APRIL 2011 IssueVol 2, Issue 10


I Did Not Know 

What To Say  




WELCOME EVERYONE!  Our online community is growing and we are honored to have you be a part of the journey. 


Featured Article...  What Not to Say to a Grieving Loved One.  Knowing what not to say can be just as important as finding the right words to comfort a loved one when they are grieving.  If you have a suggestion on "what not to say" you would like us to include on our website, please email us at info@ididnotknowwhattosay.com.


A Little Inspiration... We wanted to take a minute to spread the word about the Note Project.  A wonderful and yet simple way to spread appreciation to those that have made an impact on your life.  There is no cost to participate.  Just "Pledge to Send a Note".  See details below. 


Do you have a story you would like to share?  We invite you to submit your inspirational stories, letters that have reached your heart, a favorite quote or poem, an unforgettable outing, or a book that touched your life.  We would love to hear from you. 


Each month our newsletter will feature a new article giving you a different perspective on how to assist your friends and family through the grieving process. Please feel free to pass our newsletter on to anyone that may benefit from our articles and inspirational messages.

With Love & Gratitude,



Kind words can be short and easy to speak but their
echoes are truly endless. 
~Mother Theresa

In This Issue
Featured Article
Monthly Inspiration
Thoughtful Sympathy Gifts
Discussion Topics
About Us
Quick Links

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Featured Article of the Month

article What Not to Say to a Grieving Loved One

 by Lori Pederson


Knowing what not to say can be just as important as finding the right words to comfort a loved one when they are grieving.  Many of the following sayings might seem on the surface to be the "right" thing to say; after all you have probably heard them said at a funeral.  However, to a person grieving these common "words of support" encourage them to deny their true emotions and can be hurtful.

Here are a few sayings to try to avoid:


1.      The I'll Be There For You...But Not Really Response.
Call me if you need to talk! (but the person is always too busy to talk to you).

One of the most common stories I have heard from those that are grieving, are that friends and even family often avoid them when they need them the most.  When you are feeling extremely vulnerable, you want to be able to count on friends and family to be there for you.  Try to do your best to call or stop by to see how your friend is doing.  If they leave you a message, be sure to call them back.  It may be difficult at times to be there but making the effort can be truly healing to a friend in need.

2.      The Look on the Bright Side Response
Your loss is nothing compared to what I heard in the news the other day, you should be thankful.  You are young; you can always have another child.  Don't worry, you can always get remarried.  Don't be sad, they are in a better place now.  Your mother lived a long life; you shouldn't be upset that she passed away. 

Grief is unique to each individual.  Just because someone else's life may be more dramatic does not make your friend's pain any less important to them.  Allow your loved one to freely share their personal story. 

3.      The Overly Negative Response
You must feel so lost.  Things are really going to be awful for you for awhile.  You poor thing, life will never be the same. You must have a dark cloud over you.  How do you think your loved one would feel if they saw you like this?  If you were more religious these things would not be happening to you.

Someone who is grieving is already feeling overwhelmed and sad.  These negative comments have a way of making someone feel even worse.  If you are really trying to sympathize with their feelings, try asking them how they are feeling and allow them to express what they are going through.

4.      The Just Get Over It Response
 Are you better now?  Your loved one passed away so long ago, why are you still upset?  Crying and being depressed will not bring your loved one back.  Oh it's just an animal, you can get another one.

Grief is not a disease or a psychological condition you can take a pill for and be cured.  You don't "just get over it". When you have experienced a loss, you learn day by day to live your life without your loved one but the loss is not erased from your memory.  Allow your friend to heal at their own pace.


Wow, so is there anything you can say?

Most people do not consciously say things to be hurtful.  They have either heard them said a hundred times so they don't understand how they might affect someone or they become so nervous about saying the "right" thing that the words come out awkward.

One of the most important things to remember when you are trying to comfort a grieving friend is to not diminish their feelings.  Grief is normal.  You may become uncomfortable when watching someone go through the deep emotional pain that can occur when someone is grieving, that is normal too.  If you desire to be a supportive friend, allow the person to feel the full range of emotions they are feeling - both the celebration of the person's life and the deep feelings of loss and loneliness.  By allowing grief to take its natural progression you will assist your friend reach a sense of balance in their life. 

The best thing you can do is keep it simple and heartfelt.  Not sure what to say... why not start with asking yourself this simple question... What would you like someone to say to you if you lost a loved one?  

Remember to...
Hug them, Love them, Show up and Listen.  You will do more for your friend by showing up and listening than any words can ever say. 

2011 Lori Pederson

WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR E-ZINE OR WEB SITE? You can, as long as you include this complete blurb with it: Lori Pederson, Founder of I Did Not Know What To Say, a website created to inspire and to provide you with tools to assist a love one through the grieving process. If you would like our free newsletter on how to assist your friends and family members through the journey of restoring balance in their life after the death of a love one, please visit our website at www.ididnotknowwhattosay.com.

