A friend of mine has recently had a psychotic episode, hospitalized and was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. She is overseas at the moment and this came as big shock to all who know her. I am having a huge problem with how her closest friends are reacting to this news. One person is grieving as if she has died and main concern is that she might ruin her wedding. Another is angry at her because she had just received a prestigious internship as an artist and may lose her spot. Others are blaming her for getting sick because she regularly uses drugs. And her closest friend is not talking to her and is furious because of “the stress she is causing everyone”. I am disgusted and livid about these reactions. She is returning home soon and I’m worried about how her friends are going to treat her. Does anyone here have advice on how to calmly explain to them that they are being selfish fucks and that the way they are handling this situation is dangerous and could be deadly? Also, how exactly should they approach her? Ignore the situation and wait for her to bring it up? Has anyone here been diagnosed and had good/bad experiences with friends?
My first reaction is to warn you not to allow other people to dictate your emotions. This is a stressful situation, and you clearly have a very mature attitude about it. Some of your friends are obviously not coping with this news as well as you are. This is a case where I think it's best to lead by example. As for those moaning and groaning about how this affects them, like the wedding, you might point out that you're more concerned about your mutual friends diagnosis. Not with animosity, but just with compassion. For the friend that is upset about all the stress this is causing everyone, that sounds like a response coming from a place of fear. I think she is escaping from the situation because she's too frightened to face it. I think she need some compassion too. It is really not your place to teach them how to respond, but from the sounds of it, your empathy and kindness might teach them how. Peace to you. <3