What DO you say to someone who is hurting?

Written By: JoJoisms - Oct• 13•14

407Last week, I shared what not to say to someone who is hurting.  I’ve posted things like this many times as articles or in answer to a question online.  People have sometimes ask, “Then what should I say to someone who is hurting or struggling with something?”  So, this week, I’d like to share what you can say that will help support and uplift  those who are suffering with a chronic illness, hurting or struggling through another chronic issue.

“I understand” or “I understand how you must feel.”

If you do truly understand what they are going through because you have been through something very similar, that can help a great deal.  It means they aren’t alone.  They aren’t a weirdo.  Having someone truly understand what you are going through is a huge relief and a big help.  Share what helped you. Share what you felt.  Share what lifted you up.  Share what kept you going.  They’ll want to know.

It doesn’t have to mean that you understand every aspect of what they are going through.  It can be enough for them to just know how you must feel.  If you can’t be sympathetic, be empathetic.  No need to explain what you think they are feeling.  Let them tell you.  Nod.  Hug them.  Be there for them.

What I can do to help?”

You don’t have to understand their situation to be helpful and uplifting.  You may not know what to do or how to help them, but you can ask.  They’ll tell you.  Maybe they need help cleaning the house.  Perhaps they can do with some dinner delivered to their house so they don’t have to cook.  Maybe they’d appreciate you taking the kids for the afternoon.  They may want someone to bounce ideas off of.  Or maybe they just really want you to pray for them.  Ask and ye shall receive.  It goes for being helpful too.  Ask what you can do for them and then be prepared to do it.

“Can I pray with you?”

Many people will say they will pray for them.  Be the one who does.  Be the one who prays WITH them.  It can be an incredibly powerful support to be present while someone prays out loud for you and WITH you.  Strangely, even if the person hurting isn’t a believer, most will not turn down an opportunity to have someone pray with them.

You may have no idea what that hurting person is dealing with on a daily basis.  You may have no idea how you can help, but you can always say something that will uplift.  You can always ask what they need.  You can always be a good friend.

If you are suffering with chronic issues, what is something someone did for you that really helped uplift you?  Please share here.

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