Sometimes a friend or family member can find him or herself a shut-in. Sometimes the condition is a straightforward observable illness – the flu, a broken leg, hospital recovery. When the condition is not as discernible, your family member or friend still needs your time, attention, and sometimes, your help. Here are a few tips to make a friend in need a lasting friend in deed:

Make telephone calls periodically to see if she needs an errand run – to the store, or return library books. Visit to make sure she gets out of bed, if medically permissible, and open up the drapes and blinds to let the day, a little bit of hope, and the sunshine in.

Bring your friend or family member his favorite music, whether it is on a cd or a gift of an ipod. Make it to his house at least one evening during the week to look at television with him to share his favorite show. Don’t disappoint him. Ring the doorbell at the appointed time to make his day. Bring popcorn to share, along with funny or pertinent stories while you pop the corn, and if possible, assist your friend to the family room and go get pillows and blankets to make the visit especially pleasant for your friend. That is how you keep a friend, and build friendship capital for your own time of need.