Most people, sometime during their life will have a friend who needs to go into a hospital for some time due to an illness or other problem. Seeing a friend in a hospital bed can be a difficult experience. It is not always clear how to support a sick friend, or make that person feel included. Several ideas will help anyone to support a sick friend during their recovery.
Some people who spend time talking to a friend in the hospital will stop interacting normally. There might be an increased focus on the illness, or long conversations about everything negative happening. It is important to interact normally with loved ones in the hospital. This means talking about lighthearted topics, or the things that would typically be discussed during the day. This will help to keep the friend engaged and connected to the world outside the hospital.
Take Care of Responsibilities outside the Hospital
Making a friend feel supported often means taking the time to handle responsibilities outside of the hospital. Responsibilities at a job, or at home will continue to accumulate while the friend is recovering. It is very helpful to offer to take care of some of these tasks in order to relieve stress. This could mean watering houseplants, mowing a lawn, or even bringing in personal items from home.
Bring Small Reminders of Support
Loves ones in the hospital will spend long hours alone when visitors are not allowed. These moments are the times when it helps to have small reminders of the support of friends and family. Even small reminders like custom pins from PinPros.com showing support for more research on their disease, or funny phrases can make all the difference when alone in a hospital room. These types of small reminders help to keep things in perspective, even while recovering in a hospital bed.
Plan Something Fun
Spending days in a hospital can become very tedious for a sick friend. One way to make the days go faster is to plan something fun. This provides something for everyone to look forward to during the next visit. The fun thing could be playing a board game, showing a movie on a laptop, or bringing in a special guest. This change of pace will help with recovery, and will keep a sick friend mentally active.
Listen and Pay Attention
An essential way to show support for a sick friend in the hospital, is to listen and pay attention to what is being said. Recovering from an illness or a surgery can be difficult. A sick friend might want to simply talk about the experience, or other thoughts without being interrupted. Listening means understanding everything that is said without passing judgment, or attempting to argue minor points. Just listening attentively can help a sick friend to feel supported.
Supporting a sick friend in a hospital requires some restraint as well. Recovery after a major medical event can make a person weaker than normal. It is important to judge when there might be too many visitors, or when visits are becoming too taxing. Supporting a sick friend sometimes means allowing that person quiet time to recover between visits.