Being friends with people with mental health difficulties

Im someone who gets over involved in other peoples lives; I overhear someone say something and if I have the solution I find myself interrupting them to share it with them….. on one hand its a trait of generosity which I like in myself, on the other hand I can be a busy-body and inappropriate in certain situations.
My world centres around therapy, group therapy, support groups etc so I can find myself spending a lot of time with people who are unwell mentally.
Im okay with that. Ive had to try and learn (im still trying) that I can not fix someone, indeed sometimes I cant even support them even though im willing and able.
The problem with me supporting someone who is ill is that I find I can pick up being unwell off them, so im learning that I have to keep a distance, but even doing that doesnt seem to work for me and I find myself unsteady just after being in a room with someone who is unwell.
Maybe its part of the personaility disorder; the aquiring other peoples modes of being.  It’s one I fight against but often my identity isn’t strong enough to exist alongside someone elses difficulties.
I was very hurt once when a good friend told me she had learnt her mental illness from me and mine. I work very hard to ensure that I am not using other peoples ill health to ‘gain’ from.
My support team has never advised me not to see certain people if they are unwell although they do shake their head and ask questions in an incredulous tone as I explain what happened and why i’m so off centre. They help me pick up my pieces and verbally pat me back together.
Something I notice in myself and others when unwell is that they may say unusual or skewered things, I used to try and put forward other viewpoints but am now very aware (from my own experience)  that their illness may not allow them to be open to alternate ideas, maybe until later, another day or maybe never.
I like, or dislike, people, regardless of their mental health,  and I hope that people are prepared to make the effort to get to know me for more than my mental health difficulties before they decide about me.


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