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Forums / Sexuality and gender identity / partner with anxiety/depression

Topic: partner with anxiety/depression

6 posts, 0 answered
  1. jo85
    jo85 avatar
    2 posts
    29 August 2014
    Hi new friends! I'm aware that this isn't technically the space for support people but to be honest I feel more comfortable communicating in the queer community because there are some differences between us and the straighties. My girlfriend is not going so well at the moment, and I am trying to be supportive but also struggling with that. I won't go into details, but I think what I'm struggling with the most is a feeling of responsibility for her and her happiness. I wonder if any of you have got any gold tips for me? Thank youuuu.
  2. Jacko777
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    Jacko777 avatar
    781 posts
    29 August 2014 in reply to jo85

    It's great that you can be supportive for your partner jo85. You may be concerned for her but in the end I think she is responsible for her own happiness, as you are responsible for yours. Set the example for your partner by being responsible for your own happiness, lead the way, whilst being considerate of her needs. 

  3. AGrace
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    AGrace avatar
    1214 posts
    31 August 2014 in reply to jo85

    Hi jo,

    I am one of the straighties but I do understand what you're going through.

    Jacko is right, that you can't possibly be responsible for your girlfriend's happiness, but I get that as a carer it often feels like this is your role. What sorts of things does your girlfriend find even just a little bit of joy in? Is she willing to do any of these things even when you aren't with her? Is she working at the moment? Are you also working?

    Is your girlfriend getting any professional support with her problems? Is she taking any medication to help with her low mood? Does she have other family/friends that she can also rely on for support?

    Do the two of you communicate quite openly about her concerns, and how you are BOTH feeling? I do think that as a carer you can easily get caught up in supporting your partner, and you start to feel like it would be too much for her to hear about how you're coping. It is, however really important that the communication go both ways. 

    Have you spoken with your GP about your worries around your carer role? Carers need support too. There are some options available to you. Obviously seeing a GP is one of them. There's also the carer's Australia website. There are a number of support groups available to carers. One thing that I arranged for my partner was for him to have 24hr access to my Psychiatrist. He was also invited to some of the sessions. Through the hospital that I'd been admitted to, they offer carer information evenings, this might also be something to research.

    I do hope that this has been helpful.

  4. justinok
    justinok avatar
    151 posts
    2 September 2014 in reply to jo85

    Hey Jo, ultimately you can't be responsible for your partners happiness but her knowing that you understand and aren't going to run away will be really important for her stability. She may also feel like she is a burden on you, which could increase her guilt and possibly make her push you away. Like AGrace says communication is really important, and also you've got to look after yourself too because it can be really draining dealing with depression in a relationship. I've been in a relationship where both of us had issues with depression and anxiety, and you can set each other off and make a vicious cycle. If you feel comfortable maybe you can tell us more about your specific situation and we can try and provide some more tips. Having a good friendship circle where you can seek outside support is really good too.

  5. jo85
    jo85 avatar
    2 posts
    8 September 2014 in reply to jo85

    Thanks so much for getting back to me :-) I think we're starting to make some progress. My greatest fear is being everything for her and vice versa. I don't think of myself as her carer, and I don't want to take that role on - I'd rather be a support person but I think everything you asked is relevant, Agrace, thank you. She is seeing a psychologist, as am I. I think we're doing all the right things but it's just hard! I feel sometimes like my feelings are less important than or insignificant compared to hers because at the moment her suffering is greater and that makes me reluctant to share things with her. Eep. Thanks again! 

  6. geoff
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    geoff avatar
    15268 posts
    8 September 2014 in reply to jo85

    dear Jo, what does concern me as well as the others who have posted, is that it is so difficult to be able to communicate with the person you are living with, and the reason why this happens is because there are a lot of discussions that happen in this relationship, some you agree with and some you don't, and the same applies to your partner, so when depression hits the person affected, they don't feel comfortable talking to you, so it's a battle to overcome this.

    But this now involves the both of you, and as you are both seeing a psychologist, I think that both of you are going to say to each other 'that I am upset ,depressed because of --- ', so there has to be a balance between both of you accepting one another and their point of view, and agree that there is work that has to be done with the help of your psych. Geoff.

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