Please Stop Talking, Please?

Dealing with the death of a loved one is an extremely personal experience, everyone has a unique journey through it. As you encounter every emotion under the sun, people say the stupidest things to you most, in an effort to comfort you or fill the silence with idiotic notions. Here are a couple of my favorites…

“It’s been a few months now since your Mom passed, are things getting back to normal?”

Umm Cray Cray, as old as you are you should know better than to say this to anyone a couple of months after losing their Mother.  My response, “Huh? I don’t know what normal is anymore.”

“…well, you didn’t need her anymore.”

Honestly, if I hadn’t been in church when this comment was made to me, I would have punched this idiot in the mouth. Seriously? This one STILL fires me up! You always need your Mother, obviously not in the same way you did earlier in your life but, you still need her. I have no words for you…that are nice. 😉

Please stop talking, please!

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So, here is my advice (yes, this post comes with unsolicited advice…you’re welcome!) when you are at a loss of words, try one of these two phrases.

 “How are you doing?”

or

“I’m sorry for your loss.”

Actually, some of the best sources of comfort for me came without a word being said, a hug, a gentle squeeze of my hand in passing, or someone just being present, there.

Of course, you should do what is best for you. But when all else fails and you aren’t sure what to do or say, a Hallmark card will work nicely too. 🙂

photo credits

8 thoughts on “Please Stop Talking, Please?

  1. People do say the stupidest things. I can’t believe someone told you that you didn’t need her anymore. Unbelievable. I lost my father 9 months ago. I don’t know where normal went. Today was a “burst into tears for no earthly reason” kind of day for me. Sending you big hugs…I promise not say anything at all 🙂

    • I am sorry for the loss of your Father. I learned to take each day and that day’s emotion as it comes. It’s perfectly fine to cry when you need to cry. I am sending you hugs right back. And I just wanted that ONE person to stop talking. 🙂

      Good Luck with NaBloPoMo! Let’s do it!

  2. I’ve been thinking about loss today for my own reasons, so reading your words was timely. My favourite (most memorable?) stupid comment memory came from my wasband, after hugging the wife of his business partner and friend of 20+ years after the loss of her dad. “Congratulations and best wishes at this time of bereavement.” WHAT THE WHAT?!?!? Good luck with NaBloPoMo! Let’s do it!

  3. “You didn’t need her anymore”–?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!

    This makes my fist feel all face-punchy, too. The only thing helping me keep that itchy fist in check is remembering all the times I said things like that–maybe not that terrible, but like it.

    Thank goodness I learned.

  4. I could relate to what you are saying. I think people think they are being supportive. Sometimes the best of intentions come out in the most insensitive ways. I agree with you that sometimes just a hug or asking simply how I’m doing is better than trying to give me something canned or insincere. I lost my mother almost a couple of months ago, and if someone where to say that I didn’t need her anymore, I’d probably give that person the evil eye and demand that they explain to me what they mean. Either that, or I’d just walk away. What a horrible thing to say.

    • I am truly sorry for the loss of your Mother.

      I agree, I think people believe they are being supportive especially when they have no idea what to say. I understand it is a very unsettling situation for everyone.

      My thoughts and prayers will be with you and your family not only during the holiday season but, also in the days, weeks and months that follow.

      Take care.

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