I'm sorry to hear about your wife's depression and the effect it is having on you and your marriage. I also suffer from depression and have been married to my husband for almost 33 years.
It is so good of you to be concerned enough to write a post on this site. You will get a lot of encouragement here. Your wife would also benefit from this site! But maybe she is not ready for that yet. I would advise you to not consider bailing out. I know it must be difficult the way things are going right now; you probably feel like you have to walk on eggshells and don't know what to expect from one moment to the next. But keep in mind that your wife is finally going for counseling and has more appointments in September. Give all of that a chance to work. If she is not on medication, maybe she needs to be.
As far as what you are doing, it sounds like you are doing all of the right things. My husband has never dealt with my depression well; in fact, he is notorious for doing all of the wrong things. These are things he has done over the years: gets angry at me for being depressed, picks a fight with me while I'm depressed, turns a cold shoulder on me (especially in bed), gets depressed himself, or just sits back in silence for days waiting for me to get over being depressed by myself. All of these are the wrong things to do. I am surprised that your wife wants to sleep on the couch. Have you asked her why she feels the need to do this? When I am depressed, I need my husband's arms around me; especially at night. Otherwise, I cannot sleep. That's where his cold shoulder really wreaks havoc on my already depressed condition. I would encourage you to encourage her to discuss this with her doctor. This is not the time for the two of you to be apart at night. I hope she can explain to you why she feels the need to do this; and especially hope she discusses this with her doctor. Could she be going through some kind of post partum depression? I know your son is three, but maybe this has been brewing for awhile?
Trying to be upbeat and not take her moods personally are the right things to do. In fact, it sounds like you are doing all of the right things right now. But please, don't think about bailing out. Think about the consequences of this; for your son, your wife, and for you.
The fact that your wife lost her grandmother this past June sheds some new light on your situation. She is probably having a rough time dealing with the loss; especially since she was raised by her grandmother. As far as the difficulty with physical closenss, such as hugs, that may very well be anxiety. Anxiety can make a person feel very jumpy. I deal with depression and anxiety; so I know how both can make you feel.
I'm encouraged to hear that she does not want you to leave; that should encourage you, too. And talking about having another child with you shows her commitment and desire to want things to work out with you. As far as getting defensive goes, I'm afraid that goes with the condition. I have to admit that I often get defensive myself. In regards to her moods seeming to flit back and forth from sleeping on the couch to wanting another child, that is also very common in depressed people. My youngest son suffers from depression and I see this in him all the time. I have to constantly be aware that he can say one thing one day; and then the next time I see him, he expresses something completely different. It can play on your own emotions.
Your wife may be doubting if she can love someone properly because she may not love or like herself. That is something else that depressed people often deal with. I think it's good that your wife hugs your son and talks to you about him. Some mothers get so depressed that they cannot even show love to their children. Right now it seems she is just having trouble with closeness with adults. I truly believe that therapy can help her through this. And I truly believe she loves you. She is just having trouble sorting through her depression and feelings in general right now. Keep up the good work of being a supportive husband. You are doing a good job!
I'm sorry I missed your previous posts. I actually registered for this site several years back, apparently forgot about it, and only recently "rediscovered" it. I am kicking myself for all of the lost time that I could have had on the Healing Well site.
It sounds like there were a lot of stressors back when your wife was going to school and you were working so much. And to achieve a 4.0 no less. That's truly commendable. But it probably was very stressful for both of you. I can relate to the self-esteem issues your wife has; I have struggled with that my whole life. And, unfortunately, I can also relate to bringing up things that were said in the past. I have a difficult time letting go of past hurts. But I know I shouldn't bring them up. Your mention of this is a good reminder to me that I need to work on not bringing things up to my husband from the past.
What you did for your wife on Mother's Day was very thoughtful. And it is commendable that you are trying to learn from past mistakes. Many people never do that! They just keep making the same mistakes over and over again, never learning. And I'm glad to hear that you have no intention of bailing on your marriage. You are truly doing well.
I didn't mean to "bash" my husband in an earlier post about how he handles my depression. He is a very good man; but he just doesn't seem to know the right things to do or say where my depression and self-esteem are concerned. But I have to remember that he did not have a good role model growing up. But think of what a good role model you will be to your son by learning and growing the way that you have. He will be a better person for it.
I am the dpressed wife and in 2006 I had a major meltdown. My hubby stuck by me and always will as I have for him through 4 major surgeries. He gets down and depressed when he is in pain and facing yet another surgery. One time he was so angry he was in the hosptial over Thanksgiving and Deer Hunting that he would not even talk to me. No matter what I said he would snap at me. Yes, I felt hurt but he has lived with my depression for 27 years so we are here for each other.
He has been frustrated and thrown up his hands and said " I don't know what to do for you" I simply answered him by telling him to "stick by me is a huge comfort to me"
I was so frightened at that time I truly saw myself in a hospital but I begged him and my daughter to not take me to one and they did not. Instead they kept on helping me and taking me to appointments at the therapist and to Pdoc appointments.
I still have bad moments but my hubby will always sit beside me and say what is wrong? Even if all I can do is cry, he is there. He pushed me to get help but he never pressured me. I quit my job that I loved as I lost all confidence at that time.
Giving your wife support and allowing her time to heal is the best thing you can do at this point. Hearing she has 3 more sessions with a therapist in September is a good thing.
Take care and I wish you peace,
thanks for sharing kitt. with everlasing loving compassion. jamie