When your friend or family member is going through a challenging time in their life, it can be difficult to know how you can help them, and if they even want your help. Many people can become closed off and suffer in silence when they are hurting, so it is important that you still reach out and do you best to help even when they react like this.
When you help out a friend or family member, they will do the same for you when the situation flips.
3 Vital Tips for Helping Your Friends and Family When They are Struggling
1. Show that you are there for them
Many people will tell their friends and family members that they will be or are there for them if they need them, but not many people follow through on this promise. Show your dedication to your loved one with actions rather than words.
Even in milder situations, such as when they have a cold, instead of simply telling them you hope they feel better, make them some hot soup and bring them medicine.
Actions speak louder than words, and they will be more likely to reach out to you when they are really struggling.
2. Don’t force them to talk
It is instinct to want to know the root of the problem that is plaguing your friend or family member but trying to pull this out of them when they are upset can make them pull themselves further away from you and from getting better. Instead of forcing them to open up, let them take their time and offer them support in the meantime.
During difficult times, it can be embarrassing or even shameful to talk about what the matter is. When they are ready to open up to you, they will. Reassure them that you won’t judge them and that you will be there to support them no matter what is bothering them or what they are struggling with.
3. Look for professional help
For more serious problems and situations, you will want to enlist the help of a professional who knows how to treat things like this.
When you do this, make sure to tell your loved one that you are doing this out of love and concern for them, and that you will still be there for them during and after any treatment they may need. Taking things to the next stage by getting expert help can be upsetting for them, so be prepared for this as well.
If you know someone who is suffering from addiction or another serious issue and you think they need professional support, there are facilities and services available to help.
Opening yourself up to receive help, support and love can be difficult when you have been suffering alone for a while. Be prepared for some resistance on your loved one’s part when you try to help them get better.
Everyone reacts differently, however, so it is also important that you consider how your loved one is as an individual, and tailor their care and how you offer them support.