how do you console someone in pain?

I used to feel a bit clumsy in offering my condolences to others who are in pain, others who lost a loved one or who are going through divorces or unsuccessful rounds of IVF.

I would always fumble with my words.

“Sorry” would always come first. Then some variation of “you will get through this.”

But as I’ve matured and had to experience some “pain” myself, I’ve learned that there is nothing to feel clumsy about when offering your words to someone who’s having a rough time.

So how do I console those in my life right now who are in pain?  I tell them the truth. I’m honest.

I used to trip up on the standard responses to offering condolences, so now I don’t use them.

Instead, I say want I’m feeling. I say that “I’m so sorry,” sometimes. But usually I say that “I’m here” no matter what. And I mean that.

Honesty is the best policy.

Stop.

How do you console friends through troubling times in their lives?

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