3 Things You Can Do for a Grieving Mom

Grieving Mom
Photo by Edward Cisneros on Unsplash

Women in the prime of their lives often grieve when they lose a child, especially in the case of an infant or toddler. When friends and family members hear about such a loss, they want to help in any way possible, but it can be difficult to know what to do when you don’t have experience with grieving mothers or grieving in general. Here are three ways you can provide emotional support for a grieving mother that will help her feel better after the initial shock of losing her child has passed.

Offer attention

A grieving mother may feel distant from friends and family, but it’s important that she doesn’t feel disconnected. One way you can help is by offering your undivided attention in whatever capacity you’re able. A grieving mother may need someone to simply sit with her and listen while she talks about her loved one. She may also just need some company when she visits her friend or relative’s gravesite, so plan on spending time with her when appropriate. Whether it means setting aside several hours of one day or planning an hour of each week, you can offer your time in whatever form works best.

Give her a special gift

If your friend or family member is grieving, give her something that brings her some joy. This doesn’t mean spending lots of money on expensive presents; it means thinking of something she loves and giving it to her as a reminder that she is important and loved. Perhaps you can give your mother-in-law one of her favorite candies or flowers. A lot of times, we don’t know what would bring someone joy because we aren’t always close with them, but we may have an idea if we spend time getting to know them better. Try sharing photos from their favorite vacations with them or a special gift box curated for this type of loss such as bereavement gifts for moms.

Give her space

When someone is grieving, they need time and space to grieve in their own way. If you really want to help, give them room to deal with things in their own way. Don’t force your suggestions or opinions on them when you know they aren’t ready. Instead, offer your support in whatever form is best for them—whether that means being physically present or giving her some breathing room by going out of town. Give her time. Everyone deals with grief differently and at different paces, so no matter how much time has passed since a loss, it can still be too soon for others to talk about it with a grieving person.

No matter what you do, it’s important to remember that there is no right way to provide emotional support. The most valuable thing you can do as a friend or family member is just be there—and let mom know she’s not alone. If you’re unsure how best to help, ask her directly about what she needs from you and listen intently as she responds.

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