How To Be There For Your Friend Who's Having A Hard Time Over The Holidays

Photographed by Natalia Mantini.
For many of us, the holidays are a time of joy. A lot of us are gearing up to head home for some much-needed time off with our families and old friends.
But some people may not be as fortunate — whether you're struggling with illness or loss, or you aren't going home for the holidays for whatever reason, not all of us are looking forward to the supposed cheer.
If someone in your life is facing some hardships this holiday season, however, there's plenty that you can do to help support them.
Sheryl Sandberg's foundation, OptionB.Org, has come up with a handy list of ways you can be there for a friend during the season, and beyond.
"One of the most important things you can do for someone who is struggling is to simply acknowledge their pain and be there for them," Sandberg said in a statement.
The foundation has launched #OptionBThere, an initiative aimed at helping those for whom the holidays can be challenging.
Being there for someone can be as simple as sending a nice card, or sitting with someone even when they don't feel like talking. If you're the type to go big or go home, you can also host a dinner for those who may not be spending the holidays with their loved ones. Either way, as cliché as it sounds, it's the thought that counts.
"#OptionBThere is rooted in the power of people helping people," Rachel Thomas, president of OptionB.Org, said in a statement. "We want everyone to know how to support friends and family members who need it, and we want to change the way we all think and talk about adversity. The more comfortable we are addressing life's challenges head-on — and doing it together — the more quickly we'll find the strength to move forward."
For more thoughtful ideas for making someone's holiday a little more joyful, head to Option B's website.
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