How can I support my long distance best friend?

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send your friend a cookie

One of my best friends has been going through a tough time for a while now. A combination of relationship issues, anxiety and depression, and being a very young stay-at-home-mother to two preschoolers in a new city.

She also happens to live over 200 miles away.

So, Homies: how can I be a good, supportive long-distance friend at a time like this, when popping in to help for an evening isn’t possible?

What can I do? -A concerned friend

First our Assistant Editor and Copyeditor Caroline has some advice, then we’re kicking it over to you Homies for suggestions…

My best friend lives over 3000 miles away from me on the other side of the country. She was having a really shitty week, and it sucked not being around to take her out for a drink or bring her a snack or just generally be there in any way other than texts and IMs.

I considered sending a bouquet of flowers, but I didn’t feel like it would really fit. So I went to work to find a more apt alternative to cheer her up. I settled on baked goods, and I sent her a batch of cookies with that note you see up there.

What are you favorite options if you want to send some love to a faraway friend?

Comments on How can I support my long distance best friend?

  1. In line with sending frequent packages and being something for the kids… maybe think about subscribing her to something like Kiwi Crate. Fun activities for the kids that includes everything needed, targeted at certain ages.

    If she’s not having financial troubles (although with two kids I would be surprised if that weren’t the case), then maybe you could both sign up for something like Stitch Fix. You could open your packages together and try things on while skyping. It would be like shopping, without all the hassle!

  2. I just moved across state and then suddenly my dad died. I was completely alone with a toddler. Here’s my suggestion on what friends did wrong, unknowingly. They came for a visit and we went sight seeing. Although the time with them was wonderful, particularly the night of drinking, when they left my house was a disaster and I was three days behind on a to do list, and also exhausted. So come, see your friends, but offer to babysit while you’re in town. Take the kiddo to a park during business hours so mom can make some phone calls or get two hours to focus. Don’t expect her to cook and clean for you. You’re coming to help, not vacation. Offer to help with dishes or laundry. Vaccume or take out the trash. Take out or take and bake pizzas are seriously underrated in times of stress. One friend got me a starbucks card knowing I would have a big to do list and that helps tons. You can buy gift cards to grocery stores that work in the deli or healthier restaurants like chipotle. Infact, the friends who still checked in or sent cards a month later were a serious blessing. Sending anything at all that she views in person means so much more than something on a phone, though the text messages are nice. The in person cards feel less lonley. Send funny movies, new slippers, a face mask. Remind her you want her happy and taking care of herself. My far away friends all said they felt terrible not being there…but they have no idea that just answering the phone or sending cute things is what got me through. It doesn’t have to be a financial strain or very time consuming, just show you care.

  3. Ask her how you can support her, maybe throw out a few od these suggestions, but go with what she needs. I’d hate to get flowers, but love weekly phone dates,.especially when she’s okay and doesn’t guilt me when kiddo is hollering in the background and i have to go

  4. Hey my bff and I are on opposite ends of the country. We text and sunny funny messages or pictures when we can’t talk. We occasionally send gifts, when we can get our shit together enough. We are always no pressure, no matter what’s going on or how long its been, but we’re always there when it counts no matter what too. When she was going through a particularly tough time once, I sent her a box of sunshine – a box of yellow stuff I knew she’d like! Makes me want to send her something right now!

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