Helping people do's and don'ts

Apr 22, 20
Helping people do's and don'ts

It's certainly very difficult to witness a friend or a family member going through a hard experience like mourning. While in general everybody is different and we all react in our own personal way, there are basic principles and ideas that apply across the board.

DO’S

  • Acknowledge the loss.
  • Care more about the person than your embarrassment.
  • Be aware of how bereavement affects people.
  • Encourage the person to talk if they want to.
  • Acknowledge important anniversaries suitably and sensitively (deaths as well as births, weddings, etc.).
DON'Ts
  • Don’t minimize the impact of the loss (e.g. ‘you will meet someone else’).
  • Don’t reassure when what is needed is permission to share grief.
  • Don’t limit the time in which support is given.
  • Don’t expect someone to be “back to normal” quickly.