In past newsletters, we've talked about the holiday blues as you anticipate a loved one's final season. This year, we present touchstones for coping with the holidays after a loss. For instance, you may be comforting your mother as both you and she grieve your father's absence. Or you may be expecting a visit from a bereaved aunt or uncle.
This is a fragile time of year. Use these tips to help support your loved ones through the season.
- Speak up. Let your relative know that you are thinking about his or her loss. And that you are aware the holidays may trigger difficult feelings. Your words give them permission to talk about what's hard.
- Listen. Provide opportunities for your loved one to tell you about the memories and feelings that are arising. Retelling stories is a necessary part of healthy grieving.