Wow, it’s been over a year since I last posted in this blog!
Well, the good news is that I am back and after a long year of therapy, I am in a better place. Anyone who knows me, knows I have been through the wringer the last couple of years. Therapy has helped me separate myself from the actions of others and to not carry blame or guilt that is not mine to carry. I have learned to distance myself from things and people who expect more from me than I have to give. I have learned that I don’t have to help everyone. It’s not my job! I can’t help someone who won’t help themselves…which brings me to the subject of this post.
I had been trying for a very long time to get a friend of mine to get some help for her depression, whether it be a medical doctor or a therapist. She always responded with, “You’re the only therapist I need,” and other such statements. I’m not a therapist. I can’t help her with her depression. I was going through my own bouts of depression. I could listen, sure. But after every conversation, I would be exhausted, totally wiped out. I often wondered if this was normal in a friendship. Deep down I knew it wasn’t, but she was my friend. What was I suppose to do? I fought with myself daily! I tried to tell her that I was going through some things that I couldn’t talk about. I told her many times that I was having a hard time myself and that I couldn’t handle her problems AND my own. It didn’t seem to sink in. It didn’t seem to matter. She would dump everything on me and it would suck every ounce of my energy! Don’t get me wrong, I KNOW she has every reason to be depressed. She’s been through some horrible events over the past few years. I feel for her. But I want her to get some help.
Therapy helped me to realize that it’s not my job to take care of her (or anyone else) and that if she’s not willing to help herself then what else can I do? I had to tell her. I tried my best to explain. I told her I couldn’t help her and she had to help herself. I told her I had to distance myself from her until she got help for her depression. That went over like a fart in Church.
Immediately, she went on the defensive. I expected that. I also understood. She was hurt. I knew that it would hurt her but I was taking care of ME, something that I had not done in many years. I always put myself on the back burner. Not anymore. I was done.
What I didn’t expect, was that she would take this to the extreme. She blocked me on Facebook and THEN called me a hypocrite for talking about her behind her back. (Who blocked whom and then started talking trash about the other? Not me.) She made up lies and told half-truths about me and my family. She showed her true colors. She doesn’t know that I know what she said, but since I DO know, we will never be friends again. How can she be trusted?
She said I was throwing away our friendship because she has a disease called depression. It’s not the depression itself; it’s her inability or unwillingness to get help. I didn’t throw away the friendship. I put it on the back burner, instead of my own needs…. for once. She threw away our friendship when she gave me a bashing on Facebook.
This friendship has weighed so heavily on me for years because I couldn’t help her. If I didn’t care so much, then none of this would have been an issue. I did what I had to do to protect myself and it was my last-ditch effort to get her to do something. I hoped that it would jolt her into realizing she needs to take care of herself. I guess it was wishful thinking…but it’s her issue, not mine.