Monday, July 13, 2015

Everyday Manners: Dying Friend

What should I do when I visit my dying friend?


Dear Polite One, 

I've just looked up an old friend and found he is dying!  I'm at a loss at what I should do. Hospice is with him daily now.  What should I do when I visit my dying friend?
Thank you so much.
Wishes to do the right thing
Reply by The Polite One

Dear Wishing to do the right thing,
My condolences; it must be very difficult to reunited with your friend at such a painful time. I don't know, and perhaps you don't either, what his family situation is.  I'm not sure about how much hospice is doing either.  But, typically visitors bring ready cooked meals to the family.  We're not sure if there is family living with your friend.  So, that might not be an option.  

Sometimes, visitors will offer to stay with the dying person so family can rest.  Again, this might not be an issue here, especially with hospice in place. 

So, perhaps in this case, it is best to just take your love and caring for your friend.  This may be what is needed most.  He/she may just want to see your happy smile. 


The Polite One


  1. Hi, I hope this is not too late. I have just lost a dear friend and we knew for the last year that this was the end. She told me that what she appreciated was hearing about everyday things, like what the weather was like, what favorite foods I have enjoyed lately. Most importantly, she wanted to know that she was loved. We shared simple jokes and memories about school. We did not talk about death or how sad we were unless she brought it up first. She said the worst thing was people feeling sorry for her. Be strong. When the end comes, there is peace and release from pain for those who go on before us. It is okay to not be sure what to say - you can say that as well and your friend will understand. - SJ Robins

    1. Nice to see you here, Salley! Thank you for this. It is perfect!