The Do's And Don'ts Of Being A Truly Comforting Presence For Mourners

23 May 2017
 Categories: , Blog

The death of a loved one can be the most painful experience someone endures. It can be crushing, and people grieve in a variety of different ways. Grief counseling is one of the best ways to help someone heal, and you may suggest that or even offer to take someone in mourning to counseling sessions. Beyond that, there are no one-size-fits-all salves to the pain that someone in mourning feels. However, when you follow these do's and don'ts, you can provide genuine comfort to the bereaved at a funeral.

Do Show Initiative and Take Helpful Actions

When your loved one is immersed in grief, you may be surprised at how little motivation the person may have for ordinary tasks. Now is the time for you to step up and take care of little and big things that need to be done. You may bring over breakfast on the day of the funeral since the bereaved people are probably not going to want to cook for their families. You may offer to greet people at the funeral and do practical tasks throughout the day without being asked to do so.

Don't Explain How You Can Relate to the Loss

When someone else is suffering, explaining how you can relate to that pain can seem like the most natural thing to do. However, it's important to keep the focus on the current pain of the mourners, rather than turn it around to how you have suffered, too. Although you and the mourner may have both lost a parent, every loss is unique and felt in different ways. Don't try to directly relate to someone's immediate loss at a funeral.

Do Bring Silent but Fun Activities for Kids in Attendance

Children are often brought along to funerals, but there may be little to no time to prepare for their presence. To make the experience better for the children, bring along silent but fun activities for kids to do while they pass the time as the adults go through the traditions of a funeral. It can be something as relevant as a kit to help the children make a memorial scrapbook or something unrelated such as colors and a coloring book.

Don't Offer Feedback at the Funeral

Everyone's a critic at some point, but the worst time to bring out your inner critic is at a funeral. Although you may think of a song that would have been more appropriate for the deceased person, don't mention it at the funeral. If it's not a suggestion that's offered well before the funeral, don't give advice at the memorial service when it's already too late to follow it.

Finally, keep in mind that there is no single, universal way to grieve. The mourners may express their pain in a wide variety of ways. You can be most helpful when you respect the individual ways that the bereaved need to express themselves and offer kind, generous words at the funeral. 

For more information about the grief process, contact a business such as Brown Funeral Home.