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Readers Respond: Coping With a Depressed Spouse

Responses: 174


Updated September 30, 2011

Husband suffers depression

Me and my husband have been together for ten years and married for two. I absolutely adore him and I know that we are totally right for each other. The one difficulty is that he suffers from depression. When we first were together I was aware he had been prone to depression in the past but it absolutely breaks my heart when I see this strong man crying and feeling so angry at himself because he can't lift out of this heaviness. We have a beautiful baby girl, both have good jobs (i do 2 days a week, he is full time) and he gets paid really well to coach sernior footy. From the outside it all looks like a very successful life but I sometimes feel so helpless when this wave of depression hits him. He is currently at the Doctor getting his Vitamin B levels checked and is booking in with a therapist for next week and seeing a naturopath. As far as a husband and father he is the kindest, more beautiful natured person and I just hope we can get though this together as I really do love him.
—Guest Deee

Do I want it to end

Ive been married for 3 years and have a 7 month old son. At first the relationship was great loved everything about him. Then I moved to be with him for his job leaving my family 500 miles away. I had noticed about 2 years ago he was becoming snappy and angry at the stupidest things throwing and punching things shouting in my face and recently at our son. Over the 2 years it's got worse and I went to leave him. I stayed 2 try and sort the marriage out. I'm depressed and I don't know whether my feelings have changed or if it's the depression making me feel like I should have gone when I had the chance. I'm exhausted constantly thinking about it. I know my husband is depressed and has been for sometime but has only said and admitted he was after I went to the docs. It's wearing me down not knowing what's best for me and our son. I'm stuck and need some advice

The mountains and valleys

I have just been married for about 4 months now. I knew when I got married that my husband suffered from dysthimia. I had no idea how bad it truely was. My husband threatened suicide all the time and has tried to commit suicide twice since we have been married. The pain from hearing those words "I want to die" coming out of my husbands mouth is indescribable. Sometimes I am so overcome with pain that I wish he would just get it over with already. How do you cope with hearing those words come out of someone you loves mouth. I get so emotionally drained with the constant depression. I do not understand why it is not getting better when we are spending thousands of dollars on therapy and medication. I need some words of encouragement and prayers.

the most miserable wife

I have a depressed husband, he wasn't when i first married him 13 years ago, it is hell now, he deprives me sexually completly,he blames me for his faults and mistakes, he puts his self first, I do love him, but not like i did last week,he beat me up, he has hit me before and I am done, i feel i deserve better, but when he beat me up i was trying to leave, he knew it was it, now i have to make my plan, i am scared he will make it crazy for me, i feel riped i called his borther when he beat me up, no police were callled, i feel i am cheated by both, because the police ween't called because he would looose his job, but is this fair to me? Now he is begging me for forgivenesss, he was nice the first 2 days, this is the 3rd he has slipped several times, beinmg the usual rude to me ect, now he is calling me from work saying we have to make time to be together sexually, he knows, it is the end, he thinks if he could win me back sexually i will not leave. I have nothing but hurt, in me,what d

husband is depressed &choses masterbatin

how do you keep living with a depressed spouse, he knows he is after numerous counselers, he is selfious he masterbates to porn pictures non internet only and tells me he is impotant, & needs medicine, but the thing is he thinks I'm stupid i'm not he is not the same person i married, he take viagra & most of the time it doesn't work, when it does he is totally selfious sexually,once a ye a depressed person is selfious he cares only about himself, now the balls in my court, he hit me actually did a good job hitting me because i had to get away from his depresed ways for a few days, that is the usual only a few days, i'm disabled with cronic back pain and this time he put me in bad pain for the better part of a week, he was remosrsful for a couple days, now he thinks everything is hunky dory, well no it is not, this guy has toally changed, most people in my family think he is a angel, no he is not, he lies and is decietful, and will hit me back in a second if i look iwould but not,help

good and bad

I have been married for 14 years. My husband suffers from depression. Sometimes I feel like I'm losing my mind. His bout happen at least 4 times a year and some are worse than others. This last time he said he wanted to separate, my first reaction was name a time and place! Since then I have come to my senses. I made a vow for better or worse and that's just what I always get.
—Guest hehatesmehelovesme

Only the weak & selfish give up or run!!

