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  • FIRST POST
    • MortgageVirgin
    • By MortgageVirgin 20th Mar 17, 4:34 PM
    • 62Posts
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    MortgageVirgin
    Relationship rough patch with no end in sight.
    • #1
    • 20th Mar 17, 4:34 PM
    Relationship rough patch with no end in sight. 20th Mar 17 at 4:34 PM
    Hello everyone, I'm looking for a little impartial advice.

    My partner and I have been together for over a decade. Not married, bought a house together two years ago. He had been single for about 12 years when we met, following a very short marriage, subsequent divorce and a period of depression when he was taking ADs. Adjusting from his bachelor lifestyle took time and he told me early on that he wanted to take things slowly, that he wasn't sure if he'd ever want to get married again.

    We took things slowly, fell in love, spent a lot of time together (5/6 days a week) but didn't officially live together. About a month after we moved into our house, he told me that he was starting to feel depressed again, so went to the docs and was given ADs again.

    This 2 year period of time has been... hard. I am being as supportive, understanding and patient as I can. We get exercise together, eat healthily, got a cat for stress relief and company. Work is his main stress factor, so I took promotion so he could cut his hours to two days a week. I never push him to socialise because I know he hates it and gets very anxious. He doesn't want to talk about marriage until he feels more stable.

    He has become pretty much nocturnal- if he's working the next day, he'll come to bed at 2am. If not working, he'll come to bed just after I get up at 5.40am, while I'm in the shower. Then he'll stay in bed until about 4/5pm. He drinks a bottle of wine a night, minimum. We don't do much together apart from going for jogs and watching films/ TV in the evenings. Work is very stressful for me, 7am til 6pm most days, with extra work in the evenings and weekends at home. I do the cooking and food shopping, he washes up. Other cleaning is done by me at the weekends. I'm very aware of his mood levels and try not to moan and make him feel worse.

    I can't even begin to imagine what it feels like to live with depression like his, but I'm feeling incredibly isolated and lonely. He never asks how I am, won't instigate any affection. I stopped initiating sex because he always said no and it's now been over a year since we were last intimate. He'll cuddle me when I approach him, but that's it. I don't have much confidence and feel unattractive and insignificant as a result.

    What makes it very difficult is the fact that there seems to be no light at the end of the tunnel. I worry that I'm being incredibly selfish by getting upset about the way things are going. Lately, I've been wondering how much longer I can keep going, but then there are so many complications to us breaking up and I can't stomach causing such an upheaval when he needs my support.

    Has anyone experienced anything like this? Am I being too self-centred?

    Sorry it's such a long post- well done if you've read this far!
Page 1
    • Ozzuk
    • By Ozzuk 20th Mar 17, 4:42 PM
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    Ozzuk
    • #2
    • 20th Mar 17, 4:42 PM
    • #2
    • 20th Mar 17, 4:42 PM
    You aren't self-centred, your needs and happiness are just as important.

    If he is struggling that much then it sounds like the medication isn't helping so maybe that needs a review with his GP. Also, if he's depressed then that level of alcohol isn't good - he should stop that straight away if he's serious.

    I think that is the main thing - does he want to change? I know first hand how soul destroying depression is, but equally after this amount of time you need to make sure you aren't enabling him. Have you tried counselling? If he only works 2 days what is he doing with the rest of his time?

    Sending you virtual hugs!
    • Money maker
    • By Money maker 20th Mar 17, 4:46 PM
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    Money maker
    • #3
    • 20th Mar 17, 4:46 PM
    • #3
    • 20th Mar 17, 4:46 PM
    Hugs from here too but ask yourself if this is how you want to spend the rest of your life.


    The alcohol is bad news along with a lifestyle that doesn't intertwine with yours. You're making excuses for him but at your expense.


    You are not self-centred at all.
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    • MortgageVirgin
    • By MortgageVirgin 20th Mar 17, 4:49 PM
    • 62 Posts
    • 93 Thanks
    MortgageVirgin
    • #4
    • 20th Mar 17, 4:49 PM
    • #4
    • 20th Mar 17, 4:49 PM
    Yes... I've been wondering if I'm making things too easy. Do you mean counselling for him, or me?

    When not working, he sleeps during the day, then watches films, plays games on the computer and does some coding stuff.
    • trailingspouse
    • By trailingspouse 20th Mar 17, 4:59 PM
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    trailingspouse
    • #5
    • 20th Mar 17, 4:59 PM
    • #5
    • 20th Mar 17, 4:59 PM
    You are not self-centered, you are not alone, and it is freaking hard to live with someone like this.

