Saturday, March 14, 2015

What do you say when someone is suffering?

This post by "Mom" who writes the blog: Maybe someone should write that down. Writerly ways for Family Historians and Storytellers, is important for many reasons.

We all have had a sick friend or relative, or know someone who has lost a loved one, or is suffering for some reason. 

What do we do? We ask if there is anything we can do to help. We say, "Please let me know what I can do for you."

The woman writing this post, "I'm so sorry, what can I do to help?" is a cancer survivor and, like me, knows too many friends and family who are suffering at this time.

I have a friend caring for a daughter with cancer. Another friend recently had a tumor removed from her bladder. A dear cousin who lives alone is suffering with extreme pain and needs 24 hour care. Three little children might be on their way to foster care instead of safely home with loving parents. Another cousin passed away last week. Everywhere, we see and know loved ones who are suffering. 

Six years ago, I was the one suffering -- suffering grief and physical exhaustion from caring for my husband with cancer. My neighbors brought me food, listened to me talk and comforted me in many ways. But most people asked the question and I couldn't think of one thing to tell them.

The writer of this post tells us what we can do and should do without waiting to be told. She gave permission to re-blog her article, but you can read it best by clicking on the link below.


Sam Hoffer / My Carolina Kitchen said...

What to say or do is awkward for all of us. I'm off to read her post now. Thanks for sharing this. It will help me understand what others would like from us who want to give our love and support.

DJan said...

For me, it has always helped me to know that someone actually cares enough to want to help. But I don't know if there really is any way other than time's cure to get through these awful periods in our lives. I'll read that post and see what she has to say.

Glenda Beall said...

Hi Sam and Djan.
I'll be interested in what you think of the post by "MOM."
Thanks for reading my blog.

Barbara Gabriel said...

What a great piece to share. Every single person we know will go through something like this. I have, when I had cancer, and had no idea what to ask for. I just wanted to withdraw and solve my own problems. Great, useful information.

Glenda Beall said...

Hi Barbara,
Thanks for reading and leaving your comment. I remember feeling like I was about to collapse during those months before Barry ended up in Emory in Atlanta, but had no idea what to ask for or who to ask.
I learned from my own experience that most people assumed I had help if I needed it, but it would have been wonderful if someone had said, I'll pick up your groceries this week or if someone had brought in a meal or two while he was sick. The stress of care-giving takes so much out of us, and those small things can mean so, so much, especially when you don't have family near by.