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How to Support Someone Who Is Grieving

The days following the death of a loved one can be overwhelming. We find ourselves not only coping with grief, but also having to deal with things such as finances or funeral arrangements. It can be difficult, complicated, and exhausting. During such times we are in great need of the support of our friends and family. It is also during those times that many people find themselves at a loss as to how best to support someone who has suffered a loss.

Several people have shared what they found the most helpful while they were grieving. They also gave specific suggestions on what to do, as well as what NOT to do, when someone you care about has experienced the death of a loved one.


Reach out. Whether it is physically or electronically, reach out and let them know you care. “Just send a card, make a phone call, say something on social media, anything. Assume that no one else did.”

Show up. Whether it is to hug them or help them, show up. Your presence can be a great comfort. Sit with them and listen, sit with them in silence, or even just cry with them.

Help. Don’t just say, “Let me know if you need anything.” Say, “WHAT can I do to help you?” Bringing food along with things like paper plates, plastic ware, and napkins can be helpful, as well as straightening the house or answering the phone. Sometimes that help or food can be even more needed days and weeks after the funeral is over. Continue reading