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April 6, 2009 in Relationship Advice
On the other hand, he used to be my best friend and I often miss the person he used to be. I still care about him on some level, and it's obvious that he needs support right now. He's acknowledged his issues and realizes there's a problem he needs to address. And if he's talked to me about these problems, he probably still sees me as someone he can trust and count on for help, despite the fact that we haven't talked in so long. I know that his happiness is not my responsibility, but I can't help wondering how I would feel if he were to actually kill himself, and I knew he was depressed and had done nothing.
Well, there's your answer. He came to you because he trusts you and probably because he has few other people to turn to. That doesn't necessarily make you obligated to help him, but I personally think that it would be the right thing to do. You can help him in small ways without devoting a huge part of your life to him. I think it's smart that you're learning from your past and that you recognize that this person is a negative influence on your life. But, at the same time, if you still care about him as a friend, you should try to help him.
I agree with Alice. I've been in a similar sitution as you. I fell obsessively in love with a woman who was periodically severely depressed and who for no real reason put up a "glass screen" between us one day. In between the rebuffs, non-replies, downright rudeness etc from her we managed to build a good solid friendship which amazingly outlived my obsession. Happily so as she sent a text at 3 one morning to say she had O/D'd. (Fortunately she had the sense to call a doctor friend to help her vomit up the pills). Anyhow, to cut a long story short, I was there for her when she needed me as a friend. In fact I was always there for her and supported her / helped her with her life in many ways, made her feel wanted and gave advice when she needed it. But it was impossible to take the relationship past this supportive level, even had I truly wanted to (and I never totally fell out of love with her)
So stick with it, your friend will always be grateful, even if he does not show it openly. But keep it on this supportive basis, such charatcters are liable to consume you by their nature if it becomes more intimate.
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