I’ve gotten into a deep depression, and it pushes my girlfriend and I apart
EILERSEN - Oct 2 2017 at 16:55
I am a guy, who has been in a relationship with my girlfriend for almost two and a half year!
With her, I’ve had some of the best moments of my life, and I know she’s the one for me.
We currently study in two different cities, but we try and see each other almost every second week.
However, recently I’ve been struggling with a deep depression and anxiety attacks. Because of it, ive become very insecure and my happiness has worsened. I’ve been seeing a psychiatrist, to make me better again, but sadly it has affected my relationship with my girlfriend.
As she’s the one I trust, and can tell anything to, I’ve shared my feelings and my struggle with depression. However, last week, when I was with her, she broke down, saying that my issues had become too much for her, and it has become a burden of hers, which in turn has made her unhappy and sad. Furthermore, she said that she doesn’t recognise me anymore, and she isn’t as happy around me, as she used to be.
Because of this, she said she wants a break, and not see me for a while. Hence, she doesn’t want see me nor text or call, and she doesn’t know when she wants to see me again. She says she needs time away from me, to figure out herself, and what’s wrong.
I respect that she needs some space to breathe, but it was not my intention to burden her, nor make her unhappy - I just wanted her to know how I felt, and support me. It isn’t my fault I got the depression, so I don’t know how to handle this
I miss her unbearably much, and because of her unhappiness, due to my depression, I cannot sleep nor eat, and I’ve lost over 4 kilogram in less than a week.
I can’t bare not seeing her, and my depression has become worse because of this, and it has grown to be a bigger struggle than before.
I trust her, and know she would never do anything with another man, but when she meets new people, guys, and hangs out with them, I can’t help but think what she is doing - but I promised her the break, to be herself.
Furthermore, we have our anniversary in 2 weeks, and I want to surprise her with a gift and a romantic dinner, but she still doesn’t want to see me, and I’m afraid that if I show up, she’d become more upset.
I’m a big man, with a big heart, which beats only for her, and I’m lost for words.
Im not happy at all now, her presence was a highlight in the week, something to look forward to. Now, with her not wanting to see me for a while, for I don’t know ho long, I can’t cope getting though days of university without her being there for me, for each other.
I hope and believe that by giving her some break, to breathe and be herself, she will come back to me, so we can work it out, and both be happy, together.
However, when I read about ‘breaks’ online, it’s usually because the girl wants to break up, but just doesn’t have the guts to do it.. I won’t accept this, and I don’t believe this is the case for her and I..
Hi firstly wish u luck re the depression and keep getting help that is first step to get better. 1in 6, relationships with depression end.. Her saying she want a break could be her way of ending it.. But it might not.. It's hard to tell.. Give her the space she asks and see what happens.. Be strong and take care of you. And lean on friends to help u through this tough time. A depression support group may help aswell.. Take care
Thank you for your support.
Yes I’ll continue to go to counsellor to get better, and I’m being around friends as much as possible, not to be alone, and be reminded of her.
I had a talk with her this morning on the morning, and she said she just needed some space to figure herself out - and that she still loves me.
I sent her a bouquet of flowers and she told me it was very sweet of me, and that she liked them.
I’ll just try and go through the day, and give her the space she wants, to show her respect and that I understand her decision. Hopefully she’ll come back to be after a couple of days. She made it clear on the phone that she wouldn’t break up, nor see anyone else, she just needed to get herself ‘straight’ on track.
How long should I go about, without texting her - I mean a couple of days I can manage, but if she can go for a week or more, should I try and contact her?
Also, should I try and see her on the anniversary on the 17th?
Thanks for sharing what must be a very difficult time for you. You have demonstrated significant care and love for your girlfriend by letting her “step away” for a while. Some other things you have been doing that clearly puts your girlfriend first in this relationship is your receiving psychiatric care (necessary for clinical depression), being totally honest with her, keeping promises with her, and respecting her no contact policy. Don’t underestimate this good faith and trust from you and what it can do for this relationship.
With that being said, it is critical that she continues to be allowed time away until you become “regulated” again, and you become the person you were and she loves. Perhaps you can ask her for a specific period of time before you can contact her again and if this could include your anniversary. This may make the separation more measurable for you and give her control in your contacts. I can’t help but think she will respect you willingness to include her in this decision.
Again, I want to share that continuing to put your girlfriend’s needs and interests first should display your unconditional love for her. Please keep us informed on your progress.
I absolutely believe her because of the style of the statement, the behaviour that accompanied and surrounded the statement and her words/actions/reactions since. That and the fact you're past the 18 month point (you don't get rid of her that quickly, you know).
