We all tend to say the same thing to people experiencing pain of any kind, “If you need anything, let me know”. I know the majority don’t think like me…but when I hear these words, it translates to “I-only-want-to-pretend-to-help-by-saying-this-general-statement- that-doesn’t-actually-mean-anything”. It is passing the buck, putting the ball in HER court for YOU to take action. So, the best thing you can do is PICK your action.
There are SO many things we can do that will allow our friends to do what they need to do… mourn, make arrangements, sit in silence, sleep- whatever they need to do. Pick an action so that she can get these things done.
Now, picking an action doesn’t mean imposing, being overbearing or causing additional stress to the family. You want to offer a few options where you can assist, instead of giving a blanket statement. “Would it be okay for me to take the kids out for movie and ice cream for a while?” vs “Let me know if you need anything”.