Chapter 2: Common situations

Clumsy condolences

While you are grieving, you may get a lot of advice, often from goodhearted people wanting to be supportive. Unfortunately, not all well-intentioned support is helpful. You might have heard some of these "clumsy condolences" from well-meaning friends or family:

  • "Nothing good comes from feeling sorry for yourself."
  • "You're strong. You'll get over it."
  • "You have to pick yourself up and keep going."
  • "Time heals all wounds."
  • "He's in a better place."
  • "You can always have another child."
With this advice, they may be trying to fix your grief - an impossible task. Some people find it so difficult to face this well-intentioned but useless advice that they avoid certain places and events. It takes bravery and patience to face a world that has a hard time supporting people who are grieving.