Don’t ask, just lean in

When kiddo was in kinder, she was afraid of getting lunch from the cafe. We did a lot of dry runs but she was still a bit afraid. There were days when she would not eat lunch and got home grumpy. How did I know? Because most days when she got home she would just sit and watch TV until hw time. On days when she was hungry, she would yell at me for something I had forgotten to do. I slowly but surely recognized this pattern and knew that when she started pointing character flaws in me (tut-tut), I should just give her a morsel of food and all would be well and I would go back to being the best mommy in the world. I just knew what I needed to do for her at that moment and did it.

There are many of us who have family or friends with mental health problems. My suggestion is for us to recognize the cry for help (anxiety, anger outburst, withdrawal etc) and do what needs to be done instead of asking them if they are ready to accept our help. I was reading an article where the girlfriend was dealing with acute mood swings and was bursting out of the house to get some space. The guy friend was asking her “Do you want me to help you? Tell me, do you want me to help you?” I don’t know what happened after that because I got pretty annoyed. If the guy knows that she is having an episode, he should just go with her and not let her be alone. Just do what needs to be done instead of asking someone who is terribly upset to make a rational decision.

Anyway, my 2 cents. This thought should be applied in conjunction with your gut feeling.

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