Reality a mess In the light of the recent events, we as humans are humbled by the experience of death and bereavement of our loved ones. It is one of the most painful experiences that a person could face. During these times, we as a community must come forward to help and support people. But […]
In the light of the recent events, we as humans are humbled by the experience of death and bereavement of our loved ones. It is one of the most painful experiences that a person could face. During these times, we as a community must come forward to help and support people. But as a helping hand, we need to understand certain things before we can render that help. We in the good intentions must not make things miserable for the bereaving.
It is highly essential to understand that the bereaving is going through a lot of pain and added with this is a mix of emotions ranging from anger to sorrow. It is natural for them to be in confusion, cry uncontrollably, be stoic or even snap back at people trying to help them. Under these circumstances, as a friend, being empathetic and compassionate is extremely important.
Expressing one’s feelings to a close person is one of the best ways of catharsis, so let them to their fullest. Let the bereaved speak about their loss to you. Effective communication is not only letting the other speak but also you listening to them actively and responding. This affirms that they are not alone in the process and helps them move on, alleviating their suffering to some extent.
Remember, we are not there to help them come out of it. We are there but to support them and be with them through the process. Often the bereaved feels lost and lonely, at these times it is for us to be there and support them. Even it means for us just to be beside them in silence. If you don’t have any words of reassurance, just hold their hands and say, “I have no words but I am here for you”. It’s all that they ask of you.
Grief and bereavement are a very long process. It is also different for each individual, the grieving maybe for days, months and even for years. The degree of grieving depends on the support that they get from friends and family. In these situations, their emotions and feelings must be validated. You will have to let them grieve and not tell them otherwise, even if it’s been long.
The bereaving is not seeking for you to give solutions but simply your care and support. Don’t advice or reason with them nor try to repress their feelings by telling “Forget and move on, it’s all fate” or other generic statements. It is only by going through this process they can come to terms with the loss. Be genuine with your words Support them in whatever way they need and look out for them for a few days until they can get along with their routine.
The bereaved are in suffering. Your patience, care and support matter the most of all to them. That is, you being there both physically and mentally.
“Grief is not a disorder, a disease, or a sign of weakness. It is an emotional, physical and a spiritual necessity. The only cure for grief is to grieve”
– Earl A Grollman
Writer: Manojj Dhinakaran