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Abuser or depressed?

(6 Posts)
QuestionMark25 Fri 05-Jun-15 15:03:20

i have a friend who is having marriage problems she can't work out whether the husbands behaviour is down to depression or he is being intentionally emotionally abusive. Are there any tell tale signs? She knows neither scenario is great but her strategy would be different depending on the cause if that makes sense.

goddessofsmallthings Fri 05-Jun-15 15:57:29

What is his behaviour? Has his usual demeanour undergone a significant change and, if so, when did this change begin? Does he have any worries relating to his job, health, wealth etc?

Is there any reason why your friend can't post here, or read responses and dictate what you post, as it's not ideal for a third party to garner advice in relation to a matter such as this.

Lavenderice Fri 05-Jun-15 16:48:16

The two aren't mutually exclusive.

QuestionMark25 Fri 05-Jun-15 21:02:26

My friend isn't the kind of person who would post on here but i don't know how to advise her!
I don't know him really, so only hear her experience / views. They have 3 year old twins. He's found fatherhood especially challenging and he's under pressure in work. She told me she finds it frustrating that he won't take ownership of his problems; he's quite successful and she's said to him to give it up if it's making him that stressed but he would feel a failure taking a lesser paid role. He blames his moods / reluctance to socialise on work pressure but she says she doesn't know how much longer she can tolerate the situation. She talks to him about it, he will sometimes be better for a couple weeks until another work crisis then back to square one. She said he finds it hard to relax in general.

goddessofsmallthings Sat 06-Jun-15 04:24:10

Has he always found it 'hard to relax in general' and was your friend aware of this before they married?

On the face of it, it sounds as if he has a demanding job but he's not thriving on its challenges and is bringing the stress and pressures of his work home with him.

In the absence of specific examples of his behaviour, I'm inclined to the view that he's neither emotionally abusive or depressed but he is in need of strategies which will enable him to switch off the work button and turn on the dh/df button when he's at home in order to promote and prolong his physical and mental health.

From what you've said, his dw is understandably frustrated with him and I suspect she's also royally pissed rightly peeved at having to parent their dts and most probably undertake the bulk of the grunt stuff while he swans around being moody and anti-social. < miserable git emoticon >

There are numerous internet sites dedicated to helping men beat stress by learning how to separate work from play and this book together with the the Men's Health Forum website may be of interest to your friend.

With regard to their relationship, as I'm not a great fan of Relate I would suggest she sources a local couples counselling service through word of mouth recommendation if possible so that the pair of them can discuss their differences/expectatons of each other in a structured setting as rows discussions of such matters have been known to cause negativity to seep into the marriage bed woodwork where it casts it pall over the whole household.

If he responds with 'I'm too busy to attend weekly/monthly sessions', I would suggest she makes it clear that if he can't find the time to save their marriage from the brink he can go live at his place of work.

If he's continuing to 'find fatherhood especially challenging' there'll be a course for that too smile

BeakyMinder Sat 06-Jun-15 05:36:17

It is possible for someone to be both depressed and abusive you know. Depression doesn't make abuse OK.

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