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Saying good-bye for the last time

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Many people struggle with emotions when it's time to say good-bye. Whether the good-bye is at the end of a visit with family or at the end of a life, saying good-bye is never easy.

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You never know when saying good-bye if you'll see the person again. When you're saying the final good-bye, the emotions are even more deep because you know this is an ending.

During a loved one's last days, many families bring in hospice care. Hospice isn't a place, it's an organization that helps families let go and say good-bye.

Those who are dying often worry about the loved ones they will leave behind. Hospice offers suggestions for ways to say good-bye and allow your loved one to leave.

Hold hands or touch your loved one to say good-bye. Whether or not your loved one is awake and alert, holding hands and touching brings comfort.

Talk to your loved one and share your love. Even if you've shared your feelings with your loved one, words of love are always comforting to hear.

Share your faith and belief in God's love. If God is an important part of your loved one's life, it will be comforting to hear you talk about God's love.

Apologize for and forgive things said and done in the past. We've all said and done things that were hurtful. There's no time like the present to apologize for the times you've caused pain in your loved one's life.

Tell your loved one that it's okay to go. As the end draws near, it's important for your loved one to know that you'll be okay. When you say that it's okay to go, your loved one will draw comfort knowing that you're alright.

Life is full of good-byes, but some are much more difficult than others. Saying the final farewell to a parent, child or dear friend is one of the hardest things in life. Letting your loved one go will bring peace and comfort as death approaches.