Losing a loved one is very difficult. Whether it be a family member, friend or pet, it's a difficult time in one's life.
Grief affects everyone differently and there's no one size fits all for the grief process.
Typically the 7 steps of grief is an overall umbrella for the bereavement process, but again it's not one size fits all format. Each individual is unique and complex and grieves differently.
Below are some ways to help support a friend or family member who is grieving, remember it's never one size fits all regimen, it's always different and unique for each person being affected by the difficult loss.
The simplest way and the most effective way to support a parent or a family member during grief is to just to be there, most individuals grieving don't need to talk at that moment or be able to vent, but just need the presence of someone else, knowing that someone is there for them when they are ready to speak or talk. This is the essence of unconditional love and support.
Some of the don'ts are:
- Try not to minimize the individuals grieving emotions and or feelings
- Try not to push faith or religious ideas on a person
- Try not to only focus on good, during grievance, difficult emotions are essential to feel and heal as well
Some of the dos are:
- Just be there for the person, just reach out
- Try to listen to the person
- Try to be sensitive to the person's highs and lows through this difficult time
Most importantly understanding that grieving is a very difficult time for individuals, there are no right or wrong ways to react or support the person who is experiencing the loss, the best plan of action is just being there, being there allows for safety, comfort, and aids to the steps in the healing process.