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Please help me to say the right words of comfort to my friends who recently lost their mother.

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Choose words with feeling and listen to let family express their grief. There are no "right" words, just heartfelt in my opinion.
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There is really nothing anyone can say when talking to someone who lost their mom. Words aren't going to bring her back.
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the truth is ,saying to sumone im sorry for ur lost or I know how you feel or u'll be fine wont change how they feel because the truth is no matter how time has passed by the pain actually never completely fades away ,its like a cut it bleeds a lot at first and then it heals but a scar still remains,being sumone who has lost the closest person to my heart ,I feel it is okay to say you don't ever get over it ,or will you ever forget it you just learn how to get through the day ,eventually you cope with it but just like that scare it will always remain to remind you of what happened.The first step to healing is accepting they're not coming back ,the fact that experiences like that can shape you ,let that experience have such an impact on your life that you cherish everyone around you even more .Just let that person know they are stronger than they think they are and don't tell them not to cry ,let them cry get it all out ,atleast the memories will remain ,that's gotta be a reason to smile and just the mere fact that you knew sumone so dear to you that they made saying goodbye hard
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Only you can come up with the "right" words since you know your friends and we do not. However, a simple, "I am sorry for your loss" and "If there is anything I can do, please do not hesitate to let me know" will do in a pinch.
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What you say depends a great deal on the circumstances of the life and death.
If she was young and involved with the friends life, love and understanding is in order. Offer her assistance, a chance to talk about her life and future loss, urge her to attend a grievance group, maybe at her church ot community center.
If her mother had been sick for a long time and suffered a lot, then death is a blessing and should be accepted as that, grieving is still in order, however acceptance is much easier. Get her to talk about her mother and be a good listener.
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Share with the person something nice that reminds you of their Mom or something good that his/her Mom did. Begin with "I remember when your Mom........". That shows that their Mom's memory lives on, no matter how long it's been since the death. They might also learn something more about their Mom that they didn't know before.
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I got lots of "sorry for your loss" that seemed at least kind and polite, and we got flowers sent from the office when my FIL and when dad passed on and we went to take care of arrangements and all. People who could come to the viewings and funeral services did, and expressed regrets if they could not and/or sent cards. And my mom's good neighbor made a big pile of cookies for both the funeral dinners and accepted my undying thanks for all the little things and big things she did for us. My office staff who just quietly made the arrangements for my clinics to be rescheduled and told patients and families what was going on was tremendously helpful too.

The other thing I would have loved is what I've found primarily on here...a chance to share what it was like, to talk about it (endlessly). The hospice had a grief support group but I never really got to debrief, and the chaplain who encouraged me to e-mail him my story/journal either never read it or never responded. The other thing that meant A LOT to me was the people coming up with remembrances and photos of my parents that I did not have and sharing those.

Darbaby its true, the world expects you to get over it and get back to work and business as usual. And you hate to beg for more support, but you know what, if anyone ever asked me to join them for a cup of coffee and said "would you mind if we talked about my loved one and me", I'd say "sure - Guillermo's or Muggs, and what days this week are good for you?" It happens a lot, sadly, that people who grieve differently end up being mad at each other instead of being able to be there for each other. Guys and gals, one generation to the next, everyone has their own norms and ways about it all that should not have to get in the way if they are not misinterpreted.
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Sooozi, you sound like a wonderful friend.
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Thank you all for sharing, even your challenges help me learn about what others may experience after a loss.

When my mom was alive she told me NOT to go to funerals. She wanted me to always be happy and not be exposed to all that sadness. Her idea was that life was for living and get on with it. I was probably a TERRIBLE friend to those I knew who lost someone, because of her influence.

Then when she passed away, I learned that it was a very difficult time for me. As you all mentioned, there is a lot of responsibility that goes on. Also, I think it is more about the friendships than about anything else.

You have all given me some very good ideas. In this case, the mom was quite popular in town. She was a teacher and everyone seemed to know her. So there are lots and lots of stories and memories and messages being sent. I knew her daughter and don't really remember mom, so when I wrote this question I was at a loss as to what to say. I even drew a blank as to what people said to me. I panicked.

