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How can I be a better friend to her?

(4 Posts)
toooldforpigtails Fri 07-Apr-17 07:33:43

Not sure how to tackle this. I have a friend I met when I moved to the area. She can be lovely, we have some interests in common despite being in different places in our lives and we have always got on.

She had a minor breakdown a few years back and had CBT and is on antidepressants. She lives alone and works from home a lot. So I try and spend time with her when I can.

I'm finding it hard to spend time with her, as she seems to thrive on talking about negative things - either things that are bugging her now or going back to relive old incidents. She's drifted apart from our mutual friends and doesn't want to meet up with them. I end up getting drawn into being negative when I'm with her and I find it really draining.

I think her current situation is not working for her - she had been fixated on buying her own place as a way to help her, but now she's moved, she's now unhappy with her new neighbours and is clearly still low.

Does anyone have any tips to help support her better? I want to help, but I'm finding it hard work to not just get into conversations about bad things in her life and bad things that have happened to other people she knows

NolongerAnxiousCarer Fri 07-Apr-17 19:13:33

Hi,

You sound like a lovely friend. Supporting someone with their mental health can be exhausting. Ultimately you need to put your own needs first and if this means putting some distance between you or limiting your visits you might have to consider this. Would you feel comfortable suggesting she sees her GP for a review if you feel that she is depressed? Is this something you could talk honestly with her about?

Another thing you could do when she is talking negatively is to just ask her what you can do to help. What does she feel would improve things?

toooldforpigtails Sat 08-Apr-17 07:07:23

Thanks for replying - I'm not sure how she would react if I suggested seeing her GP. I think by nature, she is a glass half empty person and she's always liked a good moan and brood over things. I might try the tactic about asking her how to overcome the negative things in her life.

Wantingtomoveon Sat 08-Apr-17 19:58:09

Wow. You sound like such a great friend. Few and far between you friends are! If you were my friend, reassurance about things is always good albeit exhausting. Also when she says something negative spin it into a positive somehow. Maybe in a concerned friend kind of way you could suggest to her that she often seems down or negative and tote concerned, is there any way you can help x

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