I was crying the other day to my guyfriend and saying that I do not want to have to live in this apartment. He held me as I was crying and said, "You have to, you have no choice." I did not find this comment comforting (sorry Guyfriend if you are reading this). To tell me the obvious is not helpful. I already know I do not have another living option. What would have been a more empathic/helpful reply? Try one of the following:
1. "I am so sorry you are feeling this way."
2. "Tell me more about how you're feeling."
3. "This must be hard for you."
I think back to those early days after my husband's death when I would say, "I just want him back" or "I just want my old life back." I would get the same reply as guyfriend's - "He is not coming back. Your old life is over. You have to move on... You have no choice." Of course I knew all of that already. Substitute any of the three replies above and I would have felt a little better. My situation would have been the same but at least I'd have felt that someone was trying to understand me and offering some real compassion.