It can be challenging to know what to say or do whenever someone you value is going through a hard time after a loss. Many extreme and stressful feelings, such as anxiety, frustration, remorse, and deep sadness, plague the grieving. They frequently feel alienated and alone in their despair because the intense pain and painful feelings can make people feel uncomfortable giving support. The feeling of being tied up and not doing anything to diminish the pain that our loved one is experiencing is very frustrating but understandable.
However, it is important to reach out to the grieving person to comfort them. This is the time when they need your support more than ever. The first and foremost step of comforting a grieving person is to be there for them. The most important thing that they need at such a time is your presence and support that will help them to heal from the loss they are going through.
It can be difficult to determine how to console a grieving loved one; you should never give up even when you can do or say nothing helpful. You can not take the pain away, but your presence is more significant than that it may appear. You must accept that you are powerless to change the circumstances or make your friend or relative forget about it. Rather, be present and available and give them hope and a positive vision for the coming times.
If you suffer from not knowing the right words and actions to comfort them, you’re not alone, and it is okay not to know the right thing to say or do. What you can do is be there for them and refrain from doing or saying something wrong in the first place. This article will help you understand your grieving friend better and how to comfort them.
Check-in with your friend
Reach out to your friend to ask how they are doing and let them know that you are available for help. You can do this through a phone call, offering to meet them for lunch or coffee, or visiting them. This will give your friend a sense of security that you are looking out for them. It may not be visible but checking in makes a huge difference when someone is feeling low.
It can often be very challenging to know how to respond when you are in the company of someone who is grieving. Your first thought in such a situation might be to say or do something to make your friend cheer up instantly, but you must remember that everyone has their own pace of dealing with grief. Hence, it is important to listen more and speak less in such circumstances. Make sure that you keep your talking to a minimum at such times. Pay attention and listen to what your friend is feeling and be empathetic towards them and show your compassion for what they are going through at that time.
Assure that you are here to help them
A person can forget their own basic needs when they are in a state of grief. You can offer them practical help as they are struggling through a tough time. You can do things like helping with laundry, cooking for them, helping with cleaning, etc. Doing this will be a great help to them and one of the best ways to show them that you care.
Refrain from making judgments
Your friend’s interpersonal environment has drastically changed, probably permanently. You may want them to move on, but it is not something that can be forced. There is also no guarantee of it will happen. You must allow your friend to make a recovery from the incident according to their comfort zone. They may vent, cry or stay silent. What you should do at such a time is be there for them and not judge them.
Understand their grieving process
It is extremely crucial to have a basic idea of the grieving process as your friend sails through the several difficult and painful feelings that come along with grief. Someone going through such a tough time may feel sadness, anxiety, depression, frustration, and irritation. As you learn about the grieving process, you get a better idea of how you can be there for your friend and support them in a much more meaningful manner.
Let them cry
It takes a lot of strength to communicate deep pain and cry, as it is one of the most critical parts of the mourning process. Giving your friend the space to cry and vent demonstrates that you recognize that crying is an essential and normal part of the grieving period.
There are numerous methods to express support and affection for someone who is grieving. Understand the grieving process, pay close attention to its people, and reach out to help them frequently. Providing necessary help such as buying groceries or assisting around the house can make a significant change in the grieving person’s life. You must not try to fix someone’s grief process, avoid the issue, or force your beliefs on your grieving friend. There is no such correct or incorrect way of saying things to someone going through a loss, so be present for them and offer a listening ear. Remember at all times that grieving is a gradual process.