There is no written rule about how to support your people. What I mean by support is, how to be there for them when they need support. Strong people usually get used to handling their own business and they are turning to each other for most of the situations. Even though sometimes they need real support and going through some hard times, most likely they will have a very hard time opening up and talk about their hardships. They might give indications intentionally or unintentionally. For instance: They might be impatient a little bit, seem to be a little less energetic or just by looking at their eyes you might realize something inside is boiling. You will realize if you pay attention.
If you are trying to be supportive and be there for them, you really need to modify your supporting ways, to be giving what they need as a part of their support system and as a person who is a caring and protective person you need to realize what you need to give instead of what you want to give.
Here are some suggestions I think they just might work:
Keep it Simple. Ask them how are they doing? How are they holding up? just casually. They might come around and talk about what's really on their minds just like that. Sometimes a gentle tap is all they need to let themselves go. One of the advantageous things about strong people is, they can find answers on their own while they just talking and listening on their own. They might find their own answers and you just basically giving them the opportunity of expressing themselves and let them hearing out loud their own ideas. Even if they don’t find the answer, they might just open up to you and before you know it you get the opportunity of supporting them.
Reminder. While they are talking; if they sound down, keep zoning out, seem in doubt about something or struggling, remind them what they have made of, and remind them of their own strength. Give a few examples of some situations from past how they managed to overcome those. Let them stay woke about their strength and their ability to overcome hardships!
Got their Back. If they seem fine or seem like not in the mood of talking and issue, just let them know 1 thing which is You got their back and you are there for them whenever and wherever.
We all have our own strength and got toughened through time, experiences, and failures. Different stories and different battles. It's not always the same as how people need support. Usually mostly some patting and caring works.
But not with these stubborn bastards, God bless their hearts.
Be the shield to their off-hand when they are too busy with swinging their sword against their opponents.