Sunday, May 21, 2006

How not to help a friend who is depressed

I have a friend who is very dear to me. And he is going through a rough patch, and he is feeling down, and he has his good moments and his bad moments. I've tried knocking him out of his blues by attempting to awaken him to his senses, to the beauty of his surroundings. I've given him a book on meditation, The Calm Technique, a very clear, non-mystical book that makes mediative practice very accessible. I've sent cards, sent him puns via SMS, told him I love him and he is not alone. I don't know what else to do. I guess I don't understand depression--I don't really feel it, I suppose, because whenever I feel down, I just open myself to the beauty around me, and the cloud passes.

I suppose, where I am going with this, is that perhaps being a sensualist handicaps my abiltity to empathize with friends who are depressed.

I think I turned one of my friend's bad moments into a 'worse moment'. It makes me sad. I am feeling sorry for myself, my failure as a friend. I recognize it as a very selfish, self-absorbed thing, making this about me, instead of him. I should be feeling sad for him, and I am, but I am also feeling helpless, and that makes me a bit angry. I'm not very good at doing helpless... except in bed, and only if it is sexy ;)

[23:18] Amicus: I'm having a bad evening..I'd rather wait to discuss this when I'm in a better mood.
[23:19] Kayar: Which means it will never be discussed, which is quite alright. All you have to do is say you do not want to discuss it again, Amicus. That is what 'wait to discuss later', really means.
[23:19] Amicus: why can't you just take me at my word sometimes?
[23:21] Kayar: Because I have learned that you mean well, you have the best intentions, but don't follow through with what you say you will do. Other things, other sexier or more pressing things, come up, and such things are buried.
[23:23] Kayar: Its ok, Amicus. Its not a bad thing, its how you are. And I love you just as you are.
[23:24] Kayar: You can pick this conversatoin up again, if you want to. But I have no expectations of that occurring. Ever.
[23:25] Amicus: Guess I should be glad you set your expectations so low
[23:25] Amicus: Especially after I specifically said today that I wanted to talk about things (or was it yesterday)
[23:25] Kayar: There is expectation, and there is acceptance. The former gets in the way of the latter.
[23:26] Kayar: You said you did. And then you didn't. And that is ok. *shrug*
[23:26] Kayar: When you really want to, you will.
[23:26] Amicus: umm, you were afk at the time I sent the messages ;)
[23:26] Amicus: and then I had to turn off my computer to deal with getting the computer done
[23:26] Kayar: And I am always just a phone call away. A promise I made, that if you called or messaged and really needed to talk, I would drop everything to be there for you.
[23:28] Amicus: I guess that's just it
[23:28] Amicus: I'm just completely trying to avoid it
[23:29] Kayar: I have no desire to influence you to do something you do not want.
[23:29] Kayar: I did it once, somehow, to our mutual regret.
[23:30] Kayar: Obviously, you need to talk to someone, and obviously, I am not that someone.
[23:30] Amicus: I knew I should have logged off when I said I was
[23:30] Amicus: Because this discussion is just getting me more and more frustrated
[23:31] Amicus: So goodnight.

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Anonymous MithrilStorm said...

I suppose a hard thing to know is when a person is hurting and wants to talk from when a person is hurting and doesn't want to talk. More often than not, they both say they 'are ok' or put off the discussion til 'later' which never seems to come. Unfortunatly, it is incredibly difficult to determine which is which.

7:45 AM, May 22, 2006  

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