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Thread: Talk about your troubles

  1. #11941
    Pineapple! ClosetRTWatcher's Avatar
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    Re: Talk about your troubles

    Quote Originally Posted by prhoshay View Post
    What I have learned is that a lot of people are very uncomfortable with death and tragedy. If they weren't raised to be empathetic, they simply may not know how to express anything. I hate it more when people put the burden on the people who have suffered the loss. I hate the "Call me if I can do anything." "Call me if you need anything." These people in pain are not going to call, not wanting to burden anyone. They really need for people to reach out to them. Cook something. Buy some food so that they don't have to be bothered. Make a run for them. You are only limited by your imagination.
    I will admit that I AM uncomfortable with death and tragedy. It is definitely not because I'm not empathetic. I just simply have not been close to this kind of loss myself yet and I never know what the correct response is. I have lost grandparents, but I grew up far away from them so we were never close. The worst loss I have experienced was a young cousin who was the same age as my oldest son, but when she was battling cancer I was no able to be close to her because it was too painful for her mom to be around friends and family with healthy kids the same age.

    Honestly, reading these opinions on what actions are actually helpful makes me more confident that I CAN do something more useful the next time I know someone dealing with this kind of loss.
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  2. #11942
    Signed, Sealed, Delivered prhoshay's Avatar
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    Re: Talk about your troubles

    It is no sin to be uncomfortable. I think people do what they can. All families handle loss differently. At times of loss, little things mean a lot. The less a person who is in pain has to do, the better. Just being there and keeping your ears and eyes open can be very helpful.
    "...each affects the other, and the other affects the next, and the world is full of stories, but the stories are all one." - Mitch Albom, one helluva writer

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  3. #11943
    Go Teams! inthegarden's Avatar
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    Re: Talk about your troubles

    I know exactly what you mean CGN. I guess living in tornado country can make people indifferent. If nobody dies then consider yourself lucky. I understand that I'm not suppose to cling to material objects. It's not the object I cling to but the memories.
    During the last round of storms, I looked around at all my stuff. My great aunt's fried chicken platter, the water bottle that my grand mother kept filled and in the refrigerator, her paddle sewing machine, the Bloodleaf maple that my son fell in love with when he accompanied me on a nursery stock buying trip, embroidered pieces from my mom. All of it is just stuff and to some degree can be replaced. However, when I look at that stuff, it brings fond memories of the people and good times.

    I think a lot of people are uncomfortable with loss. I know that during losses that I've experienced, I've been surprised at some people's response or lack of response to loss. During the first few weeks you get bombarded with everything. It's just a muddled mess of emotions. However, like mentioned up thread, I was equally and in much need of the friends that appeared at a latter time.
    I'm glad that you are coming here and releasing all those emotions that you can't in other places.
    You and your family are in my thoughts daily. I hope that you feel the care, prayers and healing thoughts that we are all sending you.

  4. #11944
    FORT Fogey CantGetNuf's Avatar
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    Re: Talk about your troubles

    Quote Originally Posted by ClosetRTWatcher View Post
    I totally understand your point. Social media is a weird thing. You can't really "like" a post that is about something tragic like losing a family member, but maybe they also feel that they don't know how to respond in words or that a FB post would be too trivial a way to express their condolences?
    I know what you mean about the social media. It is really weird to me that it has become so acceptable as a form of life's communications. I remember when a b'day, graduation, holiday, and funeral garnered at a minimum a card. Losing a job or moving or other life events got at least a phone call. I was one of the hold outs on social media. Then I started getting b'day texts from my family and "sorry for your loss" on fb. It was really weird. I found out my dad had lost his job of 20yrs because the business closed, on facebook. I figured if my parents are doing it then it's mainstream enough. So that's my main complaint with my cousins and a few friends. I am holding out that they'll come through. Michael's memorial is on Tues. So I hope they send a card or flowers.

    I have always looked at these remarks as trying to be optimistic and bring up the person they are directed too.
    I will be the first to admit that I am real quick to judge. So I tend to look at things again later and see them in a different light. The other day one of our good friends who is a kind hearted elderly lady posted on the donation page something that basically translated to, "You can have more kids." My son just looked at me. I told him when it's someone you know and you know they only have good intentions you just have to take the words in the loving spirit they were given.
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  5. #11945
    FORT Fogey Miss Scarlet's Avatar
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    Re: Talk about your troubles

    I'm also one of those people who are uncomfortable with knowing what to say when someone has experienced tragedy. A simple "I'm sorry for your loss" just seems so hollow & insufficient, especially when expressed on any computer medium.
    But I am empathetic. I cry & hurt for people who I don't even know. It's just that expressing it in a way that may mean something to them just escapes me. I want to make the hurt & circumstances go away, but that's impossible. Circumstances of tragedy don't change or go away, and hurt takes time, lots of time. Sometimes you don't ever really stop hurting, you just learn to live with it & accept it as an ugly part of life, and try to find even the tiniest piece of positive to focus on.