I will try to reach out in the weeks and months to come to be a good friend. Thanks again for your very good suggestions. This has been very, very helpful.
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Sorry my post is kind of garbled it seems to have posted itself and lost half of itself. A hug is also very comforting and something good about the deceased. even a funny memory can break a tense moment.
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This is so difficult, but I agree that fewer words and more action is best. My mom died a little over a year ago and among the wonderful things she told me was "it's not right when the loss happens that people need you the most, but it's the months and years that are the hardest and most crucial to be there". Show up-- call, email, etc. even if your offers or contact is not returned. It will be. Don't say "just let me know if you need anything"....they don't know which way is up right now so you just doing what you think is helpful is better than any words spoken. Good luck to you.
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The best thing to do is continue to contact the one grieving over the long term. Invite them to join you for a meal, go to a movie or come over to your house and share one. offer to help with tasks that a partner used to take care of. invite them to join in something
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Ask them to let you know if there is anything you can do for them, you are available. Keep in mind that not everyone in the family has the same experiences or feelings about the parent (or family member) who died. Don't assume it was a sweet and loving relationship unless you know that for sure. If the experience was not good, death brings up many conflicting feelings. You don't want to tell everyone it was not good for you, and it is weird to pretend it was. "Thank you." covers a lot.
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As someone who lost her Mom just over a year ago.....its not what you say that is important....its how you express that u care thats the thing.....my mom was also my best friend....its understanding whats happens after the initial loss....for me im left with an 89 yr old dad who has the start of dementia....who is also grieving and thinks hes the only one who is grieving....calls on me to do everything his grocery shopping paying the bills taking the dog to the dog spa....everything my mom did hes asking me to do on a daily basis....when my mom 1st passed a few of my friends came by & visited brought flowers and then nothing! If your a true friend make sure u keep showing ur support...grief last longer than one visit....its been over a year and I feel more alone now than ever....its like i have no friends....its not what u say its what u do....quality time just sitting & talking....or getting ur friend out for a mani or pedi or lunch or just getting them outside...i dont go out from one week to the next...or even get dressed everyday til late afternoon....got no reason to.....give them a reason to live again. Xo
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My mom passed away a few months ago and my friends have been amazing! For me, it doesn't really matter what they say; the effort to express sympathy is appreciated. "I'm sorry for your loss" about does it. But what is also much appreciated is being offered the chance to talk about her. Let your friends know that if they want to talk about their moms, you are all ears. Because they will want to do this long past the time when everyone else has moved on. That's only natural, but you feel you don't want to be a burden by bringing the loss up again. Let them know it's OK, you are always ready to listen.
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It depends on the person. Sometimes the best thing to say is nothing at all. I know the loss of a parent, like many on here and still I don't always know what to say when someone loses a parent. The thing that helped me the most after my dad died was just having somebody to listen to me. My husband of course was the main person that I would talk to or vent to, whatever the case was. But it also helped me to be around people who had also loved my dad and were grieving over him. I leaned on my grandmother too, though I felt a bit guilty about that since he was her son. I felt like I needed to comfort her but a lot of the time she was the one comforting me. But maybe in a way it helped her to be able to help me, she knew she was needed, and she might've found comfort in that. I still talk to my aunt or great-aunt, siblings, etc about him. I'd have to say just listening will do wonders for somebody in that situation, not invalidating their feelings is another. Admit you don't know what to say but that you'll listen if they need to talk. Hugs. Give lots of hugs.
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With good friends, just coming right out and admitting it sucks rather than giving platitudes is probably the best thing you could say, I agree.
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One of my favorite responses is "l'm sorry for your loss. Losing your mom really sucks."
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Here's what not to say: "Don't worry" or "everything will be okay." Most people don't want to hear that. So, the fewer words the better. The fewer platitudes the better. Merely say something like you're sorry for their loss or that you will grieve with them. If you and they are religious, mention you're praying for them, but this is a tricky thing because if people aren't religious, they sometimes find this presumptuous.

If they are good-enough friends where you can offer actions, instead, that is easier than words. If you can offer to baby-sit while they make funeral arrangements or can think of anything you can personally do that would be helpful, offer that but be clear that you're not trying to push that offer onto them, either.
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I agree with redplum, there really are no words. A hug says it all, a kiss, a casserole, a movie, a hand to hold, someone to take a walk with in the woods, someone to sit with in the park, in the garden. Just care, show up, say nothing for now, just be there, that would help me.
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I just hated the words I'm sorry after awhile. Give your friends a BIG HUG and let them know you are there for them. Call them to see how they're doing, go out to chat, etc. Just being there and talking things out between the both of you, natural things, being in the moment with them work better than thinking about what words should I say.
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"I am so sorry." Or just a simple, "I am so sorry for your loss." My cousin has said that to me on occasion and it is very comforting. I'm not religious, so I don't want the whole religious aspect, but if your friends are religious, I'm sure you'll get lots of comforting words to say from others on here along those lines. Just a simple expression of condolence is really all that is needed.
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