Being the friend that everyone turns to is a huge responsibility, making sure you are available when they need you, listening carefully to the things they choose to share with you.
Sometimes you worry that you are not there enough for them, you worry if you are giving them the best advice, run over the things they’ve told you, working out possible solutions for them.
I have found in my experience that the best support is simply just to listen.
Most people just want you to validate their thoughts and feelings, to remind them that they are reacting normally, being rational. This actually can make a huge difference to someone. It can be hard to be the friend that everyone turns to. Sometimes you feel that you cannot share your own issues with someone because you are aware of what they are dealing with.
But honestly, I think they would appreciate you sharing it with them. This makes them feel that you appreciate and trust them. Knowing that you have the same faith in them as they do in you.
Sometimes supporting people can be stressful but it is also the most rewarding thing you can do. They see you as strong and caring, enough for them to turn to you. For you to be the first person they think of when they struggle. I’ll take that job hands down. To be able to support someone and allow them to vent, rant and go mad down the phone.
This is why I have set up a support website, for those people who just want to rant to someone, to feel that someone will listen to them, not to advise, because at the end of the day most people already have a solution in their mind, they just want to be told ‘its okay’, ‘that’s a normal reaction’.
That is the best support you can give, and to those who turn to people to lean on, you are not weak and you are definitely not a burden. When you chose to open up to someone, they feel special and honoured that you are sharing it with them and they are part of your struggle and solution.
Remember, if you are struggling or know anyone that is, or if you are struggling to support someone, below are some numbers you can ring. Also check out my website.
116 123 – Samaritans.
http://findingyourself.strikingly.com/ – my website.
Also, I discovered Reddit recently, where there are open forums where you can post about your struggles and the community on there is so helpful and willing to support you and just listen. Writing on different formats just to vent and be anonymous I would definitely recommend it. Just remember, you are never alone, even when it feels like you are, people are always there to support you and just be there for you. The strongest thing you can do, is share your struggles, it takes a lot of courage to open up to people.