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Forums / Supporting family and friends with a mental health condition (carers) / Are you supporting a depressed partner? My tips from 18 years of experience

Topic: Are you supporting a depressed partner? My tips from 18 years of experience

  1. Carmela
    Champion Alumni
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    Carmela avatar
    183 posts
    15 July 2016
    This list has been compiled from experiences supporting my husband with depression. There is no one size fits all, so please take what you are comfortable with based on your circumstances and resources.


    1. Reach out to family and/or friends to feel supported - this also covers support groups - online or face to face. Don't let stigma stop you from reaching out.

    2. Relationship boundaries - identify what is acceptable and not. My general platform is that physical abuse is unacceptable as well as regular demeaning/berating comments. Communicate this openly so everyone understands.

    3. Coping tools - this could be exercise, meditation, reading a book, meeting friends, etc. They are important for your mental health.

    4. Knowledge is power - research to understand about depression. The more you know, the better care you can provide.

    5. Remember your partner in the good times - this is their true selves, not the darkness.

    6. Listen and show receptivity - without judgement or anger. If communicate becomes strained, the timeout can provide clarity. Encourage communication gently and try not to push.

    7. Seek counselling - sharing your feelings can provide an opportunity to off load the heavy stuff and identify resilience and coping strategies.


    8. Work as a team - don't let mental illness be in the driver's seat. Offer to go to the Dr's and support them. Understand medication and side effects. Be understanding that some days are harder than others.


    9. Words are powerful - remember what you say cannot be taken back.


    10. Carer Self-esteem and self-worth - if you compromise these for the sake of supporting your partner, you are likely to live with resentment towards your partner and the circumstances you find yourself in.


    11. Don't forget the children - challenging circumstances at home can affect them mentally and emotionally. Speak about mental illness ( - has some great resources) and be a strong foundation toward maintaining normality in their daily activities.


    12. Intimacy - there are many variables here, so from my experience - keep communication open and make couple time to connect. When my husband was depressed, daily hugs or holding hands wherever possible worked for us. Some carers I have spoken with said their partner would demand intimacy. My personal position is that intimacy is about love without demands or attachments relating to expectation. Demands only deplete the goodness in the connection and sharing a a loving experience.


    [Moderator's note: this thread is for sharing tips on what has worked for you in supported a loved one with a mental health condition. In order to help us keep this thread focused on solutions, please start a new thread if you are seeking support from the community around how to best support your loved one.]

    123 people found this helpful
  2. HelplessWife
    HelplessWife avatar
    7 posts
    18 September 2018 in reply to Carmela

    Thank you Carmela

    This has helped give me some guidance in supporting and staying strong for my husband and our children

    I am trying and failing consistently as husband is more depressed then ever and has now retreated to living under the house...

    I hold onto hope he won’t give up on us...

    Thanks again

    3 people found this helpful
  3. PamelaR
    Champion Alumni
    • Community champion volunteers who are not currently active on the forums.
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    PamelaR avatar
    2740 posts
    19 September 2018 in reply to HelplessWife

    Hi Helpless Wife and welcome to Beyond Blue forums

    It's good you've found your way to our supportive forums. Just letting you know Carmel wrote the post a long time ago (2016). So pleased to see you have found it useful in your current circumstances.

    I'm a little sad though that you feel like you are Helpless, but sure you are not. It just feels that way at times. It's the depression. Depression is debilitating for people at times, it takes time to heal and recover.

    If you want to talk some more, feel free to join in the discussions that happen in the forums by doing keyword searches in the Beyond Blue search field or by doing a Google search (and adding Beyond Blue). You can also start your own thread under the forum you think is the best one for you.

    Also, the BB homepage has a webpage - Looking after yourself. This is so important. When you're up to it, have a look there as well. It may have some more useful tips.

    Have you thought about contacting the Carer Advisory and Counselling Service? This service provides family carer support and counselling. You can contact your state or territory branch of Carers Association on 1800 242 636 (free call from landlines).

