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What do you do about a friend who has problems that doesn't seem to want to help herself?

I have a friend who has been going through a lot of things for several months now. Her husband has been out of work since the end of last summer, she can't work because of physical problems, 2 of her 3 kids have special needs, including autism and severe food allergies, as well as other physical problems. We've done a lot to try and help them. We gave them some money a while back, they didn't ask for it, we just did it because someone had helped us out with money when we really needed it and we wanted to pay it forward, so to speak. I gave her some food and coupons and leads on jobs for her husband, and he never followed up on any of them.There ARE jobs available around here, not the greatest jobs in the world, but IMO, any job is better than none. Things are actually going well for us right now, after a long time, and I almost feel guilty when I'm around her. I don't brag about things, but I feel like I can't talk about thing

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Asked by Anonymous at 10:08 AM on May. 7, 2010 in Relationships

Answers (8)
  • cont' that are good about our lives either when I'm around her because she's so full of gloom and doom. Yesterday at the park, she was upset because her food stamps hadn't come through for the month yet and I felt like I couldn't even tell my friends that we just bought a "new" ( to us) car.So I just didn't say anything about it. I feel bad that she's going through this, but it seems like some of it can be changed. I feel like a horrible person for thinking like this, but it's hard being around someone who is so down all the time and I can't make them feel better no matter what!

    Answer by Anonymous at 10:11 AM on May. 7, 2010

  • nothing else you can do

    Answer by Anonymous at 10:11 AM on May. 7, 2010

  • You can't help someone that doesn't want to help themselves. You can give her money, leads on jobs, etc until you have nothing left, but until they decide to change, your effort is futile.


    Answer by hobbitswife04 at 10:16 AM on May. 7, 2010

  • Actually, I had some friends that were always griping and doom and gloom. Then, I finally tore into them and let them know tat for theior kid, they needed to stop all the depressive crap and do something about their situation. I was pretty much mean, but, I was truthful and blunt. They got mad and stopped talking for a bit, but, eventually they talked to me again and thier lives have turned around. They needed to hear what I had to say.

    So, I suggest you start talking about what you are accomplishing and maybe that will kickstart them. Don't help them monetarily anymore. They need to SEE you doing good. If he isn't willing to get a job and she is gonna sit back and have a pity party...there is nothing you can do about it. And don't feel guilty because you did something for yourself.

    Answer by BradenIsMySon at 10:17 AM on May. 7, 2010

  • You can't force someone to help themselves. They have to want to be helped. They have to want to change. If they don't want to, then you can't do anything. Just keep encouraging them to better their lives, but otherwise you can't do anything else.

    Answer by JazzlikeMraz at 11:35 AM on May. 7, 2010

  • Maybe she feels comfortable in her situation....theres a reason why she's filled with doom and gloom and until she sees the light at the end of the tunnel, there's nothing you or anyone can do to help her and her husband....

    Answer by mom2mybabes at 11:41 AM on May. 7, 2010

  • Pray for them

    Answer by GMMOLLY at 2:53 PM on May. 7, 2010

  • I have a friend like this. No matter what you do things won't change for them until they want it to. And that may be never. Just pray for them and change the subject when she starts complaining and talking her gloom and doom talk. And don't hide your new car or your accomplishments, perhaps that will spark her to want more for herself!

    Answer by Austinsmom35 at 10:16 PM on May. 7, 2010

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