Friends are for life and they come through for us in our best and worst times. However, over the years, it seems like the support becomes one-sided especially when one starts a family. Then, they become the friend or sibling that organizes bridal showers, buys expensive baby shower gifts, and run errands for you while you move on with your life. There’s nothing wrong with involving your friends in all your major milestones. However, you should also understand that your friends (and siblings) also need your support as well even if they don’t have children or get married. Here are some ways you can show support to your single friends and siblings throughout the years.
- Take Time To Go Visit Them
Remember when you used to hang out with your friends as a group? That doesn’t have to change regardless of the life changes you’re going through. It may be difficult to find time to go on brunch dates or road trips. So, make a point to visit them at their homes and spend time with them. This will be good for your relationship but it also reaffirms that they are important to you. Don’t be that friend or sibling who is always inviting single people to your house but never takes the time to also return the favour.
Always remember that when you go visiting it is good manners to carry something for the person you are visiting. So do some shopping for them as you go to visit them.
- Avoid Talking About Relationships
When chatting with your single friends, try not to bring up your relationship status or theirs. One of the reasons many friends drift apart once one of them gets into a serious relationship is that they make their life revolve around the relationship. No one wants to constantly hear about someone else’s husband, wife, or kids. Additionally, asking them if they’ve met someone can be annoying and at times, hurtful since it’s a reminder of their single status.
- Check On Their Mental Health
Being single, especially during a pandemic, can take a huge toll on your mental wellbeing. The best support you can offer your single friends is your presence. Check-in on them regularly and let them know that they’re not alone. Ask how their day or week has been and make plans to meet with them regularly.
Whether single or married, we all need support. When you are living with other people it might be easier to spot loneliness or depression. This might not be so easy to spot when somebody lives alone which is why it is important to check on your single friends or siblings to find out if they are ok. Here are 7 Ways You Can Help A Friend Going Through Depression
- Avoid PDA When You’re Around Them
It’s okay to be affectionate with your significant other around your single friends. However, make sure you don’t cross the line that makes them feel uncomfortable. If you notice that they look away or make excuses to leave when you become touchy with your partner, it could be that they’re not comfortable. This might also send the wrong message that they’re invading your privacy. Try to keep things neutral until they’re used to hanging out with you and your partner.
- Hook Them Up
They may not openly admit it, but your single friends get lonely and sometimes feel like they’re missing out on something. You can show them support by setting them up on a date. Additionally, you’re likely to get a good match for them since you know their preferences. Make sure you check in with them before setting them up on a date to confirm if they’re okay with it. You can also host your single friends and turn it into a mingle.
Please note that some of your friends are happily single and are not looking for a hookup of any kind. Please find out what their preferences are and if they have chosen to remain single for a season or a lifetime please respect that. Not everybody wants to be in a relationship and you need to respect their needs.
- Don’t Assume They Have More Time Or Money To Spend
Your single friends have a life as well. They just have different priorities. In fact, they may be busier than you realize since apart from managing their careers, they also have to keep an active social life to beat the boredom of single life. Therefore, before you call in that last-minute favour, be considerate of their personal time.
Just the way you have your own plans so do your single friends. If you need them to do something for you whether it is babysitting or being in your wedding committee make sure you ask in advance if they would like to help you out. Don’t assume that they are ready to drop everything else to help you. Your wedding is not our wedding – why your Cinderella wedding is driving your friends mad
Same thing with money. Just because they are single doesn’t mean they just have money lying around to do things for you. Single people also have their own financial plans, just because they are not married or don’t have children doesn’t mean they have money lying around to spend on weddings or give out as loans.
- Encourage Their Dreams
Being single is a choice for many people who have prioritized other things in their life such as a career or accomplishing their bucket list. You can ask about their dreams and goals instead of asking them when they’re getting married or having children. Support those dreams and show up for them when they need you.
By the way, don’t be that friend who is always making comments about your friends or family members being single. If they are happily single let them be. Check out this story on how it feels to be Single Over The Holidays.
Article by Faith Wambui and Rayhab Gachango