Consoling a Friend 安慰朋友
You sound upset
You sound upset, is something wrong?
Tell me what’s the matter.
I know something’s wrong, just tell me what’s going on.
A shoulder to cry on
Do you want me to come over?
Let me know if you need a shoulder to cry on.
If you want to talk about it, I’m here.
Just know that I’m here for you.
My grandmother’s sick
I just found out that my grandmother has cancer.
The doctors said she only has a few months left.
I’m so sorry, that’s terrible.
Is there anything I can do to help your family?
I’ll do anything I can to help, just let me know.
Have you ever dealt with this?
My friend’s grandmother is passing away.
Have you ever dealt with this situation before?
Have you ever had a close friend that lost someone?
Do you have any ideas for simple things I can do to help?
I just wanted to be there
When my boyfriend’s grandmother passed on, I…
…cooked a bunch of his favorite food and surprised him with it.
…gave him a card that I filled out with a thoughtful note.
…rented his favorite movie and watched it with him.
I just wanted to be there for him, and do whatever he wanted to do.
How are you holding up?
How are you holding up today?
My grandma’s fading pretty fast.
Thankfully she’s not in any pain.
I don’t think it will be much longer.
Thanks for being there
My grandma left us this morning.
We’ve already begun the funeral arrangements.
Thank you so much for being there for me and my family.
I couldn’t ask for a better friend than you.
American attitudes towards death
Americans prefer not to speak about death. If they do, they speak about it indirectly, using euphemisms for dying (“pass away,” “expire”), death (“loss”), the deceased (“the departed”) and burial (“laying someone to rest”). Culturally, Americans tend to avoid having frank and open conversations about death, and many think of death abstractly as something “out there.” The majority of Americans believe in life after death, past-lives, reincarnation or some other theory of immortality.
Funerals and burial services
American funerals are typically held a few days after death, often at a funeral home or church. Attendants dress modestly in all black, usually in a dress or suit. Normally clergy recite hymns, Bible passages, or offer other words of comfort; close family members and friends give a “eulogy,” where they recount their (happy) memories with the deceased. In “open-casket” funerals, the body of the deceased can be viewed one last time for attendants to say goodbye, while in “closed casket” funerals the body is placed in a closed coffin and cannot be seen.
After the funeral, a burial service is held at a local cemetery or crematorium to bury the body. The “pallbearers” (close male family or friends of the deceased) carry the casket to the site of burial. Guests sometimes scoop a handful of dirt onto the grave. After the burial, the family and friends gather for a meal together (usually lunch).
Condolences and support
When a loved one dies, Americans show their support and give condolences to grieving family members. Neighbors and friends often make and deliver food to those in mourning (traditionally some type of casserole). In addition, it is customary to send a card to the family to express your sorrow for their loss with a personal hand-written note to offer your sympathy. Friends and relatives may alternatively opt to send flowers to the family, or make donations to a local charity in memory of the deceased.