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How do I leave my suicidal DP? Can't cope anymore :((32 Posts)
I can't believe I'm writing this, but enough is enough. My DP is currently suffering from very serious depression and is suicidal due to lots of problems within his family (ill step-father and sister) but he is refusing to get help. This came to light about 2 months ago and since then he has tried to take his life twice, no one else knows about this apart from me and an ex-colleague of ours (we all worked together but me and ex-colleague have left recently) who I confided in as she also suffers depression. At first I thought I was coping quite well, I read a very good self-help book and initially thought DP was making progress, he had cut down on his drinking and improved his eating habits. However in the last couple of weeks his behaviour towards me and mood swings have become out of control. He is constantly accusing me of cheating on him and lying (neither of which I have done) and it's getting to the point where I'm scared to say anything, even ask something as simple as 'what would you like for dinner?', in case he suddenly gets angry and we get into yet another vicious argument. I know he is only doing all this because the monster that is depression has taken over his body, and I love him more than I have ever loved anybody else, but if he continues to refuse to get help I can't carry on like this any more. If I leave him though I know he's going to do something stupid and try to kill himself again, this time possibly succeeding because I'm not there to stop him. At the minute if he's not at work he is with me (I'm not currently working) so never has the chance to try anything but if I leave him he will be alone for the 15 hours a day he isn't at work. What on earth do I do? I can't cope any longer if he carries on refusing to get help, but if I leave I'll be responsible for his death and could never live with myself.
My partner suffers serious mental health issues, he knows that there is no compromise. He either gets help and takes his meds or I leave. It is his choice but he knows that I mean it.
Basically it wouldn't be safe or any kind of life if I stayed, just the same for you op. It has to be his choice to get help, you are not responsible for his wellbeing, you can only be there as a support.
I know it is hard.
But how do I cope if he leaves? I feel sick with worry when he's at work (and perfectly safe, if there was a problem plenty of people there can contact me immediately). I think I would go insane if I didn't know he was safe all the time.
Don't want to read and run!
I am by no means an expert but my dad has severe mental health problems, he has tried to take his own life several times and is now in sheltered housing permanently.
In the nicest possible way, you cannot help him. You are (I assume) not a medical professional and you deserve to live your own life. Recognise this and realise that you are in no position to help him and you cannot give him what he needs, so don't feel guilty AT ALL.
As you say he has already attempted suicide twice, please please please do not keep this burden to yourself. Please contact your local mental health team, Samaritans, even the police of you think he is in immediate danger.
Hopefully someone much more well informed will be along soon x
Have you told him that unless he gets help you're leaving? Hard to do I realise.
you cannot be responsible for him.
he is an adult
he is not your child
only he and profressional services can help him.
why didnt you call 999 when he tried to kill himself?
it will not be your fault if he does.
however - you can take charge here are tell his Gp and inform 999 if you concerned and think he is about to kill himself.
by doing nothing, by not informing anyone eg his work, his gp, calling 999 - then you are doing nothing to ensure eh gets the help he needs.
"he has tried to take his life twice" - please tell me you called 999 at this point, each time...
...oh and he's at risk so you need to tell adult social services.
also someone who is able to go to work and function normally for 12 hours or more is not severely depressed...is he showing odd signs at work? or are they unaware?
Yes I rang 999 both times but as he had regained consciousness and ambulances were going to take over an hour to reach us both times they told me to just get him to the GP the next day. He did go to the GP 3 weeks ago and got 2 weeks off work due to stress (he returned to work on tuesday) but I didn't go in with him and I fear he probably played it down and didn't tell the GP about the attempted suicide. If I got in touch with his GP what could he do?
His mood swings continue at work and he is on his final warning, they are aware of the stress he is going through at home due to his sick note.
Also, even if you suspect he faking, exaggerating, joking or whatever about killing himself, call the police.
It's not your job to evaluate his mental health.
See how he likes a trip to a and e - if e refuses all help tell his you are not his nurse.
'If I got in touch with his GP what could he do?'
Don't worry about that.
Write to his GP and give them the dates of the suicide attempts and say that in your view he remains at high risk of suicide and you are worried that he is downplaying his symptoms. They will know about the ambulance calls (I believe) so will see that you called the emergency services. That way, if he does contact the GP again, or an emergency call is made by someone else (or by you), they have a fuller picture of what is going on.
Why not go one step at a time. To start with, go and stay somewhere else - you sound at the end of your tether. Living with a depressive is so difficult at times. It is possible that you leaving will force him to get some help. You need to look after your own mental health as well.
you can alert the gp to what you saw and witnessed it will be confidential but it might help gp build a bigger picture
you can talk to gp about effect on you and get nhs counselling for you to talk to someone for support
you can tell dp you want to go with him next time
you can urge him to get some therapy to talk about his problems/issues
you can ask gp about crisis number for community mental health team
you can call 999 if you worried about him
you can read depression fallout anne sheffield
above all look after yourself and dont feel responsible for his every waking moment. he is an adult and once you done your bit - informed, urged him to gp etcetc then not much more you can do it has to come from him
You say that he has tried to "take his life twice" in the past 2 months; what did he do or take and, given that it appears no emergency services/doctors etc were called, how did it come about that he didn't succeed? Did he take an overdose and were you able to get to him in time and revive him - if so, did he tell you of his intentions?
