OT: Help me Help a Friend(Long)

OT: Help me Help a Friend(Long)

Post by Heirlooms Handcrafted Quilt » Mon, 28 Aug 2000 04:00:00



Hi all,
I am needing some ideas on how I can help a friend who obviously needs it.
My friend is a quilter, stay at home mom, loves to garden and cook
etc....until now.  All of a sudden she "just doesn't care" about doing the
things she used to love.  When I asked her what she WANTS to do...she said
matter of factly "To Die".

She never asks for anything from her hubby.  She will go for a year with
quilt tops made (mind you, out of recycled fabric.  She's NEVER bought new
fabric EVER), but never batting to finish.  Yet she never asks for the money
to buy it.  Her hubby will tell her to get the stuff she needs, but she puts
the thought away to get what they need for the kids etc.  She can't sew at
night because she doesn't have a light....she told me last night that she
feels like she's never been able to do anything without following something,
cooking with a recipe, quilting with a pattern etc.  I tried to tell her
that at least she has the skills to follow a pattern!  But she did also
mention that the quilt she gave as a wedding gift was so appreciated, and
the words the couple gave her in thanking just made her day.  So that made
me want to help her in at least a quilty way.

The last pair of new shoes she's gotten are now 10 years old.  Even her
wedding dress was a hand me down.  I think she just wonders when it's going
to be HER turn to be thought about.  And I can understand.  Being a stay at
home mom means that EVERYONE is dependant on you for something....yet your
entire existence is dependent on your hubby bringing home the bacon.

She has mentioned that when she tries to tell her hubby how she's feeling,
he suggests she go to the doctor for hormone therapy (she IS 45)...but I
truly believe that she needs something that she can have all to herself,
something to focus on.  It's not that her hubby doesn't WANT her to shop for
herself, and he really appreciates the quilting she does....but I think he'd
have to hand her a bunch of money and say "Don't come home with any
left!"...otherwise she'd never buy for herself.

So, do you guys have any ideas on how I can help??  My hubby is with hers
right now and probably mentioning things to him...I was thinking maybe if
she refuses to shop for herself he could give ME the money and I'll order a
bunch of goodies FOR her...if it's delivered to her door she can't send it
away!  And he would have nothing against me doing that (besides friends,
they are family too).  I'm sure he doesn't even realize how very depressed
she is.....any other ideas??  Thank you!  I want her to feel like she's got
something to look forward to....

Lori Peters
--

 
 
 

OT: Help me Help a Friend(Long)

Post by Teresa Creec » Mon, 28 Aug 2000 04:00:00


Lori,
A box of goodies might make your friend feel better - for a few minutes, but it
will not fix depression.  Your friend needs a good therapist, to start with, and
a lot of support - from her husband and her friends.  If she has gotten to the
point of not doing anything she loves and can speak of wanting to die so easily,
she needs help right now.

She won't get better overnight and some of the things you mention in your note
can help with the process (but they aren't the cure) - a little spending money
of her own - a set amount every month - in a separate account, away from the
household funds to spend as she pleases - on clothes or batting.  A little time
of her own to do what she wants, without the kids and chores getting in the way
- maybe a baby-sitting coop - someone keeps her youngsters one afternoon a week
and she keeps theirs a different afternoon.   Or, two friends getting together
to garden or quilt or cook while the kids all play together.

Good luck!
Teresa in Colorado

Quote:

> Hi all,
> I am needing some ideas on how I can help a friend who obviously needs it.
> My friend is a quilter, stay at home mom, loves to garden and cook
> etc....until now.  All of a sudden she "just doesn't care" about doing the
> things she used to love.  When I asked her what she WANTS to do...she said
> matter of factly "To Die".
> ..
> So, do you guys have any ideas on how I can help??  My hubby is with hers
> right now and probably mentioning things to him...I was thinking maybe if
> she refuses to shop for herself he could give ME the money and I'll order a
> bunch of goodies FOR her...if it's delivered to her door she can't send it
> away!  And he would have nothing against me doing that (besides friends,
> they are family too).  I'm sure he doesn't even realize how very depressed
> she is.....any other ideas??  Thank you!  I want her to feel like she's got
> something to look forward to....

