Ask Amy: Distressed friend needs to ‘Keep Moving’
Dear Amy: I have a friend who is going through a really rough patch in her life; she's facing possible divorce.
She's in individual therapy and marriage counseling, but she's experiencing sadness and mental anguish over her situation. She’s worried about the future.
She claims she's not suffering from depression, but I'm wondering.
I'm trying to be supportive and understanding; I listen to her, try not to give advice, and remind her that she has friends and family who love her and will stand by her no matter what.
I try and remind her of the joys in life and encourage her to take a mental break now and then. I also offer to hang out with her, but she almost always declines.
Is there anything else I can do to support her through this dark patch in her life?
– Worried Friend
Dear Worried: You sound like a really good, constant and consistent friend. Your presence in her life – even in the background – will help to give her strength.
You might ask if she wants to talk about her experience with (individual) therapy. Describing aloud some of the coaching she has received might help her to continue to make positive connections and add insight.
You have spent a lot of time listening, but you could also occasionally ask her to help you with something. Working on a project together might help her to get out of her head for a bit.