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Forums / Supporting family and friends with a mental health condition (carers) / Supporting partner with depression and harm OCD

Topic: Supporting partner with depression and harm OCD

6 posts, 0 answered
  1. Kaz929
    Kaz929 avatar
    3 posts
    13 December 2021

    Hi, I really need some help supporting my partner of 7 years who has been diagnosed with depression and harm OCD. Sorry, this post is probably going to be long.

    He had been taking meds for depression when we started dating and we've managed to help each other with our mental health, until COVID hit.

    He has been seeing his GP every couple of months about it all (now every few weeks) and has been going to all of his appointments.

    However, he doesn't seem to be getting better, though he keeps telling me he is ok. There has been a few times where I have had to sit him down and push him tell me what's going on in his head as his body language is saying he's not. He seems to feel a bit better after talking, but getting him to keep communicating with me is doing my head in (so to speak). I try not to push all the time as it annoys me when people do that to me, but I have to sometimes so I know what's going on. He won't even tell me when he's seeing his GP, that's his meds have changed etc, unless I push him for it.

    He tried to commit suicide last year and I'm worried he is heading in that direction again.

    He has been recently diagnosed with harm OCD, is pretty much withdrawn from everyone and sleeps 14-15 hours a day.

    I can hardly get a conversation out of him. He just replies with yes/no answers most of the time.

    He has told me that nothing interests him anymore. He would rather be dead than alive. He also thinks the world would be better off without him. I'm doing my best to reassure him that this isn't the case but it feels like I'm talking to a brick wall.

    Last week, I started getting him to come to the gym with mum and I twice a week. He seems to enjoy that so I will keep that up.

    I don't know what else I can do for him. I feel helpless. I'm trying to not let it affect me, but it is. I can't save him and I really wish I could.

    Any tips to help him (and my own mental health) would be great, especially with the harm OCD (totally new area for me).


  2. Sophie_M
    Community Moderator
    • Works for beyondblue moderating these forums
    Sophie_M avatar
    6825 posts
    13 December 2021 in reply to Kaz929

    Hi Kaz929,

    Thank you so much for sharing this here. We’re so sorry to hear about the struggles your partner has had and may currently be having. We can hear you’re a really caring partner and your concerns come from such a loving and supportive place.

    It sounds like you’re doing everything you can to help him, and we hope you are able to see how inspiring that is. It sounds like a really hard time for both of you, so it could be good to have a safety plan in place. We'd recommend having a look at the Beyond Now suicide safety planning app, if you don't already have something in place. You can find out more about it and download it here. He can even call Lifeline (13 11 14) and compete it together with one of their counsellors over the phone.

    We're sure we’ll hear from our amazing community soon, but in the meantime, we wanted to share a couple of pages with you in case they interest you:

    It’s also really important to check in with yourself while you’re going through this, so it might be good to have a look at our pages on looking after yourself while supporting someone.  A really important one of those is reaching out - the Beyond Blue counsellors are here for you if you’d like to talk this through on 1300 22 4636, or via online chat. It is so important that you look after yourself during these times and they can help you, or just be there if you want to talk.

    Thanks again for sharing here. We really appreciate your kindness and openness in sharing here on the forums, so we hope you can be kind to yourself also through this time.

    Kind regards,

    Sophie M

  3. Petal22
    Community Champion
    • Outstanding members who have volunteered their time to support others here on the forums
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    Petal22 avatar
    2131 posts
    13 December 2021 in reply to Kaz929

    Hi Kaz929,

    Im really sorry that yourself and your partner are going through this I understand it’s difficult…..

    Has your partner done any therapy for his OCD?

    I had OCD mine was accompanied with severe anxiety and was based around horrible intrusive thoughts that I’d have.

    Ive now recovered thanks to the health professionals I saw.

    Your partner may be really focused inside his mind…… I was when I was going through OCD I was stuck in a vicious cycle.

    It made me feel exhausted and scared.

    I’m sorry that your partner tried to commit suicide and is withdrawing.

    When I had OCD I felt like withdrawing from some people because my intrusive thoughts were sometimes about them and they terrified me.
    I was lucky though because I decided no matter how hard it got or how terrified I felt I wasn’t go I to allow it to stop me from embracing the people I loved.

    Sometimes I wanted to sleep so I didn’t have to listen to the intrusive thoughts that were yelling at me constantly………. But I kept going…..

    Its hard…

    You sound like a wonderful person for supporting your partner in the way you are…… just do some nice things for you too….

    Encourage your partner to see a clinical psychologist or a psychiatrist see if there is a therapy that suits your partner in your area for OCD I strongly encourage him to do a therapy so he can learn how to manage it.

    With the OCD I had I’d have intrusive thoughts about harm coming to others….. they terrified me but in therapy I learned they were just thoughts…… the anxiety that goes through sufferers body is very intense it’s horrible.

    I’ve written two threads

    From someone who had OCD and recovered

    Effective treatment for OCD Metacognitive Therapy

    Im here to check to you

  4. Kaz929
    Kaz929 avatar
    3 posts
    14 December 2021 in reply to Petal22

    Thank you for your post. It's really helpful.

    I will suggest he seek therapy. I am hoping that I will be able to go to his next GP appointment with him so I can chat with him more about my partner.

    At the moment, his GP has only put him on another lot of meds to deal with the OCD issue. I think it's just a temp thing but that's one thing I want to confirm with his GP.

    Thanks again.

    1 person found this helpful
  5. Kaz929
    Kaz929 avatar
    3 posts
    14 December 2021 in reply to Sophie_M
    Thank you for your post. I found the resources very helpful and reassuring.
  6. Petal22
    Community Champion
    • Outstanding members who have volunteered their time to support others here on the forums
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    Petal22 avatar
    2131 posts
    14 December 2021 in reply to Kaz929

    Hi Kaz929,

    Im glad I could help you in some way.

    Can I ask if your partner was diagnosed with OCD by a psychiatrist or a clinical psychologist?

    I was diagnosed by a psychiatrist.

    Yes please mention the therapy because it can teach your partner ways that he can manage his condition.

    I also did meditation in my therapy it was one of the things that got me over the line, it taught me that I’m not my thoughts but the watcher of my thoughts.

    You sound like a very caring and supportive partner and I think it’s great that you are trying to get him to go to the gym with yourself and mum.

    Im here to chat to you

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