Santa Fe New Mexican

Support And Self Care

Grief is painful, and it is important to give people the time they need to process and express their grief. There are no right or wrong ways to grieve, just individual ways of absorbing the loss and rebuilding a different life. Realize that you can’t heal someone’s grief but offering compassion and support will help him or her through the process. • Be there for them, even if it feels uncomfortable. • Acknowledge their loss and express your sympathy in a genuine way. • Keep reaching out after time passes. Your loved one or friend is not okay or over it under any specific timeline. Grief can come in waves. A good day doesn’t mean they are “over it.” • Be patient and expect your friend’s moods and reactions to change frequently. Grief is a different experience and many days your friend may not feel like herself or himself. • Don’t ever give up on them just because they can’t properly express or explain how they are feeling or what is needed. • Listen often and speak sparingly. • Offer practical help: make meals, give rides, run errands. • Suggest activities that they have enjoyed in the past: “Want to take a walk?” or “Let’s go to lunch tomorrow.” • Be aware of key moments, such as a birthday or holiday, which can be particularly hard.