A recently bereaved sister was in a dilemma. Her brother’s friends and colleagues sent cards, flowers and gifts after his death and she wanted to acknowledge the caring gestures. But she knew few of the individuals and puzzled over how to proceed.
It is very thoughtful to thank individuals for their kindness following a loss. Notes are very personal and what you say depends on how you feel about writing the notes. Some individuals create a template and use the same format for all…
Added by Robbie Miller Kaplan on June 24, 2010 at 9:00am — No Comments
A friend called, her voice filled with despair. Her dad’s cancer had returned and he was back in the hospital. I automatically responded, “What can I do to help?” She asked if I would keep her mom company at the hospital on Saturday morning so she could run her errands. I agreed and was glad I had the opportunity to visit her dad, as he died ten days later.
But the visit itself took a toll; my mom had died the year before and I found the hospital a stark reminder of what I’d lost.…
Added by Robbie Miller Kaplan on June 15, 2010 at 10:30am — No Comments
We’re often shocked and hurt by the insensitive and inappropriate things people say and do. But lots of people get it right and seem to have a sixth sense when it comes to supporting and comforting the bereaved. I’m going to start the New Year off on a positive note and share some of the real-life kindnesses you’ve reported to me:
• “In the year since my husband died, my daughter gives me a surprise every month on the anniversary of his death. It might be a candy bar on my…
Added by Robbie Miller Kaplan on January 4, 2010 at 8:00am — No Comments
The holidays are upon us and while many of us revel in the joy family traditions bring, for those grieving a loss, the holidays can hold little joy.
So what should we do for those we care about mourning a loss? Do we send cards? Buy gifts? Try to cheer them up?
For starters, it’s important to understand that grief is very individual and runs its own course. It’s not something anyone can control and the bereaved need to mourn their loss at their own pace and in their own…
When you’ve lost a loved one, the world as you knew it has changed forever. You lose your bearings, relationships change, and routines shift. Nothing feels right and the unfamiliarity is an uncomfortable reminder that life won’t ever be the same.
Most of us cherish the regularity of our lives and it’s our daily routines that give structure to our days. One of the most helpful things you can do for someone grieving a loss is to help them re-establish routines.
1. Offer to…
Added by Robbie Miller Kaplan on August 19, 2009 at 2:30pm — No Comments
How can you help a friend who’s numb with grief over the loss of a loved one and at times takes her anger out on you?
You can help your friend deal with her grief with any of the following activities:
1. Physical activity is a wonderful way to channel anger and refocus. You and your friend might make a date to take a weekly walk together in the evening or sign up for an exercise class together. You might need to arrange to pick her up to make sure it happens.