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Supporting family and friends with a mental health condition (carers)

Space for sharing tips on supporting a partner, family member or friend with a mental health condition, and seeking support for your own wellbeing with other carers.

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Support following the bereavement of a family member, partner, spouse or someone close to you.

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by Dean Dharug
9 hours ago

Topic: Supporting a depressed husband - seeking hope

  1. 815
    815 avatar
    212 posts
    15 February 2021 in reply to KG82

    Hi again KG82 (and everyone),

    Counselling went OK. I was still a bit anxious about it and I just didn't want to bring it up. But we actually went out for lunch together and went straight to the appointment from there. This was the first session where he admitted that he is no longer angry. He was disappointed, but it seems he is over that now.

    The issue for me now is dealing with all my own emotions which I had sort of just put aside while trying to support my husband and the kids through all of it. And I have been trying to do that slowly too.

    We definitely still have a way to go. We still have bumps along the day. But we are getting there. Little by little. Bit by bit. Day by day,

  2. Croix
    Community Champion
    • Outstanding members who have volunteered their time to support others here on the forums
    • Awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    Croix avatar
    11068 posts
    16 February 2021 in reply to 815

    Dear 815~

    Not everyone has wins with a partner who has such problems but it sounds to me as if you have had at least three -that is terribly encouraging.

    He has accepted a medication, and also its side effects. That is a stoke of realism on his part . It also does not mean things are now set in stone. In my own case after a lot of different meds over many years I finally was put on one whch has worked, and has no real side-effects. I never thought it would happen.

    He has been to his GP with you , who sounds lovely. The trust to do that would have been something, and I'm sure you would have benefited in understanding his state - and your best path to improve it. His GP would also have had a better picture of things due to your input.

    Finally counseling together. I'm glad it is together, that can be difficult but with a good one both accept can go well. Perhaps he might tell you why he was disappointed if oyu ask when you are both in a relaxed mood, and if his remarks hurt try to remember the potential there.

    Please let us know how you go


    2 people found this helpful
  3. KG82
    KG82 avatar
    39 posts
    19 February 2021 in reply to 815

    Hi 815,

    I’m pleased to hear you’re making some progress. You’ve put in so much work. It also sounds like you’re reflecting on how it’s made you feel as well.

  4. 815
    815 avatar
    212 posts
    23 February 2021 in reply to Croix
    Hi Croix,

    Thanks so much for your words. I do realise that my situation is so unique and different from everyone else who might be going through similar things. And I write on here because I want people to know that there is hope, and that there are better days, regardless of the outcome.

    I am definitely fortunate, that my husband and !, and our family, are moving forward, together.

    I think you are right. He is being very real about the medication situation. And despite the side effects, he is pushing through it. He is a lot more open when talking to me about his medication which is a huge improvement. I think after trying so many in such a short amount of time he probably just wants to stick with one and see how he goes. I know he has spoken to his psychiatrist about it and will review with his GP again periodically.

    His GP is lovely. He works at the same clinic as my GP and if she is not available I see him on occasion if necessary. As I have mentioned I had been to see his GP twice before on my own so I think he already had my perspective on things. But I could tell that he was pleased to see me there with my husband this time around.

    I think the most difficult part of all of this is our relationship counselling. But I am glad we can go together, and talk about some of the things that we may find more difficult to initiate conversation about on our own. We have talked a little, here and there. Not so much of the past things, but more about how he is feeling and coping with things now. He is more open about his emotions, even though he admits that he doesn't like to feel the way he does. At least he is no longer pushing me away and hiding how he feels.

    I know why he was disappointed. He acknowledges that his expectations were a bit unrealistic. He knows that I was hurt by all of that. But I guess he is past the disappointment. And as time goes on and we spend time together as a couple, and as a family, and we talk more, my hurt in all of this is healing too.