This Month's Inspiration

InspirationNote Project

We wanted to take a minute to spread the word about the Note Project created by Mike O'Mary.  A wonderful and yet simple way to spread appreciation and love to those that have made an impact on your life.  Send a note of gratitude...that is all you need to do.  That simple jester may just make a BIG difference in the life of someone you love.

What is the Note Project?

The Note Project is about sharing appreciation. There is no cost to participate. Just "Pledge to Send a Note". Your pledge will count toward our goal of sending 1 million notes. You'll also receive a free copy of the Note Project newsletter with helpful tips and inspiring stories about appreciation. Pledge to send a note today! Visit the Note Project website: http://noteproject.com.

Coming April 18, 19 & 20, the Note Project Telesummit will explore all aspects of making appreciation a part of your life. Each session will include practical information you can apply in your daily life. And best of all, all three sessions are FREE! You'll hear best-selling authors and experts on appreciation, including Nia Peeples, Dan Millman, Chester Elton, Brenda Adelman, Michael McMillan, John Kralik, Lynn Serafinn, Gail Goodwin, Florence Isaacs, and Note Project founder Mike O'Mary. For more details, click HERE.

Thoughtful Sympathy Gift Ideas


KindNotes is a jar or box of 31 messages enclosed in mini decorative envelopes for the recipient to open each day or anytime they need a smile. Choose from our library of messages or opt for blank papers to write your own notes! Our original concept brings back the sentiment of an old-fashioned letter in the midst of modern day technology and emails. Whether it's a fond memory, words of inspiration, love or thanks, the recipient will always appreciate notes that will brighten their day.

Check out our new look
...we have updated our Thoughtful Sympathy Gifts page and we would love your feedback. 

Our Thoughtful Sympathy Gifts page offers a wide variety of sympathy gift ideas for your loved ones.  We hope the thoughtful gifts listed on our website inspire you to give warmth and joy to your friends and family in their time of need.


Posted on February 22, 2011 - Interview with Cynthia Siegfried -

Cancer Journey: A Caregiver's View from the Passenger Seat


Posted on January 22, 2011 - Interview with Pat Nowak - ABC's of Widowhood

Posted on January 15, 2011 - Interview with Catherine Greenleaf - Healing The Hurt Spirit: Daily Affirmations for People Who Have Lost a Loved One to Suicide

Posted on December 29, 2010 -Interview with Ellen Gerst - Love After Loss: Writing The Rest of Your Story

Posted on October 26, 2010 - Interview with Carole Brody Fleet - Widows Wear Stilettos

Posted on June 28, 2010 - Interview with Lori A. Moore - Missing Andy

Poster on December 10, 2009 - Interview with Sally Wagner, Organized Peace - Professional Organizer

Posted on December 1, 2009- Interview Marcy Kelly - From Sorrow to Dancing

Posted on November 8, 2009- Interview Jean Reagan - Always My Brother

Poster on September 21, 2009 - Interview with Mike Murphy - The Importance of Having a Will

If you are an author or an expert in the grief recovery field and would like to be interviewed, please contact us at info@ididnotknowwhattosay.com.

To order these books and preview other inspirational books, be sure to visit our Helpful Books page.


Discussion Topics

We invite you to join our on-going discussions on our Facebook page.  Not on Facebook?  We have also posted our discussion topics on our Blog.  Current topics include: 
About I Did Not Know What To Say.com & Lori Pederson
LoriLori Pederson created I Did Not Know What To Say in April 2009 as a platform to inspire and provide resources to people that wanted to help their friends and family through the grieving process. 
Lori's expertise comes from those experiences that only life can provide.  Over the past twenty years, Lori has lost many family members, including her mother to ovarian cancer, as well as many friends, colleagues and pets.  She is no stranger to loss and the grieving process.
Throughout her life she has been blessed with many friends and relatives that were there for her as she experienced these great losses. She understands that although people want to help, they often don't know where to start.  I Did Not Know What To Say.com was created out of Lori's desire to assist people find the words when they don't know what to say or do.
You can learn more about Lori and her organization by visiting www.ididnotknowwhattosay.com, reading her personal Blog or contacting her at:
Lori Pederson
Each week we will be adding new inspirational stories and resources to our website and Blog.  Help us reach our goal of providing inspiration and insight to the world by sharing your story or resource with our online community.  We would love to hear from you! 
Share Your Story. Please email us your inspirational stories, letters/cards that have reached your heart, a favorite quote, an unforgettable adventure, a thoughtful gift idea, a book that touched your life, or a suggestion for our website or newsletter to info@ididnotknowwhattosay.com.

If you are an author or expert in the field of grief recovery, we would love to interview you for our Blog and/or one of our upcoming newsletters.
If you have a website, Blog or newsletter, we ask that you consider including our information on your site.  Here is the link:
I Did Not Know What To Say
IDidNotKnowWhatToSay.com is a website created to inspire and provide you with tools to assist a love one through the grieving process.
With Love & Gratitude,
Founder, I Did Not Know What To Say

Copyright 2011' I Did Not Know What To Say(TM) Newsletter.  All Rights Reserved.