Over time things change- from our relationship dynamic, physical appearance, interactions with others, and individual growth. Although all transitions are not bad, they can sometimes be difficult to manage. How can you support your partner when they become distant due to the stress of life challenges? Be HOPEFUL that you will make it through it together.
- HELP them by being supportive NOT trying to fix it
- OPEN-MINDED- be open to their perspective
- PURPOSE- help them find purpose In the midst of tough situations- think positive and look for alternatives
- EMPATHY- Be empathetic toward their emotional state
- FEEL COMPASSION – Feel compassion for their struggle- offer help but only give it when asked
- UNDERSTAND that they may not know what or how they feel in the moment
- LISTEN to them by validating what they feel and showing your unconditional love and support
And know that giving support to them may look a little different than someone giving support to you. What you need may not be what they need. Learn to show love the way they need it- NOT how you think they need it. ASK them how you can support them. And if they don’t know, give them space to figure it out. LISTEN to them- it may give you clues as to what they need.
Know that transition can lead to our partner:
- Pulling away or even isolating themselves to figure things out.
- Asking for more of our time, attention or affection to feel affirmed.
- Becoming depressed or anxious
- Feeling the need to make drastic changes in their life
Regardless of their response to the life changing experience, be there for them through the process. They may reject your support at first- just know that they are hurting and they don’t know how to respond. If you love each other- you can get through it. Let them know that you are there whenever they need you- don’t push the issue.