How To Be A Friend To Your Depressed Friend

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What do you do when you’re in a funk? You know what I mean. That dark place you have to drag yourself from, sometimes kicking and screaming. That pit of discouragement where you just want to lie in a cool dark room with a blanket pulled over your head. That place where you just lie like a slug and binge watch crappy television shows, because you can’t muster the energy to move off the couch (or sometimes even out of bed). Thing is, sometimes there’s nothing you can do but wait it out. And sometimes that wait means you might lose friends. But if you’re fortunate, like me, you’ve got friends who know how to be a friend to their depressed friend.

How To Be A Friend To Your Depressed Friend

Some people say, “Do something for someone else. That will bring you out of your funk.” Sometimes this works. Focusing your attention outward, instead of focusing on your troubles, can do wonders for the soul. There are times, however, that this does not work. You go through the motions, but feel the despair hanging over you like a dark thunder cloud ready to burst forth with rain at any given time.

Some say, “Exercise will do it! Get those endorphins pumping through your system, and you’ll feel great.” In theory, this is an awesome idea, but if you can’t even get out of bed, you’re not likely going to muster the energy to get dressed, let alone workout. Nice try.

It has been suggested that one should look up positive quotes, memes, videos, or sayings, and try to reside in and focus on this bubble of positivity. This can work, but what if you’re so far down that the positive quotes just piss you off, grating on your nerves like nails on a chalk board? I mean, these seemingly innocent things can come off as snarky and condescending if you’re in the wrong frame of mind.

You could try to wait it out, and hope to just snap out of it one day, like the sun coming out after a devastating storm. I suppose this could happen. Not likely, but one never knows.

I can tell you a what sure as crap doesn’t work … people making comments like, “Just snap out of it,” or “This is just in your head. Get up!” Then there’s my favorite, “This isn’t like you. Where is that happy (insert name) I know?” *Bring on the eye-roll and the temptation to sucker-punch whoever makes this comment.* This IS me, I’m NOT always happy, it may be in my head, but I can’t just get up, and I’m sure as hell not going to snap out of it just because you demand it.

So what works for me (because yes, I get in this desolate place of no return from time to time)? I have really good friends that show up. They text me, even if I don’t text back. They come to my house, even when I’ve said I don’t want to see anyone. They love on me in ways that they know I need. They talk with me without making demands or expecting anything from me. They don’t dwell on my issues, thereby enabling me to continue down my path of destruction. They don’t make excuses. They just love me where I am, and keep showing up.

Everybody needs someone like this in their life. It could be a friend in town, it could be a friend that makes the effort long distance, it may even be someone you only know from an online group (hopefully a positive, uplifting one). The important thing is, they keep showing up (maybe not in the physical sense, but they are but a phone call or click of the mouse away at any given time if needed).

There are times when one might feel this depression (call it what it is). It’s not a fun place to be. It can be lonely and funky, and sad. Allow yourself to feel it, but surround yourself with positive people, real people, who can love on you where you’re at emotionally. Eventually, you may be able to pull yourself up and out of the hole, and be the friend they need and deserve, too.

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  1. Depression is hard, indeed. And it’s amazing when people are there and understand our needs/feelings! Great to know they’re out there helping all the lost souls.

  2. I have known her since we were two and she has threatened to kill herself and me and my gilfreind many times
    I just don’t no what to do .do I get closer to her of farther

  3. This is so so important, thanks for sharing! I went through a really bad depressive spell in college, and I was so grateful to my friends who knew how to still be a friend to me. I was lucky enough to live next door to some very good friends, who were always more than willing to pull out some ice cream and pop on a movie when I needed to not be alone, but didn’t want to talk.

    Now that I’m doing better, I definitely want to be the kind of friend who shows up when people need me. Thanks for the reminder<3