> Lori Peters
> --


 
 
 

OT: Help me Help a Friend(Long)

Post by Maggiesteven » Mon, 28 Aug 2000 04:00:00


Lori, the best thing to do is get your friend to a doctor. She is obviously
seriously depressed & needs professional help, Maggie



Quote:
> Hi all,
> I am needing some ideas on how I can help a friend who obviously needs it.
> My friend is a quilter, stay at home mom, loves to garden and cook
> etc....until now.  All of a sudden she "just doesn't care" about doing the
> things she used to love.  When I asked her what she WANTS to do...she said
> matter of factly "To Die".
> Lori Peters

 
 
 

OT: Help me Help a Friend(Long)

Post by Heirlooms Handcrafted Quilt » Mon, 28 Aug 2000 04:00:00


Getting her to go to the doctor is another chore in itself....she is one of
those that will not go until she is seriously in pain.  Just this summer she
walked around for a week with an abscessed hemmorhoid until she was so in
pain she couldn't even sleep.  Eventually her hubby took her to the ER.  I
have tried to suggest alternative menopausal remedies for her (she also
won't take meds)...and I bet I would have to go and actually get something
FOR her before she would do anything about it.  It just goes along with her
"putting everyone else first" mentality.

I feel so bad when she comes to my house too.  My shop is almost done and I
know it makes her feel bad that my hubby would go to such lengths to make me
happy and satisfied...I walked outside last night with a pint of Ben and
Jerry's and she said "See?  I don't even get THAT"....I just feel so bad for
her.

Her claiming that she wanted to die really shocked me, and got me worried.
She is an overdramatic person as it is so it doesn't phase my hubby (he
thinks she's just exaggerating)....but I really want her to know that there
IS someone who cares and will take the time to show her how much.

As for babysitting....her children are all ***agers.  They are hardly ever
around so she has so much time to do things for herself, but has nothing to
work with.  That's why I think she feels so unfullfilled.  She has mentioned
that she would also like to start a quilt business (she surely has the
time!)...and I've tried everything I can to help her get started without
sacrificing what I've worked for to start mine.  What I mean by this is: her
hubby has said that maybe she could just put her stuff on MY webpage, which
I don't want to do.  I worked very hard to get where I am now (and I'm not
even anywhere NEAR my goal) so MY business is all mine.  My business started
because of my own lack of fullfillment, and decided that it was going to be
my baby....and no one elses.

She has a free webspace just waiting for her.  She has a digital camera, but
no idea how to work a computer.  My hubby has offered to design her page...I
just don't think she has the will to try.

Thanks for your suggestions so far.  I will try my hardest to get her to a
doctor.  Btw...can menopause bring on such extreme emotions??  I thought it
was always physical things...I guess I'm wrong!

Lori

 
 
 

OT: Help me Help a Friend(Long)

Post by SandySm » Mon, 28 Aug 2000 04:00:00


Lori,
I'd suggest a really good book on recognizing and overcoming depression. It is
The Feeling Good Handbook by David D. Burns, M.D. ISBN 0-452-26174-0. It might
help your friend to deal with her thoughts and feelings.

HOWEVER --
Her saying that she wants to die sends up a big red flag to me. That indicates
that she perhaps has suicidal thoughts -- requiring more immediate help than
the book I just mentioned. Professional help is needed before she does more
than just thinking about it.

Sandy
in Chapel Hill, NC


Quote:
> I am needing some ideas on how I can help a friend who obviously needs it.
> My friend is a quilter, stay at home mom, loves to garden and cook
> etc....until now.  All of a sudden she "just doesn't care" about doing the
> things she used to love.  When I asked her what she WANTS to do...she said
> matter of factly "To Die". <snip>

 
 
 

OT: Help me Help a Friend(Long)

Post by Countrygir » Mon, 28 Aug 2000 04:00:00


Lori:
First thing that came to mind when reading about her kids hardly ever being
around is perhaps she's a "nurturer" with no one to nurture so she feels
lost.  My mom is going thru that....there' no one to take care of anymore.
Could she be feeling like she's not needed anymore?  Maybe her self-esteem
was built on taking care of others.

Also, from your first post, she is definitely going thru depression.  I've
been there.  Try to get her to a doctor.  I had to be on meds to bring me
out of the depression before I could work on finding the cause.  I was never
to the point of "wanting to die", but knew something was wrong.

