Lift the Mask: Helping Others

A family member of mine recently made the difficult steps of getting help, and is taking the steps to get mentally healthy. As part of their journey, my wife and I have been an integral piece of their support system. This hasn’t been an easy journey for us, but it’s one we have not once complained about because we know it’s not about us, and it’s for the greater good that we be there.

What has helping this family member meant? Well, when I got a text last week in the middle of the work day asking if I wanted to meet at the gym to workout it meant I moved some things around in my schedule and went for a grueling workout. I went because I’m not the one this person usually reaches out to as a workout partner. For them to reach out for this purpose, I knew it wasn’t so much about the workout as it was the conversation while we worked out.

Helping somebody also means taking phone calls or text at all hours of the day/night, hearing possibly uncomfortable truths, and having your advice most likely ignored.

Sounds like fun doesn’t it? It might not be fun, but it’s important, and the person you are there for appreciates it more than you realize whether they say it or not. Chances are if you aren’t there for them, they keep their struggles to themselves, and possibly spiral deeper into darkness.

Those who need help won’t always reach out to you and ask for it. Many times they only start talking when approached, and they realize your offers to listen are genuine – that they won’t be judged or made to feel worse than they already feel. I’ve also learned that if things are pretty heavy, it’s important for you too to have somebody to rely on as you help somebody in a possible serious situation.

Being there for somebody isn’t always easy, and is sometimes uncomfortable and emotionally draining, but that person needs you. If they are in need, be there for them, the same way you hope they or someone else would be there for you if you needed the help.

Categories: Lift the Mask

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