How to Properly Help a Grieving Loved One

While many of us have felt unsure as to how to cope with the loss of a loved one, what’s more, difficult is the task of supporting another who is grieving. Many of us can identify with the same sentiments. In fact, our hearts immediately go out to those who have shared a loss and need some sort of comfort and assistance without knowing how to ask for it.

Here’s how to properly help a grieving loved one.

Be available

The first instinct is to ask the person what you can do to help. While this is a wonderful suggestion, it is better to act rather than ask. Most people will offer all sorts of help such as bringing food, looking after children or running their painful daily errands. However, this isn’t always what the person may need. I fact, they may not even know what they need. The first thing you must do is to become available for them. This may make all the difference in how they deal with grief.

Listen

One of the healthiest ways to deal with grief is to talk about the person and the events of what is happening. While this portion of the funeral service is often short, research shows that it is often the most important factor of dealing with grief. Humans need to release their thoughts. To create balance, we must be those ones to listen.

Support Feelings of Grief

While you may feel the urge to say, “I know how you feel,” you don’t.  Everyone deals with grief in his or her own ways. People may say these things with good intentions, but the person in grief may not appreciate them. We must validate their feelings into a unique feeling.

Be prepared for the fact that you may be the signal to release angry reactions or outburst from the griever. While it might not be a reflection on you, the problem lies within various aspects of the loss. Bottom line: they are angry. What makes it worse is that we cannot give them what they want to have the most.

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