Help for some­one griev­ing a death

Health & Nutrition - - SELF CARE -

No mat­ter how well you know some­one, when grief over­takes that per­son due to a painful loss, you may not know what to say or do. Here are some sug­ges­tions: ❖ BE PRESENT AND LIS­TEN – Lis­ten­ing is one of the most im­por­tant things you can do. Ob­serve how your griev­ing loved one com­mu­ni­cates through words and body lan­guage. Part of ac­tive lis­ten­ing is ac­knowl­edg­ing the essence of what’s been said and then ask­ing ques­tions, if nec­es­sary, to clar­ify what’s be­hind a griev­ing per­son’s state­ments. Some­times “lis­ten­ing” is done in si­lence. Just sit­ting and be­ing with a griev­ing per­son may be com­fort enough. ❖ SPEAK FROM THE HEART -- Do­ing so may help your loved one feel less alone in the loss. Don’t pre­sume to know what a griev­ing per­son is experiencing. In­stead, de­scribe your own feel­ings and no­tice how the per­son re­sponds. ❖ OF­FER PRAC­TI­CAL HELP – Rather than mak­ing a gen­eral of­fer – such as “Let me know if there’s any­thing I can do” – be more spe­cific. Ask what’s needed, or ob­serve the sit­u­a­tion and make a spe­cific of­fer to help with prac­ti­cal needs, such as gro­cery shop­ping, house­hold chores or er­rands. ❖ IF NEC­ES­SARY, EN­COUR­AGE GET­TING HELP – An in­abil­ity to in­ter­act with oth­ers or re­sume ac­tiv­i­ties is an in­di­ca­tor that more sup­port is needed. You might sug­gest see­ing a pri­mary doc­tor or pos­si­bly a ther­a­pist or psy­chi­a­trist. A per­son’s faith com­mu­nity may be an­other re­source.

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