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StonPono

My Girlfriend lost her father - How can I help her through that hard time?

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StonPono   

I don't really know if this is the right forum section for this thread to be posted, but nonetheless I want to ask you people out there about my current situation. My girlfriend (20), which I've been together for now nearly 3 years now just lost her father unexpectedly. Witnessing the moment of her getting the call that her father died, I’ve never seen her in that much pain, sadness, and shock.

The last nearly 3 years that I was together with my girlfriend, were absolutely great and I love her with all my heart, and I know that she feels the same for me. However, since that tragic day things have been out of place, understandably. I know I can’t imagine the pain my girlfriend is now going through, or anybody else, who lost a loved one, however this event kind of affected me too. Seeing my girlfriend is such shock and sorrow, messed me up a little bit myself, and I don’t really know sometimes what I can do for her to make her feel better.

The last days I’ve just been there for her, and her family. Holding her hand and hugging her. But sometimes I just don’t know what to do or even say. I know that she is in extreme sorrow, but sometimes I think she hides it from me or tries to hide it. I don’t know how the next days, weeks month a going to be. Because one the one hand I want to be there for her and help her through this difficult time and on the other hand I am afraid that things won’t be as ever before in our relationship.

I hope you have some advice for me.

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Hi, so sorry to hear of your loss. All I can say is be there for her. I am still in shock over my Mom's death and knowing my husband is around, helping out or giving a hug helps tremendously.

It won't be the same but you can become stronger together.

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reader   

I'm so sorry to hear about your girlfriend's dad. It is a terrible shock to lose a parent. It sounds like you are doing everything right by being present and offering emotional support. It will be hard for a long time.

Maybe when she is ready, she might want to consider talking to grief counsellor or joining a support group. There are lots of good resources in the community and through church. It might help her to be around other grievers who share her loss. Maybe offer her a journal to write in. Or suggest these websites What's Your Grief and The Grief Healing Blog to read.

A lot of grievers are upset that friends and families drop off after the funeral or after a month. I would continue to check in with her. How are you today? It can be simple like can I get you a coffee?

Sending your girlfriend and her family all my thoughts and prayers.

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Dgiirl   

It sounds like you are doing all the right things.  Be available when she needs you. Try to help where you can.  Prepare her food, suggest walks or small activities to help get her mind off things from time to time.  However, don't feel compelled to 'fix' her sorrow.  She is going to feel sadness for a while and it is healthy for her to grieve.  Sometimes she will even need space.  The best thing for you to do is give her understanding and compassion and just follow her lead.  I know this might be hard on you too. It can be hard to standby when someone you love is in pain.  The things you use to do might be shadowed by her pain.  But the biggest help you can do for her is to be patient. It might be helpful for you to seek a confident that will listen to you so you don't feel overwhelmed too

 

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I didn't read the others so sorry if this over laps what they said. But here are things I wish my husband would be doing for me right now (lost mom a month ago). Not to say he is not there for me but he keeps his distance.

Personally I don't like when people ask if there is anything they can do for me (most people will just say they are "fine") Just do nice things and just be there even when not asked to be. Things as simple as waking her up with coffee in bed, giving her a journal to write in (cute one is even better), surprising her with a meal, taking her to a movie (nice cause doesn't have to be around anyone and doesn't have to talk).

For me I want to know my husband is there, but don't always want him by me asking if I'm doing ok. Just want semi space if that makes sense.

The appreciation is there even if she doesn't show it (the sadness is so great it will weaken her ability to show happiness sometimes)

Be on her side if she is upset about something and agree when you can. ALOT of what she does and says is triggered by her sadness so don't take it personal.

Don't think that she doesn't know its hard on you too. She knows and thinks about that too, even if she doesn't say anything.

Just realize this is going to take time to smooth out a little and she can't rush it. The next year will be hard. And everyone handles grief differently. (My sister wants to be around people and out and about/ Me I want to be by myself in my own space)

When she is ready to talk, she will talk. When she is ready to do something, she will tell you. Just listen.

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Monty   

Just be there. Unfortunately nothing you say or do will take her pain away. Listen if she wants to talk and understand that she might not want to socialise with others. Some days just getting out of bed is a massive challenge.

Just be there. 

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