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Is DH depressed? Unsure what to do (long, sorry)

(7 Posts)
space21 Tue 25-Mar-14 08:17:06

Our marriage is at crisis point but I don't want to end it. After some reading, I had a bit of a lightbulb moment that maybe he's suffering from depression but in denial.

Our relationship has been growing apart since early last year. I was pg with my second and DH was working like mad so we hardly saw each other in the lead up to the birth. By which time he was stressed and knackered but trying to be strong for me I think. Immediately after the birth he was sort of distant but I was too busy with a newborn for it to totally register.

And so the 6 months following were of course a whirlwind of newborn and I also have a 2.5 year old so we were concentrating on the kids and lack of sleep, money worries and we are doing up our house but i life is good and could be amazing.

In the past few months Dh on the other hand has been slowly checking himself out of family life. He doesn't take himself of to the pub or other hobbies or go out all the time. He's there, in the same room but detached - it's hard to explain. He has no idea about me and kids do and even if i try and involve him or tell him stuff its like he cant retain it, not even the important stuff. He's lacking in enthusiasm and cold, joyless even. He's also simmering with anger and if he blows its like a big tantrum with wall punching. I've tried to encourage him to go out or do some sport or anything to improve his mood but he won't.

I'm afraid to say I've started handling the situation really badly so now we have lots of rowing, blame and tears. i feel frustrated and helpless, rejected and incredibly lonely around him and I want my husband back. I wonder if its my fault that I should make more effort but the resentment prevents me.

Sorry for the long post. If you are still reading - does this sound like depression? If so what can I do?

TheresNoMeWithoutYou Tue 25-Mar-14 08:27:36

((Hugs)) for you. It sounds possible. My DH has been struggling. He is open about it now, but I had to start the conversation. Once I did, he was so relieved. Knowing I had noticed, knowing I cared and knowing it was ok made a huge difference.
How would your DH be if you started to talk to him about it? Maybe reassuring him you love him first? I talked while we were in bed in the dark. It seemed to make it easier for DH.
Haven't much advice but there are many wiser on here, hopefully they will be along.
You have had a full on few years. Take care of yourself too.

space21 Tue 25-Mar-14 10:53:50

Thanks for replying TheresNoMeWithoutYou. We had a bit of a chat and he has admitted to suppressing all emotions, good and bad and it's just become a habit and easier. He says he feels stressed too and is finding it difficult to cope with work, kids, me, money, house - basically life.
I reassured him and told him I love him and want to be with him and that I support him 100% but also that the situation is making me unbelievably sad, frustrated and that I feel helpless and a failure for not being able to make him happy. A few tears on both sides.

I feel a little unburdened with all the honesty and he has just told me that he's made an appointment to go and talk with a therapist - I'm proud of him for doing that.

How did your dh get through it? How did you?

flanneryann Tue 25-Mar-14 13:25:45

Its really good that you were able to have a chat and try and break down some of the defences he has put up. Its an incredibly hard step for some people to talk to others about how they are feeling, and even harder to seek external professional help. In my experience these things don't just get better on their own. He has taken some great first steps. He is very lucky to have you to support him.
My Dh really seemed to struggle with the birth of our second child for some reason. I don't know whether he was feeling the burden of another mouth to feed or just jaded with life but he really seemed distant and uninterested. I also felt very unsupported second time around.
Have you got someone to support you? I am in a very difficult situation in that my husband is very depressed and is refusing to talk to anyone about it. I have to drag out of him how he is feeling so he opens up. Its hard when the burden of being the supporting person is all on you. Make sure you look after yourself too as its very easy for your mood to go downhill too under the strain as I am now discovering.

laurenlovely Tue 25-Mar-14 14:16:51

It does sound possible. I have been through something similar. I recommend a book called "Depression Fallout" by Anne Sheffiled. It helped me cope and now what to do when my XDP was expressed. It has such an effect on some people that they can become mean, unpleasant, joyless, unmotivated and even do funny things they would never do. It can also be pent up emotions / resentments coming out

TheresNoMeWithoutYou Tue 25-Mar-14 15:30:06

space21 it is ongoing here. The big difference now is DH knows he can come home and say how he has been feeling. He used to cry in his car sad He won't go and see the gp but is trying harder to be self aware. We talk a lot. He has promised if his dark days outweigh the good further along the line he will seek help from the gp.
The fact you have started talking, cried together and are moving forward together should make a big positive difference. There is no quick fix. The steps made by chatting are huge tho'. Its great he is going to see someone. Good luck to you both flowers.

space21 Tue 25-Mar-14 19:26:23

My mood has really gone downhill. Alarm bells were ringing when I started to feel better away from the house than in it with him. Awful.
And the resentment makes me feel very prickly so I have to concentrate and try to be understanding and not accusatory and avoid more rows.

Flanneryann - I think you're right about pressure to provide triggering it. I hope your DH seeks help.

Theresnomewithoutyou - crying in the car - poor guy. Talking is so important and we really have to find time for it.

Laurenlovely - off to check the book out now

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