“If I had a flower for every time I thought of you…I could walk through my garden forever.” – Alfred Tennyson
I don’t need to say it again, the past year and a half has been a wild one. Take some time to check up on someone. Here are a handful of people that may need a chat or should be checked up on.
Someone that has been acting out of character
Whatever out of character may mean for them. This can be someone patient being snappy. A careful person being more reckless. An outgoing person staying in their room all day. It is important to check in and see if something has changed that you might be able to help with.
Someone that has gone quiet
I know I withdraw when I am overwhelmed, but I am blessed that I have friends that check up on me. Someone can be exhausted mentally and suffering but not have the energy or bravery to reach out. They may just need some space to recharge, or you might be their saving grace. Regardless showing that you care and are thinking of them is wonderful.
The one that is constantly checking up on others. They might look like they have their life together but are actually slightly falling apart on the insider. A helper typically has learned how to appear okay while they’re caring for others even if they’re struggling. Their needs matter too, even if they don’t think they do.
The person with big changes
Whether it is moving, a new job, change of relationship status, or anything else. Even if it is a good chance it can still be an alarming difference for someone and they might not be sure how to handle it. They can be unsettling and taxing on one’s mental health as they’re in the adjustment period. Showing support is crucial as someone is going through a change.
Someone with a low or distressed mood
They might have a wonderful life on the outside, nice house, family, job, etc. But this doesn’t mean that they aren’t struggling from a mental health issue. If anything at times it can lead to feeling more distressed because you realize that all of the good things can’t balance out the inner issues.
The ‘how are you?’ avoider
When you are good this question is easy to answer, but when you are bad it can feel like the weight of the world. Being honest and vulnerable when you answer this question is scary, and some ignore it at all costs or change the subject. If you have noticed someone doing this try to get them to be honest the next time you ask. See if there is something there to uncover or chat about.
Someone whose weight is fluctuating
This can be a rather personal situation but it is extremely important. When people are going through a stressful time or depressive episode they tend to either not eat at all and lose a bunch of weight. Or they stress eat and gain weight. The weight can shed off or come on in a short amount of time. In these times of fight or flight energy is such a precious time that people forget how to care for themselves.
Whenever you’re checking up on someone make sure they’re in a safe space. A space where they can be comfortable enough to be open with you. Do what you can do, and what you know how to do. If all you can offer is a shoulder to cry on or a hand to help stand up that is more than enough.