    All I can say for now for anyone reading is, no matter what your situation, please don't give up hope.
    2 people found this helpful
  5. Blue Banded Bee
    Blue Banded Bee avatar
    8 posts
    25 February 2021 in reply to 815

    Dear 815,

    I am so happy to read your updates, your progress has given me hope that one day we will be able to leap through the hurdles. My partner has more ups than down lately, we still have a lot to work on. He no longer wants to his psychologist, he thinks it is not helping him after a session of hypnotherapy. They used to do telehealth previously during the lockdown, he is seeing naturopath now for his chronic pain. I advised him try few times before giving up, he refused to listen to me. His problem is he refuses to acknowledge his depression.

    Well, this weekend is going to be exciting one, we are going for camping with his family. I have no expectation, all I want is we have fun, enjoy ourselves as a family.

    I will be going to back to office next month for a month, I hope this will give us a bit of breathing space. I spoke to him about relationship mediation, and I am going to make an appointment for us to see one, just for us to talk to someone about what has gone wrong between us and focus on our goals. He kept quiet.

  6. 815
    815 avatar
    212 posts
    1 March 2021 in reply to Blue Banded Bee

    Hi Blue Banded Bee,

    Thank you for your post. Life is not always great, but definitely better. So I try to keep posting on here so that people know there is hope, even on the days when things are not so great. That it is important to see the progress, no matter how little.

    My husband feels a bit the same - he is on his second psychologist already. And even with this one he says that he is not finding her helpful. Part of the problem is that his appointments are so far in between, and she often tends to reschedule him at late notice. I am not diagnosed with depression. However I am seeing a psychologist, and in the beginning was seeing her every two weeks without fail. She has not once rescheduled. I just find it totally frustrating that my husband cannot get proper support, given the severity of his depression. For his part, even though he has admitted that he doesn't find talking about things with his psychologist helpful, he is persisting with her and giving her a chance. And so I am proud of him for that and I know he is doing all he can to get through this. Acknowledgement is such a key part I think.

    How was the camping trip? I hope you had a great time with some happy moments to cherish. I think going back into the office is a good thing too, to give you both some space and perspective.

    Relationship mediation - I'll be honest here, I did not think this would help us. And I did not even think that when I asked my husband to go with me that he would even say yes or show up to the first appointment. And I do still feel uncomfortable going. It is very confronting. But despite how hard it is, we do it together and without it, I don't think that we would have moved forward as we have. So I would say, go with an open mind, be prepared for it to be very raw and confrontational. But if you and your husband, and the counsellor, can work together, it will be beneficial.

    1 person found this helpful
  7. Blue Banded Bee
    Blue Banded Bee avatar
    8 posts
    25 March 2021 in reply to 815

    Hi 815,

    I thought I just jump in to quickly update about our progress. We have been progressing positively, like you, there is still a lot to work on but at least I know we are heading on the right track and his mental health has improved.

    I had a week off work after the labour day just to spend some time at home and not to worry about work, and time for myself. We went out for lunch and I had a good chat with him about my proposition on seeing relationship counsellor or psychologist and reiterating the reason I am doing this because of love and family, as I can see there is still so much love between us, things can't be left unsolved.

    In his opinion, I need to see psychologist, I told yes I have been seeing one and waiting for my next appointment because, I need someone to listen to me and make sure I am doing fine for us. I asked to him to help me, hold my hands and support me like how I supported him.

    I told him my goals and what I need and how to achieve to my goals. I asked him what is goals are, how we can work together to achieve out goals.

    After the conversation , things started to change. We had more pleasant conversation, spent more time together as family and as a couple. I told him we should be each other first point of contact to reach out, if we think that we are falling off track.

    Although we are progressing well, I am hoping at some point he will go back and see his psychologist again without me pushing him , or us seeing relationship counsellor together just to make sure we are on the same level with our goals.

    815, thank you so much for showing me hope and telling me not to give up. I hope you and husband are doing well in your journey.

    By the way, the camping was alright, my son and I enjoyed ourselves. My partner was very distance in his own world, but at least I know it won't be our last. :)

    1 person found this helpful
  8. 815
    815 avatar
    212 posts
    1 April 2021

    Hi Blue Banded Bee and everyone,

    Thank you for your update. I am so pleased to hear that you and your husband are making small positives steps forward. And I would like to also thank you for your support through all of this.

