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"I know exactly what you're going through...:

When was the last time you shared a painful experience with someone?


Was their response helpful? Compassionate? Or did you feel like the guy in the picture (above) at their response?


So many times we may share what’s on our hearts, only to have someone respond in a way that makes us feel worse…


“You’re still young, you can have more children…”


“At least she’s no longer in pain…”


“I didn’t like him anyway. There’s someone out there that’s better for you…”


and so on…


I just want to assure you that people really do have good intentions. Most of the time they want to help us feel better, which sometimes isn’t very helpful at all.


When my Mom died, family, friends and strangers all had their “helpful” responses. Yes, at first I wanted to scream, “THAT’S NOT HELPFUL AT ALLLLLLL!!!” but with the tools I acquired during the 60 Day Emotional Healing Journey, I was able to see their responses as information that was passed along to them—and they were passing that information down to me.


The problem is that these are intellectual responses—yes, they are reasonable and realistic, yet are targeted to our brain. Another problem is that it’s not our brains that are broken, but our hearts.


Here are some examples of intellectual responses:


“At least...” statements: “At least you still have a job. There will be other promotions.”


Fixing/Problem Solving: Telling someone how they should feel or deal with a situation.


Advice Giving: Sometimes it’s the unsolicited advice that isn’t helpful.


Comparing: By comparing our experiences to someone else’s, it tends to minimize or dismiss their feelings.


Avoiding/Changing the Subject: When someone expresses their true feelings, it may make us uncomfortable, and we may not know how to respond. Instead, we change the subject or avoid those conversations.


To be honest, there aren’t a lot of things that we can say to help someone, but here are some ways that may be more helpful:


“I can see this is weighing heavy on you...”


“I really don’t know what to say or do, but I am here for you.”


“Would you like me to give advice, or just listen?”


Or, say nothing at all and just be present.


The truth is, people’s responses to our situation can make or break relationships. What can we do that may be helpful in those situations? Understand that people mean well. They really do. It may be getting to a place within us to accept that people deal with loss in different ways…and understanding it’s more than a brain thing. It’s a heart thing.


What are some things that others have said to you that wasn’t very helpful?


How did it make you feel?


How do you respond to others when you are uncomfortable with their feelings?


What will you do differently now?


As always, however you are feeling today, I want you to know that you are never alone. I encourage you to reach out—if not to me, then to someone!


I believe in you,


Teresa


P.S. How helpful was this? If you think of someone who may benefit, please do not hesitate to forward this information. Thank you!

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