    When you feel like talking some more - feel free to do so.

    Kind regards


    6 people found this helpful
  4. Anonymous1001
    Anonymous1001 avatar
    3 posts
    20 January 2019 in reply to Carmela
    This is really helpful - thank you so much.
    1 person found this helpful
  5. Purple People Eater
    blueVoices member
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    Purple People Eater avatar
    36 posts
    4 February 2019

    I work full time as well as supporting hubby, who is not just depressed but also anxious, and has AD/HD and is in chronic pain, with an issue managing his opiate pain killers so they don't run out and make him more miserable.

    This is not new, I've been dealing with it for a long time, but what I am having trouble with is establishing a sleep schedule without making him feel like crap. He just wants to talk and talk at night, and I need to get up and go to work. Fortunately I have some flexibility, but I am sick of still being at work after 6pm at night... which doesn't necessarily help me get up earlier.

    It's not always him that makes me stay up late, but when I am trying, he just won't listen until I get nasty with him. Last night he went to go sleep on the couch, and I got him to come back by apologising and saying I'd be quiet and not complain.

    Any ideas on how I can set a firm boundary so I can get enough sleep (except during emergencies of course), without making my husband feel like a lowlife?

    1 person found this helpful
  6. Samrat
    Samrat avatar
    1 posts
    4 February 2019 in reply to Purple People Eater

    Hi @purple people eater.Seems like you are going through a tough time. I also have experienced something similar like this.I live in an apartment with my friend.We share the same room.It was like 1 years ago that his grandfather passed away. He had spent 18 years with his grandfather back in his home country where they used to live together.He had so much love, care, affection for his grandfather.He used to tell us that his grandfather was a source of motivation for him.But after his death, he had been helpless. He used to stay alone most of the time.Remained stressed,overthink and so on.He barely slept at night.Light was always on in the room which deprived me from having a proper sleep as well. This was creating a lot of problem in his personal and professional life as well. Hence, we friends thought that it is important to take him out of this. We took some off days in week. We never left him alone.One among 4 flat mates was always with him.We went for movies, dinner and so on.This was done just to make sure that his mind remains engaged and he does not have time to think about his stress.

    I know this looks difficult.However,I think you need to support your husband.Please try not getting angry.He needs your support. I think you also should try keeping hims engaged. You should also try to know the real reason behind his anxiety and depression. You are going very good in supporting him as I liked your way of apologising.However,being a strong woman you need to solve this and make sure you get back to a happy,cheerful and normal life and lie on bed with peace.Cheers.

    2 people found this helpful
  7. Seals
    Seals avatar
    1 posts
    24 March 2019 in reply to Purple People Eater

    Hi Purple People Eater, thank you so much for your bravery in posting this. My situation has similarities to yours, though my partner’s mental health sounds much easier to manage than your partner’s, on the whole.

    I struggle with the cycle of guilt at wanting to sleep when they’re ready to talk, anger at them when I am struggling to cope at work and feelings of wanting to help them threaded through. Their battle with insomnia as well as depression doesn’t help either!

    Though our situation is milder, I find myself wondering if I really love them, if I’m not willing to sacrifice sleep for them? This then becomes stressful in a perpetul sense, even when the ‘black dog’ goes away for a bit.

    I don’t have any solutions for you, unfortunately, but wanted to thank for sharing; solidarity is something.

    4 people found this helpful
  8. Purple People Eater
    blueVoices member
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    Purple People Eater avatar
    36 posts
    25 March 2019 in reply to Seals

    Hi Seals

    Thanks for your reply. Yes, you can really love someone without wanting to sacrifice sleep for them... We get compassion fatigue if we don't have enough self-care and support for ourselves in the tough times.

    Speaking from experience, when I don't get enough sleep, my brain doesn't work very well and I become more irritable and paranoid... which funnily enough leads me to asking questions like, "Do I really love him"... fortunately, I have been through a long period of support, multiple episodes of counselling over the years, etc.

