Don’t forget to check on your strong friends.
We have some really bad times. You just never know about them until it’s too late.
The difference is, we worry you won’t love us anymore if you see we aren’t perfect, can’t handle it all on our own, or need to ask for help.
Even worse- we worry you won’t love us ever again if you’re the one helping us instead of the other way around.
* Don’t say “call if you need me,” we won’t. We never will. We’ll feel too guilty to bother you with our struggle.
* And if you call us and we don’t answer don’t take it personally, we’re doing our best to shield you from anything less than perfect. It’s because we love you. Leave a message without any guilt- say this “Hey, I love you, just wanted to chat. Call me back when you can.”
Better yet, send that statement verbatim in a text.
Don’t expect an answer.
Just knowing you reached out does wonders.
* When you do get us to talk dont talk about you. Period. Make us talk about us. Give us a safe space to be vulnerable and get it all out. We need it but we use talking about you as our distraction. Don’t let us do that.
* Don’t tell us how we should or shouldn’t feel- what we feel is what we feel, validate that and tell us were ok to feel it. Because we’re already giving ourselves hell over what we feel.
* Remind us that love is not given based on what we do or don’t do, it’s simply love and we all deserve it just for being here. Because we only feel worth loving when we’re doing something for someone else. But we have given all we can and we’re empty and hurting, and resentful, and wishing for love that feels like it’s always out of our reach.
* Don’t tell us “this to shall pass.” You will make us feel even more guilty for having a bad moment bc we’re “supposed to be strong enough to know that” but right now we don’t. We know it will pass, but your platitudes only hurt us.
* Don’t tell us we should take time for ourselves, the guilt with that statement is more than you can begin to understand. Instead help us take that time. Run our bath water, make our healthy dinner, bring us the coffee we need- do all the things for us that we would do for someone else in this situation. Because we can’t ask for them and we cannot give them to ourselves.
Being the strong one is harder than you know.
But you can love us through and you can show us the grace that we give so willingly to others in a time that we simply cannot give it to ourselves.
We need it.
And we need you, especially when we can’t ask.