The Do's & Don'ts of Supporting Someone Through Loss

Updated: 3 days ago

The Do's and Don'ts of supporting family, friends, and the community who experienced pregnancy & infant loss.



Do:


  • Reach out and acknowledge the loss

  • Listen

  • Be genuine and caring

  • Allow them to express their feelings without passing judgment

  • Refer to the baby by name if they do

  • Include them in community events; invite them for meals and social gatherings

  • Understand if they don’t come to events or leave early

  • If they react negatively, remember they are reacting to the situation—not to you

  • Respect they might not answer calls or texts

  • Reach out after time passes and at significant milestones/anniversaries


Take cues from the family:

  • Visitors vs. privacy

  • Providing meals

  • Help with other children


Things that can be helpful to say:

  • It’s good to see you

  • I’m so sorry to hear what you are going through

  • I’ve been thinking about you

  • I’m (going shopping, watching the game, taking a walk, ...) want to come?

Don't:


  • Avoid the couple

  • Dominate conversations

  • Change the subject if they want to talk about the baby

  • Suggest they had bad care, or give legal or medical advice unless they ask

  • Talk about your or other people’s losses or tragedies

  • Tell them they should be “over” it Things not to say: People say these, truly intending to be helpful, but they can be very hurtful:

  • I know how you feel (no matter how much you think you do)

  • At least you have other children

  • You can always have another

  • At least you really didn’t know your baby

  • This only happens to people who can handle it

  • You’ll see the baby when Mashiach comes

  • It’s a test from God and God only tests people He loves

  • Be a gentle caring friend. It will be appreciated!



Download the NechamaComfort Dos and Don'ts to share within your community.

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