When going through any kind of health issue, people can always benefit from the support of those around them. Even those that don’t like to show it will still appreciate some additional care and attention. And in many cases, there’s more that you can do than you might assume. So, don’t be afraid to go out of your way to extend a helping hand to someone who’s going through something challenging.
Eating problems fit perfectly well into this category. They can be difficult to get through, even for more minor issues, so offering your support is a great way to help someone through this situation.
Make It Clear You’re There For Them
The most important thing you can do is to make it clear to the other person that you’re available and willing to help or at least listen. Don’t try to intrude too much on them and give them their space when they need it. But at the same time, make it as obvious as you can that you’re willing to go the extra mile to provide any kind of support they need.
Offer Some Supplies That Can Improve Their Situation
Eating problems can often be alleviated with the right supplies. Make it a habit to carry some of those around if you interact with the person on a daily basis. It doesn’t have to be anything too complicated. Something as simple as a few packets of SimplyThick Easy Mix to help make swallowing a less unpleasant experience can go a long way.
If you’re not sure what to bring, just talk to the person and ask them if they have any specific preferences or if they feel like something’s missing from their daily balance. Sometimes the answer is simpler than you’d expect.
Don’t Assume Too Much
As we mentioned earlier, you should do your best to avoid overstepping your boundaries. Don’t make any assumptions about what the other person is going through. Try to listen as much as possible. If they have anything specific that they need to share, they’ll make it clear in those conversations.
Beyond that, you should just assume a passive supporting role. Once the person is ready to open up a little more, they will let you know. Until then, observe the situation patiently and watch out for opportunities to jump in and help out with something where your help is clearly warranted. Drawing a clear line will make things easier for both of you and will help you avoid making the situation too awkward.
Also, remember that this can last a while. You need to have a lot of patience – even more than the person who’s actually going through these problems. Don’t be pushy and don’t try to pry for information that wasn’t shared voluntarily. It might take you a while to get adjusted to this situation yourself, but it will be worth the effort in the long term. This is the kind of experience that can really help strengthen the bond between two people down the road.