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Concrete support

Supporting bereaved parents

Parents who have just lost their baby are so overwhelmed by their grief that they may be disorganized and need more concrete help. Parents will appreciate this kind of help in particular if you offer.

Here are some examples of things you can offer to do to relieve and support them during the weeks following the death of their baby:

  • Help undo the baby’s room and store the items that were intended for them
  • Help organize the funeral
  • Help postpone appointments
  • Assist with the administrative tasks related to the death
  • Take parents or their children to appointments
  • Do the housework or laundry
  • Do the shopping
  • Look after their other children
  • Prepare meals
  • Walk the dog
  • Mow the lawn
  • Etc.

It is best to avoid offering help in this way: “Call me if I can do anything.” Because they don’t want to disturb you or simply because they lack the energy, parents may not take you up on this offer. We suggest you offer them your help in a specific way, for example:

  • “I'm going grocery shopping today. Can I bring you something?”
  • “I'll have time tomorrow to mow your lawn if that works for you.”
  • “Why don’t I take your kids for one night this week if you could use an evening to yourself?”
  • “What can I do to help you tomorrow?”
  • I did some cooking at the end of the week: would you like me to bring over some soup or couscous?”

Connecting with bereaved parents

Questions addressed in this video:

  • How can loved ones help parents in mourning?
  • How do you approach someone mourning the loss of a baby?

About this page
Updated on 11/8/2019
Created on 11/8/2019
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