It's hard to help someone when they don't want to help themselves.  Being a
friend and letting her know that you're there for her is more help than you
may know.

Kathy



Quote:
> Getting her to go to the doctor is another chore in itself....she is one
of
> those that will not go until she is seriously in pain.  Just this summer
she
> walked around for a week with an abscessed hemmorhoid until she was so in
> pain she couldn't even sleep.  Eventually her hubby took her to the ER.  I
> have tried to suggest alternative menopausal remedies for her (she also
> won't take meds)...and I bet I would have to go and actually get something
> FOR her before she would do anything about it.  It just goes along with
her
> "putting everyone else first" mentality.

> I feel so bad when she comes to my house too.  My shop is almost done and
I
> know it makes her feel bad that my hubby would go to such lengths to make
me
> happy and satisfied...I walked outside last night with a pint of Ben and
> Jerry's and she said "See?  I don't even get THAT"....I just feel so bad
for
> her.

> Her claiming that she wanted to die really shocked me, and got me worried.
> She is an overdramatic person as it is so it doesn't phase my hubby (he
> thinks she's just exaggerating)....but I really want her to know that
there
> IS someone who cares and will take the time to show her how much.

> As for babysitting....her children are all ***agers.  They are hardly
ever
> around so she has so much time to do things for herself, but has nothing
to
> work with.  That's why I think she feels so unfullfilled.  She has
mentioned
> that she would also like to start a quilt business (she surely has the
> time!)...and I've tried everything I can to help her get started without
> sacrificing what I've worked for to start mine.  What I mean by this is:
her
> hubby has said that maybe she could just put her stuff on MY webpage,
which
> I don't want to do.  I worked very hard to get where I am now (and I'm not
> even anywhere NEAR my goal) so MY business is all mine.  My business
started
> because of my own lack of fullfillment, and decided that it was going to
be
> my baby....and no one elses.

> She has a free webspace just waiting for her.  She has a digital camera,
but
> no idea how to work a computer.  My hubby has offered to design her
page...I
> just don't think she has the will to try.

> Thanks for your suggestions so far.  I will try my hardest to get her to a
> doctor.  Btw...can menopause bring on such extreme emotions??  I thought
it
> was always physical things...I guess I'm wrong!

> Lori

 
 
 

OT: Help me Help a Friend(Long)

Post by Jocelyne Deve » Mon, 28 Aug 2000 04:00:00


If not being a nurturer anymore is one of her problems maybe you could
suggest she take up the charity quilt goal and make even one little quilt
for a premie or other small needy person. It won't cure her but it might
take her mind off herself a bit. I have a sister who has been chronically
depressed for 23 years and who basically had given up on life. She left her
husband after 30 years of marriage when the kids left home for good. I
thought she would finally be happier but she is worse. Now she feels she is
nothing, not a wife, not a mother, not a worker!! She is so focussed on what
she is not that she can't see what others see in her. The only relief she
has had is doing some volunteer work for UNICEF where she can be creative
and useful. She is still depressed but at least some part of her week is
happy.

-Jocelyne in Ottawa Canada


Quote:
> Lori:
> First thing that came to mind when reading about her kids hardly ever
being
> around is perhaps she's a "nurturer" with no one to nurture so she feels
> lost.  My mom is going thru that....there' no one to take care of anymore.
> Could she be feeling like she's not needed anymore?  Maybe her self-esteem
> was built on taking care of others.

> Also, from your first post, she is definitely going thru depression.  I've
> been there.  Try to get her to a doctor.  I had to be on meds to bring me
> out of the depression before I could work on finding the cause.  I was
never
> to the point of "wanting to die", but knew something was wrong.

> It's hard to help someone when they don't want to help themselves.  Being
a
> friend and letting her know that you're there for her is more help than
you
> may know.

> Kathy



> > Getting her to go to the doctor is another chore in itself....she is one
> of
> > those that will not go until she is seriously in pain.  Just this summer
> she
> > walked around for a week with an abscessed hemmorhoid until she was so
in
> > pain she couldn't even sleep.  Eventually her hubby took her to the ER.
I
> > have tried to suggest alternative menopausal remedies for her (she also
> > won't take meds)...and I bet I would have to go and actually get
something
> > FOR her before she would do anything about it.  It just goes along with
> her
> > "putting everyone else first" mentality.

