My Relationship Is Making Me Depressed: What Should I Do
Recognition is the first step towards ending the toxic cycle of an unhappy relationship. This doesnt necessarily mean terminating the relationship itself, but you do need to talk to your partner and both commit to making a change. It may be possible to work through some of your issues in individual or couples counseling. However, both parties must be ready to accept the problem and try to change their behavior.
If symptoms of depression are persistent, despite changes to your relationship or breaking up with your partner, you should consult your doctor.
You’re Looking Back Through Those Rose
It’s easy to do, once you’re removed from the situation. And, of course, good memories and happy moments can be found in most relationships – but if you’re feeling an unbearable sense of loss it’s likely that you have ‘forgotten’ all the negatives that used to upset you or drive you up the wall, and instead painted a rosy glow over everything. Take off your spectacles and be objective – were you really as happy as you deserve to be?
Come back down to Earth and stop looking through those rose coloured glasses…
What Is The Biggest Cause Of Depression
Depression is a widespread mental health condition in the U.S. It can take many forms and comes with a variety of symptoms. There is not one main cause of depression, it can be genetic, but environmental influences often play a part in causing this disorder. In addition, sometimes depression symptoms are influenced by inactivity in the brains frontal lobe or the brains inability to properly regulate mood. Causes of depression are commonly tied to other elements of ones health including: substance abuse, mental illness, medication, and a variety of medical conditions. Other major causes include stressful life events and low self-esteem. Causes of depression are unique for every individual and are often a combination of many factors.
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Consider Seeing A Therapist
It seems ironic, right? Shouldnt he be the one seeing a therapist?
It is a good idea for him to see a mental health professional or therapist if he isnt already, but committing to therapy yourself is much easier than asking him to do it. Working with a mental health professional helps mitigate the stress of being in a relationship with a man who deals with depression. It will allow you to better understand what he is going through and lead by example if he is resistant to therapy.
Its also an opportunity to take steps towards asking him to join you for couples therapy. Again, this might be easier than convincing him to see a therapist alone.
Depression And Your Relationships
Depression can have a huge effect on your relationships. When you withdraw from life, you may avoid or push away the people you love. You might also be irritable or get angry more easily.
Your friends and family could feel hurt that you don’t seem to be able to enjoy their company. They may miss the fun things you did together when you were feeling better, or resent that you don’t feel up to doing your usual tasks around the house or at work. Your partner, parents, or children may even blame themselves for your unhappiness.
In turn, the problems that depression cause in your relationships can make your symptoms worse.
But support from family, friends, and other folks around you can be a big help while you’re recovering from an episode of depression. Here are some steps to maintain those relationships.
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With Your Partner It’s ‘my Way Or The Highway’
Listening is loving in a healthy relationship because of the opinions and concerns of both of you count. That’s true whether you’re wondering what to eat for dinner or deciding where to live.
If your voice gets dismissed, you’ll be at risk of feeling powerless and depressed.
How Can Counselling Help
We see a lot of couples affected by depression. While Relate counselling is not a treatment by itself, it can really help to work with someone who understands how depression can impact on a relationship.
They can help you begin to unpick whats happening so you can get a better grip of the situation and how you might begin to address it. The idea is to help you feel like everything isnt hopeless that, actually, there are ways of managing whats happening.
Here are some of the specific techniques we use.
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Get Support And Treatment
The impact of untreated depression extends to all the people closest to the person with depression. It is accurate to state that in one way or another most of us have been impacted by depression. Treatment is vitally important to a persons recovery from depression. You can help your loved ones by helping them keep up with taking their medication and remembering appointments. You can also help them by reassuring them that asking for help is not a sign of weakness or something to be ashamed of.
When someone you care about is depressed, its OK for you to feel frustrated, angry, and upset. It is very important, however, that you dont allow these feelings to fester and grow. Therapists, counselors, and support groups are not only for people with depression. Seeking professional help for yourself can help you feel supported, vent your frustrations, and make you more aware of your own emotional needs. Therapy can also provide answers to any questions you have about coping with the depression of a loved one. Even if you dont go the mental health professional route, its important to lean on your support network during this difficult time.
