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Old 9th March 2009, 11:41 PM   #1
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Exclamation What can/should I do for my married friend?

I came here to seek friendship advice about my friend who has been married for ten years. I have only known her for two of those years, but I was with her throughout her second pregnancy, and we are very close.

We have become so close, in fact, that doesn't seem to feel the need to practice any restraint when talking to me about her husband. I'm extremely glad that she feels like she can talk about these things with me, but I find myself unable to give any sort of consolation, no matter how much compassion I feel for her, other than an awkward pat on the shoulder.

Lately she has been working different hours as a youth minister at my church, working nights instead of mornings, and she is out of the house from 9 AM to 8 PM on Sundays. Her husband has expressed some... anguish... regarding this matter.

One particular Saturday in February her husband decided that he needed some "alone time" to work on one of his art projects, so she was forced to take her two children and stay overnight with the sister of one of her friends. That Saturday was, you guessed it, Valentine's Day.

And just this weekend, her baby was recovering from a fever and she was catching up on lost sleep when her husband fell ill. On Saturday she went out for a couple of hours. I was chatting with her online over her phone when she suddenly signed off. I found out later that she had received a frantic text message from her husband to return home immediately. She got back to find him tossing out her eldest son's toys and all her magazines, shouting that the house was "a mess." She promptly told him to leave and cool off. He texted her later, apologizing.

Being only eighteen, and having lived with a single mom until three years ago when she remarried, I have to be honest. I know jack about marriage except for what I've learned in school and church. But having to separate over night in order to cool off sounds like a really serious and painful matter to me.

I can tell that my friend is troubled. I can hear it in her voice, I can tell she's desperate because she's telling ME all of this. I know that she has older and more experienced friends. What are they telling her? And what should I be telling her, or doing for her?
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