The bereaved often feel upset by the things people say to them. Of course, they often feel that nothing is a comfort and anything that is said is offensive. If we are feeling terribly wounded, words don’t comfort; comforting hugs or an arm around your shoulder feel much better.

Statements and questions such as, “How are you doing?” Or, “Are you doing better?” or “It’s hard for me, it must be terrible for you,” do not feel good when we are in the shock of mourning.

Here are a few other don’ts:

Don’t say you understand when you don’t understand how someone else feels. Say, “I’m sorry for your loss and your pain,” instead of “I understand how you feel.”

Don’t patronize the bereaved.

Don’t forget to call several weeks after the funeral.

Don’t walk away from friends because they have lost their spouse.

Gloria Lintermans

Gloria Lintermans

Los Angeles-based Gloria Lintermans is a former internationally syndicated columnist. Her column appeared in English and Spanish language newspapers across the U.S. from Hawaii to New York, and worldwide from Saudi Arabia to South America. Lintermans is the author of THE HEALING POWER OF GRIEF: The Journey Through Loss to Life and Laughter, (Champion Press, 2006), THE HEALING POWER OF LOVE: Transcending the Loss of a Spouse to New Love (Champion Press, 2006), CHEAP CHIC: A Guide to LA's Resale Boutiques (1990), the "ultimate guide to recycled fashion," and forerunner of RETRO CHIC: A Guide to Fabulous Vintage and Designer Resale Shopping in North America & Online (Really Great Books, Los Angeles, 2002) and THE NEWLY DIVORCED BOOK OF PROTOCOL, (Barricade Books, New York, 1995). A freelance writer, she has also written for national and local magazines. Lintermans has appeared on radio and television talk shows across the country including: the "Donna Mason Show," Raleigh, NC; "Steve Kalk Show," Beaver Falls, PA; "Morning Drive with John Dawson," Albany, GA; "Tim Quinn Show," Bridgeport, CT, "What You Should Know About," Philadelphia, PA; "Memphis in the Morning," Memphis, TN; "Kent Slocum Show," Grand Rapids, MI; "The Michael Jackson Show," Los Angeles, CA, among others. She has hosted her own "Looking Great with Gloria Lintermans" cable television and radio shows and is a popular lecturer and commentator. Lintermans is a member of The Authors Guild, Inc., the National Society of Newspaper Columnists and A.F.T.R.A. (American Federation of Television & Radio Artists). Lintermans lives in Los Angeles. Gloria appeared on the radio show “Healing the Grieving Heart” with Dr. Gloria & Dr. Heidi Horsley to discuss “The Healing Power of Grief.” To hear Gloria being interviewed on this show, click on the following link: www.voiceamericapd.com/health/010157/horsley022808.mp3

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