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For people struggling with depression, its important to have compassion and to take action to overcome this state, including seeking professional help. Remember that the negative thoughts you are experiencing are likely being driven by depression, not by a person. Depression can lead to the ultimate negative outcome of death, so please consider calling National Hotline if your significant other is experiencing thoughts of self-harm. SAMHSAs National Helpline is a free, confidential, 24/7, 365-day-a-year treatment referral and information service for individuals and families facing mental and/or substance use disorders.
There are many types of treatment that have proven to be effective for depression, but two are the most effective: Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy .
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy . CBT is problem-focused and action-oriented meaning it is used to treat specific problems related to depression and the therapists role is to assist the patients in finding and practicing effective strategies to address the identified goals and decrease symptoms of the disorder and limit adverse outcomes.
Treatment For Depression
What Is Recurrent Major Depressive Disorder?
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Not Allowed To Seek Therapy Help
If youre not allowed to seek therapy, that is an obvious red flag that a relationship is bad for your mental health. It also may coincide with a partner who is controlling and whose controlling nature has caused you to feel increasingly isolated from former friends and supports.
Gaslighting can be another indication that efforts to get help for yourself and/or the relationship will be rejected. Dr. Davis described five common tactics that people who gaslight use. They lie about things you know to be true accuse you of the negative behaviors they engage in themselves call you crazy, emotionally unbalanced, or too sensitive undermine you in subtle ways and, when confronted about their behavior, they often deflect and distract.
Consider The Practical Implications
Trying to sustain a relationship with a depressed person can make the healthy partner feel helpless and more than a little hopeless at times. If you feel you simply cant go on, it may be time to sever ties. But walking away may be easier than it sounds, especially if youre in a marriage. Where will you go? What will you live on? What will your spouse live on? Are children involved?
Sometime depressed people may use drugs or alcohol. If this is the case, walking away may be your only choice. Your childrens emotional well-being and physical safety must be your first priority. It may be necessary to take a hard look at these and other practical considerations before you say goodbye and walk away.
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Find Your Preferred Method Of Communication
Have you ever received a text and thought, Ill respond when I feel up to it? And then you just never actually responded? It happens. But if you consistently have a hard time responding to texts, then maybe its not the best form of communication for you. Texting is something that I struggle with, but phone calls feel a lot easier for me, Dr. Johnson says. Some people say that writing an email is easier because it feels less urgent than a text, Dr. Johnson explains. Or maybe messaging your friend on Instagram feels easier because you can send funny posts that may trigger an easy conversation.
Create A System For How You Each Want To Be Supported
While you should never rely completely on your partner for emotional support, it is incredibly important to show up for each other. Supporting your partner can take many different forms, from verbal reassurances to making joint plans to leave the house.
“Having respect and understanding for your partner as they’re coping with their mental health challenges will help to keep a love connection healthy,” Egel says. “Your relationship will remain in better standing as you support your partner while allowing them to work through their own individual depressive symptoms.”
It can be helpful to make a plan for support ahead of time for each person’s depressive episodes rather than winging it when symptoms pop up. Do they want encouragement? A listening ear? Gentle reminders?
Emphasis on the word “gentle.” Since you likely spend more time with your partner than most, you may be the first to notice when their symptoms start to worsen. It can be helpful to let your partner know what you see, but you have to tread lightly. Avoid accusations or shaming. “You can say, ‘I noticed you’ve been eating less. Have you noticed that?'” Brateman explains. “In a very gentle, just, ‘I love you, and I’m curious’ sort of way. That shows interest but not blaming.”
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You Dont Need To Stay With Him
Protecting your mental health is more important than being with him, no matter how much it seems like he has become everything to you. If the relationship is bringing you a feeling of pain over happiness despite attempts to make it healthy leaving is the right decision.
It might seem like you are abandoning him, leaving him at the mercy of his depression and without your love to protect him. Nonetheless, men have a responsibility to work with those they love to overcome depression and make it more manageable. You should leave any man who is not doing enough to make the relationship work, and men who suffer from depression are no exception.
How Does Depression Affect Relationships
Everyone struggles with bouts of sadness from time to time. A challenging life event can result in a somber mood for some time, although slowly but surely we rebound. When the sadness persists for more than two weeks, combined with hopelessness, despair and various other symptoms, this could be a sign of Major Depressive Disorder.
