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how do I help a friend who is depressed?

(12 Posts)

MNHQ have commented on this thread.

ssd Thu 15-Jan-15 07:56:45

my friend may have depression, I'm not sure

I feel a bit powerless to help her, my gut feeling is she should leave her husband who is very emotionally distant to her, but I wouldn't tell her that as she wouldn't like it

any advise? she tried anti d's and gave up on them

she has kids and I feel she's passing on her feelings to her eldest and making her depressed to, she sort of lives through this dd

I dont find it easy to talk to her about this, I feel I can see reasons for a lot of the things wrong in her life but dont voice it to her, as I dont think thats the right thing to do

shes also been to counselling, didnt help her

ssd Thu 15-Jan-15 08:10:41

bump anyone?

ssd Thu 15-Jan-15 09:14:14

hoping to get more responses if this is moved to another topic

CuttedUpPear Thu 15-Jan-15 09:22:11

Keep in contact with her even though she may not seem to want or appreciate it. Be a constant, there for the good times as well as the bad.

Exercise may gave benefits for her so maybe you could arrange to go for an hour's walk twice a week together?

ssd Thu 15-Jan-15 09:23:53

thanks so much for replying, I'd almost gave up there!

she does walk but wants to go alone, and my shift pattern means I'm working most of the time she is free, but will bear this in mind

Lottapianos Thu 15-Jan-15 09:32:45

Agree with staying in touch. Send her a text every other day, not asking how she is (can feel like a lot of pressure), but with a bit of chit chat or a suggestion to meet up. The loneliness is hell when you're depressed and you can feel like everyone has forgotten you.

You may well be right that her husband's behaviour is the cause of how she is feeling. However it doesn't sound like she's in any position to think or talk about it. Her relationship with her eldest child sounds very worrying indeed. Your friend sounds very 'stuck' where she is right now which is very frustrating for you but sadly I think that all you can do right now is be around and ready to listen.

3BloodyKids Thu 15-Jan-15 09:36:36

if you start off by thinking about the things that can help depression (assuming she does have depression):

talking therapies or self-help CBT
anti-depressants - and there are lots of different ones to try, many people try three, four or five before they find the right one
adequate nutrition
exercise - doing it whether you want to or not
regular routine (getting out of bed every day for some people)
doing activities for pleasure and a sense of achievement - social, leisure and hobbies
doing stuff that brings you closer to people - again, even if you don't feel like doing it at the time

So, most of that she has to make a decision about herself, which would require her having some insight and motivation to change something. The bit that you can help with then might be the bits around doing stuff she enjoys - encouraging her to get out, do things and see people she likes and as pp said, being there, being constant.

But also, what's that quote? before you diagnose yourself with depression, make sure you're not just surrounded by bastards

DawnMumsnet (MNHQ) Thu 15-Jan-15 10:28:24

Hi all,

We're moving this thread to our Mental Health topic, at the OP's request.

Ardha Thu 15-Jan-15 13:21:23

You cannot truly know what her marriage is like.
What you can do is be there, there to hear whatever she says. I agree with regular messages, not about how she is but just stuff. Stuff is safe, but it means that someone has her in mind enough to make the effort to contact her, which means she is not alone, that she does matter and believe me, that is important.
Hope that helps,

Aridane Thu 15-Jan-15 13:39:19

Be there for her - but don't 'force' her into doing things / meeting up. When deeply depressed, a good friend wanted to meet up - and was a good enough friend to accept it when I told her I was depressed (difficult for me to admit to that...) and that I wasn't up to it.

Worth her going back to GP to try a different anti depressant?

NanaNina Thu 15-Jan-15 15:21:30

You could have a look at the MIND website to get a better understanding of depression.

JoanHickson Thu 15-Jan-15 15:31:19

I gather it's well accepted in medical circles that AD do not work for everyone. I heard on The Wright stuff today the same is true of counselling, so your friend may not get better by those methods.

The ideas of texting and joining her for the occasional walk sound good.

A change is as good as a rest have you considered asking her and the dc come for a few days away?

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