Holidays should be joyful, but they are often sad for individuals grieving a loss or going through a difficult experience. Five simple things can bring cheer to those facing tough times:

  1. Write a personal note to let them know you are thinking of them and their loved one.
  2. Invite them out to lunch and offer to provide transportation.
  3. Deliver a gift bag or tin with home-baked or store-bought cookies, muffins or a quick bread.
  4. Include them in your holiday activities but don't be offended if they decline the invitation.
  5. Establish a new ritual - a quiet brunch the week before or after the holiday, a meal you prepare together on a week night or an afternoon tea.


Robbie Miller Kaplan is an author who writes from a unique perspective as a mother who has lost two children. She has written How to Say It When You Don't Know What to Say, a guide to help readers communicate effectively when those they care about experience loss, now available in three individual volumes: "Illness & Death," "Suicide" and "Miscarriage." Additional titles are available as e-books: "Death of a Child," "Death of a Stillborn or Newborn Baby," "Pet Loss," "Caregiver Responsibilities," "Divorce" and "Job Loss." All titles are in Amazon's Kindle StoreClick here to order.


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