I thought I should write this post as I know I’ve been in both positions of not knowing what to do when a friend has lost someone dear to them, and seeing other people not know what to do when I’ve been in grief. So hopefully this will be useful for others who be at a loss of what to do for a grieving friend…
- Pray for them and pray for yourself. Make it a priority to pray for your friend to be comforted and for yourself to be a comfort. This will help you above all else mentioned in this post.
- Show you care and show you’re there. At the very least send a text or a card as soon as possible. Even if the person doesn’t respond immediately, you have shown you care and when a heart is broken by the death of a loved one, that simple gesture of love is more healing then you know.
- Don’t be too hard on yourself for not knowing what to do or say. I’ve often witnessed people kick themselves for asking ‘how are you?’ It really isn’t a terrible question, it shows you care and that’s what matters.
- Don’t take the person’s reaction personally. Grief expresses itself in a variety of ways and the simplest thing can prompt anything from anger to silence. Don’t be afraid if the person bursts into tears or is icily reserved and don’t blame yourself either.
- Small gestures count. Even if you have nothing to say, a hug, a squeeze of the hand, flowers, a note, letting them know you’re praying for them, are all simple ways to remind your friend they’re not alone.
- Take them out. Grief can put a person in a bit of a bubble, so if you can, take your friend somewhere else for a change of scenery. Out to dinner or somewhere with a nice view, nothing too taxing but something that gives a little taster of the good things in life.
- Do not presume you don’t matter. You may be surprised to find you’re the one they want to hear from most, whether to distract them from their situation or just to remind them of good times. So like I mentioned in point 1, make sure you take the earliest opportunity to show you care and show you’re there.
So, I hope that was helpful but I would love to hear from others who have lost someone, to find out what you found helpful while you were grieving? What did a close friend do for you? Is there anything else you’d add to the list? Please share in the comments below.