The best way to support a grieving friend

Kim Hamer, Widow & Founder of "Exactly What They Need", shares advice on the best and worst ways to support a friend who is grieving
The Best Way To Support A Grieving Friend
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The best way to support a grieving friend

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One of the worst things you can say or do when someone is going through a tragedy in their lives is, "If you need anything, let me know." It is not helpful. What is anything? Does that mean you are going to scrub their toilets? Does that mean you are going to wipe the green snot from their kids' noses? Does that mean you are going to take that phone call from them at 3:00 a.m. and talk to them for an hour? Anything is a very big word. When someone is in crisis, they are worried that they don't know what they want most of the time. They don't know who to turn to. Asking for help is not an easy thing to do. When you say, "If you need anything, let me know," you are asking them to come up with what they need. You're asking them to come up with the courage to ask you. You're asking them to put themselves out there to possibly be rejected. The best thing you can do is be specific. I'm happy to go grocery shopping for you. I'm happy to watch your kids for you on Saturday morning from 9:00 to 12:00. Be as specific as you possibly can. The other thing is make sure you say something. Ignoring the problem only leaves the person who is dealing with the tragedy to feel more lost and like they don't matter. Even if you have to say, "I don't know what to say to you." That's an okay thing to say.

Kim Hamer, Widow & Founder of "Exactly What They Need", shares advice on the best and worst ways to support a friend who is grieving

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Kim Hamer

100 Acts of Love: A Girlfriend's Guide to Loving A Friend Through Cancer or Loss

Kim Hamer is the author of 100 Acts of Love: A Girlfriend's Guide to Loving Your Friend through Cancer or Loss, a modern, essential how-to guide offering tips on what to say (and NOT to say), and specific ways to support and love a friend, co-worker or family member who is coping with cancer, loss or any crisis.

Kim Hamer became a widow after her 44-year old husband lost his life to cancer. Their children were 12, 9 and 7 at the time. Before and after her husband’s death, friends and supporters came up with unique, creative and simple ways to help her family. She called them “acts of love” because it’s what they felt like.

Her book is a fun, straightforward compilation of many of those acts. The mission of “100 Acts of Love” is to help everyone understand and embrace their importance in the lives of their friend in crisis and to provide the tools and courage needed to support them in a truly meaningful and helpful way.

More Parenting Videos from Kim Hamer >
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