I have never made my lack of emotional support as a child an issue because I was self-sufficient, I got by. But it’s because of the lack of support that I know how important it is to have and be a support.
Providing support and being supportive is important. Being a support doesn’t mean we should try and fix other people’s problems. We just need to be a good listener and have a caring manner. We also need to make sure we don’t judge, even if we don’t agree with what someone else says.
Although support is a fundamental need, it becomes much harder to maintain when one person is dealing with physical or emotional issues and the other needs to understand and act as a support.
How we choose to support is the backbone to all good relationships.
My suggestions below may also help:
- Take an interest but try not to criticise;
- Listen to hear, not just to answer;
- Don’t make your opinion bigger than the person you’re trying to help;
- Be conciliatory even if you don’t agree;
- It’s not for you to decide what others should do, they must make their own decisions;
- Body language is important. Be careful not to show how you feel, even if you don’t agree;
- Give the other person his or her own space, you don’t need to know everything.
Relationships cannot survive well without good support being in place. But to have that we must first be able to listen.
Support should always be given in a caring and nurturing way, so that that the other person doesn’t feel compromised.