Watching a friend suffer through their grief alone can be a devastating and complicated process. It can be difficult to watch a friend suffer through a difficult loss. Being a friend to those during their grief is one of the best things you can do for them, but this may look slightly different for everyone. As professionals in counseling in Orlando, we help many patients work through difficult losses, traumatic events, and the grieving process that follows. These are a few ways that you can support a friend during their grieving process.
Listening to your friends’ concerns and emotions is one of the best ways that you can be there for them during difficult times. When you truly listen to them as they talk, you show that you are here for them no matter what. Even though you may not have the right words to say, you should be present and listen to them when they need you.
If you are confused or want to know something about the way they are feeling, do not be afraid to ask. Asking questions will provide you with clarity and direction on what your friends need from you when you are there. Your friends may not immediately talk about their emotions, and they may not come right out and say what they need. However, when you ask the right questions, you may just find out what you can do to help them through their grief.
Even if they do not seem willing to talk about their emotions, they may still need help with their everyday tasks. Consider ways that you can help them with their household responsibilities, like cooking and cleaning. When you are there for these practical tasks, you ensure that their life is organized for when they can return to these everyday jobs themselves.
Many people assume that those who are dealing with grief will want to hear about positive and uplifting things. However, this is an assumption that can only lead you down the wrong path. When you only bring up ‘the bright side’ or ‘silver linings’ of the situation, you may end up hurting those you love. These empty platitudes will not serve people that are deep in their grieving process, as they will not want to hear that everything will be okay from everyone.
Even if you are not present in a specific moment, you need to ensure that you are available to your loved ones. Tell them that they can rely on you at any time of the day when they are feeling sad, overwhelmed, or angry. Answer their phone calls and reach out to them to let them know that you are here for them when they are ready.
By taking these steps, you will be able to support your friends and loved ones during the grieving process. Although grief looks different on everyone, you will want to be a trusted shoulder to lean on when your loved ones are going through a tough time. Contact us to hear about our counseling in Orlando and how we can support you through tough times and transitions today.
Heather Oller is a licensed Orlando therapist at Orlando Thrive Therapy, Coaching & Counseling who specializes in counseling Orlando couples, individuals, and families who are seeking changes in their lives. She has been a mental health professional for over 17 years and is a practicing Orlando counselor that specializes in conflict resolution for couples. You can contact her for an appointment or call 407-592-8997 for more information.