The Do's and Dont's when Supporting Someone that's Grieving

Loss is something that everyone experiences at some point or another in their lives. In light of November 15 being children's grief awareness day, it is important that we understand the ins and outs of supporting someone that is grieving.

 

Do:

  • Follow their lead. Everyone grieves differently so it is important that you observe their patterns and tailor your support to their needs.

  • Check up every once in awhile. There is a very fine line before this Do becomes a Don’t but a simple “How are you?” every once in a while doesn’t hurt and it shows that you genuinely care.

  • Listen. When and if they want to talk it is important that you actively listen and show that you understand what they are saying.

 

Do Not:

  • Relate to their grief. For example if someone is talking about a recent loss don’t respond with something along the lines of “That sucks kind of like the time when I…” You may think this will help them not feel so alone but in reality it may make the person feel like you don’t care.

  • Over exaggerate their pain or your response to someone discussing their loss. It can be quite overwhelming when you are bombarded with “are you okay,” “do you need anything,” “omg I’m so sorry that sucks.”

  • Act like your feelings are stronger than theirs on their loss.

 

There is no perfect way to help someone that is grieving because, like I’ve said, everyone grieves differently. Though, here are a few guidelines to keep in mind.