Someone once told me, “If you are with a person who is crying, do not hand them a Kleenex.”  Surprised, I questioned why?  He said, “because that signals to them that you want them to stop crying.”

Really?  Please listen to this:  If your friend (or loved one) is crying and their eyes and nose are producing little rivers running down their face, for heaven’s sake please hand them a Kleenex! It shows you are acknowledging their pain.

And please let them know that you feel their pain, by gently touching their shoulder (or arm) or by giving them a full hug. 

If a physical hug doesn’t seem appropriate, hug them with words from your heart, like these suggestions from author Kim Kramer:

  • “I am so sorry that you are going through this.”
  • “Your pain breaks my heart.”

So, when you are with a friend who is crying, please remember a Kleenex and a hug. 

For further advice about how to care for a friend who is crying, you may appreciate: Help Someone Cry and What to Say When Someone is Crying.

Karen Mulder

Karen Mulder

Karen Mulder is the founder of the Wisdom of the Wounded ministry. She lives in Holland, Michigan with her husband Larry.


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