I was friends with this person for about a year. But I just can’t seem to be happy around him. The problem is that we have separate political opinions (democratic, republican, pro life, pro choice etc). We get into political discussions so much to the point where I can’t stand him! He gets offended by EVERYTHING, I tell a joke, he gets offended, meanwhile, he insults the shit out of me! But in this situation, being honest is harder than it looks, because he had depression for a while, and he got out of a mental hospital last week! So if i abandon him, he could get more depressed, and if he commits suicide, his death will be in my hands. Should I be honest with him or stick it out until things end naturally?
I know I’m new here and it’s probably not any of my business replying to you, but he sounds super toxic. I’ve been in situations similar where the person threatens suicide and tries to blame it on you, but if he were actually your friend then he would never ever put you in a situation like that.
The belittling and the manipulation game is a tactic people use because they have unhealthy views on perhaps themselves and on how to genuinely be in a healthy relationship with those around them.
Let me make this super clear HIS DECISIONS ARE NEVER YOUR FAULT! Now I know there are some cases where people get bullied and feel like suicide is their only option, but in cases where people are threatening their life if you leave them and cannot support them… that’s emotional blackmail.
He probably does need better mental health support, but you don’t have to be responsible for that. It is 100% okay to take a step back and remove yourself from this position, because often if you wait around they just get further under the skin and try to gain more control.
What I’m reading here is you feel like you have this guy’s life in your hands–that you are in charge of whether he lives or commits suicide. Do you really believe you have that kind of power?
Sick people in denial will try to blame everyone around them. This is especially true of drug addicts, but there’s an -ism of Al-Anon that I think is useful to anyone who is getting manipulated through blame. It’s called the Three Cs: You didn’t Cause it, you can’t Control it, and you can’t Cure it. We all have enough on our consciences with our own actions and consequences, we can’t take on other people’s turmoil as well. If he starved to death because you wouldn’t give him a power bar, that would be another issue, but right now you’re talking about shouldering the blame for his suicidality that 1. he hasn’t charged you with yet and 2. hasn’t been a threat since he got out of the hospital.
I think it’s important to talk with him about how you feel the relationship is going–how you feel that it’s a one-sided, toxic dynamic where he’s taking his woes of the world out on you for cheap laughs. Hopefully you can break through to him that you’re a real person with your own emotional needs that he is shitting on. If he mocks you or gets nasty, there’s another important concept in Al-Anon called Letting Go With Love. It’s something to the effect of “You’re my friend, I love you and care for your well-being, and I hope your life gets better; but our dynamic has turned toxic and is eating at me, and I can’t be a party to it anymore. I wish you well, and I hope one day we can reconnect when you’re better.” He probably won’t like it very much, he may blow up your phone, say ugly things, cast blame, and threaten self-harm; but you’ll have chosen to absolve yourself of the things you really aren’t directly responsible for, the things he’s projecting onto you, without “dumping” him.
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