    A few things to remember -
    - you are not his mother, his psychotherapist, or in possession of a magic wand
    - you are important, and you need to look after yourself before you can even begin to help him

    Please go to http://www.mypartnerisdepressed.com/forum/ for lots of help and advice from people who are doing exactly what you are doing.
    • Hermia
    • By Hermia 20th Mar 17, 5:03 PM
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    Hermia
    • #6
    • 20th Mar 17, 5:03 PM
    • #6
    • 20th Mar 17, 5:03 PM
    Yes... I've been wondering if I'm making things too easy. Do you mean counselling for him, or me?

    When not working, he sleeps during the day, then watches films, plays games on the computer and does some coding stuff.
    Originally posted by MortgageVirgin
    It sounds like he is stuck in a vicious circle where his depression has led to him leading this sort of lifestyle, but this lifestyle is making his depression worse. A lot of people with depression do find having a routine and work does help them. I think you making life easier for him may have made things worse. My friend's ex-husband suffered from social anxiety so she offered to become the breadwinner and never made him go out socially because she knew how anxious these things made him. As a result of that he got steadily worse over time because he wasn't getting used to facing his fears and overcoming them. He ended up as a hermit basically.

    Whilst it is good to support your partner, it is unreasonable to have a relationship where you are doing everything for the other person and not getting anything back. You can't live your life with someone who doesn't seem to care about you and doesn't even ask how you are. I know plenty of people with both physical and mental illnesses who still care about their partner and do their best to show it even if it is hard for them. What you do next will depend a lot on whether he is willing to get help and try and change. If he isn't it might be worth you talking to someone to work out what you want to do.
    • thorsoak
    • By thorsoak 20th Mar 17, 5:24 PM
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    thorsoak
    • #7
    • 20th Mar 17, 5:24 PM
    • #7
    • 20th Mar 17, 5:24 PM
    You are living in a nightmare! You are entitled to enjoy your life and at the moment, by treading on eggshells around your partner's depression, you are in danger of slipping into that morass yourself.

    For the sake of your own health, you do have to talk to him about how you feel - you are as entitled to happiness as is he.
    • Serendipitious
    • By Serendipitious 20th Mar 17, 5:25 PM
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    Serendipitious
    • #8
    • 20th Mar 17, 5:25 PM
    • #8
    • 20th Mar 17, 5:25 PM
    I'd get some counselling for yourself. Because it's high time your needs were listened to and acted upon, and if that means off-loading to a professional to begin with, then so be it.

    You can't change the other person but counselling would mean that a process of improvement can begin for you.
    “All shall be well, and all shall be well and all manner of thing shall be well.”

    June grocery 62.91 July 89.07 Aug 71.25 Sept 71.48


    • FBaby
    • By FBaby 20th Mar 17, 6:19 PM
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    FBaby
    • #9
    • 20th Mar 17, 6:19 PM
    • #9
    • 20th Mar 17, 6:19 PM
    It sounds you are yourself starting to feel depressed. However hard it is to live with chronic depression and inevitably it will lead to attention being focused on the person suffering from the illness, it doesn't mean that they cannot take any responsibility towards the impact of their illness on those who love them.

    I think it is time to talk to him, say that you do appreciate how hard it is to live with depression, but explaining to him that living with getting little attention and appreciation is getting to you and that your feeling that the relationship is very one directional is starting to be a weight you are struggling to carry.

    Hopefully, he will be receptive to you sharing your feelings with him and will agree to try to come up with ways to make it better for you. I really hope it is the case.
    • mark5
    • By mark5 20th Mar 17, 6:32 PM
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    mark5
    Your here once, enjoy it, don't waste it, I think you deserve a lot more from him. I doubt it will change either.
    • MortgageVirgin
    • By MortgageVirgin 20th Mar 17, 7:06 PM
    • 62 Posts
    • 93 Thanks
    MortgageVirgin
    Thank you for the feedback, everyone. I've shied away from talking about it with him, for fear of making it worse. Sad as it may be, I think I agree that he is unlikely to change.

    Any recommendations on people I can talk to? Do I need to approach my doctor?

    Sorting out the housing situation will be very tricky if we do end up parting ways. I could afford the mortgage on my own; he couldn't. However, he did put a large deposit down from the sale of his previous home, which I can't afford to 'pay back'. We might have to sell. However, he wouldn't get a mortgage on his own.
    • beautiful_ravens
    • By beautiful_ravens 20th Mar 17, 7:22 PM
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    beautiful_ravens
    Speaking as someone who has had depression, I think youve done a good job helping him and trying to be supportive.
    But, I also think you've enabled him to get worse - youve kind of cut him too much slack. I also think that its very hard to get someone else out of depression -in the end, it has to be done by them. You are stuck now because theres no options left for you, no other ways to help.

