Dating Depression

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New Member

Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 4/15/2007 12:29 PM (GMT -6)   
I am new to this site and I hope I will find some people to talk to. I am dating depression, I say this because the man I love is gripped with depression.
At first I thought it was me who was at fault, nothing ever seemed to go right between us, we have good days and we have bad days. As all relationships do...I didn't pay attention. I didn't think that anything was out of the norm, until he opened up and told me he has nothing to look forward to, he feels no sense of stability, he thinks soon he will die. He has admitted that he wants to die, and that he often has thoughts of killing himself. 
I have done a lot of reading on the disease. I don't think he recognises that he is battling depression. Although all of the signs are there. Lost of interest in evertything, no sex drive, feeling like a failure, loss of hope, pushing away the people he loves becasue he feels guilty for "holding" us back from our own lives, feeling like he is a burden.
I don't know how to help him. All of the information I have read says  encourage him to get help, but what exactly am I supposed to say to him, to encourage him without worsening his own condition? Just last week we had a huge talk, and he told me his plan to kill himself. This is so frightening. I tried to encourage him to talk to somebody, a third party, a counsellor and he changed the subject.
I am doing my best to be supportive, but the mood swings are sporatic, and often he will act as if life is perfect. Then the down side comes, and he pulls far away.
I have tried to listen, to get him to open up, he won't talk. I am scared to bring up the disscussion that he maybe suffering from a mental health illness/depression.
I have battled my own depression, earlier in my teens and 20's but it was a depression brought on by a tragic event in my life. It never gripped me the way it has gripped him.
He has no self esteem, he has no hope. I don't know what to do. I lost a friend to suicide 3 years ago. It came without any warning. I am scared, can someone please give me some advice on where to go from here.
Is there ANYTHING I can do to help him if he is refusing to seek treatment? Are there things I can do to make this period easier for him? I know he can not just "snap out of it", but is there any hope that he will get better if he doesn't seek medical treatment? All that I have read says that it isn't a "phase", I understand that, but if he refuses to get help, what can I do? 

Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 30
   Posted 4/15/2007 7:17 PM (GMT -6)   
I can strongly relate to what you have said about your boyfriend. Self esteem has a lot to do with it. It's hard to face life when you have no confidence in yourself. I have a strong negative image of myself and i do not feel like i am nothing but a waste of space. I know it must be hard for you to deal with, because he can't open up. Although, if he has admitted to you that he is dealing heavily with depression than he is opening up. Do not force it. If he didn't care about you he wouldn't have told you.

Continuing to encourage him is very important. Continue to let him know that you are there for him and do not make him feel like he has an illness. The last thing we want are people telling us that we have a problem and we need to seek medical help. I refuse to talk about my depression, because i feel like i am making myself even more vulnerable. I also do not open up to my doctors, because i refuse medicine. Medicine scares me.. it does not work for me.

Let him know that you are there for him, that u love him, and that you will listen TO ANYTHING he has to say. The key is getting him to open up to you more. Find out why or what is making him depressed. I will tell you what works for me.... i keep myself busy constantly. Whether it is listening to music, reading my bible, or just going to a movie. You can't ignore depression, but you can try to enjoy the other aspects of life. Death is not the only answer. Maybe see if he would be interested in not talking to a therapist.. just talking to you. Don't push... because it is a decision that he will have to make himself.

New Member

Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 4/16/2007 5:13 PM (GMT -6)   
Thank you for your reply's.
I really am confused about what to do, or where to go from here. I have received different advice,encourage him to seek medical attention, don't encourage him to seek medical attention. I guess each individual is different on how they feel about others trying to help.
Primarily I am trying to keep things positive.
We have a puppy, and that is one of his only joys right now so getting him outside hasn't been too much of a battle until the last week or so.  I don't know how deep the depression is, but it is the talk of suicide that makes me think it is worse than it appears.
I feel helpless, on one hand I know he is the one who has to make a choice to face this and get better, but what he has already given up? I feel compelled to say someting, because I can't ignore the talk of suicide.
I was going to ask outright - "Have you ever thought that you may be suffering from depression? ". He has told me that he doesn't think that he is "normal". Should I encourage him to explore the possibility of depression? If he says no, do you think it would be a good idea to give him a print out of common signs/side effects of deppression? He could  read about it, in his own time, in his own space, as discussing emotions is very difficult for him. He will usually change the subject, or just ignore what I am saying. I figure if he reads about it, he might see that even though it's not "normal" to think these things,he is not alone. Other people are experiencing this and there is hope.
I found many good resources from different sites, I printed out 2. The first one is describing what one may feel if experiencing depression, and the other is similar but lists different places in our area where help is available.
What do you think?
The worst part of all of this is that he just lost his job on Friday, and now he is sitting around all day - he says it's too much time to think. Of course, I am extremly worried.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 870
   Posted 4/17/2007 1:34 PM (GMT -6)   
sad  I too suffer from depression and struggle to live life every day.  I could tell you my story with my depression and the person that loved me as you do your loved one.  I destroyed my relationships with my depression as I watched it change him.  He was so strong and energetic and after 1 year, I saw him start to detriorate in front of me.  His moods changed, his energetic personality became one of a "have to do" instead of wanting to do.  I will say he was so supportive and never downgraded my depression if any thing I think he took it on as his enemy and thought he would win, he did not.
During this time I was getting help and was hospitalized a couple times.  This was the greatest man of my life and at this time, I am actually dying from a broken heart because of how he was and how much he is missed.
I guess what I am trying to say is you are doing everything you can do, DO NOT START TO CHANGE TO ACCOMODATE HIS DEPRESSION!  What I mean is make sure you are taking care of yourself because it will tear you down as well.  There is nothing you can do as far as salvaging the relationship, that will be God's will.  I have an email and if you would like, you may contact me for my experience from a person with depression's point of veiw.  I wish I would have had this chance because maybe I could have either kept him healthy or sought more aggressive help.  I miss him so much and I don't want to see the darn illness take another relationship!!  Believe me, I hate my depression and struggle with it every day.
Another thing you might want to try because I did this at the end of my relationship is let him read this forum, let him be part of your concerns and let him see that there are others out there that are going through what he is as well as you.  I guess some would say that is not a good idea letting him see what YOU post here, but the one thing I can tell you that will perserve your mental health is too be completely honest with how you feel about what he is going through!  That is a must!!!!!! 
My relationship was stronger when I introduced him to this site.  Only when I started keeping secrets about how I felt, did he feel disconnected.
I consider this an excellent resource for anybody's loved one.  My family that lives in other states have access to see this site.  They feel comfortable with this because it is their way of understanding what others like me are going through.
God bless you and keep your FAITH!!!!
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