    I once even gave him a well-prepared ultimatum (when I was well-rested), and he came through, turning over a new leaf on that problem immediately.

    Good luck!


    3 people found this helpful
  9. Marcia30
    Marcia30 avatar
    1 posts
    9 June 2019

    Hi there ,

    im going through a very tough time.. I was dating my partner for a year and during that time he was officially diagnosed with bipolar, ptsd and personality traits.. I was very supportive and loving to him during our relationship however I asked to take a break around 7 months in as I felt myself becoming very anxious and upset due to his experience. I had witnessed him trying to overdose on medication and I had witnessed him become over raged.. it concerned me.. we still kept in contact each day however he commenced decreasing contact with me and became very one worded.. he then told me he resents me for leaving him... it’s been months since he’s been like this and sometimes he will ask to catch up and other times not reply to me. I feel like he’s going through a BP cycling period and not coping with his new medication of latuda and serouquel. He tells me he’s fine but is easily angered and always tired.. I can see how much he’s distanced from me in months and I can’t handle it I feel so abondoned. He once adored and loved me so so much and now he doesn’t even want to see me or talk to me. He’s deleted me off social media and hasn’t been seen to be liking other women’s pictures. He has a different personality now and doesn’t seem to remember the good times he once had with me. I don’t know what to do, but I’m so sad and struggling.

    He says he misses me but that he feels so tired and is only interested in work and gym and going home. He tells me he hasn’t seen other women and isn’t and that he needs to protect himself from hurt. I feel so upset and useless

    1 person found this helpful
  10. Tijana
    Tijana avatar
    2 posts
    2 August 2019 in reply to Marcia30


    I understand you are suffering, but believe me it can be much worse. I know, because my partner of 26 years has a bipolar and we have a child who needs to be protected. I am so tired of always being a reasonable adult and walking on egg shells.

    1 person found this helpful
  11. Gripo
    Gripo avatar
    5 posts
    8 August 2019

    Marcia 30, I cannot say its the same but similar, I am feeling very helpless as my bf who was very loving has suddenly requested for space. Initially i thought it was because he was over me but he asked me not to worry and that he has some issues he needs to deal with alone and to give him sometime to himself.

    He says there is no other too but he has been very irritable and would even say mean things to me and then apologies. He is acting out of character and very negative saying things like "he is not the one for me", "my mom wouldn't like him and would want me to stay away from him", "i have always felt you do not want us to work". He is very insecure and thinks i am cheating on him all the time.

    I know he asked for space but i have still been contacting him once in 2 days or so to tell him i love him and miss him. I do not get a response. Not sure what to do? Do i keep going?or back off and let him contact me? Please help.

  12. Deby58
    Deby58 avatar
    1 posts
    22 August 2019 in reply to Gripo


    How is it all going 😊

  13. Maree1932
    Maree1932 avatar
    1 posts
    4 September 2019 in reply to Gripo
    Hi, I hope this is all settled now and you are with him happily. However, if not, I would suggest perhaps give him space and focus on yourself. Once he works his problem out he will get back to you and you just accept him with love and care and affection. Yes, seems like he is going through depression and he thinks hes not good enough for you, he needs more affection and attention than someone without depression. I would say when he gives you a chance you need to show him more frequently that you love him, but be careful not to overdo it cause there is a belief in his mind that he is not good and hes worthless, so if you overdo it he might think you are deceiving him or manipulating him. This is just a personal opinion though, hope it works for you.
  14. Shaz1964
    Shaz1964 avatar
    6 posts
    23 September 2019

    thank you Carmela

    my husband has bipolar 11 and other diagnosis and found your information interesting

    sometimes it is hard finding the right balance between ourselves and looking after our love one like my elderly mum and my husband

    I have lots of physical problems which makes it hard also

  15. Gripo
    Gripo avatar
    5 posts
    2 October 2019 in reply to Maree1932

    Hi Deby58 and Maree1932,

    Thanks for the input.

