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So Sad Don't Know What To Say


shubom

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I didn't know exactly where to post this.....but I think maybe here.

It'll be a year in January since I lost my mom. The very thought still sickens me and I try not to obsess over the details. I want to try my best to move on.

Christmas time was hard for me. I was ok, taking each day slow.

But then, something terrible happened to a co-worker of mine. His son died of possible overdose. It was devastating, and I felt so bad for his whole family. It happened over the weekend, and he came to work Monday. The horror, the look on his face, reminded me of the feelings I had when when my mom died. It was devestating to watch him and soon after I started trembling, and had to take the rest of the day off. I couldn't think straight, I just felt so bad. The feelings for my mom resurfaced. I was literally shaken up for days after.

He's back at work now and I have no idea what to say. I asked him how he was doing, but then I started crying, and had to look away. Death is hard, no matter who it is. It's just so sad :(

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Shubom,

I'm sorry for you and your friend. It's so hard to handle your own grief let alone someone else's pain. My sister and I can finally talk about our Mom and our feelings. The pain was too great to share before. Be there for your friend but take time for your self. This is also such a hard time for you at the one year mark. The holidays don't make it any easier. My Mom passed in July. I dread the one year anniv. coming around. When your ready, you may be able to help your friend. But only if you can handle it. Keeping you in my prayers.

Missing my Mom,

Trudy

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Hi Shuborn,

I am so very sorry for you and your friend, It has been over a year for me.. It actuall is closer to two years for me... My mom died in April of 2005 and my dad died in August of 2005... I know what you mean about recurring sadness every once in a while I just sit down where I am and cry ever so much... It just happens.... God bless you Shelley

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Shubom,

That is so sad. It is hard to know what to say, even though we should because of our own grief! Just try to think of what you would have wanted someone to say to you. It does bring back fresh feelings of your own grief. It's happened to me too. It seems like when we're doing "OK" something happens to knock us back down sometimes, doesn't it? Like it will never end. Maybe it's just natures way of teaching us how to handle and survive grief and sadness, I don't know. But a long break from it would be very nice, huh? Hang in there.

Hugs,

Shell

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Dear Shubom,

It’s very hard to tend to another’s broken heart when your own heart has been broken, too. On the other hand, it may be that in the encounter you had with this man, your own tears already conveyed what words cannot.

If talking to him in person is too difficult for you, you might consider simply writing a note and leaving it on his desk. A short and simple message, written in your own hand, will suffice – as long as it is true for you. Something like this, for example:

I’m so sorry for your loss.

I’m praying for you.

I want you to know I’m thinking of you at this sad and difficult time.

I know what I went through when my parents died and I still cry for them. If you have a need to cry, too, please know that I’m okay with it. [You might also add that he can cry in your presence whenever he needs to – but say it only if it’s true for you.]

I wish you comfort, and I hope to be among those you find comforting in the weeks and months ahead.

You might also want to re-visit this message thread, which includes Paul S's perspective as a male struggling with grief: Need Help in Knowing What to Do

See also the Grief at Work page of my Grief Healing Web site.

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Hi shubom! :)

When my Mom died, all I wanted was for a friendly face. Someone, anyone who knew what I was going through and could point out the way. An ally or a friend. Maybe you can be something like that, in keeping with whatever the rules are at work and whatever your professional relationship is now. Just do what Marty says and leave a note, and maybe offer to talk. Whatever the situation may suggest.

Needless to say you have to consider how you would handle it and how it would impact on you emotionally.

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Thanks Everyone for your kind words and suggestions. Sorry for your loss.

Yes, I do remember after it happened, desperately needing a friend, someone who understood and could talk to. I guess it's been so painful, that I've blocked everything out.

It is difficult to help someone and when I'm feeling helpless myself. People grieve differently and it's hard to know what to say. I agree, it sucks getting knocked back, when you are trying to move forward. Sometimes I don't know if I'm really dealing with my grief, or just blowing past it. I wish 10, 20, or more yrs would fly by so it wouldn't hurt so much. But the more years, the more good memories fade :( HOw horrible.

I was talking to a classmate of mine about visiting my mom's relatives in another country. Before I knew it, I started crying. My classmate just stared at me and didn't say a word. I apologized, recomposed myself, and continued to talk. But then about 5 minutes later, I noticed tears dropping from her eyes. I was shocked, and thought, Oh No, I made her cry. Just then I realized how powerful tears can be, and how they can take the place of words.

I'm making a conscious effort to at least ask my co-worker how he's doing everyday. Sometimes I just want to shut the situation out, because it's so painful. I remember when it first happened for me, I didn't want anybody talking to me. I'd rather they had left me alone in my cubicle. But then when they didn't talk to me, I felt like they didn't care. It was a catch-22 ! Which makes the grieving process complicated.

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We can't "fix" someone's pain or grief, and nothing we say can take the grief away. I think it's being there that helps.

I took a class on the psychology of grief and death here at the college where I work. The professor is well known in the field. When his mother died, he said one day he was overcome by grief in his office, and started crying. He cried for some time, then when he raised his head, his wife (who also works here at the college) was sitting in a chair next to him. He didn't hear her come in, she said nothing, she just sat there and let him cry. He said that was the best thing she could do -- just be there. And listen, if needed. He said sometimes trying to find just the "right" thing to say, or trying to console the person is actually not helpful. We need to talk about our grief and our lost loved one, and even well-meaning advice can shut that down.

For example, think how you feel when you start to talk about your grief, or the one who died, and the person says kindly, "I'm sure you'll feel better soon." Well, you don't get to keep talking then. You feel obligated to feel better. But if the person were to say, "Tell me about her/him", then you get to talk. You get to honor the one who died by telling their story. And talking does help -- at least it helped me!

Many of us need to talk, and have our grief accepted. As my grief counselor said, you have to go through the grief, but it helps if you don't have to go through it alone.

Ann

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Wise words, Ann. I only wish I had someone like that (or someone like you, Shubom) in my stinkin' life! Even when I deliberately sent out pieces of information about how to help someone who's lost a loved one....not only did no one act on any of that info, but they avoided me even MORE. So I wish all these experts made up a much greater part of the population! I think if anyone ever says to me, "Tell me about your beloved one...", I'll fall over dead myself from the shock!...of course, then I wouldn't have to go through all this anymore, either...

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Friends always ask "How are your doing?". It makes me feel so good. Sure I know they care about me. But more because my Mom is not forgotten. Most of these people didn't even know her. Time goes on for everyone else. We get stuck in grief. Thanks for sharing your stories.

Missing my Mom,

Trudy

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