Social support has been defined as information from others that one is loved and cared for, esteemed and valued, and part of a network of communication and mutual obligation from parents, a spouse or lover, other relatives, friends, social and community contacts
(such as clubs), (Rietschlin, 1998), or even a devoted pet (Siegel, 1993)
Rieschelin, J. 1998. Voluntary association membership and psychological distress. Journal of Health and Social Science Behavior, 39, 348-355.
Sielgel, J. M. 1993. Companion animals: In sickness and in health. Journal of Social Isuues, 49, 157-167.