Finding the right words to say to someone who’s grieving can be challenging. Below are some of my best recommendations of things that you can say [to offer comfort] as well as avoid saying [that could cause even greater grief]:
The main thing is to be honest and sincere. Sometimes all that’s needed is a hug (post COVID-19) or a smile. Ask questions, be ready to really listen to the answers and do not offer solutions – grievers want to be heard not fixed.
This is often the best thing to say when there’s really nothing to say.
Gives them a chance to tell their story, don’t interrupt, the question is for them not you.
This statement might stimulate conversation, be ready to listen.
This will help them know that what they’re feeling is natural and normal.
It also helps them to be honest about their feelings, grieving is a process, don’t avoid those feelings.