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When someone experiences loss it can be hard to know what to do or say.
The book “Coping With Grief” is my go to gift. It helped me so much after my partner died many years ago. I hadn’t experienced the death of any one close to me prior to that (how lucky was I!) and didn’t know what was “normal”. It helped me realise that people grieve in different ways and showed me that I was going to be ok.
I usually have a couple of copies in my house that I can gift quickly as it helps answer questions that many have in the early stages of grief as well as longer term support.
In Australia you can usually buy this from ABC Bookstores and other larger bookstores may stock it (I’d call ahead first). You can also purchase it from Amazon here.
In some situations, I find the sympathy cards in stores don’t quite have the right words so I often head to Red Bubble for more fitting cards. This has been especially the case when looking to find a card after miscarriage or loss of a baby. They also have some beautiful cards for pregnancy after loss.
While flowers were a nice gesture that people were thinking of us and didn’t know what else to do or say, I really didn’t have the capacity to care for them, so took the arrangements to my local hospital.
Cooking and even having the ability to eat much after the death of a loved one can be yet another obstacle to overcome. Soup was about the only thing I could stomach for a long while so if you’re in the position to make and deliver a few servings of soup, I’m sure they’d be well received. Preferably in disposable containers so they also don’t need to worry about washing them or remembering who they need to return them too.
These are among the first things I try to do when I hear someone has experienced the loss of someone close. It is so hard to know what to do but if you can do something, it will be appreciated. Even if they don’t have the capacity to voice their appreciation at the time.