    It has been very hot and cold since. I am not sure what he even has. I have been showing love and affection as much as I can, there are times i get so angry with him and express it too. If a week goes by with no contact, he initiates so that is good.I just hope he confides in me one day and lets me in. Its hard to be in the dark and feel helpless.

    We have no physical intimacy since 4 months, i have even tried to openly tell him I miss that aspect of our relationship. He says he does too, but never does anything about it.

    This morning he said "Good morning my love. I miss you sweetheart". But what i fail to understand is why cant he just come see me if he really misses me. what exactly is stopping him? I am finding it hard to understand him. May be i am missing something.

    I am just keeping calm and respond like everything is okay. I am glad he lives with his mom so i am not worried about his safety.

    I want him back. I don't know if it is ever possible now? its been almost half a year.

    I suppose i should just take one day at a time :(

  16. Redbird
    Redbird avatar
    3 posts
    1 December 2019

    Hi I've been supporting my partner for a year now. We didn't realise he has depression until one day he left all of sudden to NZ a year ago for 5 weeks. When he was back, we started seeing couple therapy, he started opening up more on his suicidal thoughts. He left again 6 months later, out of the blue and for 9 weeks without telling anyone where he's at. Nobody not even his family believed he's suicidal because he hid it so well, and would only open up to me if I ask the right question. I've been struggling myself with anxiety because I don't know if he's safe when he leaves abruptly. He gets depressed knowing he's hurting me, but he can't control his thoughts. I've been getting a lot of self help and seeing psychologist to keep myself sane but I'm struggling. Everyone around me sees it as I should leave him for my own sake. He has refused to come home but stays at his parents for last 5.5 months. his family thinks I'm not letting him go and they are in denial that he's suicidal and blamed everything on me.

    things have been better for last 2 months in which he started on med and agreed to see a psychologist which he said didn't quite work. but he just all of sudden started lying about his whereabouts again and I feel so insecured myself that he kept hurting me with his actions.

    He has been talking more about his suicidal thoughts lately, but I really don't know how to help. I feel I am the trigger and I should let him go. but he said i am important to him and he did not want me to leave him.

    I feel so helpless. He was never out of character like this and I feel so alone albeit I have friends and psychologist that I can talk to. It just seems like an endless cycle.

    2 people found this helpful
  17. CAREE
    CAREE avatar
    2 posts
    9 December 2019 in reply to Redbird
    I hope that you are not offended that I have found your post helpful. It’s awful but it’s reassuring to know that there are people in the same situation, struggling because of the person they love. I hope for you that there is a positive outcome. Maybe it can give me hope.
    1 person found this helpful
  18. Beth12
    Beth12 avatar
    1 posts
    16 December 2019

    I've been supporting my husband for most of our 10 years together (married 8), without realising it.
    My husband has dyslexia (diagnosed at 16), ADHD (mentioned at 16 but never diagnosed), which we were able to have this diagnosed about 2 years ago and Depression (diagnosed about 3 years ago).

    We have three small children (6.5, 5 and 3). Once ADHD was diagnosed it was mentioned that each child was likely to have spiked the depression. Which it did when our third was 6 weeks old my husband had suicidal thoughts and was thankfully supported through a hospital mental health program.

    As we all know, it can be a roller coaster. They are OK one day, not the next.

    Out of the blue last week my husband told me he didn't love me. I have since been able to work out he feels his medication is a burden to take it daily and although I am in soo very much pain I can see his pain in his eyes. He has about 20 years of pain that he has barely spoken to anyone about and hasn't seeked counselling for.

    I can see where his words are coming from (his pain) and am extremely fearful and have seen how situations like this can lead to separation and sever depression outcomes. I have encouraged he reconnect with the Mental health nurse he could talk to to find a good counselor he can connect and help him.

