How Do You Help A Friend In Dire Need

I have a close friend who is going through hell right now; I can literally see him falling apart and coming undone.  He is just over 50, been out of work for over 2 years, has lost almost all hope in life and in finding a job.  The things he used to like doing he no longer is interested in.  He is showing classic signs of depression; he sees a psychiatrist, he takes anti depressants, he also has an anxiety disorder and is on medication for that as well.  He has also been drinking heavily the last year or so.  To me, looking in from the outside, the losing of hope is the hardest thing to watch.  When you lose your hope little else matters.  I have seen him over the past few years go on countless interviews, trying different kinds of meds to see if they will help more, going to the gym to see if that helped.  He says he is at the point now where with each interview that doesn’t work out he has less and less hope that he will ever find another job.  He thinks age has been part of his problem in not finding work.  For the last 20 years he worked as an executive with a 6 figure income, he is very bright and could have a fantastic future.

But, what do you say, what can you do to help a friend in need like this?  He usually just wants to be home, he is married but his wife doesn’t get home until 7 so he is alone all day.  I can relate to many of his issues, you know all the things that will make you feel better but you, or I should say I, don’t do them.  Neither does he.  What are the odds this friend will find another job?  Are they higher or lower than the likelihood of his drinking himself to death.  This time in our economy is really rough on some people.  Some people are getting left behind and I fear he might be one of them.  But what do you say, how can you help, what should you do.  I just don’t know.


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