People are sensitive creatures, and every time they see a sad person, the first emotion appearing on their mind is sympathy. However, words aren’t always the most helpful remedy, especially when you see someone’s grief. Of course, no progress can be achieved without a conversation, but you should be aware of the things to avoid talking about in order not to deteriorate the situation.
Stages of grieving
Grief is an emotional state resulting from losing a close person. Although nobody can exactly depict the feelings during this time, there are a few scientifically studied stages followed one after another in a generally stable order.
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Denial and anger are the first to appear. The person gets furious and unable to perceive the loss of a close one. Bargaining comes due to the need of the last conversation. A person “talks” to a deceased and recollects the best moments. Depression comes after. Those who manage to go through it may finally feel the relief of acceptance. Luckily, these stages can be passed easier if the right things are told or, otherwise, if the unnecessary words are avoided.
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"You need to put this behind you."
It is impossible for a person to forget everything at once. Even if there was a desire to put everything behind, no one would ever be able to do this.
"I thought you would be more upset."
You have no idea what is going on inside a person. Calm reaction doesn’t always mean everything is alright.
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"He brought this on himself."
Never speak ill of the dead. After passing away, all the bad should be forgiven, and a person is considered innocent, especially for the close ones.
"It is not good to visit the grave so often."
A person needs time to let it go. Somebody needs a week, others – a few years. You should not decide how much time a person requires to spend on the important place.
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"Others have it worse than you."
Again, the inner world is a sacred place, and you have no idea what a person might feel. Don’t compare anybody’s emotions.
"You must be strong."
There is time in your life when you don’t want to be strong. Mourning about a deceased is one of such periods.
"Why are you still crying?"
That is perhaps the worst thing the one might ever say. Emotions are hard to control; sincere emotions are impossible to stop. Let the person free the inner grief.
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How to help
If your desire to help the grieving is so strong you can’t ignore it, simply be there for a person. Don’t try to fix something that can’t be fix. Simply love.
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Show you care listening but not acting. Ask no questions – simply anticipate. You can hardly improve anything.
The best treatment for such condition is the thing you can’t influence – let the time cure the mourning person.
The material in this article is for informational purposes only. The editorial board does not guarantee any results and does not recommend that the reader rely fully on the information provided above.