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Forums / Supporting family and friends with a mental health condition (carers) / Worried about longterm friend with signs of depression

Topic: Worried about longterm friend with signs of depression

5 posts, 0 answered
  1. Lou9233
    Lou9233 avatar
    2 posts
    15 July 2020

    Hi everyone, first time on the forums but am really struggling at the moment. I have a long term, best friend who has been showing signs of depression for a while now (where I have tried to support her and suggested ways to get help) and now she has completely cut me out of her life with zero contact. I myself struggle from anxiety so am finding it hard to know what to do next and constantly overthinking things. Should I continue to check in or take this as a sign to distance myself from this friendship because she is not wanting me to send her messages etc?

    Thanks.

  2. Sophie_M
    Community Moderator
    • Works for beyondblue moderating these forums
    Sophie_M avatar
    5917 posts
    15 July 2020 in reply to Lou9233
    Dear Lou9233, Thank you for your recent post to the beyondblue community forums and reaching out. Please feel free to contact us on  1300 22 4636 to have a chat about what you're going through whenever you need. Our community here are supportive and hopefully will be able to provide you with support that you find valuable.
  3. Aphador
    Valued Contributor
    • A special award for members who go above and beyond to support others here on the forums
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    Aphador avatar
    71 posts
    15 July 2020 in reply to Lou9233

    Hi Lou!

    This is a tough situation, I really feel for you :(.

    It's so hard to know what to do in situations like this, especially considering she is a long term best friend. Of course, the social signals she is putting out would make you feel like you should back away from the situation; however when dealing with depression, I think this is not the case.

    Even if people are depressed and unresponsive, it is still important to reach out to them. They may be going through things that they wish to deal with alone (for the moment), however knowing that there are people out there that are still wanting to support you means a lot (Especially in the long-term) :)

    Perhaps you can send her messages less frequently (like twice-week, whatever feels right), but I would not break contact completely. If she ever does feel like responding, be supportive rather than lecturing- listening to her, sympathise with her. You could mention getting help if the situation feels right, however due to (what sounds like) her stigma against seeking help, it might pay to be careful around this topic.

    Even if she doesn't respond, I would still recommend checking in. Try to understand that the world is currently different from her point of view- try not to let it get you down if she doesn't respond or responds negatively.

    Finally, I just want to check in with how you are feeling? Anxiety is difficult to manage in situations like these. If you want to talk about anything, you can do so here :)

    I hope this has been somewhat helpful. Hopefully some more people can drop in to offer support or their own experiences/opinions. Keep in touch, if you feel like it! :)

    Aphador :)

  4. Lou9233
    Lou9233 avatar
    2 posts
    16 July 2020 in reply to Aphador

    Thanks very much for your support and suggestions Alphador, it's been very helpful! I'm trying not to take it personally but my mind likes to play tricks on me at times like this - trying to keep myself busy to stop the overthinking.

    Thanks again for checking in :)

  5. InhaleExhale
    Student Mentor
    • Masters of Psychology student on placement
    InhaleExhale avatar
    54 posts
    16 July 2020 in reply to Lou9233

    Hi Lou9233,

    As Aphador said, this is such a tricky situation. I’m sorry that you are struggling at the moment due to your friend pushing you away and also experiencing your own anxiety at the same time.

    It’s possible that your friend is cutting off contact with you because she believes that nobody cares about her and is acting to fulfil this belief. It’s clear to us from your post that you do care about her deeply and wish to help her in anyway you can. I agree with Aphador that it is important for your friend that you continue to reach out to her because this tells her that you do care. Her cutting off contact likely has got nothing to do with your relationship with her and everything to do with her emotional state at this time. Is this the first time your friend has been through this, has anything been helpful previously?

    At this difficult time, it’s important that you take steps to look after yourself. This looks different for everybody. It might mean talking to another friend or family member about your concerns, doing activities you enjoy, exercising and taking regular breaks from worry if possible. I enjoy reading fantasy novels to get out of reality for a bit. Anxiety is a tricky beast. Is there something that you find that helps to reduce your symptoms?

    Let us know how you get on.

    InhaleExhale.

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