Read these 5 Helping Parents Cope Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Funeral tips and hundreds of other topics.
Be reassuring to the parents and or family. Often times, parents or spouses may have guilt over what happened. They feel that it is their fault in some way. A Friend said: "I know I blamed myself for my son's death for a very long time. If only I had been in the back and my mother had been driving. If only we hadn't driven so far." Reassure the parents or family that what happened is not their fault and that they didn't cause this to happen, should they hint toward these thoughts.
If you are comfortable in the role of confidant, encourage the bereaved parent to talk honestly with you about what they are feeling. Assure them that they can talk openly and freely about what they are going through, but don't push them to talk. Once you have let them know that you are willing to listen, let them take the lead. They will open up to you when they are ready.
Don't avoid someone who is greiving. The urge may be strong to avoid them because you don't know the right thing to say. There is no right thing to say. You cannot take their pain away. Saying “I'm sorry” will let them know what you are feeling. The simple act of approaching them will let them know that you care and are there for them. Let the bereaved parent take the lead in the conversation. They may simply need a normal conversation to take their mind off things for a moment. The gift of your time may be appreciated in ways that you will never know.
Sometimes the best thing you can do for a parent who has suffered a loss is to be there. Be there to listen to them. Be there to offer a hand to hold. Offer your support, friendship, and help. If you see something that needs to be done, do it. When the grief is fresh they may be able to organize their thoughts well enough to ask for the help they need.
Remember a parent who lost a child with a card or phone call on the birthday of the child and the one-year anniversary. The bereaved parent will be painfully aware of these dates but others may be reluctant to acknowledge them. Let the parent know that you are aware of what day it is and that your thoughts are with them. If you are very close to them you may also want to invite them out for the day and help them busy themselves. Take your lead from them.