Instead of an assessment (which implies judgment) and advice (which implies expertise), what someone who's mentally distressed, in any context, needs first, mentally and emotionally, is some acknowledgment and support.
This Thanksgiving, I'm helping my kids participate by expressing their gratitude for the things that make their lives special. Every night, I lie in bed with them and ask them to be thankful for something, anything. It is also a good reminder for me to pause and be present with them.
Being that we only have this one, wild and precious life as you and as me, right here and right now, striving to overcome, to lift one's spirits, to find and experience that which is good, satisfying, funny and loving is, for me, the only choice.