By Tracy McGinnis
Aside from crawling under the covers with your favorite pint of ice cream and waiting for the smoke to clear, the next best thing to getting through a major crisis is to call upon your closest friends and family to help you get through it all. But let’s face it, most of us don’t live within shouting distance of the ones we love, and if we do sometimes that army of help can leave us feeling more flustered than before we let them in on our latest meltdown.
We all have stories of the friend who offered to cook, and never returned those snappy Tupperware containers, or the mom who sent us on a scavenger hunt after cleaning our house by finding a better way to arrange our goods. Let’s not forget the friend who was standing outside the delivery room, and overstayed their welcome straight through our first breast feeding experience. Other friends may want to help, but stay away unsure of what to do. Their intentions are good, but they may not know the best way they can help, which is why sites like www.whatfriendsdo.com  can be just the right help you (and they) need.
The site is a tribute to Laura Crawley who was diagnosed with brain cancer. Laura’s friends quickly rallied around Crawley and her family, and through a “team” approach were able to play a small part in making a big difference by putting their skills and interests to work with the overall goal of supporting and helping their friend, and her family through a difficult time.
Visitors to WhatFriendsDo.com, can create a profile and set up a team to help loved ones get through all types of life transitions from new parents and new homeowners, to friends who live far way, to those that are grieving, serving in the military, hospitalized or like Laura, faced with a long-term illness. The site also offers tips and ideas on how you can help, what to avoid, and links to additional resources to better understand certain problems as well as motivation and support.
Whatever life has put in front of you, there is a way to gather those closest to you, and get through it together. So the next time your husband wants to be helpful by tackling the grocery list only to return with cocktail wieners, or that friend calls - listens to you vent for 60 seconds, and switches gears to fill you in on her latest vendetta against her boss, thank them for their help, and quickly let them know whose team they’re on.
Tracy McGinnis has published hundreds of articles on topics related to women's interests, most recently in Forbes and Pregnancy Magazine. She lives in North Carolina with her husband and two sons.