Social Question

Judi's avatar

How do you deal with someone having a manic episode all over Facebook?

Asked by Judi (37684 points ) May 30th, 2014 from iPhone

The daughter of a former friend is totally losing it on Facebook. She is finding meaning in everything and right now is flooding a Facebook post of mine with crazy comments about every 5 seconds. Everything is related to quantum physics and she isn’t making much sense. (Although to know nothing about quantum physics.)
I care about this young woman (in her late thirties) and I’m concerned that she’s going off the deep end. Apparently she recently left her husband and he has her young daughter (probably a good thing.)
I don’t rely have the energy to deal with her crazy but I also don’t want to abandon someone who is obviously headed towards a huge crash. I have a few bipolar folks in my family and I feel really selfish thinking that I don’t want the emotional drain.
If you have people like this in your life, how are you there for them without being sucked down with them?

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40 Answers

cookieman's avatar

If I still had contact information for the former friend (girl’s mom), I would contact her and let her know what’s been going on. Just that I was concerned and thought she should know. Then step away.

Next, I would delete my Facebook account — but that’s just me. ;^)

Judi's avatar

I’m pretty sure the mom knows what’s going on. I noticed that her grandma is a Facebook friend.
I really don’t want to delete my Facebook. I have reconnected with people from my childhood that I never thought I would hear from again. I don’t want to give one crazy person that kind of power.

janbb's avatar

I would contact her grandmother or mother and then hide her posts or delete her as a friend. No need to delete your page.

My best guy friend is bipolar and he crapped on our friendship a couple of months ago. Very upsetting.

turtlesandbox's avatar

This is when privacy settings are helpful. You can remove your post, then post it again for your friends to see, but add her as someone who you don’t want seeing the post.

I would do this from now on with all future posts.

cookieman's avatar

I was kidding about deleting your page. Notice the smiley face.

The rest of my post stands, however. Contact the mom or (as @janbb says) the grandma, and step away. Hiding her posts is a good idea.

hearkat's avatar

You can put her in a Restricted group that has limited access to your content and Unfollow her so she’ll still be listed as a “friend” but interactions will be limited to what you allow. If her comments are on your post, you should be able to delete them, as well – from your desktop.

hearkat's avatar

Whoa. I just say the post and her comments – way out there and inappropriate posting screenshots of stuff from your own page. I’d even consider blocking her, but if you’re concerned about her blowing things out of proportion if you do so, I’d do as I recommended above.

Take your own screenshots of what she’s posted to document this – before you delete it, and reach out to her family, as others have suggested.

janbb's avatar

Just saw it too. Delete all her comments or your whole post. A nutjob I used to be friends with once really insulted me on my page and then was furious when I deleted his comment.

Pachy's avatar

Aside from other suggestions on this thread, I would suggest that you try to reduce your own emotionality about this. This kind of social media folly is the new norm and to stress about it—well, anyway, overly stress about it—is a waste of time and energy.

Judi's avatar

I am not really concerned or upset about her showing her crazy on my page. I’m more concerned that if I block or delete her that when the crash comes (and it’s coming) she will have alienated everyone and no one will be there to catch her.
To put it in perspective, my bipolar first husband killed himself when he crashed. I don’t want to see this happen to her, but I also really really really hate drama. Not that I feel responsible for her life or anything but I hate to abandon someone when they’re this sick.

janbb's avatar

@Judi Understandable so maybe contacting her relatives to discuss your concerns is the way to go. As you know, you can’t rescue here yourself.

ucme's avatar

I rejoice that i’m not on the bloody thing, typical fb behaviour.
Before anyone screams “but if you don’t have an account, how do you know it’s typical?”
My wife & daughter are on there & frequently cringe at the moronic users.

janbb's avatar

@ucme But it does also depend on whom you friend.

Pachy's avatar

@Judi, I understand. Thanks for the clarification.

Judi's avatar

Her mother and I had a huge falling out when her dad worked for my husband. It makes it more complicated.

ucme's avatar

@janbb Not at all, one can hardly be held responsible if a friend suddenly acts out of character with others.

janbb's avatar

@ucme That is true.

KNOWITALL's avatar

Personally I don’t allow anyone freaking on my fb wall and will message and offer them the opportunity to delete odd posts before defriending them.

On the other hand, when it comes to dealing with bi-polar and mental illnesses, sometimes all it takes is a kind email expressing concern to stop it. Often people don’t even know they’re rapid cycling and it takes a third party to gently inform them to get help. I often express concern with a few people I know have issues and they’re usually grateful.

turtlesandbox's avatar

This is not typical fb behaviour. I read more drama and crazy here at Fluther. You at least have options on fb to hide these kind of things. And like @janbb said, it depends on whom you friend. If this is typical behaviour that you see on fb, it’s time for new friends.

ucme's avatar

Of course, you can always display more behaviour typical of fb, a strange sense of misguided loyalty for example.

CWOTUS's avatar

Shut down Facebook for awhile and take a walk. Don’t feed trolls or maniacs.

Judi's avatar

@KNOWITALL, I had a very long PM with her. She’s off her rocker right now. She actually said “if this is manic I don’t want to change.”
My heart is aching for her. I know the opposite end of this is coming. I pray she survives.

anniereborn's avatar

@CWOTUS way to be sensitive to those with mental illnesses.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@Judi Mania does often feel energizing to people with a disorder, it sounds like she needs meds. Rapid-cycling manifests in my mother as frenetic high energy, fast-talking, outlandish ideas and impossible grandiose dreams of fame or riches. Bipolar people are also typically bad with money and with relationships.

Personally, all you can do is suggest she seek professional help or if you feel she is danger, you can talk to her or her family about a psychiatric 24 hour hold. Depression sometimes comes after the energy is depleted and can lead to suicidal tendencies.

Judi's avatar

I am to aware of how this plays out since I stood by my first hubby through this until he killed himself.
She says she is still seeing her counselor but I really doubt she’s taking her meds.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@Judi Depending on your concern level, you may consider emailing a family member of hers on fb or going to see her personally to evaluate since you have experience. Hard situation.

Judi's avatar

The latest post indicates the depression is beginning it’s onset. It was a video selfie for about three seconds of her crying.

Symbeline's avatar

I don’t. If they are a close friend whom I would care to help, I usually have other, closer means besides FaceBook to be with them.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@Judi Wow, that’s not good.

cookieman's avatar

So glad Facebook is around so folks can have these meltdowns in public. ~

Then again, maybe it’s better than being all alone with no one who knows what’s going on.

anniereborn's avatar

@cookieman I DO think it’s better than being all alone.

Judi's avatar

Yesterday was really scary. We ended up calling the police because she was driving and facebooking, and videotaping. I’m not sure if they caught up with her and let her go but this morning she was calling all the people who were trying to stop her black holes trying to suck her off of her trajectory. It is so sad to watch. She even seemed to sympathize with the Santa Barbara shooter wondering if he did what he did because of the black holes.

janbb's avatar

@Judi Oh wow! Sending a hug.

anniereborn's avatar

Sending care and hugs as well. I sure hope she gets the help she needs :(

hearkat's avatar

Holy crap – that is very scary. I hope they find her and keep her, and everyone around her, safe.

MollyMcGuire's avatar

Delete the post. It’s Facebook!

Judi's avatar

MollyMcGuire, I’m concerned for her well being.

anniereborn's avatar

how is she doing?

Judi's avatar

Still crazy but spent all day yesterday with her grandmother so she was safe.

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