    Like you, Blue Banded Bee, we are also making progress. Small, slow progress. We have had some ups and downs along the way. I think maybe if I share some of what we have gone through, it may help others to understand too.

    One night, after both of us working late, my husband was already in bed and when I went to bed he came over to hug me. I held him in silence for a few minutes and honestly thought he was OK. Without thinking, I picked up my phone to reply to some msgs that I didn't get to during the day. After a few seconds he turned away, and later told me to leave him alone and just keep playing with my phone. I instantly defended myself and said that I was just replying to some messages. Of course that made him even more mad.

    We spent the next 2 days not really talking to each other. He told me why he was so angry. All he wanted was a hug and then when he told me off for it I tried to justify my actions. I let him have his time for a couple of days. But I realised that I can't afford to let too much time and distance get between us now.

    So I told him I wanted to speak to him. I apologised, told him that I was wrong. However, I wanted him to know that just because I picked up my phone, it does not mean that I don't care about him, or that he is less of a priority. It simply means that sometimes, I don't think or I actually don't realise how much of an impact it can have. I told him that on my part, I need to be more sensitive to his needs. And that I wasn't expecting him to forgive me and not be hurt or angry and just move on. But I was hoping that we would move forward, and heal the hurt and anger together.

    He sat in silence for a long time after my words. And eventually he came over to give me a hug. I realise now that, I can't be scared of his anger, but I also need to own up to my actions and understand how something simple can make him feel awful. But I think the key is, communication. We both need to be able to communicate how we feel in the situation.

    We know the road isn't always going to be smooth. What's important is that we travel the road together. And hopefully as time goes on the bumps will become less frequent. Or if they do come, that we will know better how to get over them.

  9. Skye_S
    Skye_S avatar
    5 posts
    8 April 2021
    815, thank you. Your posts this last month have pulled me through some tough nights. I really connect with a lot of your experiences and am feeling brave enough to share mine right now.

    We're in our thirties and have kids in school. We've seen a marriage councillor on and off for the last 18 months.

    We have these blissful days and sometimes weeks of being happy, playful and long conversations. Then I sense the change and he will do anything to avoid being around me or engaging in conversation with me. He rises the facade when in other people's company, and is good at being an engaged dad with the kids. He retreats of an evening so I can't chat with him, and if I try, well there is just a grunt reserved for me.

    All the blame for these phases are on me. I don't take good care of things so they get broken and he has to fix them. I don't do my fair share of things around the house so he picks up all the slack. If we go on trips I never help unpack afterwards. I don't show basic levels of respect through my actions. It's been the same mantra throughout. Our councelling sessions have predominantly been focussed on fixing my anxiety that is triggered by these cycles, and ultimately how this effects my behaviour and actions. Despite 'fixing' my anxiety, my behaviour still triggers him.

    And so the cycle continues over and over. We had been months between negative cycles until recently, it came out of the blue for me, again. And now we're on the second cycle in 3-4 weeks. We're booked in to see the councillor again soon.

    He describes it as feeling sad and burdened. Not as depression because there is a real cause - me - making him feel this way. In these periods he stays up late, is less motivated and has a small appetite.

    My hope for our next councelling session is that it will focus on his behaviour, not mine. I'm back to doubting myself that I'm the problem again.

    I feel so alone and it's a while till that session. I have people that I trust and confide in, but I suppose I feel embarrassed that it's happening in such quick succession again now, to the point I haven't been able to reach out to them yet this time. I know it's better for me if it's out, rather than in, so here I am.
  10. quirkywords
    Community Champion
    • Outstanding members who have volunteered their time to support others here on the forums
    • 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
    14697 posts
    9 April 2021 in reply to Skye_S

    Hello 815 and everyone reading

    Thanks for having this thread 815 that allows people to share their experiences.

    Skye-s , I am pleased you could share your experience.Welcome to the forum.

    This is a friendly and safe place.

    When one is depressed on either pushes people away especially whose closest to them because one feels so low. Sometimes like your husband a depressed person blames others so one gets a break from the self loathing. I can see it would be so hard on you when you are trying hard to make things better but all you find is blame.

