in need of help once again!!!!!

lostsoulMarch 11, 2008

hello everyone, i come here again with yet another problem. this one is not in reguards to my marriage, for that so far is working well. there is still things we need to work on, but its a great start to a new begining.

but what i came here to ask is that we had a tragedy in the family and im not very good with being the one to say the right things, i mean by this i really don't know what to say other than just to be there and listen to everyone. i want to be there for my wife, and i want to help her through her loss, but when she asks a question of why? i can't respond, is there really anything you can say? i searched online for grieving spouses and what to say but nothing seems to work.

so i come to you all once again, for advice, opinions, and help, to help me make my wifes grieving something more than me just standing there holding her tightly and listening to her. i want to be able to help her, i want to make things better for her, although i know it won't be, at least for a long while but still, i just need to know if anyone else had a great loss, with there spouse and how they helped them deal with it. believe me im all open ears, i more of a rock for someone to lean on then one that knows whats the right thing to say. im sure you all understand where im coming from.

thanks for all your help again.


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Grieving is a very personal thing. Frequently difficult for any "other" to know what to say or how to be helpful other than just being there. Questions about "why?" are just part of the process. We don't get to know, but it seems to be part of the human condition to want to whether that's rational or not.

You are who you are. You believe what you believe, think what you think, and feel what you feel. You can't share her grief. All you can do is be there and make sure she knows you want to be. I doubt using other people's words would be other than transparent. Your own are the one's she'll recognize and want to hear.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2008 at 5:05PM
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Remember that you are male, and (stereotypically) your instinct is to solve the problem - so when she asks why, you feel pressured to answer the question. What do you think she is really asking for, when she comes to you and says, "why"? -
What she is doing is connecting with you, inviting her into her experience. You might acknowledge that, let her know that it means a lot that she would include you. You might consider writing her a little note, women love that - a note that says, thank you for including me in your grief experience. I may not have the answers to your questions, but I am glad to be there for you and with you through this.

This will mean so much more to her than any "answer" to "why" ever would.

Also, remember the steps to grief, and remember that all people react differently to it with regards to length of time in any one stage. Grief is universal, so although you don't understand so much, one day you will -

I'm so glad you are together.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2008 at 7:40PM
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This is the way I think of mother died of lung cancer. And yes, she smoked. My mother and I were very close, I was devastated when she died. If I had said to my husband, "why her!?", the answer would not have been "well, because she smoked". A hug and maybe "there isn't an answer for everything" would do it. If she asks you "why", I doubt very much she is expecting an actual analysis of the reason for the death. She's venting.

Incidentally, my husband scored big points just by being extra nice and doing things he wouldn't usually do (like hold my hand in public or give me a hug in public).

You can't fix the problem, but you can make other parts of her life easier (do a little more around the house than usual, etc.).

    Bookmark   March 11, 2008 at 8:21PM
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For me, I wanted practical help, like someone to cook the meal, do the washing, pick up the children from school. I could not face going to the shops, or even thinking.

I wanted a hug.

I wanted flowers to cheer me up.

Hold my hand - I found that really comforting.

Make me a cup of tea.

Kind words.

Someone to listen to my sorrow, and just listen, not start talking about what happened to them !

Its a process, some days good, some days bad. Gradually things get better.

I found comfort in doing things for my children. After the gloom of death, to see their smiling, sparkling faces, was the way forward. I remember I bought my, then 6 year old, a bike, that made me feel good ! And him.

One of the nicest things my DH said to me was (when my dad died), "he lives on through you". I found that really touching and comforting.

Bit teary now.


    Bookmark   March 11, 2008 at 9:26PM
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I think everyone is so different it's hard to tell you what you should or shouldn't do or say. Some people may actually prefer to be alone. But, generally I would think just being there for her and listening to her is probably what she needs most. And a little pratical help as some of the others mentioned certainly shouldn't hurt.

I remember one of the nicest things anyone ever said to me when I was talking about my grief was just the phrase "That's Understandable". For some reason just those two words made me feel better than all the other advice or forced comfort so many tried to give me.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2008 at 11:39PM
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thanks again to all of you, i guess i was a little quick to jump the gun to what i really ment to say, the thing is im not interested in wanting others words to say to her, i say what comes into my mind and heart. what i was looking for is exactly what i've been doing, and the answers from all of you have just proven to me that im doing the right thing.
i guess there really isn't anything to say at sometimes, and sometimes my hugs are more than words can express. even my light kiss and i love you, on the cheek works. i was really upset because i just didn't know how to be there to help her through it, but with what you have all said to me, and what i have already been doing, is exactly the same. so i must be on the right track. shes taking this very hard, and i feel that in my own opinion just being there for her isn't enough, i wish i could do more, but like everyone had said, sometimes more isn't better, and just holding her and listening to her is better than anything else you could do.

thanks again, for all your help, i have been coming here for months, but never wrote anything, and im glad i took that that step to write,
thanks again.


    Bookmark   March 12, 2008 at 11:17AM
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