Saying that, one could still ruin things if one didn't basically do as she asked (so well done!) and gave her the sense of control and chance to empty out the hoovered-up depression) (over-empathy) for a while, whilst *occasionally* just sending her yet more "pretty, shiny pebbles and things" to keep demonstrating that it's true, you can still function as a viable mate because you can [drum roll] still woo romantically.
The depressed don't woo. They don't ter-wit, either...they just 'owl (hur-hur). The recovering depressives do, though. See how that works? See why, now, she was so delighted/relieved?
Know what I think? ("No, I don't") (Then I'll tell ya!)
I think subconsciously you/your inner animal did this deliberately in order to set yourself something outside of yourself to focus on, a huge goal and challenge (run meaty programme Get Me Girlfriend Back) and more to the point, some real, mental stimulation because you've probably been holed up for too long. Something to hoik yourself up and out....an artificial but viably highly strong aid by incentive.
Want to speed yourself up? Add something else stimulating and challenging and pretty insta-amazing for your self-esteem and depression? ("Yes, please") (excellent ;-)): Answer some threads for me, be it in the style of 'there-there, chat-chat' or 'and here are some tips'. Maybe you can be Recovering Co-Victim for those who are in your (soon-to-be-past) boat? You are, after all, an expert now, are you not? :-) And nicely sensitive and gentlemanly. Because "To know the road ahead, ask only those coming back" - which is you.
What say you, Gunga Din?
Hi 8Twenty8 & SOULMATE!
It has now been a couple of days, and I am still trying to respect her decision of not contacting her, to hopefully make her realise that I respect her and care and love about her.
To distract myself, I have been trying to see my friends as much as possible, and I have started to exercise Mixed Martial Arts to boost my self-confidence.
I sent her a flower, which was delivered on Monday to her door, where a card was attached, saying that “I know we can get through this together, because we care about each other. I respect your choice, and I’ll give you the space you requested - I’ll patiently wait for you to figure things out”.
10 minuets after the flowers were delivered, she texted me saying “thank you for the flowers. You are so sweet”. It gives me a sense of hope, that she still feels something for me, and that I just need to give her space, for however long she needs.
I am also starting to get busy at uni, and with the coursework that comes with it.
However, whatever I do, I keep being reminded of her, remembering how much I miss her...
As I said, I’ll try and respect the space the wanted, but I just don’t know for how much longer I can go on like this - she doesn’t know herself for how long she needs this space. It is starting to become a burden, that she feels this way about me, and that something about me, particularly my depression, has made her so unhappy, and it doesn’t make the recovery of my depression any easier, as she used to be the one standing by my side...
Thank you all for reading and commenting!
Thanks for the response and update. Absence and interference usually makes the heart grow stronger, right? I still like your style and respect for her. What woman (man) would not want this mutually respectful relationship?
I also understand your frustration with an unlimited (unstated) separation. Your therapeutic behaviors of school, physical activity and friendship interaction is profoundly appropriate. Good decisions. Maybe periodic (negotiable) contacts regarding your updated "progress" will lesson the anxiety of both of you. If your diagnosis is clinical depression, and this is the accurate reason for her "distance", then this is treatable and all should end well. Romantic relationships are journeys, not necessarily a destination.
Keep in touch.
Hank you for your quick reply - yes it is a severe depression, and I think it became too much for her, that’s why she wants some space, to figure herself out and what she wants - of course I want her to come back, and I hope she will, I just have to stay strong and not contact her until she takes the initiative. I don’t know if you can imagine, but she is just so important to me, and I love her with all my heart, so it’s diffuclt to understand and cope with her wanting this form of space for me.
I just have to deal with it somehow and respect her decision..
I am in treatment, as mentioned I’m seeing a counsellor, and I started taking SSRI about 6 days ago - they just have some side effects, such as mood swings and the feeling of loneliness, which also makes it more difficult to cope with her not wanting to see me for a while, nor any contact for that unknown period of time..
hope you understand, and that this message finds you wel!
When we start a relationship, our focus is not the relationship. Our focus is on ourselves how we are presenting of ourselves and our focus is on the other person. But our focus is also on the activities that we are sharing with one another. We know that there is a strong division between one another, two separate worlds.
We are all just living our lives, some people come into orbit, on the same path as we are, and some even stay connected.
What I am trying to say is that you need to organize your own planet again.
Something has happened to you that has changed the landscape of your mind, something or a series of somethings that have given you this depression that you are suffering from. It could be an external event, it could be your own thoughts building towers, rivers and trees that were not there before, but they are there now, making you a little unrecognizable to yourself, and to those around you.