    So your are seeing a marriage / relationship counsellor not a mental health counsellor or a psychologist. has your husband seen a psychologist?
    you are under pressure when you are being blamed for his behaviour.

    In the blissful times does his behaviour change in other ways , appetite, sleep?

    Do the sad and burdened times last longer than the happy ones. Can you predict a bit before the cycles change.?

    Thanks for sharing your story.


  11. Skye_S
    Skye_S avatar
    5 posts
    9 April 2021 in reply to quirkywords
    Hi Quirky,

    Thanks for getting back to me. It feels really good to be heard.

    Our councillor calls herself a psychotherapist. She does both couple and individual therapy and practices CBT. We initially would see her together for relationship councelling. A lot of the focus was on fixing me. I've had some one on one sessions with her to help with my anxiety, which was so closely tied up in this situation. My husband hasn't seen anyone by himself. There's been no real focus on making him work on his behaviour in our sessions. He has made some small improvements when he's in the negative cycle. I guess the point is we're still on the cycle though, which is entirely driven by how he feels.

    In the good times he's mostly in sync with me going to bed at really reasonable hours, he'll be really active, cooks up healthy meals. The negative phases can last several days to maybe up to two weeks, so at the moment there's always longer good stretches than bad. I can never predict how long this will last.

    I honestly have no clue when the tide is about the turn. I am very sensitive to his every move and gesture so I'm onto it when it does occur, but I never see the series of events that he blames for being the trigger. I still don't know what it was this time because he doesn't want to talk about it. This time he's cancelled a date day out I've planned for some time now for just us two. I'd made lots of advanced bookings to make it a lovely day. When I asked him about it he said he didn't want to spend that time with me. I'm really devastated by this but won't force the issue with him.

    He's been fairly chatty tonight but don't know if that's just a front with the kids. I'm so tired of putting the olive branch out and getting rejected, but I am I right in saying this is something positive I should continue to do with him to try and feed some positivity between us?
  12. Portia72
    Portia72 avatar
    4 posts
    11 April 2021 in reply to Skye_S

    Hi all.
    new to here and was seeking out a thread where there may be some people is similar situation and arrived here.

    thanks for all your previous posts- it helps to know others have partner struggles!

    I am struggling with my husbands depression, something only fairly recently acknowledged but present many years. I feel very alone in the relationship. The organiser, planner, decision maker, mood raiser, worker, you get the picture. I’m becoming quite exhausted with it all. Work becoming harder to focus on too ( helping profession)
    My husband and I have been together over 35 yrs and 2 years ago started legal proceedings for an historical child sexual assault case where husband was victim. It’s been a stressful two years and not over yet.
    He’s been very open to others about the legal proceedings which means people are incredibly concerned for him, I feel there’s not much understanding of what I am experiencing as the one who lives with him and how much I have accommodated the fallout of this wrong doing as well for many years.
    He’s getting some help (not enough) and Im about to start seeing a psychologist & hopeful this will help me. I’m normally pretty upbeat but this has taken a toll on me & I feel like I don’t enjoy life much at all anymore. Not suicidal, just really sad.

  13. Skye_S
    Skye_S avatar
    5 posts
    11 April 2021 in reply to Portia72
    Hey Portia 72,

    Yep I totally hear what you're saying. This week has been especially rough and where there are just normal, low stress situations I'm feeling almost at my wit's end a lot of the time. I don't know if hubby will be kind or spiteful towards me from one moment to the next so I think I live in a state of constant anxiety. I think I'm learning to live with this as well, which is really unhealthy too. I used to be spritely most of the time. And yes, during the tough weeks it is a distraction at work too.

    It's great to hear you're getting support and makes me think I need to check in regularly too again. I need to find the right way to suggest my hubby sees someone himself. I think there's total denial of there being a problem bigger than he can handle alone. I just don't feel brave enough to broach the subject. I'll get showered in negative put downs, which I'd really rather avoid. But if I don't broach the subject he might never consider getting help for himself. I consider you lucky that your husband sees someone, even occasionally. But I guess we're all here because what they are doing (if anything) isn't yet enough.

