Post Edited (Honey Bee) : 12/28/2007 4:22:45 AM (GMT-7)
Constantly I question is this my husbands depression or is it him being a jerk. In the months I have been asking myself this question I have not found an answer. I try to emphasize to husband that this is not him it is the depression. He is treating, but not getting alot better. I picture us at the bottom of the well. We climb up a little, slip down abit, then crawl back toward the light. We are not at the bottom, but we are far from the light. I wonder if I will ever see the light.
There is a website that someone mentioned on this site. I find it helpful just reading the stories. It is primarily spouses of depressed people--depressionfallout.com. The answers vary from couple to couple. Some find a way to move forward others do not.
Wife of Depression
Now my husband does acknowledge he is depressed. It took a long time getting there. To make a long story short my husband basically spent from Labor Day 2006 until mid August 2007 in bed in a dark room. I convinced him in January 2007 he might be depressed, so he went to a psychiatrist who gave him so small a dose of lexapro it did nothing. It took months for me to realize that hubby was not telling psychiatrist that meds were not working. Switched doctors. I went with him to first appt and told dr, he will tell you all is well, please probe. The next appt hubby said he was ok--psychiatrist told him to bring me back as husband was being evasive. The stress of trying to hide my husbands illness and parent two teenagers (who are absolutely incredible) was too much. Finally in August after another day of broken promises that he would get up and did not I had it, told the kids to pack a bag we were going to my moms. They packed up and in 20 minutes we left. Considering that we had been married 22 years and I had never ever walked out it scared him and he went to the doctors with me--they admitted him into a day program at a psychiatric facility that was an hour away from our home-he wanted to stay anonymous. It was a waste of time. The kids and I moved home after a few weeks as I was tired of going between the two houses trying to keep all the balls up in the air. After he returned to work our life became horrific again. Come to find out husbands manager put him on probation the day he was released to go back to work partial duty--this set husband in to a tail spin. Of course husband did not tell me or his therapist that there was a problem at work until 6 weeks after he was put on probation and no one could understand why he was regressing. Husband and I started to work on the job issues, things were going OK. I left for an appt the monday after thanksgiving and came back to a husband who was in the beginnings of his first manic phase. Having no experience with this (husband is not bipolar, so this was new to me)I did not realize how our lives would spiral out of control over the next 4 days. Husband does not remember much about those days--I do. After he presented my with outrageous delusions I called our internist who wanted me to take him to the ER as soon as possible. Husband was adamant that he was ok and just was a bit tired even though he called his therapist 4 times between 2 and 4 am stating he was hopeless and despondent. At the direction of his therapist and psychiatrist I had to call the police twice and a mobile crisis unit. Even though his therapist told the police that husband was a danger to himself they would not take him for treatment--when the police or mobile crisis unit came he would get so scared that he would shape up when they arrived and appear very together. One of the officers asked if Hubby and I were having marital issues and there was nothing wrong with him, that it was me. Because husband was so upset the kids and I moved out--and we are not moving back any time soon, lesson learned from first outpatient stay. Luckily we have a number of close friends who are doctors. I called them and told them what I had been living for the last 18 months.After they got over the shock one friend called him, as the friend lives 8 hours away, and one friend came to our house.Then I called my husbands closest Christian friend who drove 4 hours to our home. Between the two doctor friends and our persuasive Christian friend--they were able to convince him that the psychiatric hospital was where he needed to go. The entire time they were intervening I was at my moms with the kids, the friends would call with periodic updates. They were able to get him admitted as an inpatient. Unfortunately our insurance refused to pay for the inpatient stay (he did not present as homicidal or suicidal)so he was released to a day program after 4 days. Without our friends I do not think husband would ever have gone for treatment. Husband called me every name in the book. It was absolutely horrible. The awful things he said about me to our friends, police and providers was extremely hurtful. He has apologized and I made him call all our friends to retract the statements he made about me to them.
While he was inpatient I found this website. Someone recommended the fallout book and website. From there I found another book--it was a godsend. It is called What to do when someone you love is depressed by Mitch Golant. It talks about being a strenghtening ally. It was from this book that I got the idea--which I should have done ages ago--to research the medication that was prescribed for my husband. He usually is diligent in researching his meds and doctors and he had seen three psychiatrists who all had him on this med so I fiqured they knew what they were doing. The med caused him to suffer from all kinds of side effects including manic episodes and ulcers, plus it was primarily an OCD drug which has benefits for depression. While husband is ocd, it is no big deal, the depression is a huge deal. I printed out all the info got out a highlighter and highlighted all the side effects. Then researched over 40 SSRI's to find out which one appeared to best address the issues husband was having. Read the studies for some new treatments. Printed this all out and told husband to take to psychiatrist at hospital. The doctor asked me to come to a session. He agreed with my research, discussed another study that I had not read, and agreed the med hubby was on was wrong and changed the medications. The new medications began on Christmas day. They are working! Anyway there is a chapter in the Golant book on how to address loved ones that do not recognize they are depressed. Also check the NAMI website there is an article about couples who have made it thru this roller coaster ride.
Please remember that as you go thru your day that you absolutely must do something for yourself. That can be finishing a project at work so you feel less overwhelmed, taking your baby girl out in the stroller for a quick walk around the block or to the library, or calling a friend to vent on the way home from work. Just something that lets you leave the problem for a bit. I concentrated on my kids. My 17 year old and 15 year old are so great--they are incredible in ever way. I tell them that they have to truly understand this disease so it does not eat away their lives. My 15 year old gets it. Daughter is struggling as she is upset that her daddy is gone and she does not trust him.
Hopefully she will remember how good life was when she had the Wellbutrin to help her thru her days and want that kind of life back.