Life leads its path and then there is death. Living through a death of a loved one and trying to grieve is a very hard process. Writing this article was one of the toughest things I have done in a while. Years back, we lost my niece at only 11 years old, and then just recently, on my birthday, my Mother-In-Law passed.
Honestly, restlessness and an unnerving end to a regular calm life quickly took over. There are no words that console, no blankets to make you feel warm, you are just left cold.
If I can say anything about the most ghastly time in our lives, I would love to suggest 4 tips tp console a grieving friend or loved one because we were offered so much over a short span of time and most of it was quite helpful.
4 Tips To Console A Grieving Friend Or Loved One
Death is inevitable but having others that are there for you, helping you through the most desperate, and isolating hours, days and months is the best thing you can have by your side.
While friends and family might appear inconsolable during the immediate period following the death of their loved one, they will eventually need a shoulder to fall onto hard.
Remember, grieving is done different by everyone, and pain allows us to say good-bye and at some point, closure appears. While this post won’t provide lavish living, I do believe that my 4 tips to console a grieving friend or loved one will be most helpful as we all experience this.
Death just lets our minds go where we dare not usually think. It is like the world factor: We know there is a whole world, and so much out there, but we just are able to focus on task each day and ‘our world’ until something goes wrong.
Suddenly, just as in death, you are raw, exposed and in need of consoling, support and love.
The motivation does not matter, but there are 2 kinds of helping friends: sometimes those Helping friends through loss and grief are purely selfish and sometimes just truly golden.
Some help friends through loss and grief so that it distracts them from the most horrific situation and allows them to displace their darkest fears.
While others help friends through loss and grief to truly bring them to the other side, stronger and in time.
Dealing with the death of a loved one is inevitable and if you have a friend or loved one, who has recently lost someone close to them, it’s important to be there for them in the best way possible.
There is a pain with saying goodbye to a loved one that cuts worse than any knife, and any discomfort you have had in life, because the unreal image of them NEVER being there again is about to occur.
This is where 4 tips to console a grieving friend or loved one come in handy so that you can provide thoughtful comfort and support to family and friends as they work through this heart-wrenching time.
There Are No Quick Fixes
Get rid of that urge to “fix” your friends and family that are going through hard times. While your earnest good intentions come from a heartfelt and caring place, it’s not the right course of action when a loved one is grieving a death.
Don’t just talk to talk, keep small banter quiet, it is just annoying. Saying that your loved one has gone on to a better place leaves them in a worse place and we want more, so don’t say you had a lot of great years with them either, all small banter that is just so awful to hear.
Grieving happens in stages and trying to move them from stage-to-stage without feeling it, does not validate their feelings nor help them come to terms. Allow them to grieve, and don’t try to be a force of positivity. Simply be there for them, and offer the truth: the situation is awful and heartbreaking, but you’ll be there by their side as long as you need.
Be The Detail Whisperer
Grief and loss knock the wind out of the sails. Does your friend or loved one have children? Get the details together and organize rides for the kids, babysitting and anything from activities to sports should still carry-on for the kids, be that chariot.
Grocery shopping can be dismal and really the last place anyone wants to be, pick up the necessities for the first few weeks, because the food is not always where it is for someone grieving. Take the stress off of them, and if you can send in a cleaning service.
Life is not in focus, and while it falls apart around those mourning from loss, when they get to the other side, having less to deal with will bring them through the puddles.
Don’t wait for the grieving to ask to step up, step in, and take stress off their shoulders by picking up the slack without prompting, and without being pushy.
Assist With Funeral Planning But ……
If your friend has lost a family member or spouse, they’re likely responsible at least partially for planning the funeral ceremony in a time when their heart is sick with grief and their mind is still in shock.
Hopefully, you are close enough to that person to be able to sit on on the planning, write notes, and ask the detailed questions that the fog from all this has created. You can be the shoulder of support.
Remember, it is not just the funeral home, rather there are a variety of aspects of the funeral that they’ll be forced to make decisions about from burial details, transportation, flowers, and food for visiting family. Just guide with support.
The one more evident and touchy area is often the struggle of funding the funeral. Funerals can become very expensive, so you might step up and consider hosting a fundraiser or collecting donations to help offset the costs. Easy to do, and perfect for those that were contributing anyway, as it is very organized. This is being used so often that it is a trick of the trade in support systems!
No, Let Up
It’s funny to me and always has been that at the time of the funeral there are so many people around and suddenly, one-by-one everyone disappears and suddenly you are very, very along. It is so important to offer continued support.
When the news first breaks until the funeral, your friend will be inundated with well-meaning condolences and offers of help, but this outpouring of support tends to naturally wane away as the weeks go on.
Remain a pillar of support for your friend even as the months ebb away and I like to call this NO LET UP. Grief doesn’t follow a strict timeline, and they’ll have a transition period while they get used to their new reality.
Support during this time period might range from a cup of coffee to a small visit or inviting them to your home to get them out!
During this time, you might want to offer them a way for them to keep the memory of their loved one alive; encourage them to talk about them if they’re willing, personalize a sentimental gift that honors their lost loved one, or even plant a tree in their loved one’s honor.
Let their legacy live on, let the love shine through and provide comfort, easily achievable with these awesome resources.
The subject of death, dying, funerals, viewings, mourning and life that has passed on is so difficult to discuss.
While you may decide to not discuss any of this, at least let the 4 tips to console a grieving friend or loved one, lead you to the path that provides some comfort in outreach.