    Are there any outlets that you've given up that you could take up again, be it sport, craft, music, or meeting up with friends? Perhaps making a point of putting your priorities first some of the time will give you slices of happier times while your having a tough time.
    1 person found this helpful
  14. Portia72
    Portia72 avatar
    4 posts
    12 April 2021 in reply to Skye_S
    Thank you for responding Skye_S.
    I’m sorry you are berated by your husband - that is hard to handle.
    Thankful mine does not, he just gets defensive and shuts down.
    We have had a weekend where I’ve chosen to not initiate conversation so there’s been little speaking other than “what’s for dinner” type convos.
    I have started cutting down on my work hours as best I can to give more space for activities but very unmotivated to make the effort required. Yes I need to connect more with others, I know. That means leaving him alone and then I feel guilty!! I know I need to work on that false guilt, he is not a child I need to tend to. I guess my fear is that we are growing apart. I know I would cope alone but I’m not so sure about him. I need to live a little more for myself.
    thank you for listening. I see the psychologist Friday so will let you know how that goes. I encourage you to seek help too- we’re worth it!
  15. 815
    815 avatar
    212 posts
    12 April 2021 in reply to Skye_S

    Hi Skye_S
    I am saddened to hear that you are in a similar situation as me. But I am humbled that my posts have helped you through some tough times, as well as allowed you to be brave enough to share. These posts have helped me through such a bad time for my family. The support here is amazing and I hope that you are able to find that support here too.

    I can see so many similarities in our situation. So I can feel your heartache.

    My husband just straight out did not speak to me for months. Not a single word. So maybe just take some positivity about the fact that your husband still communicates with you, and that you are still able to have some good times.

    I think the key to our progress, has definitely been that my husband finally sought help, on his own. However in some ways, that was what caused the problems between us. Because he expected me to seek help for him.
    Correct me if I'm wrong, but depression can have a cause. My husband blamed me for his depression. He acknowledged that I didn't trigger it, however my behaviour made it worse.

    I too was tired and exhausted, of always putting the olive branch out and being rejected. I do realise now all those little things mattered to him, once the fog started to lift. All of those moments counted in the end. And I did it for as long as I had the strength to do so, and I will keep doing it.

    I think what has worked for us in terms of professional support is that, our individual support is separate. Our relationship counsellor is completely separate and we do not see her individually. Although I still do find that the focus in our couples session is largely on his behaviour, it has definitely helped us to to get to where we are. I think it is important to keep your individual support separate.

    I know you mentioned that you don't feel brave enough to bring up the subject of your husband getting help, could it be something that you can bring up in your counselling session?

    I feel your anxiety. It can be totally draining. I know it is hard to think about caring for yourself. It is the thing that many people told me to do but I felt so unmotivated to do anything for myself. But you need to. Even if it is a walk outside for 20 minutes, or a sit down in a cafe with a coffee and cake. Just some time out for yourself.

    Please keep posting here if it helps you. I am no expert in this. But I can tell you that there is hope. Just don't give up on it. And in the meantime, be kind to yourself too.

  16. 815
    815 avatar
    212 posts
    12 April 2021 in reply to Portia72
    Hi Portia72,
    A warm welcome to you and thank you for posting.
    I feel your sadness. I felt so alone through a lot of the really bad phase. Even though I had family and friends who knew what we were going through, it was still really tough. And there are days when it still is. But I have learned to allow myself to feel that sadness and work through it. Because it is tough for us to, supporting our husbands. And it needs to be acknowledged somehow. So please know that you are not alone.
    I am glad to hear that your husband is seeing someone to support him. It sounds like he has had a traumatic past and I'm so sorry to read about it. And I hope that you are able to find some support from your psyhologist this Friday. Do let us know how it goes.
    I know it's hard to find the motivation to do things for yourself. But as I mentioned to Skye_S, it doesn't need to be anything huge. Just a walk around outside for a while, a coffee with a friend maybe?
    And yes, we are worth it!
    Please take care. And continue to post here if it helps.
    1 person found this helpful
  17. Skye_S
    Skye_S avatar
    5 posts
    12 April 2021 in reply to Portia72
    Thanks Portia72 and 815,

    You have both shown me that I do have silver linings, and I am usually such a silver linings kind of gal.