    But anyhow, CantGetNuf, since you have said it makes a difference to you: I am sorry for your loss. Truly. I want to give you a big real life hug & take some of the pain away, but that's not possible, so That's the best I can do from here.
    "Is this Heaven? No, it's Iowa. --Field of Dreams--"

  6. #11946
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    Re: Talk about your troubles

    Quote Originally Posted by ClosetRTWatcher View Post
    I will admit that I AM uncomfortable with death and tragedy. It is definitely not because I'm not empathetic. I just simply have not been close to this kind of loss myself yet and I never know what the correct response is. I have lost grandparents, but I grew up far away from them so we were never close. The worst loss I have experienced was a young cousin who was the same age as my oldest son, but when she was battling cancer I was no able to be close to her because it was too painful for her mom to be around friends and family with healthy kids the same age.

    Honestly, reading these opinions on what actions are actually helpful makes me more confident that I CAN do something more useful the next time I know someone dealing with this kind of loss.
    My kids and I are uncomfortable in comfortable situations. We aren't socially awkward but we feel like it on the inside. lol! So in uncomfortable situations we want to run. I've told my kids when you see someone you know has lost someone recently and you have to give condolences just use the KISS method and keep it simple. Just, "I was so sorry to hear about your father, brother..." And then stop. They direct the conversation from there. All you have to do from that point is nod appropriately. You don't have to say a thing to try and make them feel better because you can't. The minute you start trying to justify their loss or comparing it to someone else's, your going to say the wrong thing.
    But this experience has taught me that is better to say the wrong thing then nothing at all.
    "You better watch your mouth sunshine."-Daryl Dixon

  7. #11947
    Best Ever Pool Runner Angry Birds Champion pikachu's Avatar
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    Re: Talk about your troubles

    A friend of mine's sister died recently and I'm rather ashamed to admit that I haven't called her, emailed her, or anything. I just don't know what to say so I'm uncomfortable approaching the situation. I am looking into getting her a rose plant so that she'll know my thoughts are with her and that's about the best I can do. At least she has plenty of friends and family so if she needs emotional support, she has it even if I don't know how to give it to her. Another friend of ours went to the funeral and she said there were over 400 people there. They had 8 rows in the church for the family alone.

  8. #11948
    FORT Fanatic mushybrain's Avatar
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    Re: Talk about your troubles

    Quote Originally Posted by pikachu View Post
    A friend of mine's sister died recently and I'm rather ashamed to admit that I haven't called her, emailed her, or anything. I just don't know what to say so I'm uncomfortable approaching the situation. I am looking into getting her a rose plant so that she'll know my thoughts are with her and that's about the best I can do. At least she has plenty of friends and family so if she needs emotional support, she has it even if I don't know how to give it to her. Another friend of ours went to the funeral and she said there were over 400 people there. They had 8 rows in the church for the family alone.
    Sadly, I have lost many close family members, so I can speak from experience on this subject. It would probably mean the world to your friend for you to reach out to her, even if it's just to write or say a quick "I don't know what to say. I'm so sorry." It will get harder to do this as more time passes because you may feel increasing regret at not contacting her earlier. Please spare yourself that feeling. Sometimes by not acknowledging someone's loss, we can unintentionally add to the terrible hurt and pain a friend or loved one is feeling.

    When my brother passed away very suddenly at the too young age of 35, every expression of compassion and sympathy, no matter how small or awkward or uncomfortable, helped me through the fog. Every gesture - a kind look; a pat on the hand; a hug - felt like a steadying hand. I especially appreciated people who would check in on me in the weeks and months following his death, after everyone had gone back to their lives, and there was only silence left where he once was. Those are some of the hardest moments.
    prhoshay, candor, Kip and 3 others like this.
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  9. #11949
    Signed, Sealed, Delivered prhoshay's Avatar
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    Re: Talk about your troubles

    As someone who has also had a lot of loss, I fully agree.
    "...each affects the other, and the other affects the next, and the world is full of stories, but the stories are all one." - Mitch Albom, one helluva writer

    When you throw a rock into a pack of dogs, you know which one you hit by the one that yelps!

  10. #11950
    Kip
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    Re: Talk about your troubles

    Pikachu, I agree with mushbrain. Just a note to let your friend know you're thinking of her will be meaningful to her. ("I was so sorry to hear about your sister's death. You've been in my thoughts. i'm sorry I didn't write sooner. No words seemed adequate - I just didn't know what to say.)

    Between Dec 2010 and Aug 2012, I lost 5 close family members, 2 of whom died relatively young. I had some emails and note - just a couple of sentences - from people I hadn't heard from in years. I was touched that they cared enough to write.
    CantGetNuf and mushybrain like this.

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