“There are only four words that mean so much more than I love you, and those four words are I’m here for you.”
When a loved one is hurting, it’s a perfectly natural feeling to want to make their troubles go away.
It’s natural to want to be their knight in shining armor and “save” them from their obstacles.
But that’s not always the best solution.
Sometimes all a person needs or wants is a reassurance that you’re there for them.
They don’t want advice or solutions unless they ask.
They want to know that should they look back and need you, you’re there.
In some ways, it’s like teaching your child to ride a bike. At some point, you let go of their handlebars but are always watching till they learn.
When I was first diagnosed with depression, my counselor advised me to let those around me know that if I’m ever crying or feeling down, don’t try to cheer me up by turning on a comedic movie or a sitcom. He said it would be better to just let me be.
It’s a thin line and no doubt, difficult to assess at times.
In extreme cases, like if a person’s suicidal, just an assurance is not enough. Action needs to be taken promptly.
But in other cases? Sometimes just saying the words “I’m here and I’m listening” can go a long way.