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Topic: My partner seems like she has given up & I feel like I'm starting to struggle with depression myself.

12 posts, 0 answered
  1. Beggar36
    Beggar36 avatar
    0 posts
    14 December 2019

    In our 8 year relationship my partner has spent the majority of the past 6 years unemployed. She is intelligent & highly educated. I am not a high income earner & have pretty much finacially supported both of us. We get by by but struggle to indulge ourselves very often. There have been times she has broken down before but showing my support & telling her I love her have always helped in the past.

    A few months ago a workmate tried to set her up with a job & I dont think she went through with applying. I have never pressured her into finding work before but I really felt let down by this & perhaps I wasnt emotioanlly there for her & there was a slight disconnection between us. This meant I would work, come home & tidy up cook etc & thats when I first started feeling like this was all our relatioship was ever going to be. I have been holding out for our lives to improve but felt she might never get work again & was becoming suspicious of how hard she tried.

    She has a poor relationship with her family & I seem to be her only emotinal support. A few weeks ago she came home from her mothers upset like she usually is after spending time with her & I learnt she owed $500 on a credit card. I have bailed her out in the past but atm money is really tight. I came up with a plan to resolve everything by selling some items which would help her start up a business she seemed positive about & things seemd good for a week but I was struggling worrying about finances. I began crying for no reason at work & at home

    This week My partner started off very distant with me & the past few days has spent locked up in a dark room wanting to be left alone. Nothing I tried could console her. Last night I visited my sister for help for myself & advice on how to handle my partner. My partner rang me when I was gone & when I told her I was at my sisters she seemed mad. When I came back I tried speaking to her but she wanted nothing to do with me. I ended up sleeping on the couch to be woken up by her yelling at me. She had breached my privacy by reading my messages to my sister. There was nothing bad but I did mention the room stank which upset her greatly. We then spoke & I tried to tell her that I was struggling & we both needed to see a doctor but she doesnt want to go. Shows no empathy for my emotions & seems like she has given up almost daring me to break up with her. Im worried if we did break up what she would do as I am her only support & worry she could end up homeless or worse

    1 person found this helpful
  2. Soberlicious96
    Community Champion
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    97 posts
    14 December 2019 in reply to Beggar36

    Dear Beggar36,

    Welcome to Beyond Blue and well done for reaching out.

    It's hard to try and help someone who doesn't want to be helped. And harder still when a relationship becomes 'unbalanced' as a result.

    I'd like to suggest that even if she does not want to see a doctor or a counselor, that you could perhaps still see a doctor or counselor on your own, yeah? It might help you to make whatever decisions you need to make, in order to perhaps prevent your own mental health from sliding down even further than it already is.

    It's great that you are working though, and that you are being as supportive as you are. It's a big, brave, and very challenging role to be the main provider. And I will also say, from past experience, that it is also hard having to rely on someone else so heavily. We all like to be independent, and to support the ones we love too, but when those roles are constantly swaying in the one direction, then yeah, the relationship can begin to topple.

    Obviously I/we cannot tell you what you should or shouldn't do, but what I can and will tell you is this; you are not responsible for what SHE chooses to do to herself if you do decide to leave. And who knows, maybe a separation - even if it is just temporary - could be just the thing she needs to give her that 'jolt' into taking some action to make the changes needed?

    Please note also that I am certainly no professional relationship expert - I've have my own fair share of relationship mishaps - but I do hope that helps at least a little? The good thing about BB is that it is pretty much 'open' 24/7, so you can come here for advice (or even a little venting) as much as you like. After all, we're here to help, if we can.

    Anyway, if you want to respond then please feel free to do so. And if not, that's okay too. Take care. I'll be thinking of you. xo

    1 person found this helpful
  3. smallwolf
    Community Champion
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    smallwolf avatar
    282 posts
    14 December 2019 in reply to Beggar36

    Hi Beggar36,

    welcome to beyond blue. Soberlicious96 has pretty much said what I was going to say, so I won't repeat any of that. On the beyond blue web site there is also information for supporting someone with a mental illness which recognises that it can impact on the one providing support, and in that case getting professional help for yourself is OK to pursue. (This somewhat happened with my parents - mum supporting dad, and their GP would always check-in with mum to make sure she was OK.)

    You can start here...

    https://www.beyondblue.org.au/the-facts/supporting-someone

    I would also thank you for having the courage to post here with your story. You will find similar stories in various threads here - you are not alone :(

    Peace to you,

    Tim

    2 people found this helpful
  4. Beggar36
    Beggar36 avatar
    0 posts
    15 December 2019 in reply to Soberlicious96

    Thanks for the responses. She laid in bed until the afternnon yesterday. I did feel a little better last night when she asked me if I was enjoying a DVD before asking if I went to the doctor but when I asked her if she wanted to come she seemed distant again despite cooking dinner after I offered to cook us something. But she did agree to come.

