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Does My Friend Need Therapy?

Group Therapy: Does My Friend Need Therapy?

This question is from a Group Therapy post in our TrèsSugar Community. Add your advice in the comments!

I have a friend who was in an emotionally abusive relationship from late high school throughout the majority of college. He was controlling, manipulative, and made constant disparaging remarks about her. He was the puppet-master in her life for years. When she finally broke free of him, all her friends were so happy, especially since there was a time in college he didn't  allow her to go out at night, and subsequently, we all went months without seeing her.

Once she was single, she became sexually promiscuous, and had casual sex with an array of guys. While we didn't necessarily approve of this behavior, no one said anything, because we all assumed this was her way of taking back control of her life. After a few years, she started talking via Facebook with someone she had a class with in college who was now in the Army. To make it clear, she was not friends with this person beforehand, just acquaintances. They decided to start a long distance relationship, and he was 2 1/2 years younger than her (21 to her 23). After only a few months of dating, he was pressuring her to get married. After entertaining the idea for too long, she broke up with him.

Now, she is in a sexual relationship with someone over a decade older than her, who has a girlfriend. She will go out with us at night, then take the subway to his place. It's essentially a booty call, but she is so smitten with him, she doesn't care/realize it.  After months, we all finally met him. Unfortunately, any doubts about the relationship were NOT alleviated and we are all more concerned that she is losing herself.

I guess the point I'm trying to make is that she's never been in a healthy relationship, and might not realize she deserves better. She isn't treating herself or her body with any respect. It's becoming obvious to her friends and family that she might need to meet with a shrink or go to some type of counseling to deal with unresolved issues from her abusive relationship, because it seems to have impacted her self-esteem and judgement greatly. My friend is incredibly smart, vibrant and strong-willed . . . and no one is sure if we should approach the idea of seeing a therapist/how she would react. Or, are we just too concerned, and making a mountain out of a mole hill? Should we just go with the flow and trust her?

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