Depressed Friend Refuses Help

Hey ...
I am a muslim, so having a boyfriend isn't at all accepted by parents,it's forbidden by our religion. some girls just do it from behind their parents backs . I don't do that.. I am 14.

So, there's this girl i know and i am kinda close to, she's actually a very respectable girl and at the same time she's fun.. She's now in 10th grade ..
In 5TH grade, there was this boy who was one year younger and always sweet-talked her and straight forwardly told her that he loves her. But she didn't love him back, but as he continiously talked to her for 4 OR 5 YEARS persistenly and not giving up, She finally gave up and agreed to be his girlfriend. She isn't the kind of girl who'd do such a thing AT ALL, but she weakened in front of his sweet words.. Later, (2-3 months ago) we all discovered that he was a very irrespectable person and they broke it up .
Maybe a week ago or sth, that boy left school with no notice. I thought that she was over him, but apparently she isn't.. Ever since he left, she kind of went into a lifeless mode. I spotted her crying a couple of times, she has COMPLETELY withdrawn from all her friends and is always alone and we all try to support her but she just says I am sorry guys but i just wanna be alone.. She has changed 180 degrees, her face is always pale and yellow,literally YELLOW !! She used to sing and she had an amazing voice that spellbound everyone. and that boy used to play musical instruments, he playd for her and she used to sing on his music.. Now, she has totally givn up on singing and basically gave up on everything and she's just a totally different person.

I have been going through and still am (better now) a depression bout myself. But it's all inside me, nobody knows. I just see her and see myself in her, i am extremely worried about her, she's not the girl i knew, I suspect that she may be depressed..
I do't know what to do ..
May i add, that we aren't that extremely close but we are really good friends. her parents know nothing about this..
How can i help her when she won't let anyone near her ?!

Ben's Answer:
You're a very good friend for expressing this concern about this girl. She does clearly sound depressed and should really get some help. Just talking to someone would be the most important help she could get and would probably turn things around completely for her. If you know a school counselor or trustworthy adult that she could confide in, maybe you could try to help arrange the meeting. Or encourage her to talk to you about her feelings. Or you could give her a teen hotline/helpline phone number (they are free and confidential and you can call day or night). Other than that, you can't force a person to get help. Just stick by her and keep letting her know you are there for her if she wants to talk about it. Just knowing that may be a great comfort, even if she resists talking to you. If everyone turned their backs on her it would be worse.

But, don't sacrifice your own peace for a person that refuses help. You can't fix her problems.

Thanks for your caring. It means a lot.

Take Care,
Ben Schwarcz, MFT

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