Hello! Please remember that my responses are informational only, we are not establishing a therapeutic relationship.
It sounds like that is a frustrating situation for you.
And probably confusing as to why she does not move on.
And, I suspect that you feel helpless too!
What happens when you've tried to talk to her about the situation?
Wow --it sounds like she is paralyzed by her feelings and very stuck. And having difficulty accepting that his behavior is not functional for a relationship.
I would say she doesn't need to "know if she loves him," rather, does she want to continue living like this 1, 2, 5 years from now under the conditions that she's living now? If she can picture that scenario (nothing changing) it might help.
Or --does she hold onto false hope that he will change --which will make things harder if that's her belief.
So really she has 2 men in her life where neither relationship is healthy or functional.
You are limited in what you can do. I would first say that ideally it would be good if she went to therapy.
When we are stuck, we tend to listen to those closest to us the least!
If she's not open to that, I would ask very open-ended questions like, "How do you picture your life 5 years from now? What do you want the circumstances to be like?"
The point being, where you don't tell her what to do or why this is all so wrong, but try to get her to discover it for herself by asking open, inviting, questions that make her think.
If she complains about one of these guys' behavior, I'd ask, "Wow --what's that like for you to deal with?"
And make empathic reflections, "It must be frustrating that your boyfriend is high and you couldn't do what you wnted!"
So you might be relieved if she let go of #1 and went with @2
Yes, it would be good for her son to have some stability.
That's understandable --with his father so in and out of his life....
Can you suggest therapy to her?
No I am here
A good psychologist --I think any modality would work in this situation, more importantly she would need to feel comfortable with the therapist and be able to develop a good working relationship with him or her.
Do you need websites to search for one?
OK. She may want to do several consultations --
Unless she really connects well with the first person that she goes to.
A good therapist should be able to see through that ---
I'm sorry that you are in the helpless position of watching. I think it's the most frustrating to see our kids suffering --even more than ourselves!
You are welcome. I hope I gave you some ideas of how to approach her
That's a tough one. It essentially means allowing her (by that I mean emotionally) to make her mistakes and find a way to accept that you have no control.
You don't give up caring, but you need some kind of emotional boundary.
Particularly tough balance, but it's worth working on.
Otherwise you can make yourself physically sick. Then, perhaps you need to set some tangible boundaries as well.
You might need to tell her that you cannot listen to certain topics....and explain why.
OK --You are welcome.