A Friend With Mental Illness Is Still A Friend

I was over at The Black Snob, and read a post in which she discusses living with bipolar disorder. The post was enlightening, especially because now she is able to manage the illness and live a productive life.

I read the post and felt an eerie sense of deja vu. I had a friend who suffered from mental illness. Well, she was not just a friend, she was my best friend in high school . We lost touch in our college years and reconnected maybe three years ago. She helped me tremendously with my book that I have yet to publish.


She had symptoms of the illness like insomnia, mania, hospitalizations. I tried to console her during our conversations but I did not have the knowledge or experience to understand. I would tell her positive things and pray with her. Then this fear started to develop in me. When I had not heard from her in a few weeks, I would call to make sure everything was okay.

I remember our last conversation, she said all of the right things but nothing was right about the things she said. The only way I can describe it is that it is like talking to someone who is in an aquarium. You can make out the words they are saying but they are coming from a place where a person should not be speaking from.

I would love to tell you that my friend learned to cope with the illness or found deliverance but sadly she did not. A got a message from her sister that she had passed away. The sister sent the message via FaceBook of all mediums. I was at work when the message that was forwarded to my email was received. I was so upset my manager told me that I could take the day off.

I often think back to that last conversation and I wonder what could have been said or done differently. The truth is, I knew something was fundamentally wrong but I did not know how to help. I just always let her know that I cared for her and was rooting for her success. I never guessed it would all lead to suicide.


2 thoughts on “A Friend With Mental Illness Is Still A Friend

  1. Good for you to support local theater, get your mental stimulation and feel great after having done so! Sadly many of us miss such opportunities that are of great quality, worth the cost and good for the soul.

  2. Hi Camille:
    Welcome to the site!
    I felt great after the play. It had me thinking about motivations for human behavior. Not knocking fun movies but it is nice to think while being entertained.
    Hope to see you again on the site!!

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