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What to say to someone who is going through a difficult time

How often does it happen when you understand the feelings of a struggling loved one but still can’t find the right words of support? It doesn’t matter how concerned you are, but what to say to someone going through a difficult time is very important.

Some statements are warm blankets for someone going through a difficult time. But contrary, certain words or statements can be as painful as piercing. It can restrict the struggling person from sharing his/her emotions.

What to not say to someone going through a tough time

A person going through an emotional struggle is emotionally drained. He hardly reacts to any verbal formalities. There is distrust that continues to grow with each formal statement. This makes him cut off contact and not let anything out.

To know what to say to someone going through a difficult time is a big responsibility. Let’s have a look at statements that may backfire.

Do not say, “Everything happens for a reason”

This is the typical statement that people use as condolence. It makes you look insensitive to the current situation. Tragic incidents can obstruct the ability to connect with any better future result. This could be the loss of any family member, diagnosis of a chronic disease, etc. Thereby, such a statement causes more confusion and disbelief.

Do not say, “I know how you feel”

You should never generalize the problem. Talkers often find it simple to become consumed by their conversation. Somehow, they make the whole problem about themselves and look like attention seekers.

Try not to act like an expert on the situation. The impact of an incident on every person is different and thus are his reactions and feelings.

Do not say, “It could be worse”

Do not try to relax a person with illogical comparisons. Statements like “It could be worse” or “It’s not so bad” look like a failure to understand the gravity of the current situation.

Tough times make a person helpless and hopeless. To see the light at the end of the tunnel is too much to expect. Thereby, “it could be worse” or not are mere speculations but presently the person is struggling.

Do not say, “It’s going to be okay”

It doesn’t matter how hopeful you are. There is no way you can make a struggling person believe in your predictions.

You have no idea how it’s going to be. Telling an emotionally struggling person something like this will make him lose trust in you.

Avoid using Cliche statements

Certain cliche statements make matters worse

    • God will get you through this – You don’t know the religious orientation of the person and belief system. This kind of statement may work for you but not everyone.

    • Have some food – This is one of the worst statements to say to someone going through a tough time.

    • I’m sorry – You had no part in it so saying sorry doesn’t make any sense.

    • Is there anything I could do – Maybe you are trying to connect and empathize. But it can make a struggling person feel like it’s said to get off the hook.

What to say to someone going through a tough time

The words you say to someone going through a difficult time should feel like a soft cushion. Though words may not solve the situation, they do provide significant remedies. Let’s look at sentences that can help someone going through a difficult time.

1. “I will always be here for you”

A tough phase of life makes a person isolated from their surroundings. They feel lonely in their pain.

Maybe you don’t understand what the other person has been going through. Therefore, it’s possible that you can’t relate to the problem. But make sure you tell them that you will always listen to them and be there for them.

2. “You don’t have to figure this out alone”

A person going through an emotional breakdown feels vulnerable. They often feel that they have to figure things out on their own.

Reassuring them that you are all in with them can lift tons of load from them. Also, it can save them from feeling helpless and guilty.

3. “I wish I knew what to say”

It’s important to be true of what you can offer to a struggling person. Meanwhile, it’s completely okay if you can’t find words of comfort.

This statement reflects that you understand the complexity of the problem. Also, build trust in a person for your future suggestions about the problem.

4. “This is a difficult phase of life”

Somebody who is going through a tough time wants to be understood. More than analyzing the situation or judging, recognizing the gravity of the situation is important.

Make sure instead of examining the situation, touch their shoulders for a moment. Irrespective of the bad situation let them know you’re there for them.

5. “Let’s seek professional assistance”

It’s no more a hidden fact that professional help has a significant impact. Mental health professionals are qualified to deal with mental illness.

It’s important to make a struggling person understand that just like any illness mental health illness needs professional assistance. It won’t be a bad idea to update a struggling person with qualified mental health professionals.


What you say to help someone going through a difficult time reflects sincerity and motive. Our words and the warmth of our presence truly matter to someone struggling emotionally. You don’t need a perfect reaction or reply to someone’s tough situation. But the presence of the moment and a genuine intent to help someone going through a difficult time. However, if something made you search and read the whole article then you must have a heart of gold that cares about others, peace.

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