It is unrealistic to expect that you can babysit or police this man throughout all of the hours he isn't at work and there is a vast difference between 'being there' for someone who is endeavouring to help themselves by seeking medical advice to cope with depression, and being the virtual prisoner of someone who not only has no intention of getting outside help, but is also using you as the whipping girl for their moods.
If you allow yourself to become the victim of emotional blackmail of this nature you will find that your own mental and physical health will suffer to the extent that you won't be able to think clearly and may become too scared to leave him for any length of time - which, it would seem, has begun to happen,.
Regardless of whatever preventative measures are put into place, the stark truth is that if someone is determined to commit suicide they will find a way to do it and, notwithstanding the fact that the balance of their mind may be disturbed at the time and/or they may have acted entirely out of character, the ultimate responsibility for the deed lies solely and wholly with them.
You didn't create his problems and, as it cannot be said that you've added to them in any way, you ARE free to leave him to his own devices but I would suggest that, before doing so, you alert his GP, those of his family members who are not unwell, and any particular friends/colleagues he may have who may be willing to attempt to persuade him to do what so far he has refused to do for you and get medication that is specifically designed to alleviate depression.
Other than by order of a court of law, doctors cannot treat patients who don't want to be treated and if you get in touch with his GP the most probable outcome is that your concerns will be noted on his medical record pending his next visit to the surgery.
In cases where patients state that they are suicidal doctors, pyschiatrists, and some social workers, have discretion to determine whether or not a section order is required to facilitate treatment.
Thanks for all the help I know it's going to be hard but I suppose I just need to 'grow a pair' as they say and tell him I'm leaving.
Don't tell him you leaving....just leave. Don't leave room for sobbing and begging you to stay .
That's the thing I don't think he will try to get me to stay because he agrees I'm better off without him.
I tried to help someone who was suicidal a year or two ago and it broke me. It broke me so badly that I ended up on anti depressants myself as it feels incredibly stressful to be relied on so heavily.
He didn't do anything and all is well, but I understand how you feel x
This sounds familiar!
My ex would threaten to kill himself when I said I was leaving, three times later I did leave and unfortunately he did kill himself.
For years I blamed myself but that default in his brain was there before I got there.
You can stick around and help him as much as u can stand and others too but unfortunately people are determined and keeping strong for him is detrimental to your health and life.
That may not have helped but I hope you both get through this
I think you have to treat this a little like addiction, as in "you didn't cause it, you can't cure it". If he dies it will not be your fault; you cannot possibly be with anyone 24/7 - you have to sleep, work, live your life and if he is determined he will find a way no matter how you watch him.
Once you've accepted that fact, you have to accept that you cannot hold yourself responsible for stopping him from killing himself. It's physically impossible.
You say no-one knows about his attempts - why don't they? Why is it a secret? The first thing to do is have complete honesty with the people in your lives, not just professionals, but everyone. You can't take responsibility for this by yourself, you have to talk to people and get help for yourself even if he won't accept help for him.
Have you been in touch with Mind - they might be able to give you some support.
I have a friend who left. She couldn't stand it any more. He drank, was addicted to painkillers, he had mood swings, he accused her of this, and that, and she couldn't stand it any more. She carried him as far as she could with his depression and his talk of suicide, and there came a point where she just could not do it any more.
Her stbxh (they were going through a divorce) committed suicide about a year later.
And you know what? It is now all over. She is getting on with her life. She was doing that before he chose what he chose, and after the shock and the funeral, she has resumed her climb out of the hole he had made for her and for himself, and their children too. She understands she could not have stopped him, either living with him or living away from him. He had help, he had a therapist, he had friends and colleagues who loved him, and he had family. He chose to end it all. It was always his default option.
My own exH went through similar, and I went through it all with him before we divorced. He was the one who left, in the end. He is still alive. Nothing alienated me more from him than his talk of suicide. I felt I was being blackmailed in the worst possible way. There were times I said to myself that I wished he would just do it and get it over with. I am not proud of that, but that is how I felt.
So sorry dottymay, that must've been awful
OP Im so glad you've decided to leave. You've been offered great advice. I took a long time to leave (in the end, he dumped me, oh the irony) but I spent years picking up the pieces, juggling work and hospital visits with the kids, making allowances, putting exp's needs above my dc and other family members, career, social life. Leave him to sink or swim, otherwise you'll drown.
I think you need to blow it open. Get friends and family involved and stop carrying the weight of it all by yourself.
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