It can be tough watching a loved one go through a difficult phase in their lives and not know how to help. We want to be there for them, but we’re not sure what they need and don’t want to bother them. Should we ask? Should we leave them alone? So many doubts running around our minds. If this is how you’re feeling, here are four simple things you can do to make their journey a little easier and show them your love and support:
Do your research.
When a friend, family member or partner tells you about a wound they have, try to learn more about it. You can do that by asking them questions or if it’s a recognized trauma wound, you can turn to the Internet. Doing some research will help you understand their minds and guide you on how to deal with them effectively, in times of distress.
Give them space.
Giving someone space and privacy is crucial when helping them. They might need some time off to think, reevaluate or even comprehend their wounds before discussing them. This is important to keep in mind, especially if you want to ask questions about it. Creating a comfortable and safe space is key, hence it’s important to avoid getting offended if they’ve asked to be alone.
Continue to hold them accountable.
While giving them space is important, holding them accountable is just as. This doesn’t mean you should always be harsh during a hiccup. Allow them to go through the ups and downs of healing, but once they cool off from a meltdown, strategise how you’d be dealing with the issue in the future. Being held accountable is how we learn to grow and improve, just ensure it is from a place of love.
Healing takes time. Two people might process an identical incident in completely different ways. Something that takes one days can take somebody else months. So since it’s different for everyone, make sure you allow them to express their needs and have an honest conversation about their journey with you.