3 Ways to Show Love Toward a Grieving Loved One
Even though I’ve lost people I care about, I still struggle when it comes to helping other people with the process. Nothing seems good enough, because it isn’t.
You can’t bring their loved one back, you can’t take the pain away, you can’t hurry along the process of grieving, and you can’t change how they feel.
But you can show them you care about them and express your willingness to be there when they need you.
1. Show Up
Assuming this is someone you’re close to, you can do things for them that other people will find it hard to do.
Don’t ask them what they need, just show up and look around. Put a load of laundry in the washer, or bring a dinner you can serve right away or pop into the freezer if someone’s already taken care of dinner for the day.
While you’re waiting for the laundry, or whatever else it is that needs doing, ask them if there are any phone calls you could make for them or any errands you can run.
If they’re a hugger, then hug them and ask if there’s anything they want to talk about. Some people may wall themselves up and not be ready for tearful hugs and talking about their loss. That’s okay, too.
After your visit, text them once in a while. Let them know you’re thinking of them. Keep in mind that the first week or so is when they’ll get the most attention. This is also the time when they’re the most numb. Afterwards, as reality sets in, they may need a lot more support.
Keep in contact throughout the following months. Text that you’re thinking about them, take them out to lunch, and just be there emotionally for them.
Don’t put a time limit on their grief.
2. Pamper Them
Send them something a little different than flowers. Flowers die quickly and depressingly, and keeping a plant alive may be more work than they’re up for at the moment. Consider a Harry and David’s sympathy basket, especially if your friend or loved one isn’t likely to be fed by family or friends where they live.
If you want something more enduring than food, a gift from Laurelbox is a perfect, thoughtful offering to send someone who’s grieving. They carry gift packs specifically assembled for the bereaved. You can choose your own items or depend on their expertise. From self-care items to memorial ornaments, prayer shawls and remembrance necklaces, you’ll find the ideal gift to show your love and care.
When a little time has passed, consider sending them to a massage therapist or other self-care specialist. Grieving negatively affects the body as well as the heart and mind. If you can, go with them.
3. Show Respect
A kind thing you can also do is show you also remember the one that’s passed. You can clean the headstone and leave flowers, particularly if your friend hasn’t been able to bring themselves to go back, or make a donation to a favorite charity in the deceased’s name.
Let your friend know that they aren’t alone in remembering the one that’s gone.
Grief is often a terrible isolation. On top of losing someone, people often feel like no one cares and they’re facing their new normal alone. Reach out and let your loved one know they aren’t forgotten.