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Grief & Loss Message Board

Grief & Loss Board Index

As some others have said here, simply saying that you are sorry for their loss is plenty. If you knew the deceased at least fairly well, it would also be fitting to add that you miss them as well. What I feel is more important is to not leave them alone for long periods (like days at a time) unless they request it. Inviting someone to call at any time is fine, except that they likely won't believe that you mean "any" time. But if they do call, be there for them! If they leave a message, certainly call them back!

I say these things because they are the very things that I missed when my parents died. I'm not married and I live alone. I lost my father 10 years ago, and then my mother 18 months ago. When Mom died, a couple that I've known for about 30 years e-mailed me and invited me to call "any time". When I did, I had to leave a message, and to this day they've never called back. I have several long-time friends in my local area. None visited, one called to offer sympathy.

After each of my folks died, I didn't feel up to struggling with trying to figure out who to call, or what to say. I didn't know what to do about anything. I wish that some of my friends would have been concerned enough (and mature enough) to realize that deep grief and solitude are not a healthy mix. Where would a friend get the idea that someone that is in mourning would want to be isolated?

One last thing: a friend's mother once told me, "When someone dies, clean." I eventually took this simple advice, and found it therapeutic. But first I got drunk. Should have cleaned first.

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