How to be a Friend in Need
A Friend in Need is a Friend Indeed.
When a close friend of yours is suddenly diagnosed with a condition, their life becomes a rocking boat. While they’re occupied and busy dealing with their health, they see, their long time friend, as a lighthouse in the dark. Below we listed some ideas that can help you be that source of strength and love for them. If you have any more suggestions, we would love to hear from you.
Write letters when you feel like you can’t speak
Sometimes you’ll have a lot of things you want to tell your friend, but you just won’t know how to say it right. Letters are the answer in times like these, since you can write and erase and rewrite again, until you get it right. Some letters are best presented on the same regular paper you wrote it on, because it shows how hard you’re trying. Other times you can buy or create a nice, colorful card that can make him/her smile when they see it. For inspiration and ideas read about Emily McDowell, a former patient who created cards with sentences she wished she’d received when she was sick. There are also things that are not recommended to tell your friends when they’re sick, we’re attaching a link to some of those too.
Offer real help
“Call if you need anything” isn’t offering concrete help since we all know no one really picks up such offers. Real offers sound like “I’m at the grocery store, what can I get you?” or “Can I pick your kids up from school today?” Initiatives like organizing the community to cook dinner meals for your friend and their family also count. You can offer your friend to be their “Medfriend” through Medisafe; In case he/she forgets to take their medication, Medisafe will notify you so you can save the day and remind them to take their meds (if you have any questions, take a look here).
Some patients prefer to keep doing what they did before they were diagnosed, without any help. Be sure that even in situations like these, all of your offers are still appreciated, so don’t take it personally. When your offers are consistent your friend gets the message you’re sending- that you are always there for them and never letting go.
Remember special days
Your friend may be so invested in stabilizing his/her health that they will forget special calendar days like anniversaries, birthdays or holidays. Sometimes they know it’s a special day, but they are just too swamped by their condition that they can’t not feel down. Here’s where you come in! It is your job to lighten your friends day, and there’s endless ways to do this! You can drop over a bouquet of flowers, or a dozen balloons. It’s the small things that bring smiles to anyones face, so even just picking up the phone and showing them you remembered will lift their spirits. There are so many ways to go with this one, so be creative!
Stay the friends you were before
Your friend may have a new condition, but he/she is still that same old friend with the same old likes, hobbies and obsessions. Their new health condition should deepen your relationship but it shouldn’t change it. Keep going to watch the same basketball team you both love, keep reminiscing high school crushes and keep those family BBQs you always loved arranging together. Your friends life didn’t stop, it just changed its course a bit.
That is our last advice. You won’t always have answers for them, you won’t always know what to say, but you don’t have to. Listening is showing that you are there with them, in that rocking boat. Being a friend means simply being there, through it all.
To your friend’s health
The Medisafe team