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Supporting a Friend Who Is Grieving

>> Feb 8, 2012

For most people, knowing the right things to say to a friend when they are grieving can be quite difficult. It is completely natural to feel helpless, unsure, or awkward in this situation because saying the wrong thing could potentially make them feel even worse. While you may not be able to take their pain away, there are still many ways that you can provide comfort and support that shows your friend that you are there for them. The following tips will help get you started.

Let Them Make the First Move

It is natural to feel awkward around a friend who is grieving, and it's often hard to know what to do. In this situation, it is important that you make it known that you are available to them, and that they can come to you if they need to. Honesty is the best policy - tell them that you want to help but aren't sure what to do. A great way to let them know you are available is by giving them flowers or having flowers delivered to them with a friendly note.

Listen With Compassion

Two common mistakes that people make when trying to help a grieving friend are that they try and give too much advice or that they force the grieving person to open up. Here are a few tips on how to simply listen with compassion:

- Be accepting of all feelings. Let the grieving person feel comfortable about opening up and sharing their feelings. Don't try to reason with them regarding how they should or shouldn't feel, and don't avoid talking about the deceased person.
- Don't be afraid of silence. Sometimes if you’re not sure what to say, you don't need to say anything at all. The grieving person will talk about it when they are ready, and sometimes all they need is to be listened to with a reassuring presence in the room.
- Let them tell their story. Sometimes grieving people need to retell their story, and sometimes in a lot of detail. Try to be patient with them as each time they retell the story; their pain is a little less.

Offer Assistance When Needed

Grieving people sometimes don't feel comfortable asking for help as they may feel like a burden or they may be too depressed. If you want to offer practical help, make sure you are specific. For example, let them know you are making a trip to the shops before you ask them if they want anything. Being consistent is also helpful, as the grieving person will look forward to your attentiveness as opposed to feeling like they have to ask your help again and again. Helping in the garden, looking after the kids, dropping off a casserole or taking them to movies are all easy things you can do to show you care.

Pay Attention to Them

It is completely normal that a grieving person may feel depressed, confused or disconnected, but if these feelings don't fade over time, it could mean that what was a normal grieving process has turned into a serious problem. To help your friend, keep an eye on them and watch for some of the following signs that could mean they need professional help:
- Excessive bitterness, anger or guilt
- Obsession with death
- Neglecting personal hygiene, their kids, their pets, their job, etc
- Inability to enjoy life and being completely withdrawn or;
- Alcohol or drug abuse


2 komentar:

Anonymous February 9, 2012 at 6:58 PM  

sungguh tips hidup yang akan sangat bermanfaat buat semua orang lin...khususnya buat orang yang sedang menjalin suatu hubungan baik itu teman sahabat atau pacaran, dan umumnya kehidupan bermasyarakat...(semoga tipsnya nyambung hihi)

Anonymous February 9, 2012 at 6:59 PM  

Ralat maksud saya semoga commentnya nyambung hehe

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