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Forums / Supporting family and friends with a mental health condition (carers) / Feeling helpless due to my partners drinking&depression

Topic: Feeling helpless due to my partners drinking&depression

3 posts, 0 answered
  1. BlueRose19
    BlueRose19 avatar
    1 posts
    9 April 2018

    How to start?

    Little about myself first I suppose. I've had anxiety and depression problems my whole life, but it's like a rollercoaster, sometimes I struggle more than other times. At the moment, I feel ok with where I am.

    About 18 months ago I started to see someone casually, which has now evolved into a harmonious relationship. Everything is just perfect or at least so it seemed....

    After spending more and more time together, I've come to the realization that he has a drinking problem and he knows that there is a problem. He is seeing a counsellor, I'm not sure in how much detail he goes with her, especially because he has other issues to overcome.

    He also suffers from depression and is possibly bipolar and I am very worried that I can't help him the way I'd like to help him.

    Yes, it is a new relationship, but emotionally I am already too invested to just walk away. That's not me! That person means the world to me and I cannot imagine a life without him anymore. But I don't know how to help him? Where do I even start? I am always there for him. I listen to him when he is down and I am grateful that he usually does open up to me. When he drinks, his mind wonders to dark places and it just scares me. They are not suicidal thoughts, but he questions his whole existence.

    I feel so helpless :(

    How can I help him? How can I make sure, that I don't slip into depression again myself while worrying about him-trying to help him?

    Are there any books which have helped others in a similar situation?

    Thanks for taking the time to read this and I am most grateful for any help you might be able to offer!!

    1 person found this helpful
  2. Peppermintbach
    Valued Contributor
    • A special award for members who go above and beyond to support others here on the forums
    Peppermintbach avatar
    4566 posts
    9 April 2018 in reply to BlueRose19

    Hi BlueRose,

    You seem like a really lovely person who clearly cares very deeply for your partner. You sound very commited and want the absolute best for him. I feel he is very fortunate to have someone like you.

    I’m not 100% sure that I will be much help in terms of practical advice/help. But I’m someone who also turns to alcohol when I’m struggling to cope so maybe I can offer you my general thoughts on the whole situation.

    To his credit, he is aware that he has a drinking problem and I’m glad he’s receiving professional support for it (as well as personal support from loved ones like you).

    I’m stating very common knowledge but alcohol is a depressant at the end of the day. So it would make his depressed feelings even more pronounced in the long run (even though it is also a coping mechanism) as I’m sure you have seen...

    I feel relieved you’re aware of your own emotional needs as the last thing you would want is to burnout. On that note, perhaps establishing some boundaries is important so maybe adopt a mentality that you want to help him but you can’t “save” him. Just my thoughts...

    Also I feel perhaps it would help to remember not to neglect yourself so take some regular time out to rest and do nice things for yourself (regular self care). I feel just because we love someone, it doesn’t mean we should put all our own needs aside because that is a recipe for burnout in my opinion. I hope you look after yourself too. I believe you’re very important too.

    Now, I wonder if you have seen the “Supporting family and friends with a mental health condition (carers)forum on this website as I feel you might be able to find some helpful ideas there.

    Kind thoughts,

    Pepper

    2 people found this helpful
  3. geoff
    Life Member
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    geoff avatar
    15584 posts
    9 April 2018 in reply to BlueRose19
    Hello BlueRose, can I welcome you to the forum and a great reply from Pepper so thank you.

    I am sorry for your situation but when I was in depression for so long I also used alcohol as a way of self-medicating much to the annoyance of my wife and 2 sons.

    As you say it's difficult to know whether or not he has even mentioned that he has a drinking problem and even if he has the amount maybe a query, and I say this because it took me awhile to tell my psychologist how much I was drinking, but a blood test would indicate whether or not how much of a problem it is.

    I would suggest that you see your own doctor a.s.a.p, so you can still listen to him and remain the way you want to be.

    If you click 'Get Support', scroll down until you see 'Publications to download', this is a booklet on Depression, but to get a book about alcohol your doctor would be the person to advise you.

    My Best.

    Geoff.
    1 person found this helpful

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