How to Talk to a Grieving Friend
When someone we love is grieving, it can be difficult to know how to talk to them about their loss and the subsequent grief they may be feeling because of it. Some people may try to make the grieving person feel better with well-meaning words of advice and comparisons of their own experiences with grief, but this can sometimes make them feel worse. Others simply do not acknowledge the passing, as they are unsure what to say.
Here are some ways you can speak to a grieving friend or loved one.
It sounds simple, but just acknowledging their grief by saying “I’m sorry for your loss” lets the bereaved know that you’re there for them and are thinking of them. Expressing your sympathy in this way can also help to start a conversation with the bereaved, especially if you’re unsure what to say.
Share your memories
If you have any memories of the person who has passed away, share these with the bereaved to acknowledge their absence and the hole they’ve left behind. If you didn’t know the deceased, encourage your friend to share their memories with you. This can be a cathartic experience, and helps the bereaved to focus on happy memories rather than dwelling on the loss of their loved one.
Have a conversation
Simply asking “How are you doing?” lets the bereaved know you’re thinking about them and gives them an opportunity to be honest and speak about their grief, if they want to. It’s important to acknowledge their feelings and their grief, and it’ll be a comfort to them to know you’re there for them and willing to talk.
Sometimes you don’t need to talk at all - just having you there willing to listen can be a big help. The bereaved may want to talk about the events leading up to the death, their memories of the person who has passed away, or even something completely different to take their mind off things. It will mean a lot that you’re there for them.
Ask if there’s anything you can do to help. Grief can be a difficult time, so offering to help with chores, shopping, cooking or funeral arrangements can be a big help to someone who is grieving. It gives them less things to worry about, and lets them know you’re there for them however they need you to be.
The best thing to do when speaking to a grieving friend is to be honest. If you’re not sure what to say to them, then tell them that’s how you feel. It’s better than not saying anything at all, and it’s something they’ll probably be able to understand. Make sure to take your cue from them, and don’t try to push them into talking about something they’re not comfortable with. Some people simply do not like to talk about their grief.
If you’re still unsure of what to say, why not have a look at our blog on gifts to give a grieving friend, and express your feelings through giving instead.
Thank you for reading.
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How to support a friend who is grieving
It can be difficult to know what to do to help a friend or family member who is struggling with their grief. Everyone grieves differently, and will need different things to help them through. Here are a few ideas for how to help someone who is grieving.
Helping Men Cope With Loss
Many men have been raised to not talk, cry, or reach out for support. Therefore, their grief tends to stay inside. There is evidence that men are more likely than women to remain silent or grieve in isolation, engage in action-oriented forms of grief expression, or lose themselves in distractions such as work.With the spotlight on men’s health recently, let’s look at how this sensitive time can be difficult for some men to work through and how we can offer support.
The First Few Days
You should first contact their Doctor and nearest relative. The doctor will come to formally confirm the death. If it was expected and the cause is known, a medical certificate of Cause of Death will be issued. If the death was sudden or unexpected it may not be possible to establish the cause of death and will be referred to the Coroner who will investigate. During this time you would be unable to register the death but will be provided with an interim death certificate to allow you to proceed with the funeral arrangements
When a loved one passes away we understand it is an upsetting and difficult time. We have put together the following information with what to do immediately after the passing, help with arranging the funeral, who to contact and coping with the loss in the long term.
At such a sad and emotional time, it can be overwhelming if the responsibility falls on you and can be difficult to know what to do next, we hope this information helps.
If you are struggling with grief, your mental health or need help right now, view our support page here: Help Needed Now
If you feel you are in immediate danger and/or unable to keep yourself or others safe, dial 999 and request emergency assistance or get to your nearest A&E.
Registering the death
A death needs to be registered within 5 days of the passing at the local Register Office, if you are unsure of its location you can search online for the nearest office to the deceased's home or the hospital they passed away in. You will need to take the medical certificate signed by their doctor. You should also take as much of the following information as possible which could include:
Who Do I need to inform
When someone dies, you should ensure that the following people / agencies are informed of the death as soon as possible:
The deceased may have left instructions for their funeral, if there are no clear wishes it will usually fall on the executor or nearest relative to make the funeral arrangements. They will need to choose a Funeral Director to handle the arrangements or can decide to plan themselves. If using a Funeral Director you can rely on their knowledge and experience to ensure the funeral is arranged as efficiently as possible and can offer guidance at a difficult and emotional time. You may already have a trusted Funeral Director in mind but for guidance we work with many Funeral Directors who place many notices on our site and you can find a local trusted Funeral Director listed in our Directory.
Finances after death
A person will be appointed as administer of the estate. This would usually be the deceased's next of kin or closest living relative. Once appointed the administrator must apply for a letter of administration allowing them to deal with the deceased's assets The order the responsibility falls on is as follows:
A Lasting Tribute
Here at funeral-notices.co.uk we aim to create a lasting tribute to your loved one where you can update their notice with memories, photos and candles, this remains on the site forever and can be a wonderful way to mark special days, share memories or just to reflect and remember your loved one.
Every comment / photo is moderated for peace of mind. We hope this tribute can offer comfort and give friends and family a supportive and sensitive way to remember and reflect.