It is my firm belief that millennials just don’t know how to comfort each other. We are all going through a lot of the same sucky life situations, but we barely know how to cope, let alone comfort each other. Some of us are experiencing loss and grief while many others have never lost someone close to them, so there are plenty of our own generation that can’t sympathize and therefore don’t know how to provide comfort. What I see a lot of is those people simply backing away slowly when they see someone in pain and never coming back. I myself have been at both ends of the equation. I lost someone when I was young and no one had any clue how to help me. Friends have been touched by death and grief as adults and instead of getting in close and comforting them, I’m all hands off. I would be an ideal comforter since I’ve been through it myself, so why do I turn away?
Older generations knew how to comfort. They would send you a card, bake you a casserole and come visit you at home. Of course it’s not a pleasant visit, but they were present. In that moment, I think what a lot of people want is someone to just be there. Even if that person just wants to go to sleep, I can’t imagine how comforting it would be to just have someone there while you slept so that you’re not alone. I’ve heard stories of this happening, and while they sleep, the visitor will straighten up the house, wash dishes, throw trash out, do small little things for them that will mean so much when they wake up and don’t have to worry about them. Grief brings depression and anxiety, and sometimes it’s all you can do to get out of bed. Those small things add up fast and soon you’re overwhelmed and don’t know where to start.
We need to step up for our fellow generation. Send a card, it will instantly make them smile and they will always remember that you did it. If you say you’re there any time, be there. Visit your friend at home when all they want to do is curl up on the couch and sleep. Don’t force them to get out if they don’t want to. It’s their grief, not yours. Just be there.