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  1. Remember you are not alone. Sometimes it can feel like everyone else is going out and enjoying pre-covid activities, and it can increase how isolated you feel. Read our stories of shielding to hear from other siblings in similar situations
  2. Get some daylight every day. If you are able to go for a short walk in a park when it’s quiet this will help. But even opening a window and breathing in the cold air for ten seconds will make a difference
  3. Join an online sibling support group and meet others who understand what sibling life is like
  4. Prioritise exercise. It’s normal for exercise routines to slip over the winter (don’t say ‘what exercise routine??’) but you have needs too and exercise is great mood boost. Be creative. What haven’t you tried yet?
  5. Help friends and employers understand. Share Sibs page The impact of Covid-19 on adult siblings to help non-siblings in your life understand a little more about how the pandemic has impacted siblings
  6. Focus on what’s within your control. Many siblings feel very protective of their brother/sister and want to eliminate all level of risk. But this is impossible and attempting it will leave you frustrated. Stay focused on what you can control – your own actions.
  7. Access psychological support if you need it. Siblings can be quick to support their brother or sister with appointments, but might delay booking their own, saying their own needs “aren’t as bad”. If this is you, and you need to talk to someone, read our advice on How to find a counsellor.
  8. Remember that you are doing your best! Many siblings are perfectionists and can be really hard on themselves when they don’t live up to their own high standards. But we are all human, and we cannot be ‘perfect’ 100% of the time. You’ve been through (and are still going through) an incredibly tough time. Be self-compassionate and talk to yourself like you would a good friend.

I need urgent help

You are not alone – reach out for support:

  • To talk about anything that is troubling you, call Samaritans on 116 123 any time of day or night or email jo@samaritans.org
  • Prefer to text? Use the ‘Give us a shout’ text service. Text ‘Shout’ to 85258 to talk about your feelings, at any time of day or night
  • CALM (for men). Phone line 0800 58 58 58, open 5pm – midnight. Webchat service here

 

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