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Living with a depressed spouse
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Snapchen72 posted:
I am a first time poster. I'm glad to have found this forum. I have a spouse who Suffers from depression. I have 2 young kids. I want to Understand more about depression and have questions so i Can cope with this situation better. He can be absolutely Fine for weeks and then I get blindsided by him not being Able to get out of bed in the morning. I get so pissed sometimes But just hide it and act supportive. I hide it from my kids. I have to say daddy has a tummy ache. It is pretty Sick and dysfunctional that i have to hide this. My kids don't deserve This. When i chose a husband, i made sure the man i married Didn't have a temper and wasn't an alcoholic.....i though I was conservative and careful with who i married. Now i still end Up living with dysfunction and sickness....just another form! Anyone out there dealing with a sleeping spouse?
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SuzianStar responded:
Hi - I don't have a depressed spouse, but I understand depression as it runs in my family and I have suffered from it on and off for most of my adult life. I am 52 and female. I think I can help perhaps by trying to help you understand that it is an illness - it REALLY is and it is debilitating. It really sucks because, unlike other illnesses, people tend to think we should be able to "snap out of it" but people would never expect someone with diabetes to snap out of that. Something is out of balance chemically in the brain and the brain stops working. I'm so sorry you have to deal with this, especially with two small children.

I'm curious, does you husband understand that he has an illness? Has he sought treatment for it? Does he talk about what brings it on for him....if anything? Some people get it in the winter only (SADS).

I'm honest with my son. Maybe you might feel better being honest with your kids. Daddy is sick, it's just a brain ache instead of a tummy ache. The worse thing about depression is that the exact things that might help us feel better are the exact things we feel totally incapable of doing (exercise for example). It takes away all motivation, drive, hope, enthusiasm, desire to do just about anything.

Has he talked to a doctor about it. Does he feel ashamed? It sounds like you feel ashamed of it. I encourage you to challenge that feeling. It's just an illness - period. There are drugs he can take for it that really work. I took Prozac and it really helped a great deal. I also took Effexor but I would CAUTION YOU do not let him take that one. It gives really awful withdrawal symptoms after missing only a dose or two. I was much happier with Prozac. There are many others. I would encourage you to take the time to do some online research on any drug your husband considers taking before taking it. Now adays we have to educate ourselves.

Try to remember it is just a disease. Sounds like you are beating yourself up for choosing a spouse with an illness. He may not have had it. It may have just started. Who knows. None of us are perfect. You may develop it at some point in your life too. Treat it like a disease because that is what it is. Get treatment for him. Make him go to the doctor. Make him face it. Is he at least aware that he has depression? How long does it last when it hits? Maybe keep a record in a calendar to see if there is a cycle to it. Maybe he has some childhood issues that are surfacing?

Sorry you have to deal with this. But is he a loyal, true husband? I'd rather a man with a treatable disease than a man without a conscious or a cheater.

I hope this helps.
Warmest Regards,
Suzian
 
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itmatsb responded:
Suzain has it right, that it is an illness. Your husband needs to go to a doctor and get medication. When you say that he is fine for weeks and then gets depressed, it sounds like he may be bipolar and may need a different medication than the usual anti-depressants. You are not lying to your kids when you tell them that daddy is sick.

You can get surprised in a marraige by a man who later on becomes an alcoholic or has a gambling adddiction or is a cheater with many other women. Or your husband could suddenly have other major illesses, like cancer or a stroke. Yes, many young people also have disabling strokes. This illness is treatable. Life is not perfect.

If you do love this man, you will try to get him help. He is truly suffering more than you can imagine. People who have had major illnesses say that the depression was worse. That's why the pain of it often leads to suicide--to just get away from the intolerable pain. Instead of being angry with him, try some sympathy for him. And get him help.


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