    After almost no sleep for anxiety last night and a dreadful day at work I decided to confront him tonight. Everything on my mind came out and whilst it wasn't polished I said everything I needed to - including that I have worked on me for us, and it's his behaviour that's worsened and I'd like him to see a GP because I think he has a mental health issue and he needs to talk to someone about it. He started to deflect - as expected - but I calmly didn't take that criticism on this time (I usually just allow it to wash over me). It ended in him calmly walking out the room and having a bath. That'll be end on any conversations for a while now but I'm actually pleased to get it out before the councelling session. I'm sure he'll have a defence ready by then. Just wondering if I broach the GP thing again later this week. I'll suck it and see.

    I'm struggling with leaving the kids guilt complex so I can spend the night and day with my friend this weekend. I know I need it but yeah... They also pick me up so much as well. I hope they aren't being badly effected by all this. :(

    All the best for Friday Portia72.
    1 person found this helpful
  18. Portia72
    Portia72 avatar
    4 posts
    13 April 2021

    Appreciate your responses 815 & Skye_S.
    I have to admit I did not expect to find such lovely support here. Thank you.

    yes sometimes we have to get our brave on, Skye you’ve done so well to press through the anxiety and say what you needed to say. And can I encourage you to take that break? Maybe one of the children could go to a friends for the weekend to lighten the load at home?
    I cancelled my morning appts yesterday, bought a new plant for the garden& had lunch with a fairly recent friend, kept it light but did share with her some of my struggles and that was good, she was so kind.

    Hubby had an appt today with his Counsellor and was willing to talk about it in the evening. He admitted his motivation is almost flatlined and I was able to share that this drags me down too, & we agreed we need to help each other and get out of the house more. A bit of a breakthrough. So even though I’m awake at 4:30 again I feel a lot better.
    thank you ladies for helping me this week.
    we need to keep looking for silver linings!!
    I’ll check in again on the weekend..

    1 person found this helpful
  19. 815
    815 avatar
    212 posts
    13 April 2021 in reply to Skye_S

    Hi Skye_S,

    I am glad that you got to speak to your husband and tell him how you feel.I always took it as a positive when I got to speak, and I wasn't yelled at or criticised. So him walking calmly away might be a bonus :)

    I think giving him some time to process what you have said is a good idea. And then maybe see how he is doing in a few days and see whether you are feeling brave enough to broach the subject of the GP again. I did this too, and tried to judge his mood and see whether it was the right time to bring things up.

    I understand the feeling of guilt of doing things for yourself. But if you can, you should try to take a break from it all.

    On the kids thing, they pick up more than we know. And sadly, my kids were impacted more than I realised through all of this and I had to get additional support for them too. I was reluctant to admit they needed it, but in the end I think it helped them too. Depression may be something that an individual person suffers, but it affects many people around them too and we need to acknowledge that.

    Take care and take some time for yourself.

  20. 815
    815 avatar
    212 posts
    13 April 2021 in reply to Portia72

    Hi Portia72,

    I'm glad to hear you are taking time for yourself and managed to do some things to make you feel better.. And I'm even more glad that you've had a bit of a breakthrough with your husband. I guess you both just need to keep moving forward together through all of this.

    We are always here if you need any support.

  21. Skye_S
    Skye_S avatar
    5 posts
    15 April 2021 in reply to 815


    So 24 hours after having my chat with hubby he was all chatty with me, asking if I was ok, saying we'd get through this, I love you, giving me hugs. All the things I miss and are rare when he's in a bad space.

    I told him we'd chat again in the evening - 2 days after my initial confrontation with him, which was last night.

    The short story is he doesn't think he has a mental illness because our psychologist didn't diagnose him during our 10 hours of therapy. We will ask her at our session on Monday. He isn't open to getting a second opinion.

    This didn't come as a great surprise to me. It's also my biggest fear, because that then just makes him a horrible husband.

