Two questions about this that are kind of from opposite directions. But first a little background:
So I've been told many times by family members and definitely my SO that I'm pretty emotionless. As in I don't really have any reactions to news, I describe every movie I see as pretty good or ok, and I'm generally not very excitable/emotional/etc. To be clear I feel like I experience the same emotions as everyone else, I'm just not so great at sharing them.
Anyways recently my SO has been going through an increasingly bad situation with the health of a close family member and I feel like it's becoming a problem. I should also be clear that while this person is close to them, as in it's one of their parents, they don't really have the best of relationships with them. Still it's your parent, and things like this are going to be very hard. The thing is, I don't really know how to act or what to do when I talk to them. I feel bad and I want to be supportive but I mostly just end up saying "that sucks" pretty much ad nauseam. I'm also really bad at the whole just listening versus offering advice thing. I'm just never sure when I should be trying to make them feel better, or just empathizing, or just listening. I'm not really sure where I'm going with this first question, but I guess just any general advice on how other people have acted in this situation would be good. Or advice on things not to say? Anything will probably help.
There is also a second complication that is making things really hard. Things have not historically been great for my SO's parent in terms of doctor care. Mistakes were made, excuses were given, and my SO's parents have had some pretty serious repercussions from this, including this current increasingly dire health situation. While I can certainly acknowledge the shittyness of what happened in the past, I also know that being a doctor is hard, and medicine is not some perfect science. In fact I have several close friends who are doctors/becoming doctors. The problem I'm having is that my SO is becoming increasingly angry with all of the doctors, and has resorted to home/internet diagnosis second guessing. I feel really uncomfortable with the general doctor bashing, but I also feel like it isn't really an acceptable time for me to defend them. I also think it will be nothing but worse for my SO to become angry with the doctors, or to try and make their own diagnosis to check up on the doctors. It just doesn't seem healthy but I really don't know how to approach that without seeming like I am unsupportive. Also, there are legitimate grievances with some past experiences and it's always a good idea to fight for more attention from doctors who can be spread thin. So I guess my question is should I say anything? Or should I just let them express their grief however they want and just try and be supportive? I really hate how bad I am at this stuff.