Ask your friend or loved one open-ended questions, as they may not be able to directly answer, such as “How can I support you?” Open ended questions allow the other person the opportunity to elaborate on their answer beyond just a ‘Yes’ or ‘No’.

You may try:

“You seem upset today. I'm here to listen if you’d like to tell me about it.”

“I know you’ve been having a tough time. How have you been holding up?”

If you feel that the other person is experiencing challenges, but you do not know the depth of the challenge you might ask:

“What’s been happening in your life lately?”

“How have you been feeling?”