May 26, 2014 10:27 AM Subscribe
How can I support my bereaved friend?
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (25 answers total) 10 users marked this as a favorite
One of his immediate family members died tragically, in a way that might complicate grief.
I will take his lead on everything and just listen. That's the prescribed advice. Is it really enough? My friend is a truth-teller with no patience for bullshit. Repeating “I’m sorry” over and again is weak. He deserves more authentic engagement than that, and would offer nothing less if roles were reversed.
None of us is religious, though he's vaguely ‘spiritual’. I am not at all, and he knows it. I can’t help with those kinds of comforts; he’d hear a false note a mile a way. I have nothing to offer regarding the unfairness of life. It is unfair. This is one of many senseless pains and burdens he's already borne. There are more to come in the not too distant future (unrelated), and he knows that too. He's a reality-focused person.
Thanks in advance for your guidance. I'd be grateful if answers concentrated on talking about meaning after death and providing support; I'm not the one who lost someone.