    I have stayed strong, supported him, ensured my kids are ok (one with a mild disability include therapies etc to coordinate). I am now however very very tired. My strength has dwindled and I am just exhausted.

    3 people found this helpful
  19. poorlydrawn
    poorlydrawn avatar
    14 posts
    21 January 2020 in reply to Beth12

    Hi Beth,

    Thanks for sharing your story. I don't have any direct experience to compare to your situation, but it sounds like you have done amazingly well to get this far.

    It's OK to be exhausted - you're only human, like the rest of us. Make sure that you get the support that you need to help you - and, writing about it on here is a good start!

    If you'd like to talk more, there is a whole community here willing to listen and offer support. In the meantime, though, you're wonderful! :)

    2 people found this helpful
  20. BillyB
    BillyB avatar
    1 posts
    25 February 2020
    Hi I have a partner who is 24 and hasn’t worked in 5 years , the longer she didn’t work the harder it got for her to do anything. She became more anxious. To the point she couldn’t call to pay a bill. I work most days and is a physical job. So I get in and want some time out. She has been in the house all day . Maybe going out for half hour. I know she’s struggling as I am. As I can’t understand why she can’t get up or can’t get a job. She doesn’t have a purpose . But I say things like this and she snaps and gets angry then upset
  21. TayW
    TayW avatar
    1 posts
    17 March 2020 in reply to Carmela
    My husband has depression & anxiety. He is also an alcoholic & can struggle with anger at times. At the end of last year thing escalated to the point of him cheating on me, hurting himself, us separating & eventually him getting help in the form of anti depressants. He did stop drinking for awhile but its getting worse again. He has changed jobs which has him under a lot of stress as he feels he isn't learning the new job fast enough & thinks that his workmates are judging him (these are people he has known for years & went to school with). He comes home every night so crippled from the stress & generally mopey. He's to the point now where he won't eat if I don't make him. He won't shower if I don't make him & he often falls asleep on the couch both from exhaustion & drinking. I think the extra pressure he is putting on himself is making him so tired & he isn't sleeping well at night. The problem for me is I'm a SAHM to 2 young kids & it now feels like I have another kid to look after when he comes home. He isn't as bad as he used to be anger wise but he is just so sad all the time to the point that I don't like being around him alot of the time, which upsets me because I miss the way things used to be. I'm getting him to try counselling now but if that doesn't help I'm not sure how I can keep going forward with him. I desperately want to support him but I don't know what to do when he doesn't want help. I'm not really sure what the point of this was, just needed to vent. Thanks :)
  22. ClaireMo
    ClaireMo avatar
    1 posts
    24 April 2020


    My name is Claire. My husband suffers from depression and anxiety. He uses alcohol to soothe himself. I can feel when he starts being anxious (often triggered by work), he will then start an argument about nothing, blame me, will start drinking (often more than 1 bottle), then at the start he would try to hurt me by ignoring me and pushing me away but I know I just ignore him. I do love my husband but it is draining as I never know how the mood will be when I wake up. I am trying self - care by spending time with my horses but evenings are tough. It has been like that for the 4 years we have been together. I am better at ignoring because I know his pattern of behaviour but what is the point if he is not willing to change or seek help? When he is feeling good, we can talk about it and he says he doesn't want to feel like that but he never does anything about it. I do love my husband and he is an amazing man when he is feeling good but it is so unpredictable.

    1 person found this helpful
  23. Firework4
    Firework4 avatar
    1 posts
    27 May 2020

    My husband of 12 years has struggled with depression and anxiety on and off his whole life - was only diagnosed officially about 5 years ago. He's struggled with keeping jobs; a mixture of finding work that he enjoys and fulfils him or his mental health effecting his work.

    He found a job he enjoyed with people he enjoyed working with and was in that role for almost 3 years. I was doing well in my career and had an opportunity to accept a promotion that required us moving from CBD to a remote town, 650K away. Hubby has always been very supportive of my career and we've often talked about relocating so we packed up and I accepted the position. His company weren't able to transfer him to our new location and he took a job in a similar role with a different company.

