Sasha Bates is a qualified Psychotherapist specialising in embodied psychotherapy, trauma and self-regulation. She teaches workshops on subjects such as self-care for therapists, and how yoga can help those with PTSD.
Sasha's first career was in the TV industry where she spent 18 years writing, directing and producing for the BBC and C4, including for series as varied as Omnibus, Grand Designs and How to Look Good Naked. She also writes travel articles for The Sunday Telegraph and Queen of Retreats.
When Sasha's husband suddenly died she was plunged into the messy reality of her own grief. Her resulting memoir LANGUAGES OF LOSS explores her personal experience of grief through the mindset of her expertise as a psychotherapist, asking the question - can knowledge of the theory of grief help us better understand and process our own grief? It is a tender and raw portrayal of loss, a beautiful portrait of her late husband and an honest exploration of grief, arguing that ultimately there is no one way to process bereavement. It was published in 2020. Sasha's follow up A GRIEF COMPANION is due in Spring 2021 and she has a yoga-related title in the works for 2022.
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Praise for Languages of Loss
"Sasha writes exquisitely and honestly, the sheer rawness of what she has gone through and is still going through, sitting in balance with the calm and clear-sighted objectivity of the therapist, who is also her. That I knew Bill and so vividly recognise the man is testimony to her skill at characterisation - but whether one knew him or not, one recognises love when one reads it and one recognises the chaotic agony of a love lost. Exploring the threads of her bereavement with such candour and wit and lightness of touch is a remarkable achievement. Importantly, bursting through the bitter darkness of her personal experience shine truths that will serve as points of light for those who have shared, or are perhaps just embarking upon, the confusing journey of grief" Hugh Bonneville, Actor
“A really powerful book. I hadn’t read a book before that melds the professional, as a psychotherapist, and the personal, as someone that lost their partner. Sasha’s book covers the course of one year since she lost her husband Bill, where she describes how she feels and tries to apply what she has learnt as a therapist. She explores the times when that really exposes the shortcomings of grief counselling, and how incapable anything is really at helping you navigate this absence. I’ve never read anything like that, a mixture of the practical and the emotional.” Pandora Sykes, The High-Low Podcast
"A beautifully written and honest look at grief, this is an exceptional and much-needed book." Good Housekeeping
"This is a deep and generous book. Sasha Bates offers the reader a compassionate walk alongside her as she weaves her own personal story of loss with her professional understanding. It will be a great support to all who have suffered loss." Elizabeth Wilde McCormick, Psychotherapist and Author
"Reading this book, I'm in the hands of someone I would want to be my side for the traumas of life - however small they seem, or big they loom." Kirsty Wark
"Through joining the language of the head and the heart, Languages of Loss teaches how, after grief - no matter how impossible it may seem - we can begin to search for the ‘why’ once more." Andrea Cleary for the Sunday Post
"I was...left with an awe, an awe of humanity’s fundamental and beautiful capacity for loving connection, with one another and with one’s self. I will keep this book close to me always" Ed Simmons, Psychotherapist and Chemical Brother
"This is a book fluent not just in the languages of loss but of compassion, humour, empathy, understanding, revelation and humanity.
Even in the depths of her own grief Sasha Bates makes sense of the chaos that envelops all of us and offers not a reductive path to some kind of quasi-redemption but the profound glimpse of a way through." Tim Marlow, Creative director of the Royal Academy
"This is the most startlingly honest book about grief I have ever read. Its immediacy hits you on the first page and takes you on an unforgettable journey. No one has set out so clearly the stages we go through as we try to come to terms with facing the enormity of death." Dame Penelope Wilton, DBE
“This book is about so much more than loss. Sasha’s way with words allows the reader to access and connect with the depth of love shared by her and Bill. In doing this, she offers inspiration and hope for us all, highlighting along the way that grief is not ‘the price we pay for love’ but is indeed love itself. I loved this book with every bit of my own broken, open heart.” Donna Lancaster - Co Founder of The Bridge Retreat
"The Language of Loss is a psychotherapist's journey through grief, breaking down taboos and finding humour and light." David Nicholls
"In this touching book by psychotherapist Sasha Bates, loss and grief are discussed with unwavering honesty... Bates infuses the book with hope and will leave you glad to have shared her journey" Amy Sedghi’s ‘Best Books on Mindfulness and Meditation to Read in 2020
"Sahsha weaves her path from the professional to the personal response of a loss, with aching honesty and beauty. Uplifting and intelligent I loved it so much." Lizzie King, Author
"An astounding achievement both as a 'memoir' and as a valuable insight into the aftermath of trauma and loss, otherwise known as grief. I am not a great reader of books on grief... but Sasha's construction of a conversation between her two personna's has been a great help for me to understand the processes of my own grief as well to empathise with another" Jimmy Edmonds Co-founder of the Good Grief Project.
'Compulsory reading for everyone. It will prepare any of us to help someone’s whose beloved partner or child has died. It will prepare any of us who has to face the death of their own beloved. A book for our times' Irish Examiner
“This book will give anyone grieving the death of their partner an insight into their experience, and help those around them understand the difficult and painful process of grief.” Julia Samuel, author of This Too Shall Pass and Grief Works