Trauma and Healing: Ashley Judd Opens Up About Processing Grief and Finding Peace

Nashville, Tennessee – Actress Ashley Judd has found comfort and connection with her late mother, singer and songwriter Naomi Judd, through what she refers to as “winks” or “small nudges.” In a recent conversation with CNN’s Anderson Cooper for his podcast “All There Is,” Judd shared how she follows these gentle impulses, like stopping at the greeting card aisle at Walgreens, where she picks out the card she believes her mother would have chosen for her.

Since her mother’s suicide in 2022 at the age of 76, Judd has been on a journey of healing. She described the intersection of trauma and grief as a “braid” and emphasized the importance of processing trauma before beginning the grieving process.

Judd has been open about seeking therapy to cope with her grief and trauma. She underwent eye movement desensitization and reprocessing therapy (EMDR), a evidence-based treatment that helps reduce negative emotions associated with traumatic events. She acknowledged that the healing process required hard work and dedication, but through it, she has been able to navigate her grief and find new ways to remember her mother.

The actress reflected on her mother’s sense of curiosity and how it shaped their relationship. She finds solace in knowing that her mother’s spirit resides in the mysteries she once daydreamed about.

Despite the pain of loss, Judd cherishes memories of her mother’s resilience. Even in the depths of her depression, Naomi Judd would rise from the sofa to greet Ashley, illuminating with joy at her daughter’s presence. These fond memories continue to shape Ashley’s perception of her mother.

As she continues to grieve, Judd finds comfort in family traditions and small reminders of her mother’s presence. She believes that how a person lived should be remembered, and that their death is just a part of their larger story.

The second season of “All There Is” is now available wherever podcasts are streamed.

If you or someone you know is struggling with suicidal thoughts or mental health matters, please call the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline at 988 to connect with a trained counselor. Additional resources can be found on the 988 Lifeline website.