> > I feel so bad when she comes to my house too.  My shop is almost done
and
> I
> > know it makes her feel bad that my hubby would go to such lengths to
make
> me
> > happy and satisfied...I walked outside last night with a pint of Ben and
> > Jerry's and she said "See?  I don't even get THAT"....I just feel so bad
> for
> > her.

> > Her claiming that she wanted to die really shocked me, and got me
worried.
> > She is an overdramatic person as it is so it doesn't phase my hubby (he
> > thinks she's just exaggerating)....but I really want her to know that
> there
> > IS someone who cares and will take the time to show her how much.

> > As for babysitting....her children are all ***agers.  They are hardly
> ever
> > around so she has so much time to do things for herself, but has nothing
> to
> > work with.  That's why I think she feels so unfullfilled.  She has
> mentioned
> > that she would also like to start a quilt business (she surely has the
> > time!)...and I've tried everything I can to help her get started without
> > sacrificing what I've worked for to start mine.  What I mean by this is:
> her
> > hubby has said that maybe she could just put her stuff on MY webpage,
> which
> > I don't want to do.  I worked very hard to get where I am now (and I'm
not
> > even anywhere NEAR my goal) so MY business is all mine.  My business
> started
> > because of my own lack of fullfillment, and decided that it was going to
> be
> > my baby....and no one elses.

> > She has a free webspace just waiting for her.  She has a digital camera,
> but
> > no idea how to work a computer.  My hubby has offered to design her
> page...I
> > just don't think she has the will to try.

> > Thanks for your suggestions so far.  I will try my hardest to get her to
a
> > doctor.  Btw...can menopause bring on such extreme emotions??  I thought
> it
> > was always physical things...I guess I'm wrong!

> > Lori

 
 
 

OT: Help me Help a Friend(Long)

Post by Molly Wil » Mon, 28 Aug 2000 04:00:00


I honestly believe that your dear friend needs more than just things for
herself.  

When a person tells you that they want to die I think you need to take
them seriously.  Sure personal things may perk her up for a while, it
doesn't get to the heart of her problems.

I don't know how close you are to her or how she will take suggestions
from you but if you can, urge her to see her doctor so she can tell
him/her how she feels.  She may need antidepressants and counselling to
help her climb out of her gloom.  I'm not even talking about
psychiatrists or psychologists.  A good social worker preferably a
female will work wonders.  They usually do not play head games and are
easy people to talk to.

I know you are trying to do nice things for her but this could turn out
very seriously and I know you only the best for your friend.

Molly in Mass.
(who has been there)

" Just my opinion, I may be wrong."
                               -Dennis Miller

 
 
 

OT: Help me Help a Friend(Long)

Post by ibby » Mon, 28 Aug 2000 04:00:00


Your friend needs to see a medical doc for a physical, who could then
recommend a therapist. Do NOT wait to see if this is "just a phase."
The longer you wait, the deeper she will sink into depression.  You and
her family need to use any method necessary to get her to a doctor.  I
realize this is sounding a little dramatic, but I don't want you to lose
a friend.  I almost lost one of my friends several years ago.  She had a
lot of the same symptoms that your friend has.  Unfortunately, it took a
botched suicide attempt to get everyone's attention.  No one should have
to go through that. The good thing is my friend did get the help she
needed and is now happy and healthy...and off meds for quite some time.

After she has started to come out of her depression, perhaps she could
get a part time job to get out and about.  It could be for pay or
volunteer, just something she could focus on.  This would also give her
a few dollars she could call her own, to buy fabric or whatever.

Ibby in Pittsburgh

 
 
 

OT: Help me Help a Friend(Long)

Post by Kathy Appleba » Mon, 28 Aug 2000 04:00:00



Quote:
> All of a sudden she "just doesn't care" about doing the
> things she used to love.  When I asked her what she WANTS to do...she said
> matter of factly "To Die".

I'm no doctor, nor do I even play one on TV, but it sounds to me like
this woman is seriously depressed, and perhaps even suicidal. This type
of thing is one of the warning signs of suicide that are always being
published.

She needs professional help, and very soon...
--
Kathy Applebaum
Kayney Quilting (longarm machine quilting)