After someone has lost a loved one, it can be difficult to know what to say to them. This is especially true when their loved one has died from completing suicide. Here are 9 ways to being a conversation when someone has lost their loved one.
1. Tell me a good memory you have of your loved one.
2. I can’t imagine how much pain you are in. We hurt too, because we loved him/her.
3. I love you, and my prayers are with you.
4. He/She will be missed,
5. He/she was a good person. -Focus on the way they lived and loved, not the way they died.
6. How can I help you today? (Follow-through with errands, grocery shopping, cleaning, going to church with them, etc.) or Tell me what I can do for you.
7. I am so sorry for your loss.
8. I’m here
9. I’m not sure what to say, but I want you to know I care.
One way you can remind that person that they are not alone is my remembering the tough dates. The “month markers” are the first that come to mind in a suicide. The first 6 months to a year are difficult to get through (and sometimes even longer), and a call or a note on those month marks will do more than you can imagine to communicate to the person that you truly care for. Other dates such as birthdays and anniversaries are also difficult dates. Remember, the greater the joy previously associated with a date, the greater is the potential for sorrow. These tough dates are also a time for you to do something personalfor a friend or loved one. Make sure they are eating well, offer to attend special events with them, put together a CD of music specifically chose for lyrics that offer hope.