At the Cremation Society of Greater Cincinnati, many of the questions we receive are related to grief. What should be said to someone who is grieving? Are there subjects that should be avoided? How does someone comfort a loved one experiencing grief? Like so many aspects of life, there is no one right answer when it comes to grief and how it should be handled. There are some suggestions, however, upon which most experts agree.
Understand that Everyone Grieves Differently
Allow them to grieve in their own way. Give them the power to choose how they decide to handle it. Grieving is a process but there is no specific map to get through it. Let them know you are there for them through their journey.
Comforting a Grieving Loved One is Not Easy
Comforting someone you deeply care about who recently lost a loved one is not an easy task. It can be sensitive and emotional. Rely on your empathy and caring nature.
Don’t Be Afraid to Reach Out
Don’t allow your own fears keep you from reaching out and extending your sympathy. Waiting for “the right moment” may only make it more difficult. You can always start with “I just heard and am so sorry.”
Let Them Know You are There to Listen
Avoid bringing up your own personal experiences with grief. Let them know you are there to listen when and wherever they may want to talk. Some worry so much about what they are going to say they forget the importance of listening and allowing the grieving person to talk and express themselves.
Look for Ways to Help
Seemingly small acts of kindness can be very meaningful. Making a casserole, running errands, mowing the lawn or helping clean may be tasks they are just not up to while grieving.
They may even just want some company or need a ride to the doctor.
Grief Doesn’t Stop After Final Services
While funerals and final services can help us recognize that things have changed, grief doesn’t end there. Stay in touch with the person you care about and offer to take them out for lunch. Let them know you would consider it an honor if they were to contact you.
Those who are grieving need the support of those around them. Don’t worry so much about saying or doing the perfect thing. Express your condolences and let them know you are there for them. That alone can go a long way in helping someone who just lost a loved one.
Should you have any questions about cremation, final services or need assistance in a current need or in pre-planning, we encourage you to connect with us at the Cremation Society of Greater Cincinnati. We would consider it an honor to assist you.