Why doesn’t anyone understand how you feel?

It’s definitely one of those things where “you had to be there” rings true.  You can’t possibly know what it’s like to lose a loved one until it happens to you.  And when you’re grieving, it can sometimes feel like no one understands what you’re going through.  People you thought would be there for you no matter what, seem to drop away.  People often say the old clichés like, “they’re in a better place,” or, “at least they’re out of their suffering.”  Sure, THEY’RE out of their suffering but you aren’t!  You’re the one living without them.  Here’s what you can do to help your friends understand how to be there for you during your grieving process:

  1. Don’t be afraid to tell your friends what you need from them. “When I cry, just give me a hug.” Or, “When I cry, don’t walk away from me.”
  2. Go ahead and mention your loved one’s name out loud in conversations. By doing this, you provide a model or example to your friends that it is okay to recall something funny or memorable about your loved one.
  3. When people do make awkward comments or fumble with what to say to you, remember that they are often well-intentioned and just don’t know what to say. They haven’t been there. Yet.
  4. Tell friends and understand for yourself that crying is okay and sometimes necessary.  Their efforts at preventing you from crying or their avoidance of mentioning your loved one only prolongs your grieving process.
  5. Allow your framily to be the for you. Don’t hide from them all the time. Take them up sometimes on their offers to support you.


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