I recently posted a link to an article on my Facebook page about things to avoid saying to divorced moms. There were a bunch of comments and I'm afraid the impression I gave was that people need to walk on eggshells with us single mamas. Although there are some things that sting that people have told me, I think after the road I have traveled, and others in my situation, it's fair to say that I've got pretty thick skin. I was thinking about how it is hard to know what to do or say for people who are going through hard things that we ourselves haven't experienced and we feel at a loss as to how to extend a helping hand. I know I felt that way today at church when I saw a friend who had recently lost the baby she was carrying and nearly died herself. She had been barraged with people asking how she was and yet still I asked the same question everyone else asked... "How are you?" ...and I wished I had something better to say.
The other day a friend of mine said to me that I was welcome at their home anytime if I ever wanted to just hang out. That really meant a lot to me. Somewhere to go. That meant if I was feeling lonely I had somewhere to go.
I have also been blessed with very non-judgemental friends who are willing to listen and listen. These special friends probably wish they could shake me sometimes or tell me to just forget about it and move on. But they have extended to me patience and respect for where I am in my journey through divorce-land. They have been there when I needed to talk, even when things in their own lives were less than perfect.
So, what could you say or do for someone who is divorced? I think two of the most compassionate things you could say are that they are welcome in your home any time and that you are there for them if they ever want to talk.
Maybe they won't come over. Maybe they won't call. But I assure you that if they are anything like me, just extending that offer is something that will bring that person a lot of peace and comfort.