I read these response that say "run away" "get out while you can". You people should be shot. You never loved your partner or spouse. When you truly love someone will you not give your own life for that person? I would give my life here and now for my wife or kids for ANY reason. We people with depression didn't ask for it nor do we want it. You think it's hard on you? Be in our shoes for just a day. You selfish bastards. Maybe for you you should run away because you don't truly have love in your heart. I pray that your spouse or parter finds that person that truly cares for them and loves them unconditionally after you run.
—Guest I battle it


i have the same problem with my husband very same as exhausting.. im getting so depressed and having mood swing.. just wondering if i should end this before the depression gets worse. and i cant help anyone or myself anymore.
—Guest mdh

depressed or psycho

Its me i dont know what it is thoe ive been with my husband for a year.i have 2kids frm previous relationship ive had horrible relationships my whole life always got cheatd on andi always cheatd imet my husband at church we fell in love at first sight he loves my kids n they love him but i have bad thought like hes always cheating but its weird its only when i have access to a phone n when im not at work n when he is at work.its crazy i need help its like if im not doing nething all my mind cand do is think of negative bad thoughts its horrible but if im busy at work its like everything is normal...help me i dont know if im psycho or just depressed
—Guest mamafluff


My boyfriend has been depressed since I've known him...treatment after treatment after pill after pill....originally I tried to be supportive but realised I was enabling him. He wakes up everyday, lays in bed thinking about his depression for hours, gets up, wanders around the house doing absolutely nothing....I know I sound like I don't uderstand how bad he feels. The examples are MANY, and I feel as though he is at the point where his behaviour is exacerbating his depression. He has had his own psychiatrists suggest to him that he is transitioning out of depression..which scares the crap out of him so he goes off the deep end..because it's much easier to be in a state of depression so expectations of him are very slight. He was given a great opportunity to volunteer at the treatment center as part of his therapy and he threw that away with both hands...refuses to stick one toe out into the world. Just sits home and wallows and whines about how depressed he is.

now what?

I have lived 42 years with a man I once loved very dearly; his depression has caused him to become sullen, angry, emotionally negligent. He blames me for eveything and I have to walk on eggshells around him. I can't take it anymore, He behaves like he hates me, but I'm trapped in this loveless marriage; or am I? How do get out of this and on to a normal life. Any suggestions from someone who has experienced this would be appreciated. He refuses to go for help.
—Guest Julia

Be sure the diagnosis is correct

So many of these responses sound more like other problems, rather than straight depression. Remember that depression can be comorbid (occurring at the same time) with OTHER problems. Those of you dealing with a trying situation and think your partner or loved one has depression, I urge you to at the same time educate yourself about the following problems, which may be the actual culprit (or be co-occurring with the depression): - Adult ADD and Adult ADHD (very common problems. Often associated with addictions and rocky relationships) - Borderline personality disorder, and other personality disorders - Bipolar disorder (also quite common and causes terrible low/depressed moods but in combination with other problems. There is also more than one type - Bipolar I and Bipolar II which has no real "manic" phases) Problems often get a lazy label of "depression", and then people wonder why the typically useful treatments for depression aren't working. Learn from Wikipedia and Google Books.
—Guest Know your stuff!


All these words, egg shells, distance, break up, mean, lazy, self hatred. I just read my life in all these posts. I've been with my partner for 20 years, the last 4 have been bad. I am a scientist I understand the disease but to seperate that from life is really hard. I'm so angry!!!
—Guest Rob

totally lost n heart broke

all i can say is do what your heart tells you to do. My lesbian relationship started off LOVELY. I met her on a dating site, we both lived far apart. I was however in a relationship and she was single. We ended up hitting it off, (she actually took the first step and drove from Oakland to Fresno to see me) thats a first. after a few months I endured a terrible tragedy, my mother passed away, I had no family, no one to comfort me, She was there. I ended up moving to Oakland to be with her. Yes I broke up with the girl I was with for her. when we movedin together everything was ok. The sex was there the natural affection and mutual feelings. I fuckd up and cheated on her with the girl i had jus broke up with. she found by going thru my txt msgs, i admitted to doin so. So she cheated too, with her exboyfriend andwith sum random female. now things arent the way they used to be. I havnt cheated anymore but i wish i had the heart to because shes always depressed, never in the mood for nothn
—Guest interesting1

My husband is depressed

My husband and I have been together for 12 years now, have a 6 and 3 year old. His depression was diagnosed about 3 years ago. I have been feeling like I am a parent and taking on most responsibilities including pushing to work on our relationship for years now. He won't take steps to do what is healthy for him when he is feeling well such as using his cpap machine, seeking counselling or therapy, light therapy eating healthy, getting a decent sleep etc. I love him, but feel exhausted and cant see myself living being able to do everything I do for the rest of my life. I get depressed due to being deprived of love, attention, a partner and friend and communication. I feel depressed sometimes myself. I do not want to leave, but find so much dissatisfaction at times. I feel like I have to fight for my right to be sick, tired or just down. I am soo fatigued. I want to cry. Does it ever get better?

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