At some point or another, we all lose someone close to us. It’s a part of life that can feel like an emotional rollercoaster. In these ups and downs, it’s important to know that you’re not alone. Loss is something we’ve all experienced—to different degrees, of course, because no situation is exactly the same.
Communication, both verbally and nonverbally, is the key to coping with this kind of grief. It may sound easy, but in the moment, you’ll find that it’s hard to know just where to start. Here are a few ways to start the conversation with someone who has lost a loved one::
“I’m so sorry for your loss.”
It’s simple, and it’s true. Sometimes, the most direct statements make the most impact. You don’t need to say anything elaborate or deep. In most instances, the best thing you can do is show up and express your heartfelt condolences.
“I brought you dinner.”
Pick up a pizza, or bake a batch of chocolate chip cookies. Whatever the menu, your thoughtful gesture will go a very long way. There’s something about a warm meal that brings people together and opens the channels for communication.
“Can I give you a hug?”
When asked directly, very few people turn down a hug. It’s one of the easiest ways to express just how much you care. Plus, science has proven that hugging can help to reduce negative feelings like stress, fear and anxiety.
“Do you want to talk?”
Listening is just as important as speaking. If they initially answer with a no, give your question some time to soak. Be it a few days or a matter of minutes—they’ll eventually start to share exactly what’s on their mind. Sit back, and let them have the floor.
“I’m here for you.”
Loss and loneliness go hand in hand. The best thing you can do is to let them know you’re there as a friend. Send an occasional text, swing by with dinner or simply wait in the wings. When they call, make sure you’re the first to answer.
Photos for Foundation c/o Lori Romney Photography
Aubry studied communications in college and has since made a career of it. By trade, she is a social media and digital marketing consultant. In her time off, she enjoys a good DIY and dreams to perfect the art of baking. Aubry is also the creator of finding beautiful truth, a blog that highlights everyday life, travel, style, and all things delicious. Visit www.findingbeautifultruth.com to learn more.