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How hard should I push my depressed friend to see me?(9 Posts)
Looking for honest advice here; sorry the title sounded harsh, was trying to explain topic in a nutshell.
My friend has suffered from depression for years, and it goes in cycles. She was a professional in London, but now lives at home with her parents in a small town. She has other health issues as well and is on a lot of medication. She sometimes doesn't contact me for long periods and often cancels plans we've made; very, very often. I understand this and am always there for her when she "comes back"
She hasn't been able to face coming to visit me for some time, in fact hasn't left her local town for months. She generally doesn't want me to come to her, because it makes her feel anxious; will I have a nice time, etc; will her parents be OK with it...but recently I said that she needed to see someone other than her parents and that I would be glad to visit even if she's not up to anything, just to see her for a couple of hours, and booked train tickets.
Visit was supposed to be tomorrow, she has just texted to say that she's having a terrible reaction to her meds and not to come.
My question is, should I just go anyway? I don't care if she's in a terrible mood and can't speak. I'm concerned for her, and think that it's better for her to have the distraction of my visit. I'm at the point where I think that she doesn't know what's good for her, but I also know that that seems like I am disrespecting her and her wishes.
I need to text her back and am not sure what to say. I honestly just want to do what's best for her.
Thanks for any advice
When I am at my worse I don't want to see anyone. I just want to sit in a dark room with a big heavy blanket.
What I would do is contact her parent to arrange to visit as a surprise. Then she will not have the build up of anxiety.
It has taken all my energy some days to battle through.
Like tonight I have plans to go out, childcare all sorted as is the dc. I want to cancel.
You could text her what you put - that you don't care about the mood you just want to see your friend. Or that you understand and will still be here when she's ready. I had a time when a friend turned up anyway and it ended up making me feel much better - just knowing someone cared enough. Maybe even pop round and say you're not stopping but here's some chocolates and a hug?
If you really want to see her you could text back ok then turn up on the doorstep anyway. Just so long as you accept you might only get the door slammed in your face. Hopefully once you're there in front of her it will be ok though.
Oh goodness, how difficult. I wouldn't go with the intention of turning up at her door but do text her tomorrow perhaps just to check. Just go to hang out in the town maybe and text to say you're in her neck of the woods and is she really sure she couldn't do with half an hour watching a TV show with you.
Think Piper's idea of a surprise is very good and insightful.
All I can say is that you sound like a lovely person and a good friend.
I'd love to know that if I got in a bad way I'd have a friend like you. I'd like to think you'd just come and see me without judging. I'm not her though, so who knows?
My experience of depression was that I did want to see certain people. After days of being shut away by myself. It was the kick up the butt I needed. But that's me!
oh and may I just say, if this isn't too patronising, that you sound like a bloody brilliant friend, very caring. Hope you're coping as well- must be hard seeing her go through that.
Thanks for all this advice. Can't exactly turn up on doorstep as she is 3 hours away from me. You are all right though: just turning up is better as she then doesn't have to feel "prepared" for me, or think about me coming. Should have hired a car rather than bought train tix, as train means that I need her to pick me up from station, or her mum.
I texted and said more or less that: I just want to see you and it doesn't matter if we don't even talk, but she still said don't come. She doesn't want me to see her at her worst: I think she doesn't trust that people will still be friends with her if they see her crying/ranting, but we will. She's afraid to be her true self with people, which makes her life very exhausting.
I do think that if I did turn up unannounced that it would be OK and as another poster said, it's the anticipation that makes her anxious. I understand this -I have it myself. We did talk frankly about this when I arranged the visit, but things have obviously gone downhill from there.
She is at her parents, as of course they can support her financially and she doesn't have to pay rent, but it is not the best place for her, as some of her problems historically have been connected to her parents.
I will drive over with another friend one day soon and we will try to insist on seeing her, and we won't say we're coming til the morning of.
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