Breaking down the taboo against finding humor in grief is a theme of British comedian Cariad Lloyd’s Griefcast. She started the popular podcast as a side project based on her personal experiences following her father’s death. The series snagged three prizes at the British Podcast Awards in 2018, including Podcast of the Year. She talks about her journey to find the funny in the most difficult circumstances in this article in the Evening Standard. After growing up in what she calls “an emotionally literate household,” the overwhelming response to her podcast made her realize that others didn’t have the same tools with which to express grief after the death of a difficult loved one.

No One Talks About Death

“The biggest shock to me was how some people don’t talk about death,” she says in the interview. “I would get emails from people saying: ‘My parents died and I hadn’t spoken to my wife about it. I thought I was having a breakdown until I heard your podcast and realised I was just grieving’. Suddenly I thought: ‘Maybe this is useful’.”

Interviewing Comedians About Personal Losses

Lloyd’s approach takes the sting out of what she calls “the peculiar human process of death” by interviewing comedians about losses in their lives. The series is sincere and funny, and most of all, brings that sense of recognition that weren’t not alone in the complexity of our feelings about death and dying.

“When someone dies you’re made to feel like it’s 100 per cent awful, and any other feelings you have about it are wrong. But that’s not life. Life is always a mixture of emotions and I want the show to reflect that — about 50 per cent is people telling me these incredibly tragic, sad, painful, true stories and the other half is like: ‘Oh yeah, then they did this weird thing’. If funny things happen you don’t stop noticing them.”

Catch the highlights of the award-winning 2018 season in these two episodes or visit Cariad’s website for the latest.

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