    We spoke a fair amount. He's not open to changing his behaviour with all the suggestions I made, kept coming up with reasons why not to do them. He finished with "I love you but you make it hard for me".

    I'm going to stay with my girl friend this weekend and have a full blown girly time. So glad to have wonderful friends.

  22. 815
    815 avatar
    212 posts
    16 April 2021 in reply to Skye_S

    Hi SKye_S,

    It is good that there is at least communication between you and your husband. Hopefully you can discuss this further in your counselling session together with the objective help of a third party.

    Just my experience, we went into our relationship counselling sessions knowing that my husband was diagnosed with depression. Our psychologist also does individual counselling for depression, however she tries not to interfere with that side of it too much as my husband has his own psychologist and mental health plan for that. And we specifically sought her service for relationship counselling. While it has been beneficial that our psychologist has a lot of experience with depression and we have been able to openly discuss the impact of my husband's depression on our marriage, I still think there is benefit in keeping his treatment for his depression separate from our couples sessions.

    Could you maybe ask your husband just to talk to his GP about it? If he is totally convinced he doesn't have any mental health concerns, then there would be no harm in going to see his GP, as nothing would come out of it anyway if there are no issues. And I'm not expert in this, but I wouldn't think that it would be the place of a relationship counsellor to diagnose someone with depression? But that is just my thought.

    I think it's a good idea that you are spending some time away to do something fun for yourself. It might help to reset things a little for you both before your counselling session next week. I hope you have a great weekend with your girl friend :)

  23. Portia72
    Portia72 avatar
    4 posts
    16 April 2021 in reply to 815

    Thanks 815.
    things still going ok.
    I think I need to adjust my “glasses” a bit & count my blessings.

    I had a counsellor session today and she really highlighted my negative bias, without invalidating me (good counsellor!) I do tend to skip over the positives.

  24. 815
    815 avatar
    212 posts
    19 April 2021 in reply to Portia72

    Hi Portia,

    I'm glad that you are going OK and that you've had a good counselling session.

    I think the good thing is that you are able to see what you can control in the situation and work on that.

    I hope things continue to improve.

  25. quirkywords
    Community Champion
    • Outstanding members who have volunteered their time to support others here on the forums
    • 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
    14697 posts
    19 April 2021 in reply to 815

    Hello everyone,

    I feel when one is feeling with a depressed partner it is so hard not to fell and see negative in everything.

    Portia I am glad you are gaining insights from your counsellor.

    I hope you are looking after yourself as you cope with your husband as well as offering support to those on this and other threads. Take care

  26. 815
    815 avatar
    212 posts
    22 April 2021 in reply to quirkywords

    Hi quirkywords,

    I think what you said is true. It is so easy to get caught up in someone else's negativity, especially that brought on by depression. And even more so when it is someone you love and care for deeply.

    And thank you for checking in with me. I am doing OK. I was telling a friend just yesterday that things are OK. We have some really nice moments together. But there are still some hard days. And I am still trying to find that balance, of moving forward while still being conscious of the fact that we are still learning how to navigate this somewhat new world of managing depression together as a family.

  27. 815
    815 avatar
    212 posts
    6 June 2021

    Hi everyone,

    It has been some time since I've posted. Partly because I guess, I haven't felt the need to. Things seemed to be going OK. But here I am again. Perhaps not in as bad a situation as last time, but I feel the beginning of falling into that hole again so felt the need to post here.

    The last few days, my husband has started showing the same behaviours of speaking rudely to me. Although he is not ignoring me as such, I just get a sense that something isn't quite right. We are in lockdown again and I know this is taking a toll on all of us. I am determined not to let things get as bad as they were last time. But I'm feeling that awful feeling in the pit of my stomach again.

    Last night, I decided to talk to my husband an asked him how he was doing. He told me that he is doing just fine. He's finding ways to manage his depression. But not with my help. He has help from his friends and doesn't need min. He says that, us spending time together these past few months hasn't helped him. It hasn't really made him happy. And he suddenly remembered, that I have done nothing to help him.

