When someone you care about deeply calls with the sad news that their partner, or someone close to them has died, it’s not uncommon to you can feel helpless, even lost for words.
Many people ask ‘what can I do to help?’ But it’s important to understand that your friend is in a time of grief and may not be in the right frame of mind to answer your question.
Here are some practical ways you can offer your assistance that can really help to reduce their stress during a difficult time:
– Ask whether you can contact mutual friends on their behalf to let them know what’s happened and pass on funeral details.
– Offer to meet the Funeral Director with them if they don’t have immediate family close by.
– Ask if you can assist with details surrounding the funeral.
– Collect family and friends from the airport who are travelling interstate or internationally for the funeral.
– Offer your spare room or couch to travelling family and friends.
– Cook a meal. This is a very busy and stressful time and sometimes a good, hearty meal cooked with love can make a big difference at the end of a long day.
– What’s happening after the funeral? Often, family & friends gather at someone’s house to share their grief and fond memories of their loved one. Bringing baked goods and extra chairs can be a big help.
– Be aware of “Compassion Fatigue.” Grieving people are often surrounded by supportive people at the time of loss and the funeral. However, as time goes on, that support tends to diminish as friends, neighbours & co-workers get back to life as usual. It’s not uncommon for grieving people to be left feeling quite alone. Keep the lines of communication open for the long term. Coping with grief is a journey.
We hope you find these tips helpful and remember, we’re always here when you need us with advice and help during this difficult time.