Losing a loved one is never easy, so how can you be a supportive friend or partner during their time of need, when someone they care for has passed away? Continue reading below for suggestions on how to help them cope.
It’s natural to be unsure of what to say or do during such difficult times but the best way to help is through compassion and empathy. The first most important thing to keep in mind is that the grieving process has no time frame and people may have emotions of guilt, remorse, anger and depression. Many times, those going through the bereavement process feel isolated and lonely. Try reaching out to them and be present. Don’t say, “Call me if you need me,” because most likely they won’t in fear they’ll be a nuisance or because asking for support is the last thing on their mind altogether. Instead say things like, “I’ll be over at noon to bring you lunch, offer to help straighten up the home, or to help pick out the flowers.” It’s more about actually being there than just saying you will be or you know I’m here for you.
Being open and honest that you’re not sure what to do is fine but offering your time and assistance in making arrangements for the deceased would be greatly appreciated. Also, continue to be supportive after the funeral. A huge part of the healing process is talking about the person who passed and even looking at photographs to relive old memories. Be patient and find genuine interest in these things because it will help your friend or partner find peace with the situation. Some voids can’t be filled and it’s not your responsibility to attempt to, however it’s nice to try and alleviate some of the pain and stress that comes along with grieving. Put yourself in their shoes and try to think of how you would want someone to be there for you.