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Published: Saturday August 23, 2014 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Updated: Saturday August 23, 2014 MYT 11:17:40 AM

How to help those who are grieving

PETALING JAYA: Radio stations paid tribute to those who perished on MH17, with Red FM talking to a psychologist on how best to approach those who are grieving.

Friends of those who are grieving should not ask questions such as “are you okay”, said psychologist Dr Anasuya Jegathevi Jegathesan.

She said this to Red FM’s breakfast programme host JJ, who interviewed the psychologist specialising in thanatology (the science of death).

Dr Anasuya said that although grieving was natural, there were good and bad approaches when people tried to help.

“Dr Anasuya said it was important for those who have lost someone to be given space to grieve.

“Friends and family can only be there for them and offer a hand, but only they can help themselves,” JJ told The Star yesterday.

“At funerals or wakes, don’t go up to them and ask ‘are you okay’ or ‘do you need anything’. Ask them if they need water or if they’ve eaten – simple day-to-day things which you can forget when overpowered by grief,” said JJ.

He added that another way to help those in grief would be to help out with their regular chores, such as buying groceries or cleaning the house.

“These are things that they just won’t do because they’re focusing on grief. People can also cook for the family – just do things for them. Don’t ask, just help.”


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Tags / Keywords: MH17 crash, MAS, Ukraine

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