I have a friend I'm having a hard time communicating with for the past few months. She's been diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) for a handful of years (which has been the backbone of a history of emotional instability and suicidal behaviors), and lately this has reared its ugly head all over again. (FYI she is undergoing professional help throughout this time)
Where I feel uncertain/uncomfortable is that while I want to be there for her, we haven't been in contact during past episodes of hers and thus I'm not sure what is the best way to support her. She's essentially emotionally "blank" during these episodes, and they can last for days/weeks/months. So far this has resulted in our conversations starting/ending on her emotional state (usually about how she feels so tired and hopeless).
I've tried responding to this by:
Telling her I care about her wellbeing and her place on this Earth
Talking about her experiences with all the other people who care about her (family, close friends, etc)
Talking about the positives she contributes to the world
Talking about every day life so she can have a break from talking about her illness
Offering to listen if she ever needs to talk about something (including "call me anytime" privileges)
Asking her if there's anything I can do to better support her
However, it feels like these things make 0 impact to her when she's in this state. While I don't believe I can "save" her from these episodes, it makes me wonder if there are better ways I could be responding to support her.
Similar to how using an "I-statement" is a proven method of expressing how you feel, are there any specific interpersonal skills/strategies that work best when speaking to someone who is in emotional distress or emotionally disconnected from the world?
P.S.: We don't live near each other anymore (several states apart), so my words are all I have for supporting her.
P.P.S.: Again, she is already seeking professional help, and I'm not trying to be a replacement for that.