1. First and foremost, be genuine. Don’t be afraid to say you struggle with emotions or are worried you are going to say the wrong thing.
2. Reach out, even if you don’t know exactly what to say or do and don’t get a response back.
3. Empathize and validate their feelings and behaviors. Empathy is not about relating to someone’s exact experience; it’s about relating to their emotions. Validating is about understanding and expressing acceptance of their emotional experience.
4. Talk to them about their loss and listen; you don’t have to say anything. If they don’t want to talk, it’s okay to sit in silence with them. Simply being with them can be more powerful than anything you can say in words.