4 Gentle Ways You Can Help Your Grieving Loved One Make Important Decisions

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From our partner mentalhealthforseniors.com

When a tragedy occurs in the family, everyone can help to provide comfort and support. In the event that one of
your senior loved ones loses their spouse, they might be in particular need of a helping hand. Your loved one must
navigate difficult financial decisions and all manner of red tape, which can be overwhelming during the grieving
process. You can be the one to assist your grieving family member with making those important decisions, but it is
important to know ways that you can guide your loved one while remaining thoughtful and gentle as they are
mourning. That’s why The Autonomy Group has assembled some helpful tips and resources to get you started.


1. Provide Emotional Support

Though it is important to get one’s affairs in order, pushing your loved one straight into solving their financial issues after a spouse’s death is insensitive. They need comfort and time to grieve first and foremost.

The best thing you can do in the early stages is to create an environment for your family members in which they can
process their feelings without the need to worry about hard decisions. By taking a caring and sensitive approach, you
will be able to glean when the time is right to present the pressing matters at hand to your loved one.


2. Get Organized

Experts emphasize the importance of organizing financial records so that income, bills, taxes, and social security
information will all be immediately available. Your loved one’s documents might be disorganized or stored across multiple locations. Additionally, you will have to gain access to any records belonging to your loved one’s deceased spouse to ensure that everything is accounted for. You should also use an online calculator to get a rough idea of how much their house is worth, depending on whether or not they decide to sell.

Consider bringing up the idea of receiving power of attorney from your senior family member, though you should
avoid forcing the issue. With that level of legal authority, you can access your loved one’s accounts and assume the responsibility of safely storing their financial documents in a designated location. You should then establish a plan for filing away future receipts and other records as well.


3. Seek Outside Help

During a sensitive time, your grieving loved one might be hesitant to rely on help outside the family. Even so, there
are a number of professionals that can help ease the process of settling important matters after a spouse’s death. A financial advisor could also be helpful in guaranteeing that your loved one is getting the most out of their money and investments.


4. Sell the Family Business

If your loved one owns a business, you might suggest selling it if they are ready to retire. However, this can come as
a daunting burden to your family member if they suddenly inherited ownership from their deceased spouse. 

You can help with the selling process by securing a professional valuation. With an objective opinion of the business’s worth, you will be better equipped to approach negotiations. Bear in mind that a thorough valuation
should include all business assets as well as real estate and product inventory.

While losing a family member is difficult for everyone, it is an especially arduous experience for the deceased’s
surviving spouse. Your gentle support can make all the difference for your loved one in overcoming the difficult
decisions that come after inheriting all of a spouse’s marital assets and burdens. Though they might struggle to voice their feelings during this time of grief, your loved one will surely appreciate your efforts.


The Autonomy Group has access to the best resources, and years of experience analyzing policies that have an impact on your security, your loved ones, your legacy, and your golden years. We are keenly aware of your growing needs and the challenges you face every day.

Call 803-262-0442.


Teresa Greenhill,



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