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Supporting a partner with depression

(9 Posts)
choccyfiend78 Fri 12-May-17 10:47:43

Have recently got together with a new partner and he suffers from depression and anxiety. The past week or so he has been going through a bad patch and I am unsure of the best way to support him.
I have said that I am there for him whatever he needs but I feel sometimes like I am hassling him and don't want to make him feel worse. He keeps apologising for being this way even though it's not his fault and says he is sorry because he doesn't want to hurt me but knows that he will.
I don't know what to do for the best, does anyone have any advice on his best to help him get through this??

NolongerAnxiousCarer Sun 14-May-17 22:12:09

It's lovely yhat you want to support him, have you asked him what he would like you to do to support him? He will know best what he needs. For my DH, normality and routine help. Talking about normal non mental health stuff, watching TV together. Remember you can't make it better, and you are unlikely to make it worse, it just is as it is, just being accepting of that can in itself be helpful.

choccyfiend78 Tue 16-May-17 17:40:45

Thank you so much for the response. We have talked about it but I don't think he has had someone willing to stick around before so is unsure of what to say. He seems to hide away and shut himself off from others so I am just trying to check in with him to see how he is doing but not too much that I get annoying confused
Maybe in time he will trust me more and possibly open up a bit more about what we can do X

NolongerAnxiousCarer Tue 16-May-17 19:36:40

Sounds like a plan. When DH is too il to engage much with me I focus on doing things I enjoy for me. I will invite him to join me, but if he doesn't want to I will do it anyway for myself. That keeps me well and then when he's ferling better we go back to doing things together.

smu06set Tue 16-May-17 19:42:55

As a person currently going thru a depression bad patch - my advice would be:

Lots of affection. Not necessarily physical hugs, but words, a shoulder squeeze, that kind of thing.

Pick up the slack - at the moment i am thoroughly crap at housework, and seeing the jobs pile up whilst being unable to do them stresses me. Whatever he normally does (eg taking the bin out), you do it. Not forever, just for now.

Being there to listen if he wants to talk. So sit on the sofa. Dont force conversation, just be there and go with it when he starts to talk.

And reassurance that you dont judge him for being depressed.

AndNoneForGretchenWieners Tue 16-May-17 19:50:18

I am prone to depression and anxiety, and DH has also gone through a period of depression, so luckily we can support each other as we recognise the signs. What I find helpful is space, recognition that I can't always face the world, a loving text, a cuddle for no reason. DH will buy me a magazine, or put on one of my favourite films, when we are together.

I don't often feel like sex, or going out, or talking when I'm depressed. DH doesn't let me wallow as such, but will be there, which is all I need. Knowing that he will love me regardless of how miserable, pessimistic or scared I get, is the biggest comfort possible.

erinaceus Wed 17-May-17 06:40:27

Self-care, self-care, self-care. Being around depressed people can affect your own mood, so make sure that alongside supporting your partner you find ways to keep yourself in a good place, if that makes sense?

Is your partner getting any professional support?

This cartoon captures what support looks like to me when I am in a bad place with depression.

Itisnoteasybeingdifferent Wed 17-May-17 07:44:49

Be there for him.
No pressure to "do something". Remember he will come out at some time. But it is painful when your other half is depressed. So as said above don't be hard on yourself. Look after your health.

Good luck .. oh and do keep posting.

choccyfiend78 Wed 17-May-17 20:28:26

Thanks all for the advice. I think I am attempting most things suggested at the moment so that's good.

I have had spells of mild depression in the past so have a vague idea but nothing particularly severe so worried a little that I was going over the top of you see what I mean.

As for taking up the slack, his flat is a total state at the minute, worse than the shared house I used to live in with 4 blokes as a student!! I did offer to help with it as he had someone coming to stay for a couple of days but he was being stubborn and refused the help so I just let him get on with it.

I suppose I am keeping my distance a little to give him some space with the relationship being quite new (only a couple of months but we have been very comfortable since the start so seems a lot longer smile) but I have been checking in every day to ask how he is doing even if he doesn't reply for hours.

Hopefully he will come through this low patch soon and we can talk more about what he would prefer on the future.

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