    This has come a bit out of nowhere for me. Our last counselling session he said that we doing fine, and that he was happy in our relationship. Although we both admitted things weren't the same, but we were on the right track. And our next session is now not for another 5 weeks as we felt that we didn't need to see her again so soon. But I feel like everything has changed in a matter of days.

    He has been unable to see his psychologist as she keeps cancelling. I know he is unhappy about that I guess that professional support that he needs hasn't been there.

    Is it possible that he is regressing? Or is it really true, that perhaps he really is happy, but just not happy with me?

    I asked him what it was that made him come back, forgive me, give me another chance. He says he doesn't know. I'm confused and hurt but I know that I need to try not to take it personal...but what if it is personal?

  28. 815
    815 avatar
    212 posts
    6 June 2021 in reply to 815

    I guess I would really just appreciate some advice, some thoughts, anyone who has experienced this before. I knew that it wouldn't be smooth road, that recovery is not linear. There will be good days/phases, as well as bad days/phases. I guess what I find hat to deal with that the moment is that he says he's actually happy and doing fine. Is he in denial?

    I felt last night that our conversation wasn't going anywhere, so I asked if we could talk again in a few days. He said we could if I wanted to, and I said I do. And we left it at that. We haven't really spoken this morning and there's a lot of tension especially with all of us being at home with nowhere to go. I will speak to him again in a few days, but to be honest I'm not really sure what else I can say.

    I don't really want to have to go through and list the things that I feel I am doing to help him. It doesn't seem genuine if I have to tell him. But he seems to be back to being hung up on that. And I'm wondering why he hasn't raised this in any of our counselling sessions and only raised it because I decided to speak to him...

  29. KG82
    KG82 avatar
    39 posts
    6 June 2021 in reply to 815

    Hi 815,

    I have been thinking about you and how you’re going. I’m sorry that things have gotten harder again. I imagine it must feel like a kick in the guts all over again to be told that he doesn’t think you’re helping. You’ve tried to stay by his side and it’s been a long slog for you (judging by how long this thread is now). I wonder whether the lockdown potentially combined with the change in seasons is having an effect on your husband’s mood. If he’s also not seeing his psychologist and getting that regular input, there’s not that external help to put things in perspective. If he’s on medication is there a chance that it’s lost some of its effect and that he may need an increased dose?

    Depression is a nasty illness and the lies that it tells are quite horrific. I thought with a lived experience of anxiety/depression that I would understand. Turns out that there is so much I didn’t understand. Unfortunately it’s not until the depression lifts that reason can start to take over again. With things sounding like they’re getting better and then taking a shift again, perhaps the depression is worse. Unfortunately once again that makes you the emotional punching bag. I imagine that there’s a degree of anxiety on your part about going through this all over again. I wish that I could give you answers as to how to make things better. You’re a compassionate wife who has done so much to support her husband, and sitting with the discomfort that you’re not out of the woods yet is so incredibly hard. My thoughts are with you.

    1 person found this helpful
  30. quirkywords
    Community Champion
    • Outstanding members who have volunteered their time to support others here on the forums
    • 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
    14697 posts
    7 June 2021 in reply to 815


    i a so sorry that things have suddenly got harder and your husband seems to have forgotten all the progress you have made. I w ant to give you a hug and say everything will be all right.
    KG82 has written a very supportive and honest post and has expressed my thoughts as well.

    Depression is a complicated illness and it does deceive us. I agree we say it isn’t personal but it it is nphard nit to see that when your loved one says such hurtful things .

    knowing that things change on the journey does nit make it any easier to cope when all you efforts seem to be ignored and everything you have achieved over last few months dismissed.

    it is o hard when the next appointment is weeks away.

    I know this has been said before and I realise you do look after yourself but it is very important. Depression can trick us into thinking we are well , into blaming loved ones for our unhappiness even when a few weeks before we were thanking them.
    815 I have always admired your patience andI willing to share so honestly your experience.

    As you know there are no easy answers sometimes only more questions.At Keats you are talking to each other and communicating.

    There are many people reading who are going through a similar thing and encouraging you as well.

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