Jill Biden shares a powerful message about grief with Kelly Clarkson

Jill Biden reveals how she overcame the grief of losing her stepson, Beau Biden, to Kelly Clarkson in a candid interview

WILMINGTON, DE - JUNE 6: U.S. Vice President Joe Biden (C) and his wife Dr. Jill Biden (R) arrive with family for a mass of Christian burial at St. Anthony of Padua Church for there son, former Delaware Attorney General Beau Biden, on June 6, 2015 in Wilmington, Delaware. U.S. President Barack Obama is expected to deliver a eulogy for the son of Vice President Joe Biden after he died at 46 following a two-year battle with brain cancer. (Photo by Mark Makela/Getty Images)
(Image credit: Mark Makela/Getty Images)

Dr. Jill Biden has opened up about her experience with grief on The Kelly Clarkson Show, in her first solo interview as First Lady. 

Speaking with the daytime chat show host at the White House, Jill got candid about the death of her stepson and how the devastating loss challenged her Christian faith. Beau Biden, who had lost his biological mother and President Biden’s first wife Neilia to a car crash when he was four, passed away in 2015 of brain cancer. 

During his two-year-long battle with the disease, Jill constantly pleaded with a higher power to cure him. 

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“I prayed so hard, every single day, that he was going to live,” she told Kelly. 

The injustice of his death was incredibly difficult for Jill to comprehend, prompting her to question her once-staunch belief in God. 

“When we lost Beau, it was hard for me to keep my faith, because I had believed so strongly in prayer and that he’d make it.” 

Jill helped to raise Beau since he was eight, stepping in as his ‘second mother’ after she married Joe in 1977. 

“I felt like he was such a special person, that God would let him live, and I just prayed and prayed. It just wasn’t meant to be.” 

Jill admitted it took her ‘a long time’ to start the recovery process following the bereavement, having struggled to understand why her desperate prayers had gone unanswered. It wasn’t until a chance encounter with a stranger at a church in South Carolina last year that she began to slowly regain her faith. 

“A woman came up to me in a church and she said, ‘Jill, I want to be your prayer partner’,” she recalled. 

The proposal surprised Jill, who was more accustomed to praying alone. 

“I hadn’t even heard of a prayer partner,” she revealed. 

Despite her unfamiliarity with the term, she graciously accepted and remains in correspondence with the woman to this day. 

“She started to call me and we would pray together and to this day, she calls me maybe twice a week, we email, we text one another, and it really helped me find my faith again.” 

She now views her new friendship with her prayer partner, a Baptist by the name of Robin Jackson, as an invitation sent by the holy spirit. “It was like God was saying to me, ‘Okay, Jill, you had time, come back.’ And so I thought that was a gift she gave to me.” 

Emma Dooney
Lifestyle News Writer

Hailing from the lovely city of Dublin, Emma mainly covers the Royal Family and the entertainment world, as well as the occasional health and wellness feature. Always up for a good conversation, she has a passion for interviewing everyone from A-list celebrities to the local GP - or just about anyone who will chat to her, really.

Emma holds an MA in International Journalism from City, University of London, and a BA in English Literature from Trinity College Dublin.