I am concerned my friend is depressed

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Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 51
   Posted 6/29/2008 1:05 AM (GMT -6)   

I have been reading a few of the posts on here regarding depression and how to deal with it. Let me first say that all who are on here helping others are truly saints, and please keep up the good work. Now to business.

I have reason to believe that my friend, Erika, is depressed. She has never had a real easy life. Her parents have been divorced since she was 4, her hair color is naturally white (which I think is very unique and cool but she thinks it is hideous). Her father has schizophrenia and is now off his medication. Her mother, before she kicked Erika out of the house at 17, would beat her constantly. Recently, she spent the night at my house after her cousin (whom she was living with) kicked her out. I later found out that she was sexually intimate with her cousin and romantically involved. Why she got kicked out is a longer story, and I'm in no mood to post it.

I have asked my girlfriend and closest friends to help me support and just be good people to Erika, but they always make excuses..."i am too busy, i don't have her number, she gets what she deserves, etc..." So, I hate to say it, but it looks like its up to me to help her out.

She has refused counseling and evaluation, , but I do not think it should be used for escapism as she does. I am concerned she is depressed and is attempting to "self-medicate." I need to know how I can help her. She does not deserve the bad luck she has had, she is a good woman.

Please help me help Erika. I feel it is my responsibility as I left her years ago before the latter half of the above events began to occur. I made a mistake in leaving her then, and I will not leave her again when she needs me.



Earth,I had to edit your post..please remember we do have teens that post on our site.

1. No discussion of any illegal activity or threats of violence. (ie. illicit drug use, including medical marijuana use, threats of suicide or self-injury, or threatened or intended physical harm). Discussions of suicide or self-harm that are deemed negative and therefore potentially injurious to others are also not permitted

Post Edited By Moderator (ShynSassy) : 6/29/2008 4:53:42 AM (GMT-6)

Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 3036
   Posted 6/29/2008 5:56 AM (GMT -6)   

She is very lucky to have you as a friend.
It sounds like she needs to get into some type of therapy and soon.

I would approach her with the idea,and if she is scared to go then maybe you can tag along and wait for her in the waiting room.

Also,her self esteem is shot right now,considering everything that she has been through she is probably looking for anyone that will show her any type of love.

Keep telling her that she deserves to be happy and what her mom did was not her fault.

Please keep us posted on how she is doing.

Mod- Depression

Chronic Depression, Panic Attacks,Anxiety Attacks,Anorexia

Please remember,I am not a professional..I am just a person who is also fighting depression.

I know I'm in my own little world, but it's ok. They know me here.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2008
Total Posts : 585
   Posted 6/29/2008 9:19 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Earth,

I agree with Shy, Erika is very lucky to have you as a friend. If it is possible to get therapy or counseling for Erika, that would be the best thing to do. Maybe she won't like the idea, but remember depression isn't mental weakness or something you can blame yourself for. I used to think that, maybe Erika does the same. If so, going into therapy is accepting your failure, and humans tend avoid that.

I wish you, and Erika, all the very best for the future, and keep us posted on the progression!
Acceptance is the key

Existential depression and Insecurity

Try to keep smiling! :)

Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2008
Total Posts : 499
   Posted 6/29/2008 9:56 AM (GMT -6)   
I know of some people with tough situations in their life that have found so much help in attending a church. Maybe there is a good one near you you could drag her too. Tell her you want to go and it may act as a type of therapy for her. Just a suggeston. Some churches have great support groups and they are free.
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Elite Member

Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 6/29/2008 12:33 PM (GMT -6)   

Dear earthzero,

I admire your standing by your friend.  Erika needs help and you recognize that but sadly she is probably not going to go alone or even with just you.

Get a teacher, parent, or another adult to come help.You won't be snitching; you'll be advocating for your friend. How about her relatives, siblings, Aunts or Uncles?

Is she 18 year old now? If she is you could call your county social services to report her as a vulnerable adult.

A vulnerable adult is defined as: - 'a person aged 18 years or over, who is in receipt of or may be in need of community care services by reason of 'mental or other disability, age or illness and who is or may be unable to take care of him or herself, or unable to protect him or herself against significant harm or exploitation'.

From what you have described she fits the criteria as she has no home, income, and is using drugs which makes her vulnerable to predators. She also appears to have a mental health disorder.

I would first try working with her and really trying to get her to seek help voluntarily. You will have to be strong and know that what you are doing may save a life.

Bless you




Kitt, Moderator: Anxiety, Panic & Depression 
http://www.healingwell.com/donate *~*
Not a mental health professional of any kind
It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver.~Mahatma Gandhi~

Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 51
   Posted 6/29/2008 4:45 PM (GMT -6)   
Cheers for the replies. :-)
I have talked to her about receiving counseling, but she refuses, saying that she doesn't have a problem and is a little down on her luck. She is over 18, she does have a job, and is currently bouncing in between her friends' houses.
She does not attend church nor belong to any organization, Bellski. She used to go regularly with her mother, but when she got kicked out she stopped going.
She doesn't have really much by the way of family. She was raped by an older cousin several years ago and her entire family has ostracized her. I have told my parents, but there's not much they can do for her since they already have a full house, as they have taken in a few of my cousins while their father is in prison.
The only problem I have is that I am leaving to go back to school in New Mexico at the end of the summer, and I understand that depression is not something that can be quickly healed, if it can be healed at all. I tend to be the only positive influence around her; the only one pushing her to succeed, surpass, and survive. I fear if I go, she'll fall back into her old habits (illegal drug use).
Are there any tactics I might use Kitt that would try to get her to seek counseling voluntarily? I'm quite the persuasive speaker (or so my girlfriend tells me), so if you could give me a few starting points I think I could take it from there.
Sorry about the earlier post, Mod Shy. I was not glorifying her use, I see it as a definete factor that could contribute to her depression. But, rules is rules and I will not protest your edit. I apologize for not reading the rules more closely!
Cheers once again for all the help,

Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 3036
   Posted 6/30/2008 6:08 AM (GMT -6)   
Not a problem zero.

I hope that you are able to find her the help she needs. It sounds like she has been through alot,and can heal,just needs to be shown the right road.

Getting her into some type of counseling before you leave,and then you can check in with her once a week just to encourage her...

Mod- Depression

Chronic Depression, Panic Attacks,Anxiety Attacks,Anorexia

Please remember,I am not a professional..I am just a person who is also fighting depression.

I know I'm in my own little world, but it's ok. They know me here.

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