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Friend in trouble
August 6, 2001
11:23 am
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I have a friend who has problems. He was raised by irresponsible parents. He got addicted to speed early in life, became a dealer and helped his mother sell. His mother was also addicted and went to prison for selling. His dad just left the picture altogether. His mother remarried a very rich man and my friend has the opportunity to taste that kind of life. He's been in jail himself for nearly killing a man.

He's never been to college and has educated himself by reading. While growing up, he read virociously. He's very intelligent and refined. On the other hand he's not got money. He owes money to his ex-wife. He also has a history of physically abusing his wife. He owes the government money. He has no education, therefore no degree or vocation to fall back on. He once worked construction, so he could fall back on that.

He is actually his best as an artist. He's so incredibly talented artistically and musically... he could support himself with the right direction and contacts. He lacks so much money, and makes most of his money waiting tables at nights on the weekend.

He just moved to a loft space about an hour out of town. He bought a car (used) so he could get back and forth to his loft. Now, his car is broken down. He has no transportation, other than the Greyhound bus.

I have a lot more money than he does, a car that is new and reliable, an education, and a "normal" upbringing.

I need advice on how to help him. I want to help, but don't want it to seem like pity. I want him to get back on his feet, but with his life he's always had trouble like the ones described above. It almost seems like he should be alone, rather than try and have a friend like me around as a reminder of his failures.

How to help him without letting him use me. He confessed to using people before, so I don't want that to happen.

Can anyone relate?

August 6, 2001
11:32 am
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janes
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Here is the low down, the scoop the total truth...

"YOU CANNOT HELP HIM"

Find the numbers for therapists, rehab, etc. give them to him.

Offer to go with....
DO not feel YOU can help him...only HE can help himself and make the changes stick.

I feel like I am talikng to my second oldest daughter here...she is a "saver" and it has cost her more than she knows.

If I could I would implore you to forget you know this person...but you won't forget will you...

Offer rides...NEVER YOUR CAR
Offer support...NEVER YOUR $$$$$$$
Be more than ready to say NO without guilt.
Keep a little distance....

IF he wants to be successfuol than he will be. He has to pay his oown dues and make it his own way.

YOU are not a reminder of his failure...HE is a reminder of his failure..

BE CAREFUL.....if you want to help him with money give it to a minister to devliver to him anonymously.....

This may sound hardhearted but it really isn't/

August 6, 2001
1:00 pm
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No, no no. It does not sound cold-hearted. In fact, he won't accept money from me. He will not drive my car, although i've offered. He is determined to make it on his own and is careful not to depend on me too much. To the point of shutting me out and excluding me. To be honest, I don't like being a part of all his problems.

Although I am torn between dedication to my friend and being too involved. He's the kind of person you want to be close to, but when you get close, you just get waylayed by all the negative crap in his life. You get close, then you get close to nasty, unplesantness. Nothing much positive or good is there to rejoice in.

My problem I guess is that I am a "saver", and feel needed around him. I feel worth something helping someone... that's why I'm checking into helping out with the children's shelter.

I dont' know how to forget I know this person, as we are more than friends, even though we are each other's friends. He has offered encouragement and emotional support to me, because he can and I need it. I'm "high-maintenance" some might say and he fills some of my needs, but never comes close to a pattern of regularity. The support comes in spurts, and seems like a tease to me. It's like i can get a taste of what he could offer, if only his life were working out better. Then the needs go unfilled for a while. It leaves me starving for attention and support, until it gets so bad...

I don't want is problems and the pain I feel because of them. His problems are my problems. It's effecting my life apart from his.

THANK YOU SO MUCH for your words. They help me to find where i am on this matter.

August 6, 2001
9:40 pm
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Molly
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His problems are my problems, did you really say that? You call him your friend, you know what this is, you know what your doing, ask your self why? What do you gain out of this relationship, and can you tell me, with the work that you have done, that you can call this healthy?

August 7, 2001
1:31 pm
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gingerleigh
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Being a "saver" myself, I can definitely relate. But what I can also tell you from my own experience is that eventually, when you keep trying to "save" someone, they start to resent it... sometimes they even spiral further and further into their hole of despair to purposely rebell against you and the "parent" that you represent.

Proceed with caution. You've offered your help. He has declined. Please respect his decision. In fact, by respecting his decision, you might be helping him more than your money or car ever could, by showing him that you think he is mature enough to make his own decisions and handle his own crises. That does *wonders* for someone's self esteem.

August 7, 2001
4:46 pm
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M
Yes, because he's having these problems, they're effecting me...
to be honest, i think it's crap...
he supports me, accepts me...
it's not perfect, but it is where i want to be. he and i share the same goals: to live simply, minimalistically, to be artists, to do without the need for cars, live in an energy-efficient house in the country, to stay centered, to stay close to the trees, OK - so maybe i AM a freak for staying with him... maybe I'm a freak anyway!

G
I'm staying away from offering money or too much help. Dont' want to baby him, he needs to feel his own strength.

August 7, 2001
6:44 pm
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janes
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Just be sure you are living YOUR life for YOU....

Make sure you are not "codependent"

Good Luck

August 8, 2001
10:26 am
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I'm trying - Thanks janes! It' s easy to become co dependent when you are a little lost. Don't think I'm there, though.

Thank you so much!

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