Resources to help you help others in grief.

I’m working to be helpful in a variety of places. The other Friday night, I offered the following as a series of tweets.


It’s possible that someone you know lost a loved one this week. It’s possible that you aren’t sure what to say. As a hospital chaplain, I’ve thought about this a little bit.


In the first hours, if you happen to be with them, you can try I’m sorry. /Nothing: (60 seconds of silence)/ May I take care of that? (and take the tissue out of their hands and give them a fresh one and throw it away and wash your hands)/ This is hard.

10 simple phrases when visiting in the first hours after a death.


If you want to send them a note, you can say, “I’m not going to ask how you are doing or suggest how tragic this is or offer suggestions for what this means. I’m just letting you know I know this is hard.”

How to write a note to a grieving friend.


If you want to order a book for me to send on your behalf, I can do that.

This Is Hard book with sympathy card


When you see in social media that there has been a death, what do we say? Many responses aren’t helpful. How we recovered from a similar loss so they should be fine. Observations on how this should feel. But here’re some suggestions on what to say.


These are suggestions, not rules. You can choose, sometimes, to simply send a text and say, “I heard. I’m sorry.” Thanks for listening. And for caring for your friends.


The thread was shared enough to remind me that we are each and all facing grief in a variety of ways.

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