    I explained the situation as best as I could from her perspective to the doctor as she wouldnt talk otherwise but when the doctor asked her questions it was heartbreaking that she answered the highest level for most questions. I did add a few things to her statements but when she didnt reveal that she had a medical condition I tried to tell the doctor & she told me to stop speaking on her behalf. We are scheduled to see him again tomorrow but Im not sure if she will come again. On the way home I said I was sorry. She said "what for?" & I said for "The way you feel." I then broke down while driving home. Not once did she offer me any support. She just sat there silently. She is being totally cold with me & it hurts.

  5. MsRufus
    MsRufus avatar
    4 posts
    15 December 2019 in reply to Beggar36

    Hi Beggar,

    You sound like such a kind and caring person, but sounds like it is time to look after yourself!

    If the only reason that you are with her is you are worried about what will happen if you weren't there to support her then thats not really enough!

    Sounds like your values are not aligned but also like you might be holding the relationship together (I've been there!!).

    Sounds like she needs to seek help, but is not willing to help herself which makes it hard for you!

    Hang in there and make sure to think about what is best for you.

    I recently split up from my partner of 5 years and although its been very difficult at times I am realising it is important to do what is best for me for a change! It's not nice to be putting in the majority of the work for the relationship.

    All the best!

    Isabel

    2 people found this helpful
  6. smallwolf
    Community Champion
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    smallwolf avatar
    282 posts
    15 December 2019 in reply to Beggar36

    Hi Beggar36,

    On scoring high in each question ... if that was a test where you answer most of the time vs all the time, I think it would be hard as the supportive partner seeing the other like that; as someone who has done these sort of tests it is gives the GP an indicator where the person is at and perhaps a guide re treatment and is not the end of the world. From your side it would be painful to get a sense of what your partner is feeling.

    On being sorry ... How might she interpreted you saying "sorry"? You have mentioned she had a bad relationship with her parents. Is that recent thing? Or from childhood? What is bad about the relationship? Did she put all her efforts into study at the expense of relationships? If you are her only emotional support for the last 6 years, then loneliness and other factors may come into play. There are all rhetorical thoughts and questions based on me having worked from home for too many (15+) years. Perhaps if she thinks she cannot fix herself, how can she support you. Or lost in her own world. Or not even knowing how to respond. None of this justifies how she reacted, yet if we allow ourselves to the open to other possibilities and conversations might develop and solutions found.

    Being the supportive person you are and knowing (?) there is little you can do would be hard. Continue being the person you are and if you feel you need support yourself, that is OK. Here is the kicker... if she sees you getting help, she may follow in your footsteps. There is no shame in getting help.

    Peace,

    Tim

    1 person found this helpful
  7. Beggar36
    Beggar36 avatar
    0 posts
    16 December 2019 in reply to smallwolf

    Thanks to everyone for taking the time to offer their insight & advice.

    In regards to her relationship with her mother she has felt like the forgotten child her entire life. Her sister has a similar personality to her mother & her mother doesnt make much of an effort to listen or learn about my partner For example a present might come in the form of something her sister might like. Also her sister has leeched off her mother financially her entire life yet we are doing it much tougher but never get a look in. She loves her mother but feels like she never really listens to her. Whenever she feels frustrated she brings up past events but it is always brushed off as jealousy.

    Regarding current events my partner moped in bed until the afternoon but was at least speaking to me. I invited her to watch a TV show I knew she liked & while she was still upset it was a massive improvement on her past mood.

    Today when I came home from work we were almost talking like we normally would but I could tell she was still hurting. We went back to the doctors who gave us a plan to see a therapist although before we went inside she seemed anxious & said " I dont know about this." When we got home she asked me if I feel better that she made an appointment. I truthfully felt better that she was acting almost normal again. My stress levels seem to mirror that of hers. The core financial issue still remains but I want to focus on her feeling better before I try to solve some money problems.

  8. Beggar36
    Beggar36 avatar
    0 posts
    28 December 2019
    Hi everyone. Things have been Ok with my partner recently but I avoided talking finances with her until today. I approched the subject very softly but the mere mention of sorting out finances made her angry & she felt like I was judging her or giving her an ultimatum. We have very resolvable issues but the mere mention of sorting things out makes her stick her head in the sand. I have money to fix her credit card & want her to do a couple of things like cancel her car insurance & ring up her phone company as I have found cheaper alternatives but she has left it for weeks & it would probably only take 30 minutes to sort it out. She is so emotional when it comes to sorting out issues. We had a big argument & I told her "This isnt a relationship because she offers nothing." Harsh but I was very angry. She broke down saying I thought she was worthless. All I'm asking for is to be kept in the loop with her finances & as the sole income earner I think I have a right to know so we can avoid the recent debt we were in but she feels like I'm judging her about spending money. She has retreated to her bedroom again & could possibly spend days there again like the last time which means the things I asked her to do probably wont get done. I feel sick with stress again & worry about our relationship. I love her so much but she is so defensive about money she isnt willing to help me budget without making it seem that Im judging her or keeping her on a leash. I'm doing all this so we have more money & we can splurge on little things from time to time which benefits both of us.
  9. smallwolf
    Community Champion
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    28 December 2019 in reply to Beggar36
    Hi. After the birth of our first child we were down to a single income. Managing finances was difficult. Trying to find savings. One time I called my mother about all of this and she said to me to let my wife have certain things because (insert reason here)...

