There’s a catch-22 in grief support: because we don’t talk about the realities of grief in our culture, no one really knows how to help. This is true for friends and family members and for the pros. The people who can best tell us how to help — grieving people themselves — don’t have the energy, interest, or capacity to teach anyone how to be supportive.
So we’re stuck: friends and family want to help, grieving people want to feel supported, but no one gets what they want.
If we’re going to get better at supporting each other, if we’re going to get what we all want—to love and be loved—we need to talk about what isn’t working, and we need to talk about what really helps.
Here’s a little bit of a roadmap, to make things even just the tiniest bit easier: