59: A Grief Observed
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This episode is an unusual one as I’m joined by three different guests. We are getting a different perspective on grief as we wade into the messy complexity of interacting with someone deep into grief and being the person in grief who is trying to field all those interactions. These three people have experienced grief in losing someone very close to them. I ask them the same questions about what people said and did that were helpful gestures AND those that were not helpful, along with what they wish people would have done and said. Their varying answers are insightful and revealing, helping us to understand that there is no one right answer to navigating grief. Being human is complex and messy, and there is no better example of that than when grief and loss slam into our lives. Join us to hear the different perspectives on grief from my friends, Shayna, Rachel, and Portia.   *Sensitivity warning: We are talking about death in this episode, so be aware that our specific topics are infant death, spousal death, and the death of a close friend.   Show Highlights: ●      My first guest, Portia Burch: ○      How she lost her close friend, Tish, unexpectedly, around the same time as another meaningful loss in her life ○      The value of those who “bear witness” to our loss ○      How Portia responds to those who ask, “What do you need? What can I do for you?” ○      Why Portia wanted people to let her be, act normal around her, and not expect too much from her ○      Why it’s good to ask someone how they would like for us to proceed as they deal with a loss ○      How we can rephrase our questions into statements and listen to context clues to better follow up with someone during grief ○      Things people say that are not helpful during grief: comments like “this will get easier,” and “she’s in a better place” ○      What it really means to comfort someone ○      What we should talk more about the joy of a person’s life instead the fact that someone is gone ○      Why Portia says, “Grief is what we feel when our love has no place to go.”    ●      My next guest, Rachel: ○      How she lost her husband, Jim, in 2017, just before Father’s Day ○      How Rachel responds to those who ask, “What do you need? What can I do for you?” ○      How Rachel thought of grief and the people in proximity to it as ripples on a pond ○      Ways in which people were actually helpful with tangible support and care ○      Why Rachel vigilantly safeguarded how her husband’s death was explained to her kids ○      Rachel’s take on what to say and do to help someone experiencing acute grief   ●      My next guest, Shayna Raphael: ○      How she lost her daughter, Claire, eight years ago as an infant ○      How Shayna responds to those who ask, “What do you need? What can I do for you?” ○      What people did for Shayna and her family that were helpful actions ○      Things people did or said that were NOT helpful: comments about religion, closure, “a better place,” etc. ○      Why it isn’t helpful when people try to force comfort on a grieving person ○      Why those who show up and “enter into the messiness” are comforting ○      How Shayna found help and support through a Facebook group ○      Why Shayna and her husband founded the Claire Bear Foundation to provide safe sleep spaces to families across the US   Resources and Links: Connect with our guests: The Claire Bear Foundation Connect with KC: Website, TikTok, Instagram, and Facebook Get KC’s book, How to Keep House While Drowning We love the sponsors that make this show possible! You can always find all the special deals and codes for all our current sponsors on our website: www.strugglecare.com/promo-codes.
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