Grief is a hugely complicated process to go through, and it is something that every single one of us will sadly encounter at some stage in our lives. Not only is it heartbreaking to deal with personally, but it can also be as emotional to see a loved one go through.
Everyone deals with grief in their own unique way, what’s important is that we all need some form of support during these dark times. If you’re worried about how to be there for a friend, partner, or loved one that is currently dealing with grief, here are some ways you can.
One of the most underrated but essential offers of support is simply listening. Even if you have gone through grief yourself, you still won’t know how your friend is feeling. Everyone’s experience is entirely personal to them. Checking up on them regularly and just listening to them is a great way to show support.
You don’t have to always know what to say, which many people worry about, but just let them know that you are there for them to talk to at any time. Ask them about some of the memories they shared with this person, ask them to tell you a story about them that makes them laugh. These moments will not only help them reflect on these positive times but also show to them that you are there.
Grief can consume you and your life, making it difficult to continue with your typical day to day routine or tasks. Offering to go to a supermarket for your friend or offering to walk their dog or water their plants may seem like minimal gestures. They can have a significant impact on your friend, as these things can be overwhelming when dealing with grief. They will appreciate your help, and it can take some of the weight off of their shoulders.
Whether your friend would prefer you to physically be there for them or is more of a distant communicator, make it clear that you are there for them. If they need you to go round when they’re struggling or feeling alone, offer to. If they need some space and would prefer a phone call, be available for them. Grief is seriously hard to navigate but having a reliable friend can make it a little more bearable, so offering your support in these simple ways can be hugely effective and appreciated.