How To Support A Loved One When They Lose A Loved One

March 28, 2019

© Barbara Helgason | Dreamstime

Losing a loved one is never easy and just as handling your own grief can be challenging in itself, knowing how to support your partner when a friend dies can feel incredibly daunting. Because we all handle death differently it can be a challenge to offer support for your loved one when they're grieving. So a relationship therapist has some advice for you to be there for your partner in their time of need. First and most important is that you need to drop your expectations on how they are supposed to grieve. IF you grieve by crying, don't expect them to cry like you do. Rather ask two questions: What can I do to support you right now — what would be helpful? And what would not be helpful? That second question is important and sends our partner the message that as well-intended as we may be, we want to respond in ways that they need — and not respond in ways they do not need right now. Although it may pain you what your loved one is in pain over the loss in theri life, by acting appropriate for them gives your loved one some room to navigate in and out of the various stages of grief. One of the hardest emotions to conquer is that "fix it" mode, which is what you don't want to do for someone grieving.  Based on the two questions of what can I do to help and what they don't want you to do (at least for the time being).  However you may want to reach out to a professional if after a week or two, your companion's ability to function is so compromised that they can't go to work, school, and become totally withdrawn then it might be time to recommend that they seek out a therapist who can help them navigate their grief. Remembering that you can't fix everything and that loss can change how people behave can take some major pressure off of you and your relationship. Healing from loss will often demand a lot of time and attention, but you are an amazing partner, and the two of you will get through this — together.

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SOURCE: Elite Daily

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