Helping a Grieving Friend, Partner or Family Member

Tuesday, 27 October 2020

As we all know grieving and mourning can be a terribly difficult time for everyone involved; The loss of a loved one is never easy and the mourning process is an important time to offer support for each other. Support can come in many forms, whether it is sending flowers and sympathy cards or simply offering an open ear. At Memorial Card Shop part of our work is helping people through grievance, so we have put together some tips on how to help your loved ones through the mourning process.

 

Listen and Talk

The simplest and potentially most effective way to help someone is to offer them an open ear and a shoulder to cry on. Do not be afraid to ask specifically how your loved one is feeling about the situation - people are often afraid to bring these topics up themselves in fear of ‘bringing the mood down’. Let them know that this isn’t the case, and you are always ready to talk, and more importantly listen. Sadly, we all face bereavements in our life, so we shouldn’t be scared to talk about it.

Whether it is a phone call or arranging a coffee, don’t hesitate to reach out to people who are mourning, the likelihood is that they need you more than ever. Additionally, you want to avoid downplaying the situation. Say it how it is – bereavements, especially unexpected ones, are sad and difficult to cope with. If you and the person in question are both religious, you can offer to pray for them or light a candle in your place of worship in memory of the deceased.

 

Offer Practical Help

Unfortunately the death of a loved one can often leave you with a number of new responsibilities, such as the tough job of announcing the news to friends and family, writing an obituary, or arranging the funeral. Offering some practical help can take a big weight off the shoulders of someone who is mourning, and it can be as simple as helping with basic day to day tasks. Some of the help you could offer includes:

  • Funeral arrangements: Arranging a funeral can be particularly time consuming and emotional. Pick up some of the smaller tasks such as the flower arrangements, sending invitations or ordering memorial cards.
  • Get their groceries: If your loved one is feeling particularly down it can be a great idea to offer to pick up some of their groceries for them. It might be a small gesture but it is one less task for them to worry about.
  • Cook a meal: A lot of people show their love through their food. Cook your loved one a meal, or if you aren’t a great chef you can take them out for some food or order their favourite takeaway.
  • Look after the kids: Mixing bereavements and children can be extra tricky. Very young children are often unable to comprehend death and grievance, so might not be the most understanding when a parent is upset. If you’re in a position to, offer to take their kids out for the day to give your friend or family member more time to mourn properly.

 

Bereavement Helplines

Accept that you won’t always be equipped to help a family member, partner or friend whilst they are grieving. Particularly if the deceased was younger, such as a child or sibling, it can take a huge toll on the mental health of those involved. There is no shame in seeking professional help, and speaking to somebody who is trained in the field can often be the best option to ensure the grievance process goes as smoothly as is possible.

Supportline.org.uk have a long list of bereavement helplines, some of which are for specific situations such as loss due to suicide or murder, or the loss of children.  ITV offer a similar list on their website which you can find here.

 

We sincerely hope this advice will assist you in comforting your loved ones during a difficult time. If you end up helping out with the funeral then don’t forget that here at Memorial Card Shop, we provide a wide variety of in-memoriam cards and thank you cards. We even offer a free sample and brochure pack to help you evaluate the quality of our products and decide which is best for you.

If you require any advice about your order, please don’t hesitate to call us on 03450 542 861, or email info@memorialcardshop.co.uk.

 

Tags: Grieving, Mourning, Bereavement, Sympathy Cards