The National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization and the National Hospice Foundation have some suggestions for how to help loved ones through what may be a difficult time.  See the link for their full list of suggestions, but here are a few that might help initially.

  1. Be supportive of the way the person chooses to handle the holidays. Some may wish to follow traditions; others may choose to change their rituals. Remember, there is no right way or wrong way to handle the holidays.
  2. Offer to help the person with baking and/or cleaning. Both tasks can be overwhelming for one trying to deal with raw emotions.
  3. Offer to help with holiday shopping or give your loved one catalogs or on-line shopping sites that may be helpful.
  4. Remind the person you are thinking of him or her and the loved one who died. Cards, phone calls, and visits are great ways to stay in touch.