    Your doctor would be the first port of call towards finding a counsellor for yourself.

    http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/stress-anxiety-depression/Pages/Free-therapy-or-counselling.aspx
    ''A moment's thinking is an hour in words.'' -Thomas Hood
    • goodwithsaving
    • By goodwithsaving 20th Mar 17, 7:49 PM
    • 616 Posts
    • 917 Thanks
    goodwithsaving
    You aren't being selfish. My ex was an alcoholic who was also depressed. I spent every evening in tears, was often up at midnight begging him not to drive and he would frequently pick me up on my way home whilst he was drunk. I was surviving on 3 hours sleep and he didn't change despite chances. I tried, really tried. In the end I needed to separate for my sanity. The house went, as did my first true love.
    Since then, I've been on a downward spiral. Suffering a breakdown, I've been at the bottom and intend to come back up.You will be resilient up to a point but no-one is superwoman. I didn't look after myself and subsequently fell to pieces. I suggest go on holiday alone, have some breathing space and take time out from your day to day life.
    Every time you borrow money, you’re robbing your future self. –Nathan W. Morris
    • thorsoak
    • By thorsoak 20th Mar 17, 8:03 PM
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    • 24,781 Thanks
    thorsoak
    Thank you for the feedback, everyone. I've shied away from talking about it with him, for fear of making it worse. Sad as it may be, I think I agree that he is unlikely to change.

    Any recommendations on people I can talk to? Do I need to approach my doctor?

    Sorting out the housing situation will be very tricky if we do end up parting ways. I could afford the mortgage on my own; he couldn't. However, he did put a large deposit down from the sale of his previous home, which I can't afford to 'pay back'. We might have to sell. However, he wouldn't get a mortgage on his own.
    Originally posted by MortgageVirgin
    Yes - the house will have to go - sell it, give him his deposit back, and as you say, you can afford a mortgage on your own. He will have enough to put down as a deposit on a rental if he cannot get another mortgage - but really how he manages is not really your problem - you've carried him for how long? If he is not energised enough by a discussion with you to start seeking help with his depression, then you cannot help him forever.

    I know it sounds harsh - and yes, it is harsh - but what other option do you have?
    • Fireflyaway
    • By Fireflyaway 20th Mar 17, 9:02 PM
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    Fireflyaway
    It doesn't sound as though his depression is under control. Will he go to the gp to adjust his medicine or be referee to CBT ? Its no life for either of you, but it can be very hard for a depressed person to get the motivation to seek help. Does he know how you feel? Sometimes an honest conversation is needed. It might make it worse temporarily, but you can't both stay this way forever. You must not blame yourself.
    • Kim kim
    • By Kim kim 20th Mar 17, 9:22 PM
    • 2,023 Posts
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    Kim kim
    Yes - the house will have to go - sell it, give him his deposit back, and as you say, you can afford a mortgage on your own. He will have enough to put down as a deposit on a rental if he cannot get another mortgage - but really how he manages is not really your problem - you've carried him for how long? If he is not energised enough by a discussion with you to start seeking help with his depression, then you cannot help him forever.

    I know it sounds harsh - and yes, it is harsh - but what other option do you have?
    Originally posted by thorsoak
    This. I personally would have been long gone. You have no children to tie you.
    He's using you. You're doing everything in the relationship, you're getting nothing back.
    Leave & be happy alone without the weight of supporting him & you will probably find a real "partner" in time.
    While you're supporting him, it's dragging you down - even if you don't notice.
    • Ozzuk
    • By Ozzuk 21st Mar 17, 12:22 PM
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    Ozzuk
    As you haven't really broached it with him I'd certainly make some attempt before writing off the relationship. Tell him he needs to at least try counselling (maybe you should as well), I'd go private, it isn't cheap but given the options it could be money well spent.

    Let him know how you feel and how it is impacting you and that you want to help things change. A large part of depression is not being able to see things that are obvious to others- like the impact you are having. Often a partner highlighting the issues can jump start change. It can of course also make the sufferer withdraw and feel more guilty.

    Self help can be effective and low cost - you're already exercising which is good, but stop the alcohol. If needs be, both of you for a while at least, it is a depressant. There are loads of books on the subject, try some (both of you).

    If you do all this and see no change then at least you know you tried, ultimately if this continues as is it will really start to impact your health, outlook and wellbeing.
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