Pat's Answer

My best friend's father passed away. I am unsure what to say to her?

Your Question

My best friends father passed away. I am unsure what to say to her?

Answer

Hi there, and welcome to Ask Pat. 

It sounds like you’re unsure of how to support your best friend as her father recently passed away. We understand that when something like this happens, it can be confusing to think of what to say or do. We might be worried about saying the right thing or we may feel like there isn’t much we can do to help.

You appear to be a very caring friend as you want to be there for your best friend when she is going through a tough time. It might be useful to consider how have you supported her in the past when she’s been through a rough time; can you think of something you did before that helped her? There are many ways to support someone. You could invite her to go for a walk, or to do something you know she enjoys. Perhaps you’d like to bake her biscuits or prepare her favourite meal. Remember, it’s okay to admit to your friend that you don’t know the right thing to say but you can let her know that you are available if she needs to chat at any time; the important thing is that she feels your supportive and caring presence. Have a look at this website for helpful ways to support a friend who is grieving: https://www.mariecurie.org.uk/help/support/bereaved-family-friends/dealing-grief/supporting-a-grieving-family-member-or-friend  

If you are unsure of what to say, do you think you could speak to an adult you trust? This trusted adult, be it a teacher, guidance counsellor, aunt or uncle, may be able to help you figure how best to support your friend. You could also get in touch with Childline if you would prefer to speak with someone you don’t know at this time. You can contact us via our webchat option at https://www.childline.ie/, or you could phone 1800 66 66 6 or text us on 50101. We could help you to explore the different ways you can be there for your best friend. We also have some articles on our website you might find helpful, like this one: https://www.childline.ie/supporting-a-friend/  

Thank you for reaching out to us and we look forward to chatting this through with you. 

Take care, 

Pat 

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