The idea of dealing with a partner who feels distant and depressed can be overwhelming.
My depressed partner wants space. It is definitely not an easy task, but it’s important to remember that there are ways you can support them on their journey.
This blog explores how supportive you can be when your partner is struggling with depression.
Can Depression Make You Want To Leave A Relationship?
Often when couples need to deal with depression in their relationship, one or both are finding it difficult to deal with the other and want to end the relationship. However, they may not be sure whether that’s the right thing to do.
As such, a lot of research into depression suggests that it can make you want to leave a partner or relationship as you may feel less secure or less happy with your partner.
This is because depression makes you feel that life is undeserving of happiness and you are incapable of achieving happiness in your life.
My Depressed Partner Wants Space: How Do I Support Him?
There are a number of ways you can support them on their journey through. The most important thing is to be there for them, to listen to and support them. However, it is also really important that you take care of yourself.
Best 10 ways to support your depressed partner:
1. Be Available And Patient
Your partner may need more support than usual so be there to listen, even if they do not want to talk at times. Acknowledge how hard it is for them to talk about their feelings and how they’re feeling, and take your time in returning the conversation.
2. Learn What Depression Is And How It Affects People
Understandably, if you are a partner of someone who suffers from depression, you’ll feel frustrated, angry, and disconnected.
Also, because depression can make you feel isolated and self-loathing, it’s important to understand that your partner may need more time for themselves, support, and love than usual.
3. Don’t Take Their Feelings Personally
If your partner struggles with depression, they may act differently than usual; this doesn’t mean they’re mad at you or don’t love you anymore. It just means that a loved one suffering from depression experiences different emotions than someone who does not suffer from depression.
4. Encourage Your Partner To Talk About Their Feelings
Talking about feelings can be hard for someone who is experiencing depression, but as a partner, you need to understand that without talking about your feelings, it may cause your partner more pain.
Instead, ask them how they are feeling and encourage them to talk about their feelings without getting frustrated when they don’t want to talk.
5. Don’t ‘Fix’ Their Problems
As a person at risk of depression, you shouldn’t try to fix your partner’s problems or take over the role of a carer.
You must understand that your partner needs time alone and help from professional support groups if they’re struggling with depression.
6. Don’t Take Their Depression Personally
When your partner suffers from depression, they may say things you don’t understand. As such, it’s important that you don’t take their comments personally and learn to understand what they are feeling and how they are feeling.
7. Give Yourself Space
It’s easy when your partner is suffering from depression to want to be all over them, but this isn’t the best thing for you or for them. It’s important that you leave space in your relationship for your partner to talk about their feelings, space for you to talk about yours, and space where neither of you feels responsible for fixing each other’s feelings.
8. Be It Just Between The Two Of You
It’s important that your partner feels like they can talk about what they are going through and that it’s just between the two of you. If you’ve already talked to a professional about how you’re feeling, ensure it stays between the two of you.
9. Be Yourself
When your partner is suffering from depression, their feelings for their partner will change, and so will their feelings for themselves.
As such, it’s important to remind them of your love and support; let them know that no matter how they feel, they’re still loved by you, and remind them that despite what they may think or feel, life is worth living.
10. Leave Space And Let Your Partner Cry
As a partner, it’s important that you let your partner cry if they are suffering from depression. Let them know you will be there for them and follow through on this, even if that means letting them cry themselves to sleep. If you need to touch or hug your partner, make sure it’s done in a gentle manner.
The Bottom Line
Depression can cause many problems in relationships, but by learning about depression, you can learn how to deal with it so that the relationship can survive and flourish.
Depression can be a partner’s worst nightmare, but by understanding that your partner isn’t doing this to hurt you or because they don’t love you anymore, you can understand what they are going through.
It’s important to remember that depression affects people in different ways, and everyone will suffer differently.
As such, it’s important that you don’t take your partner’s feelings personally; instead, try to understand what they are experiencing, as nobody will act the same in a relationship when they have depression.
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