    The new company he worked for had a toxic environment and was known for going through many people in his role prior to him starting. I could see this work place was not for him as his mental health was declining so I supported him in looking for other work. As COVID conditions were changing quickly and he was on probation, he was told his position was no longer required and was out of work.

    This took a major toll on hubby's mental health. He connected with a local GP who didn't seem to understand much about mental health but had no other face to face options being remote. He was put on anti-depressants which he hadn't been on in years due to ineffectiveness. He's gone through two different types of medication and increased levels to try and find what "works".

    He's currently still unemployed and is in the process to receive payment from his income protection policy. Due to my promotion, I'm financially able to support us both at a comfortable level and am not pressuring him to look for work at this stage. What I'm struggling with is responding to people (work colleagues, family, friends) who make comments that he should still work although he's depressed and should be job searching and not living off me. Few are aware of what's happened but for those who don't, I don't want to disclose as it's none of their business but don't know what to say.

    Can anyone relate in a similar position and give some guidance on how they handle these comments?(apologies for use name, I can't seem to amend from an old profile from years ago!)

    2 people found this helpful
  24. Karly_M_99
    Karly_M_99 avatar
    1 posts
    16 June 2020 in reply to Carmela
    Thank you for this post! I am in this situation and scrambling for where to even start. It feels like it’s been a long road already, but I guess there is more to come.
  25. Lemon Zest
    Lemon Zest avatar
    1 posts
    24 September 2020
    Hi. Apologies in advance for the novel. I have reached a point where I am no longer sure if I can stay in the relationship I am in. I spent 20 years supporting a depressed partner, who left 8 years ago, as he could no longer cope with the demands of dealing with our 3 young children. 2 of them are autistic. I started a new relationship, only to find 2 years in that I am again supporting a partner with mental health issues while looking after a teenage family with enough issues of their own. I have been in this relationship for 6 years now, providing support to my boyfriend. He now has been diagnosed with bipolar and For the last 3 years has been getting help for major depressive disorder. He also has chronic pain due to a back injury and I have nursed him through open heart surgery and a major hernia surgery. He is able to very little for himself. I have drawn the line at him living with me, to save my own sanity, but he often sleeps at my home because he can’t be alone. He has all his meals at my home as he can’t shop or cook for himself. I do all of his laundry, provide a home for his dog, who he can’t motivate himself to look after and refuses to get rid of. (I have 2 dogs of my own who don’t get on with his and it’s causing huge problems) I attend all of his medical appointments as he has difficulty retaining information. I have his 2 teenage daughters at my house so that he can spend time with them, as he can’t cope with them on his own. I have for years in the past helped him run his small business, but have stepped back. There has been no intimacy at all since the depression hit. I care deeply for him and if I ever needed anything financially he would bend over backwards to provide it, though I don’t often ask him for money, even for groceries etc. He adores my kids and accepts them despite their issues and behaviours and they love him. But I am really struggling. I feel like I am just a carer. I have no social support, as being a mum 2 special needs kids has been very isolating. I have no family anywhere close. He has no family or friends either. I feel really selfish for pushing him to pick up after himself and care for his dog or help with his kids when they are here. I know how much he struggles just to get out of bed. I know he doesn’t need to hear me complaining about how much I’m struggling with carrying everything, for everyone around me. But I just can’t do it all. How do people balance so much and still maintain their own space and sanity?
  26. Wife Lil
    Wife Lil avatar
    5 posts
    8 October 2020 in reply to Firework4
    I am appreciating what you have posted because I am in a very similar situation with my husband. I have a few supportive friends, but careful not to involve others, as I have been burnt by oversharing, it can spoil friendships. I find choosing the right people to communicate is vital. Having family close or not, I have been in that situation having shifted 12 times in 15 years. I find, sometimes having mine or husbands family close hasn't really helped. I have had friends wonder why I have stayed with my husband, and family really feeling sorry for me. Love is a strong thing, it is hard to know why we pick the partners we do, but marriage is through the good and the bad, and we have had our share. The more I have suggested, talked, pushed or complained, it hasn't helped. He knows what I say. I am training myself to not try to offer suggestions, because I find my husband isn't listening to my advice. In fact, I guess he feels there is no point in repeating myself. I am fortunate because my husband is getting out of bed still, even if it's me, knocking on his door, making him the coffee. I have decided, that if we are to stay together, I need to allow him to live exactly as he chooses, and for myself to continue on as though he will work it out for himself. Certainly treating him as though he can't make a decision, or giving him directions, hasn't worked. My idea for you, and it is only my idea, is to perhaps have a meeting with the kids, and talk to them about what makes them happy, bring laughter and fun in when you can. Don't expect anything from him for a couple of weeks, take your foot off the pedal, and just glide. You all love each other, that's the key. So why not try to just let him ride it out, and carry on. I have started sketching, going out for a coffee with a friend, going for walks by myself. I no longer expect my husband to do any of it. In fact, playing the opposite game, is working better. It takes the pressure of him to perform tasks I want him to perform. After all it is all about him. I have shifted my focus to myself, and let go of trying to suggest or solve. I am finding myself, and mentally, letting him go. I treat my life as though I am single and he isn't there, and then I am there for him, and love him. I no longer search for the man I had in my life at first, I am just holding space for him to return.
    5 people found this helpful
  27. Wife Lil
    Wife Lil avatar
    5 posts
    8 October 2020 in reply to TayW
    You are already helping him, because you love him despite of your circumstances. Everyone has their way of coping with stress, but it is simply, the way we choose that adds or takes from our lives. Unfortunately, the alcohol is his method to relax and cope. I feel, this is the main topic in your conversation.
  28. quirkywords
    Community Champion
    • Outstanding members who have volunteered their time to support others here on the forums
    • Life membership is awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    quirkywords avatar
    14732 posts
    8 October 2020 in reply to Wife Lil

