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14 Apr 2003

How do u help a friend
Please could I have peoples in put on this;
I have a friend who I work with; I am very worried about her; I will call her L
she seems to have very high highs and very low lows.
She was previously married and had 3 children, he left her for another woman
She was then in a abuse relationship L fell pregnant and gave the baby up for adoption.
Her 3 other children live away from her (2 with her ex an 1 with her mom).
What really worrys me is that L really loves her children but insists on living as far away as possible from them; and has as little as possible to do with them.
When I try to speak to L about this she says she made too many mistakes and it is best if she is not in their lives, but I can see that she really misses them and her family (mom and sister).
What can I do to make her understand that people make mistakes, you learn from them then you move on you dont have to keep punishing yourself.
Answer 363 views
Expert
CyberShrink
cybershrink

01 Jan 0001

Dear cf,
You're right, of course, about the value of learning what one can from one's mistakes, then forgiving oneself and moving on. But some of us find that very difficult indeed, to actually do. And of course, you don't know the details of what has happened in the past, and whether L has indeed tried this before, an might have good reasons for not trusting herself with the care of her children. What she needs, from the sound of it, is a therapist with whom she can work hard to understand and work through what has happened, to draw appropriate lessons from it, and to reconstruct her way of life so as to be able to have the children form as large a part in her life as she likes, and her in theirs. She might have as a complication, something like a Bipolar Disorder, which may have helped to ause some of the previous problems ; and if she can be accurately assessed, and if such a problem is present and at last properly treated, she might not only be free of the mood problems, but more capable of readjusting her life satisfactorily.
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