I was so touched by the reading of this book, that I cried like a baby for the first time since I returned back from Vietnam. I was there myself and knew many men, such as Pauline’s husband. I just never realized how much grief and stress that those left behind had suffered. Pauline is an example of someone who has had to learn how to cope and deal with the death of her husband, without any road maps. She led with her heart and let her emotions take her to places she had never visited before. She allows us to take that journey of her spirit, though the pages of this wonderfully, well written, book of her emotional experiences. I could not put this book down once I began – not until I reached and read the final word on the last page. I highly recommend buying and reading of this book. It will move you in ways you thought possible.”

By W. H. McDonald Jr.

Tears Like Rivers Were Meant to Flow

“Reading Pauline Laurent’s book, Grief Denied, A Vietnam Widow’s Story has helped me painfully yet better understand the denied grief that is within me – grief and fear that colors my values and lends a dark skepticism to my personality in ways that my own psychiatric training has failed to enlighten. It hurts to have our darkness exposed to the light of Truth. I don’t like hurt. Pauline’s text has inspired me to “flow on” not to worry about the tears! After all, tears like rivers were meant to flow. It is the stuff of life. When we try to stop the flow…stagnation!”

By a customer who wishes to remain anonymous

The Truth About Being Left Behind

“Laurent has written a searingly painful portrait of the endless pit of despair and intermingled rage engendered by a senseless death. Such a death involves a murder of the soul, and her writing about the combat death of her husband after a pitifully short marriage is an intense read. Seven months pregnant, she loses the center of her life forever in one short moment and must somehow find the strength to go on and raise their little daughter born so soon after her father’s death. While her husband died in Vietnam, the experience of coming to terms with the death of a loved one is universal. No one who has not felt the hopelessness and the bleakness of the unending sorrow is fully capable of knowing what it is like, but the beautiful writing of Laurent makes it as close as is humanly possible to understand. It is the writing which distinguishes this book; Laurent expresses the pain and anguish of all losses in her words. Difficult to read; yes. Worthwhile; absolutely. And somehow cathartic, for we have all experienced loss, even if not a husband lost to combat in a senseless, meaningless political debacle as Vietnam. Read it; you’ll be glad you did.”

By D.M. Dean, PhD.

Excellent Book for Anyone Dealing with Grief and Loss

“In June 1970, when I was nineteen years old, my husband was killed in Vietnam. I had no idea how to deal with such a loss and, honestly, neither did anyone around me. I did what I had always done. I pushed the whole experience to the back of my brain and moved on. I did not realize that I was carrying this grief and loss with me until May 2014 when I opened the grocery bag in the basement that held the letters that my husband and I had written to each other. I was suddenly taken right back to 1970. I felt completely over-whelmed by the intense feelings of sadness and loss that came up. I thought I might be losing my mind. After all, this had all occurred forty-four years ago and I had dealt with it, right?

“I went on the internet to look for other Vietnam widows or anything that could explain what I was experiencing. The only relevant information I found was the book, Grief Denied by Pauline Laurent. At the time, the book was not available on Amazon, but the author was kind enough to send me a copy. In her book, Pauline describes her own long journey after her husband was killed in Vietnam in 1968 while she was pregnant with her daughter. She shows courage and compassion in describing how his death impacted her life for many years as she struggled to find her way. She offers hope to those who are still trying to find their way. She has generously shared her story, not only through her book, but through her willingness to meet with veterans and families of veterans, as well as widows and their children.

“The truth is that our culture does not deal well with death and loss. We don’t like to think about it, and we prefer that those who are experiencing grief get over it quickly and “get back to normal”. Pauline makes it clear that grief does not go away and that the “old normal” does not return. Her book is an excellent one for anyone who dealing with grief and loss or for those who know someone who is. Grief Denied helped me begin the healing that I had waited so long to do.”

By Kate Cooker

Finally, there is someone who speaks my language

“Pauline’s account of her early days of being a young military war widow and pregnant with the child that will never meet her father touched me to the deepest part of my soul. It was the first, and only, account of what my world was like and spoke a language I thought no one knew. Her message of denying grief is strong and resounding, most with personal antidotes, struggles and triumphs. I recommend this book to any and every person that either experiences first-hand the life of a military widow or knows a person who is walking the path of widowhood alone.”

By J. McCollum

Deeply Touched My Shattered Heart

“For the past 31 years, I experienced the same dreams; the same unspoken grief, the same inability to love fully again; the same inability to let go of my grief. I sobbed for hours while reading this book and for many hours afterwards. Pauline opened my eyes to the immense pain that my thirty-two-year-old son is living with due to my inability to discuss or deal with our total grief over his dad’s death in Vietnam in 1969. Thanks to Pauline for having the courage and fortitude to write and publish this extremely necessary book.”

By Brenda Cavanaugh



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