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Friends show empathy with friends.

Friendship: Friends show empahty.

Friends

Friends Show Empathy with Friends. How to Grow a Friend: Step Six.

Joy Stevens

Friendship: Friends show empathy. Reciprocal confidences deepen any relationship. Ideally those confidences are received with empathy. Empathy is identifying with another’s feelings. It is seeing life through his/her eyes.

How can you communicate empathy?

  • Listen with empathy. Lean closer to your friend and frown, smile, or cry appropriately.
  • Touching your friend also shows empathy.
  • By your physical presence and/or the gift of your time. At times just sitting with someone communicates empathy.
  • By your body language and facial expressions.
  • By your words. Say directly, "That hurts me," or "I’m happy for you."
  • Paraphrasing often shows that you are in touch with your friend’s feelings.
  • Your tone of voice is as important as the words you use. A sad tone is slow and quiet. A happy tone is faster and louder.

If you felt certain of a caring, empathetic response to a confidence, you would rarely hesitate to confide. However, when you are not certain of the response, you may find yourself teetering on the brink of intimate disclosures:

"Should I risk saying this or not?"

"Should I reveal this part of myself?"

"Can I trust my friend not to use my disclosure to hurt me in the future?"

Additional information about friends and friendship.

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