How to Help a Depressed Friend Grow Up/be Herself?

First of all, apologies for the INCREDIBLY patronising tone to the title. When I say about helping her to grow up, I don’t mean to patronise! My friend married very young, and her husband has always been in sole charge of money and the house. They now have children, and she hasn’t worked since the children were born. So she went from her parents’ … domain, I suppose, to her husband’s domain; and now she has no money, no independence, nothing concrete that would help her to feel that she has some power over her situation.

She’s becoming more and more withdrawn and depressed; you can practically see her "self" ebbing away, like she’s fading out. She’s always been someone who puts everyone else first; she’ll do anything for anyone. The problem is, she’s never been one to say "no" to someone, even if they’re putting too much on her. There are a lot of other things going on lately (their business is folding at the end of this year, and her husband so far has no plans for a way to bring in any income.).

She’s not taking the matter in to her own hands, which is very like her; things happen TO her, and she feels that because she has no say in them, no power over them, there’s nothing she can do except suffer them. That paints her in a bad light, and I don’t mean to; it really saddens me that she can’t see that she can actually change anything she wants to. It’s as if she feels that actually, she has no right to stick her nose in to things; even when they’re things that directly affect (and upset) her.

Sorry to ramble on and on – and a big thank you if you’ve got this far!

If you have any advice, anything that might help her – or might help me to help her – then I would be ever so grateful. Under normal circumstances I’d advise her to see an NLP therapist (she’s seen how it’s turned my life around COMPLETELY) – but with the business folding and no plan B, now is not the time to be telling her to spend money!

Many thanks

Bird

How to Help a Depressed Friend Grow Up/be Herself?

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