Archives for Friends and Social Support
"I'm afraid I'll say the wrong thing." Have you ever thought this before you call a friend who has just lost someone to death? I'm pretty sure most of us have. Especially if you haven't experienced grief yet, it can be awkward and nerve-wracking trying to say the "right thing" and steer clear of something that will make the person feel worse. However, many times the very things we think will comfort the person only end up hurting them. Let's look at some ways you can help your friend start the slow bounce back from grief.
It’s hard to bounce back by yourself. If you look into the research about resiliency, inevitably you’ll find that social support and community are among the factors that help people learn to recover – and even thrive – through the worst of circumstances. There are many aspects to the idea of social support but I’m just going to discuss four key components here. Utilizing any or all of these elements will help you bounce back more easily and in good company.
Resilience: The Beginning Emmy Werner and Ruth Smith sifted through the mounds of data from their longitudinal study and noticed something peculiar. Of the children born on Kauai in 1955, there were a group of them that were at high risk for doing poorly as they grew older. It wasn’t this group that caught the attention of the researchers, though. It was a subset of this group. The subset, about thirty-percent of the high-risk kids, was doing well. Really well. They checked the data again. Yes, all of the high-risk children were facing the same types of adversity: parental issues including low education, behavioral health issues, and discord; health problems; poverty. And yet some of the children did very well while others did not. Why?