dp33 wrote:Do they appreciate you still being friends or do they prefer that you leave them and never bother them again?
I'm not bipolar, but one of my best friends is. I can't speak for anyone other than him, but he was extremely greatful when me and my husband stayed friends with him after the first time we saw him in a full-blown manic episode. I know as someone who's mentally ill myself and sometimes very hard to live with that I treasure everyone who's stood by me after I gave them good reason to leave. L (my bipolar friend) has pushed me away sometimes, and I leave when he's acting that way, but I always call him up again in a day or two. When he's really manic or really depressed he doesn't mean the things he says, anymore than I mean the evil things I say sometimes when I'm struggling.
dp33 wrote:I'm assuming that when they are acting normal you could give them your opinion on some bad decisions they have made?
Well, I guess you could, if they genuinely don't realize they did something wrong. When L is in his right mind he knows he did stupid things while manic or depressed and is very apologetic. Reminding him that he did bad things when he was out of control would be really cruel, IMO.
hope7951 wrote:Lots od people give smypathy and go along with delusions. This makes both people feel good, but does nothing to help with the problem.
I don't think giving someone sympathy is ever wrong. Going along with delusions is definitely wrong, though. Calmly repeating the truth of matters is definitely the way to go.
dp33, I think it would be great of you to renew the friendship, if you can. But have boundaries
. And stick to them. One of my big boundaries with L is that I won't be alone with him when he's all the way 'up' (manic). He's not violent, but he makes me really uncomfortable sometimes and can trigger my own issues. I've taught myself to be OK with just leaving him when he's like that. He's a grown-up and it's not my or my husband's job to follow L around and try to parent him.
Crawling wrote:The same is true for your friend, you need to remember you cant save her.
Yeah. I always remind myself that there are chemicals going haywire in L's brain (i have a funny sort of visual to go with it too). It's not his fault, nor is there anything I can do about it.