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How do I support my friend?

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Q: A friend’s wife 34 had a affair with a 17 year old boy. She had been treated for depression for over a year before this and was taking paxil and xanax . When she got caught in the affair she tried to commit suicide and has since been placed in 2 psych wards. Was her judgement impaired due to the longterm depression?

How do I support my friend?

Answered by on -


The best people to respond to this question are her doctors in the hospital who got to know her and treated her. I sincerely hope that there has been follow-up care. This woman has been struggling and needs support from her doctor, her husband, and her friends and family.

The bast thing you can do as a friend to her husband is to be a support to him. Too often the caretaker gets overlooked as everyone responds to the person in crisis. You can’t solve his problems for him and shouldn’t try. But you can be a sympathetic listener and you can remind him that he deserves some attention too. He probably would benefit from seeing a therapist who can help him understand his wife and how to manage his own complicated feelings of anger and worry in this situation.

I wish you all well.
Dr. Marie

How do I support my friend?

Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

Dr. Marie is licensed as both a psychologist and marriage and family counselor. She specializes in couples and family therapy and parent education. Follow her on Facebook or Twitter.

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2018). How do I support my friend?. Psych Central. Retrieved on May 21, 2019, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 May 2018
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018
Published on Psych All rights reserved.