How to Help the Family of a Hospice Patient
Do you have a friend or family member with someone they care about going through hospice? This time can be difficult for not only the patient but their close loved ones as well. Understanding how to be compassionate and caring in your communication with them can go a long way. Here at Center for Hospice Care, we understand the importance of whole family wellbeing when caring for our patients. Our hospice nurses and staff are trained in assisting our patients and their families.
What to say to the family/friend of someone who is dying?
The most important thing to remember when speaking to someone who has a loved one in palliative care or hospice is to listen. Listening and giving people time or space to discuss the things they are comfortable with is essential to offering support. Secondly, ask questions like:
- “How are you feeling right now?”
- “What can I do to help?”
- “How does that make you feel?”
- “Are you getting your needs met?”
Many times family and friends of someone who is dying are solely focused on their loved one and can forget to care for themselves. Showing sympathy for them by listening and helping where you can, can truly make a difference in helping them cope. Often times they will not want to talk about the realities of their loved one dying. Just listening and giving them space to process, you can give them the support they need.
Ways you can help friends and family of someone in hospice
If you want to help ease the pain of your friend or family member who has someone in hospice, you can do a number of things. Offer to cook a meal, help clean their home, take care of some yard chores, give them a hug, and remind them of the wonderful job they are doing caring for their loved one. If you are close enough, you can even suggest becoming the liaison for people who would like to call or get updates about the person in hospice. Anything to allow them to focus on their loved one while still being able to care for themselves will be a huge help.
At Center for Hospice Care Southeast Connecticut, we focus on covering many of the basic amenities to allow the space and time for people to connect and grieve together during those last days. Having a shoulder to cry on or lending an ear can sometimes be just the thing people need. Our staff is experienced in helping everyone involved go through this transition in a caring and compassionate way.