We all go through some difficult times eventually, and it is in these moments that family love and support is most needed. Whether it’s your parents, siblings, children, partner or relatives that are going through a rough patch, there are many ways you can show them you care.
With that in mind, here’s a couple of things you can do to ease the pain and help your family go through the hard times more easily.
Stick to your usual routine
When going through tough times, things may start to feel as if they’re out of your control. In those times when you are feeling powerless, keeping a routine can be an effective way to regain a sense of control.
From mealtimes to household chores to bedtimes, going about your days as you usually would can aid in maintaining a sense of security during hardships. That way, even when everything feels uncertain, you still get to be in control of how you and your loved ones spend your days which is something that is especially important for the little ones in the family.
Listen to them
You’d be amazed at how much you can help a person who’s going through a rough patch by simply listening to them. If someone in your family is facing challenges, don’t avoid them or ignore them, even if you’ve got nothing to say. Saying just a few kind words can be of immense help to someone who’s in a vulnerable position. Therefore, try to encourage interaction and communication as much as possible, allowing every member of the family to express themselves and be heard.
Keep in mind that the emphasis should be on listening and not talking too much. Try to avoid giving unsolicited advice or speaking from your personal experiences as you can come across as self-centered, making the whole situation about yourself when it should be about them. An empathetic ear is sometimes more than enough and offering one will go a long way in comforting the person who’s hurting.
Turn to experts for help
Offering an understanding heart and a listening ear can make a world of difference in aiding a person who’s going through difficult times. However, sometimes being supportive and empathetic to a family member just isn’t enough. Sometimes, helping a person who’s in a tough spot will require turning to professionals for help.
Whether it is a knowledgeable expert such as a therapist or an attorney, turning to a pro who is skilled in resolving crises can be a much more effective solution to a problem. For instance, if a family member has suffered injuries and needs help in settling their compensation claim, hiring an experienced compensation lawyer to represent them can be helpful in determining their eligibility for obtaining benefits. While you may not be able to help the person directly, you’ll be still providing support to them by finding the people who can.
Give them the gift of your time
Your time is the most precious gift you can give. Devoting some of your free time, even if it’s just an hour or so, to a family member going through hardships is invaluable, and it is sure to make them feel important and special.
Even in the times of quarantine and social distancing, you can still have some quality family time. Cheering up the little ones can be as simple as throwing a backyard movie night or finding the perfect gifts to surprise them with. For adults, it can mean cooking a delicious meal, running errands, or looking after the kids.
Help them out by staying positive
Sometimes, being there for your family will simply mean staying positive in less-than-ideal situations. While this may be easier said than done, looking at the bright side is an invaluable life skill that will help keep your spirits up even during the toughest of times.
Being negative, complaining, and arguing won’t be helping anyone and it’ll probably make the situation seem even more overwhelming and frustrating. Every situation has a silver lining, so try to make the most of each day that passes, taking it as it comes and not worrying too much. Focus on the good in your life and appreciate even the smallest things, finding joy in each moment you spend together.
Offer the support they need
People have different ways of dealing with an unpleasant situation. Some may need someone to vent and cry to. Some may want to talk it through but would rather you listen instead of trying to solve their problems for them. Some may even prefer to spend some time alone without relying on others and sharing too much. And then there are some who just want a company and a hug.
Always keep in mind the person you’re offering your help to. Not all people need the same type of support, so try to understand what they want from you first and then act accordingly.
When things get tough, our families can be an invaluable source of support. As the saying goes, ‘this, too, shall pass’, and all those negative feelings you are overwhelmed with now will go away eventually.
Remember that, even though the current situation may be less than stellar, you still have each other to lean on, and that is something that is truly priceless.