It is great to see you here my friend and may I commend you on looking for ways to help support your husband and to understand depression.
I am the depressed spouse at our home. I am going to try to answer some questions for you and please remember I am in no way judging anyone.
The harmful effects of depression are not limited to the person diagnosed with that disorder. Clearly, depression in one marital partner can affect that person’s spouse. In fact, depression in a marriage often disrupts communication and social patterns and can even contribute to depressed mood in the “non-depressed” spouse.
The first and most important thing you can do is to find ways to remind yourself that your spouse or partner is ill—not hostile, not out to get you, not stubborn, not any of a dozen unfriendly things you might feel like calling him when you are at your wit’s end. Diagnosed depression is much like diabetes or heart disease from the perspective that it is a chronic illness that requires special attention and considerable patience.
Patience of this magnitude is a tall order. It will help if you have a good friend, a supportive family member, a pastor, a therapist, or some other caring person in your life to listen to you and help to shore you up during the hard times. Recovery from depression often takes longer than the ill person or the people surrounding him or her think they can stand. You need someone to be in your corner!
Not going for treatment is generally not a reflection of irresponsibility. It’s part of the illness. A sense of hopelessness is common to all depressive illnesses and may be the very thing that keeps your spouse from getting needed help! You can gradually turn responsibility back over to him or her when he or she has accepted the diagnosis and is actively working on getting better.
I think it is a positive sign that he is going to get some counseling. It is a huge step for him and I hope that he is on the road to recovery. Your supporting him is awesome as I know my husband gets upset with me and when he does I feel like I am a failure because I cannot be happy. I have learned in therapy many ways to work my way through a bad day and I have hope that your husband will too.
Please know we support you and I am glad you felt comfortable in coming here and asking for help.
You must take care of you first in order to help your husband.
I wish you peace,
"The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes." ~Marcel Proust