Updated date:

8 Ways to Support a Grieving Friend

Jessica is a psychic medium, intuitive mentor, and Certified Advanced Akashic Records reader with 20+ years' experience.

How to Support a Grieving Friend

When we get that call, saying that our friend has lost a loved one, it can be tough to know what to say or do.

In fact, grieving people across the world say how lonely they feel because their friends don't know how to help.

But the tips in this article will help you support your friend, and navigate these difficult waters.

Let's start with some things you can say to comfort your grieving friend.

8-ways-to-support-a-grieving-friend

Words to Support a Grieving Friend

One of the most helpful things you can do to support someone when they are grieving is to listen to them, and offer them words of comfort.

Here is a list of comforting phrases, along with things you should not say to a grieving person.

Do Say Something Like:

  • I can’t imagine how hard this is for you.
  • [Name] was such an amazing person, I’ll always remember when…
  • I’m so sorry for your loss. Can I do anything to help you?
  • I wish I had the right words to tell you how sorry I am. Know that I care about you and am here to help.
  • Is there anything that I can do for you?
  • You are in my thoughts.
  • I’m just a call/text away.

Don't Say:

  • They’re in a better place.
  • They lived a long and happy life.
  • There is a reason for everything.
  • Sometimes we just don’t know why bad things happen.
  • I know how you feel.

In addition to comforting your friend with soothing words, there are several other things you can do. Let's talk about them now.

8-ways-to-support-a-grieving-friend

More Ways to Support a Grieving Friend

1. Acknowledge the Deceased by Name

Often, those around a grieving person stop talking about their loved one altogether.

It comes from a good place, as they don’t want to reopen wounds. But those who have gone through a tragedy know it’s nice to hear your departed loved one’s name every once in a while.

So, don’t be afraid to talk about their deceased with them, reminisce stories, or help them recognize the signs from heaven.

2. Ask What They Need

It sounds simple because it is.

Your friend is in pain, and they may know how you can help. So, take the guesswork out of it and ask them if you can do anything. Then, really listen.

Sometimes, it’s less about bringing flowers and more about calling the caterers for the funeral.

When all else fails, bringing a hot meal will never go unappreciated.

3. Help Make Funeral Arrangements

In the overwhelm of a loved one's death, dealing with funeral invitations is usually far from someone’s mind.

If possible, offer to step in and be the logistics person...

  • Confirm with the caterers, funeral home, and minister to be sure everything is on schedule.
  • Man the RSVP inbox and answer any questions.

Checking these logistical tasks off your friend’s to-do list will allow them to mourn and grieve their loss.

4. Be Present and Available

Sometimes the best way to support a friend when their loved one has died is to just be there.

Don’t worry about saying the right thing or bringing the right meal over. Instead, make it known that you’re there for them -- for whatever they need.

They may want to talk and they may not, so bring some tea over and sit with them. If you are long distance, let them know that you are only a phone call away.

5. Send White Light and Peace

This is something you can do no matter where you or your friend are.

  • First, sit down in a comfortable spot and start to meditate. Focus on your breath and quiet your mind.
  • Next, imagine surrounding yourself with white light. Picture the light repelling negative energy and dispelling everything no longer serving you.
  • Now, picture your friend in detail. What do they look like when they laugh? What perfume do they wear?
  • Then extend the white light you’ve surrounded yourself with to your friend. Imagine it washing over them and soothing the grief and sadness they feel.

6. Gently Encourage Them

I like to encourage friends to talk to their loved ones in heaven.

Whether they choose to talk to them out loud, or in their own head, talking to a deceased loved one can be very comforting for some people.

And understanding they can still connect with their loved one in spirit (though in a different way), is helpful too.

7. Help Them Find a Support Group

Your friend may take comfort in speaking to others who have also lost a loved one.

Some trusted resources for online support are:

  • Hope for Bereaved – Support for all, with a memorial butterfly garden
  • The Compassionate Friends – Help for grieving parents
  • National Organization for Victim Assistance – Special support for homicide survivors
  • Coalition to Support Grieving Students – Help for students in mourning

8. Reassure Them

Often, people experience unexplained phenomena after a loved one passes away -- a whiff of a favorite perfume, a cell phone glitch, a vivid dream...

And with more people being open to the idea of an afterlife than ever before, feeling that their deceased loved is around can be extremely comforting.

So, if your friend shares these experiences with you, listen. Reassure her that the spirit of her loved one:

  • Is at peace
  • Is around to comfort her
  • Will continue to support her from the other side

Takeaways

At the end of the day, the best thing you can do for your grieving friend is to be there.

Try to make yourself available and present as much as possible. Show them love and compassion in their time of need, and don't be afraid to ask how you can help, or reminisce about their loved one.

8-ways-to-support-a-grieving-friend

© 2021 Jessica Lee

Related Articles