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What Your Grieving Friend Needs During The Holidays

Holidays for grievers are tough one no matter how many years it has been. As a friend or loved one this day might be tough for you. You might find yourself feeling helpless as you see your friend missing their loved one on any holiday. To sit back and watch as your friend grieves, you don't know what to say or do. You might even feel guilty for telling them what you are doing with your own family during this time of the year. 

You may even find yourself slowly avoiding your grieving  friend during the holidays because you don't want to say or do the wrong thing, being away seems easier than hurting their feelings.

Good news!

I have compiled a list of things that you can do for your  friend or loved one during this time of the year. This way you don't have to avoid them. You might even find yourself filled with joy that you finally have a way to help them on this day. A way to make them not feel alone and a way to do something rather than nothing.

Please remember you will never have the right words to say to your grieving friend on this day but just you being there for them in some way will mean more than you will ever know. You see, as grievers we don't need words, we don't need to be fixed on this day, we just need to know you are there.

So here it is, your cheat sheet to helping your friend on the holidays 

1. Flowers, Card & Coffee: Simply go get their favorite cup of coffee, pick up a bouquet of their favorite flowers and grab a card. On the cup of coffee, write their loved ones  name inside the card, you can write anything from "I love you" "I'm here" "I know your person would give anything to be here with you today if she could. I'm here and I love you." You can leave this on their doorstep with a quick call telling them to walk outside or you can deliver it and then leave them with a big hug to enjoy their coffee.

2. Flowers From Their Mom: Last year, my sweet friend sent me flowers and the card was written as if my Mom had written it and ended with "Love, Mom." (You can see this on my Facebook page Grief To Hope). I was in tears because for a few moments it was as if I was not a motherless daughter. For a few minutes that day I had the feeling of having my Mom there.

3. Cards: A few weeks before get together some close friends and set up a secret Facebook page. Have everyone send your friend or loved one a card on Christmas, Thanksgiving or any holiday that might be difficult for them to let them know they are being thought of by so many on a tough day.

4. Lunch or Dinner: Don't call, don't ask, just show up with lunch or dinner for your friend. You can either stick around and eat with them or leave it for them to enjoy with their family or by themselves. You will be able to judge by how your friend responds if they would prefer company or not.

5. Text: A simple text during the holidays letting them know you acknowledge today is going to be tough for them. Let them know you are there if they want to call or if they want someone to go visit the graveside of their loved one with them or whatever tough thing they might need to do during that time. 

Whatever you do that day, let them know that even if they don't respond to your texts or calls, even if they don't respond with complete joy when you show up, even if they don't say "thank you" let them know that you still love them and that you are there for them during the holidays and after the holidays. 


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