Open Communication

In times of grieving, it is common to hear people offer to be there if you need to talk.  While some accept this offer, others may choose against it for different reasons.

There are several reasons why one may not choose to address feelings related to their loss with others.  For example, people may feel that if they talk about their problems they will appear weak or dependent. Furthermore, people may feel as though they are being annoying or being a source of negativity.

When finding yourself hesitant to discuss with others, remember that a person offered to help you. They want to know how they can assist you to make things easier because they care. If you do not want to talk about it, tell them you are okay and you’ll check in with them. Additionally, if you feel too reliant but still need help, ask if it would be okay to talk. Most people understand you are experiencing a difficult time and will be dealing with a lot of negative emotions.

Some may feel comfortable talking after seeing the situation from another perspective.  Imagine a friend is experiencing something similar but will not talk to you about it because they feel annoying. How would you handle the situation? Why do you believe that they should talk about their loss?

On the contrary, if you do not wish to discuss with others, try to be polite and honest.  When a person offers help, thank them for their concern. If you are having a rough day and they ask about it, try not to lie about your feelings.  You do not have to be detailed and can simply say you are having a rough day. If they press for details, politely remind them you do not want to be more specific. In this way, you are being honest while still appreciating their desire to help.

When grieving, most attention is put towards focusing on the negative and what has been lost. However, this is also a time where people can build stronger relationships with close friends by maintaining open communication.