Depression is the second most common mental health disorder among U.S. adults, affecting 17.3 million of us each year. Depression can impact all aspects of our lives, including our relationships. The symptoms associated with depression make it difficult to connect emotionally or to spend time with others.
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Your Partner Doesn’t Do His/her Share
A partner who takes an active role in the project of living and loving together is a joy to partner with. Whether he scrambles eggs for the two of you in the morning or scurries around with a quick clean-up before visitors arrive, helping is loving.
If you’re feeling sad in the relationship, you need to address why and find a solution. Talk with your spouse or a marriage counselor to help you work through your feelings.
If you or someone you know is suffering from depression, you are not alone. According to the CDC, “more than two in five adults experienced symptoms of anxiety or a depressive disorder in their lifetime.” Visit SAMHSA’s website, or call 1-800-662-HELP or 1-800-273-TALK
You May Be Wondering How Can I Help My Marriage
Capitalizing on the healthy parts of your relationship may be the best way to combat depression in this case. While making the most of your relationship, it is important to acknowledge the presence of depression. Recognize that it is nothing to be embarrassed about. Emotions live in every part of who we are and are often the most tangible internal part of us. Consider these few examples for self-improvement that you and your partner can work on individually.
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Understand How Depression Can Affect Your Relationship
Individuals with a mental health condition such as depression can have a negative impact on their spouses mental health, and vice versa, sometimes even leading to relationship breakdown. Understand the common signs that indicate depression could be a factor in your relationship.
One in five Australians will experience a mental health condition such as depression each year, with one in two doing so during their lifetime.
Traditional practice from mental health professionals often focusses on the mental health of an individual, overlooking how individuals relate to one another in a relationship. Individuals with a mental health condition such as depression can have a negative impact on their spouses mental health, and vice versa, sometimes even leading to relationship breakdown.
Your Partner Is Always Criticizing You
There is a difference between constructive criticism and criticism. However, when your partner is constantly tearing you apart and making hateful remarks about you and your actions- it can ultimately push you to the point of depression. No one likes to be made to feel they arent enough, and that is the message these behaviors send.
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Ways To Tell If Your Relationship Is Causing Depression
Relationships can be one of the most meaningful parts of a persons life. Romantic relationships, especially the ones that become a lifetime partnership, are particularly important and have an enormous impact on a persons happiness.
A healthy long-term relationship should be a source of love, comfort, and happiness. When this relationship instead becomes a source of pain, feels like a prison, or makes a person feel unsafe, that relationship causing depression isnt uncommon.
If you feel like this may be the case in your own life, or the statements above sound familiar, but youre still unsure if your relationship is making you depressed, check out the red flags below and see if you can relate.
Buffer Stress By Making Space For Yourself
Because depression can feel like a third person in the relationship, you might need a healthy amount of space. This can alleviate the irritability issue mentioned earlier.
Ava Strong, who has dated a man with depression, recommended partners practice healthy boundaries and self-love. This means protecting your mental health by giving yourself space when you feel it is at risk, which brings us to the next piece of advice.
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Unhappy Relationship Or Depressed Signs Its The Relationship
Often, people wonder whether the root issue is the unhappy relationship or whether theyre depressed. Many relationships go through dry spells or seasons where one or both partners may feel dissatisfied. Sometimes, though, the core issue may not be the relationship itself but the fact that one partner is depressed.
Here are some signs that the relationship is the source of unhappiness , according to Dr. Davis:
- Low sense of security in the relationship
- Second-guessing a partners motives
- Feeling like you are lacking in some way
- Feeling empty after interactions
- Settling for bursts of connection but craving more
You Miss Your Ex Despite It All
Even when things don’t work out, it’s natural to grieve over what you have lost. Most relationships have good points, even great points – and that goes for ones that reach an end. But if it was perfect, you’d still be together. Come on, admit it – you’ve put those rose-coloured glasses on again. Treasure the memories you made together, because they are part of you and part of your life. But accept that you need to go forwards separately. You can waste your life worrying about what might have been. Don’t stand with one foot in the past, because that’s like being sucked under by quicksand. Being stuck in one place hinders your chance of future happiness – and happiness is what we all strive for.
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