What to say to a grieving person? - The360 Healthy

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  • Saturday, January 4, 2020

    What to say to a grieving person?

    What to say to a grieving person?

    Situations of hopelessness after death can put us in a complicated position to manage. We want to support and help a loved one, but we don't know what to say. The solution: bet everything on attentive listening, while keeping yourself an anchor so as not to sink.


    If one of your close friends has lost someone they loved, a grandparent, a parent, a partner, or even a child, you may have felt helpless in their distress . What to say to a person who is suffering, to make him feel our empathy? I'm sorry, it will get better one day, it's not your fault, my condolences... some words may seem too mundane or too formal.

     Instead of saying something that seems out of place, it's a good idea to focus on listening. Be available to the bereaved, and listen to their stories. But unless you have trained in psychotherapy, listening can be scary. It is tempting to rush in and say something to "fix" the problem. Here are some tips for providing balanced support and comfort.

    Step 1 - Stop at the threshold

    It's easy to get carried away by your feelings. We cannot rush into a conversation with someone who is suffering and think that we can turn a blind eye to the hustle and bustle of the day, work, doubts, traffic jams and deadlines. To achieve this, we have to set in motion a different "mode". Take a few minutes to pause, breathe and soothe your mind. Remember the reason you are with this person: show your support and love.

    Step 2 - Approach

    The next step is to start the conversation. The words don't really matter, it's the general message "I'm here for you" that has to get through. Start by asking the person how they are feeling right now. Her answer will allow you to understand if she prefers to be distracted and talk about something light, or if she prefers to talk about her pain and her memories. Follow this route with ease.

    Step 3 - Return to the subject

    Listening deeply is a bit like meditation, says Psychology Today. Listening, you’ll probably have ideas that pop up out of the blue. This kind of inner dialogue is completely normal. When these distracting thoughts arise, gently focus again on the person you are trying to help.

    Step 4 - Continue breathing

    It takes courage to support someone who is in pain. The natural human temptation is to run away from discomfort. But when you really care about someone, you overcome that tendency and open up to their feelings. It is important, however, not to get too carried away by the problems of others. His pain is not ours. Use the breath as a tie so you don't fall into despair with your friend. If you feel lost in your own reactions, take a few slow breaths to clear your mind and bring your attention back to the other person. To help him better, you have to be strong enough yourself.

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