Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, see our mental health web guide which can point you to expert advice.
Help me to understand my partner's depression please...(2 Posts)
So, I've been with DP for over 6 years now. We don't live together, but live about 10 mins apart each with our own houses. We are a bit older! He's a lovely, kind man & I care for him deeply.
DP has high functioning aspergers and I am a very tolerant people pleaser... it works, although I do let a lot go. We both have some baggage, but (although he won't ever talk about it) I fear his childhood included some form of abuse. He has a long history of depressive episodes (he'll occasionally say he doesn't see the point of being here). These events tend to pass & I have learned that he just needs time to process whatever is on his mind. He's in the midst of an episode right now & whilst my default setting is to try to fix things for him, to make him happy, I know I can't actually do anything which will help him - normally he comes out of these episodes after a few days.
Yesterday morning I encouraged him to talk to me about how he was feeling. He's been very ambivalent towards me of late & I guess I wanted some reassurance that it wasn't me which was making him unhappy. He said he didn't want to & that it was "tedious". He said that there wasn't much to be happy about was there & that during our recent holiday he felt he wanted to come home in the first week. He also said if we start talking I'll turn it around to be all about me & not about him. I don't know quite what happened then, but I started to cry. I'm massively emotional at the moment, 3 months post cancer all clear & mid surgical menopause.
Anyway, he said my tears weren't helping & that he didn't want to have to worry about me on top of everything else. I said he didn't need to worry about me, left him to his day & drove home. There were no cross words - I was crying & he just wanted to be left alone. I kept myself busy yesterday & he called me last night saying he was feeling a little better & asking how I was. This morning he called again & was talking about booking holidays...
I'm still a bit up in the air today to be honest. It's like yesterday morning never happened. I'm questioning how happy he is with our relationship because of his withdrawal from me & the fact he can't provide any reassurance about how he feels....when it might not be the relationship which is the issue...
Please can someone explain how I can support him through these episodes but also how I can take care of myself during these times too. It's a massive rollercoaster of emotions at the moment.
Having lived with a depressed partner I can understand something of what you are going through. I think when someone feels as he does it takes all their emotional energy to cope, snd having to worry about someone else is just too much. He may also feel that by keeping you at arm's length he is saving you from being hurt! It is hard being with a depressed person, and a very lonely place because they cannot see things from any point of view but their own. It is worth hanging in there though. It will get better, and if your relationship is usually good then it may well be that he can see you in a different light. Hope things improve for you
Join the discussion
Already registered? Log in with:
Please login first.