Take a piece of paper and draw a mini you and a HUGE head, a planet. Fill that planet up with all of the things that you spend your time doing and thinking about. Draw BIG buildings for the towers of love, and shade some of those windows in black because they are full of worry, when they used to be sunshine.
What is on your path? Draw a path and the steps that you take and surround that path with what surrounds you. What are you actually DOING with your time, are you connected to what you are doing or are you going through the motions when your mind is in a blur? Maybe you should look at ways to stay CONNECTED. In the moment. Present.
I want you to SEE YOUR WORLD, so that you are able to start rearranging things to be the way that you want them to be. WE MUST BE THE TEACHERS TO OUR OWN MIND. We must see ourselves with truth, and our life from a bit of a distance in order to first see the need to create change and then how we can change. (JAY-Z has CDs called BLUE PRINT. I have never heard them but I believe he called the albums this because the importance of creating our own blueprints.)
Remember that old proverb? ***Be careful of your thoughts for they become your words, be careful of your words for they become your actions and be careful of your actions for they become your character.
YOU CAN BE WHAT EVER YOU PROGRAM YOURSELF TO BE.
You are in school right now so you can see the power of learning and how something you had no knowledge of can become second nature to you through practice and review.
So look at you planet and BUILD WHO YOU ARE. On another piece of paper or in your notebook, write the words I AM on the top. Then fill that page with all of the answers that you can. Reflect questions like, what are my skills, my friends see me as, my character is, my purpose is, I like to, I need, I love, I can, I am someone that did this, I have achieved, my mom says i am, my talents are, my skills are, my interests are, ....
It is important that you do this, because your identity to yourself and your identity to your loved ones is getting a bit lost. You are defining yourself as someone that is depressed, when you are so much more. If you do not focus on your COMPLETE identity and keep working on building your identity, you will get lost further in depression.
***Those two projects focus on your mind and who you are. The next project is to step back and LOOK AT LIFE ITSELF. What is life? Write this question at the top of another page in your booklet and start collecting answers. (I'm still collecting answers to that question after years of focus) You need to see that you are a powerful person on this earth. Someone that has the power to do great things just by being a good person, someone that is kind and respectful, someone that can train his mind to fulfill a role that is needed that will help improve on life...this is the gift we have, we get to choose our roles in the world!!
Depression can often be because someone has GREAT potential, but they have no way of realizing it, they fail to see the power they have to make a difference in even the smallest ways. They have become numb, werewolves, cold, bored, standing in line with the masses waiting... for something to happen.
Life is just one experience after another after another after another after another... until we die.
Work really hard on the three projects that I have mentioned and you will build your confidence back up, and most importantly be a reflection of your true self. Your mind will be occupied with healthier pursuits, the most important ones of all, Who am I, and what is life?
Create your experiences. I would send her a creative card with 3-5 different envelopes with 3-5 different options as to what you could do together.
You want to create options where the attention is not on the relationship, do you have a group of friends that you used to hang out with that will bring out the best in you so that she can see the you that she fell in love with? And you can be yourself with again? Plan something fun and exciting for everyone to get together!! Laser Tag?
Is there some kind of activity like horseback riding that she has always had some interest in? Or something fun in nature? Because nature is very healing to the soul. When you are out there hiking, don't talk too much, show that you are strong, and ENJOY YOURSELVES IN THE COMPANY OF ONE ANOTHER. That...is what it is all about ... That.. is what will help you last forever.
Milking a cow sounds like a lot of fun?! Laughter is such an amazing healer. Get out of your bubbles, your realities... and HAVE FUN.
Don't put pressure on having to get together for the 17th. If it were myself, I would schedule things for Thanksgiving and Christmas because that is time that you both will have set aside without any other pressures. It will give you guys something to look forward too as well!! Christmas is a time of forgiveness a time where we look at one another and say.... "I have decorated you with my love and I can see through the darkness where you hide..and you are GOOD." Most importantly I AM GOOD!!
She seems to have made it clear that she loves you and wants to stay together, but you have to get back to being YOU. If you fill yourself up with fear you will not be YOU.
MY LAST POINT..for now..is that you are both in school with a lot of pressure on you. (which is probably a source of some of your depression, DO YOU WORK OUT? Exercise is the ESSENTIAL KEY to mental health and healing....as is diet.
I hope that this helps. I hope that you have a lot of fun creating these options and having then delivered on the 17th. Watch HITCH with WILL SMITH AND EVA MENDEZ. For some fun and inspiration!!!!
Sorry for the delay. How are you coping at this point?
I wanted to ask: what, in your estimation, caused your depression? And what tenure of relationship did it kick in? Or did it pre-exist this relationship?