    If I could make a suggestion - have you spoken to your partner about money related stuff when she was growing up? You said she was forgotten and now might be doing the opposite? Alternatively is used to having money?

    Fwiw, I don't look after the finances for the family. It would be a disaster as I would be too tight.

    How are things going with the appointment? Is or will your partner speak with someone about her feelings?

    Have you or your partner considered volunteering? It would get her out a bit and might find a sense of purpose.

    I used to work from home for too many years. Yes, there are phone calls but social connections die and can become a recluse. This is what happened to me and partially contributed to my depression etc.

    Try to continue to be supportive and hinting at getting help. For yourself, if you can look at the situation from her perspective, you may get an understanding and then be able to find some sort of resolution?

    Remember that if you don't get the answers you are looking for here or from your partner, you could always speak with someone about your situation - I mean, if a friend told you this story what would you tell them?

    Listen and peace to you.

    Tim
  10. Beggar36
    Beggar36 avatar
    0 posts
    28 December 2019 in reply to smallwolf

    Apprecaite your advice Tim. Havent made appointments yet due to the time of year. I dont think she has been splurging on herself buying lavish items. More a case of little things building up on her credit card not paying it & the interest getting out of control. Like i said I am not a high income earner & money is tight, by managing the finances better I can let her go & buy stuff for herself from time to time. I know it seems like Im laying down the law but I have tried to speak to her with respect & it needs to be done otherwise we are throwing away money we dont have on interest when we dont have to be. (This is the 4th time this has occurred) Her lack of income means she wont even look at her accounts which is probably the reason why we find ourselves in our current situation. I know she cant contribute financially without an income but taking 30 minutes to swap over her phone provider would save us $500 a year & cancelling her insurance would save us over $100. Money Id gladly give to her.

    She did work for the dole a few years ago & while she hated the premise of it I think it did her some good. Socially she plays an online game with friends from overseas. Its probably her one joy in life. I hear her laugh playing it & as an administrator of a group she does a fair bit of work behind the scenes to make sure it runs smoothly but when it comes to real life stuff she just doesnt want to know about it. Most of our problems stem from money & while I cant do much, the little I can she isnt willing to help me at all.

    I think I have a good understanding of her viewpoint but depression has made it so dark & twisted she cant see Im not coming from a judgmental place & you are right, I'm sure isolation plays a role in that. I have tried my best to give her space when she needs it but ultimately you can't ignore issues forever & the shields come up whenever I try to resolve them. When I was avoiding talking about money while she gradually got better I had a gnawing feeling in my stomach knowing this needed to be sorted by the end of the month to avoid extra fees but we are pretty much back at square one when I first started writing. Just need to get over this first hurdle of getting our finances back on track before we can start combatting depression itself.

  11. loouuiiee
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    13 posts
    29 December 2019

    I would just like to point out how lucky your partner is to have you. you not only support her financially but you also seem to really care about her emotional wellness and have her best interests at heart.

    I hope she realises this and seeks help to sort her own issues out soon before it does any more damage to you and the relationship the two of you share.

  12. black_rose
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    4 posts
    9 January 2020 in reply to Beggar36

    Don't know if this helps but I'll try. Most of what I suggest you may have already tried. From the sounds of it you've tried a lot.

    Perhaps sit down with her tell her your concerned about her and love her.

    Slowly bring up the topic of finances but before doing so mention that you are not trying to upset here, but you a genuinely concerned.

    If she gets upset tell her it's okay, and ask if it's too much for her to deal with (sounds like it could be and if her shields come up) tell her that if it is then that's ok. It's ok for things to me too much to handle.

    Ask her if it's too much if it would be okay for you to sort them out on her behalf and let her know you only want to help her.

    Sadly I too use to be a lot like your partner, I buried myself in an online game that required me to take leadership roles and to put a lot of effort in to make sure things were good for every one.

    I also hated dealing personal finances as we were both unemployed and I stuck my head in the sand, my partner didn't quite get that it was all too much for me. Yet I was the one who dealt with the finances, as you could imagine it didn't end well. We ended up homeless due to unpaid rent. Not my proudest moment.

    Things are better these days thankfully, we are now both working. He's full time. I'm part time as that's all I can cope with mentally, and I'm not so big on online games that require significant responsibility anymore.

    These are the things I wished my partner would have done for me bit even now he's stillan ostrich when it comes to finances.

    Also your partner is lucky to to have someone who cares about her so much. Good luck and I truly hope things get better for the 2 of you

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