If you are in a position to comfort a friend in need, think of it as an opportunity to express your love and support.
While this responsibility can be overwhelming and some of us find supporting a friend to be awkward, it is important to show you are there for them.
Below are some ways that you can offer comfort to your friend. You may not be able to change the situation, but you might be able to help them through it.
When you hear your friend has heard some bad news or is going through a struggle, make contact with them. Whether it is a phone call or a text, offer to visit them. When a person is experiencing a crisis they will often feel alone and appreciate a friend reaching out.
When something has happened to a friend, offer to listen. But don’t push them, they will tell their story in their own time. Voicing the story is known to be one of the cornerstones of psychological trauma treatment.
Your job as a friend is to listen, communicate your concern and show your understanding.
Be there emotionally
Supporting a friend going through a crisis can be stressful, so it is important to make time for yourself. However, do not let your feelings interfere with your ability to support them. Try not to pass judgement or criticism when they are sharing their story.
Let them cry
Your friend will be going through many waves of emotions during the crisis. You don’t necessarily need to say anything, but be the shoulder for them to cry on.
Experiencing a trauma or crisis can often make a person lose their appetite or turn to comfort eating. Make sure your friend is sleeping regularly and have nourishing food available to ensure they are staying healthy.
“You will get through this”
A person in such a situation may not be able to see the light at the end of the tunnel so it is important to remind them that it is not forever. Hold their hand and look in their eyes, reminding them “you will get through this”. They may not believe you at the time but it will be a helpful thing to hear.