Thoughtful Activities For Grieving Friends (TM)
This is a simple activity that we can do to show up for our grieving friends. Inspired by my own gifts growing up when I was too poor to buy presents for family and friends, instead I made them coupons which were exchangable for services to be performed at a later date.
Fun examples of mine included:
- Volunteering to do housework and chores.
- Being "nice" to my younger brother for "1 day".
But your Friendship Coupons can say anything. Remember, the point of what we're doing is showing up for grieving family and friends. When we do that, we can expect that they'll be sad. And that is 100% okay.
It's not our job to make them not sad...nothing that we can do there. It's our job to just show up! Hold that sometimes uncomfortable space with them.
Try to be normal-ish. Lol. You don't have to change who you are to show up for your friends. Be yourself.
Lastly, you don't have to worry about getting "sucked into" their grief. Speaking from the experience of someone who talks with many deeply grieving people, I could be having a wonderful day, only to have the saddest conversation where I really connect with someone who has juuuuust said goodbye, then, when that conversation is through, I can take 5-10 minutes to process how I feel at that time, let it go, then proceed onward with having a still wonderful and now impactful and meaningful day.
The point is to just show up.
You'll be fine.
Fill out a Friendship Coupon!
Suggestions: Movie, dinner, games, volunteering to help with work, shopping, or just being available.
Give them the coupon!
Suggestions: Make sure you can actually do the activity when you say you can. Also, you can hide it in creative places.
Honor the coupon by showing up and being okay with however they are feeling without trying to change it.
Remember, grief takes time. Your friend may be sad for months. Let their sadness be okay when you're together.
Suggestions: Repeat Step 1.