    I want to welcome everyoneto this thread who has posted here this year or who has posted here for the first time. This thread is an older one so it is not looked at frequently.

    If anyone wants support they can start a new thread or maybe look at other threads in the supporting family and friend with a mental health condition.(carers)

    The first post has many helpful suggestions.

  29. Sweesoft
    Sweesoft avatar
    60 posts
    22 March 2021 in reply to Carmela
    Thank you for this thread. It's a very challenging role to have a partner dealing with depression. The relationship will surely suffer.
  30. Bonnie B
    Bonnie B avatar
    6 posts
    13 October 2021 in reply to Sweesoft
    I too am struggling with a husband of over 40 years who is living (is that what it is ??) with chronic depression. I too have tried to support him in whatever way I can think of. I have found that, just like in another thread, I have just given up on expecting anything from him and just do what I can myself. This morning though, I lost it completely and shouted at him!! I rarely shout and this did stop him in his tracks. This morning I needed him to help me do something that I physically couldn't manage and when I asked (ever so politely) I was met with the usual never ending grumbling, sour looks and negativity. I know he isn't feeling well physically or emotionally, I understand that but ... gee whizz ... every now and then I'd like some support myself. I feel like I am doing all the heavy lifting in this relationship and he just "checks out" when things get a bit complicated, or even if it's not complicated, and it's just every day living. Honestly, a lot of the time it's like living with the sphinx!! I walk on egg shells around him when things are particularly bad but to be honest I am really sick of it!!!!! Years ago I suggested (numerous times) counselling for us both either individually or as a couple, but was met with "what good is talking going to do"!! So I went along to counselling myself and found it really beneficial, but I know it would have been more effective if we had gone together. He has accused me of being "too needy" and that I take things too personally. You know what? I probably am both of those things, he is probably right, but when your emotional needs and support are not being met then I guess that does turn you into a needy person.
    2 people found this helpful

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