S/O (now ex) has depression and fell out of love
This post is a little long. But I need you guys to understand the complete situation.
My boyfriend of 7 months dumped me on January 1st, this year. We had known each other for three years (he's a friend of a friend), but he was married at this time, so nothing had happened before, although I always had a huge and secret crush on him.
So he has been single since January 2015 and he asked me out in May 2015, and everything has been perfect since then. He would think of fantastic ideas for dates, he would ask me to be exclusive, he told me he loved me three months after we started dating, he was enchanted to meet my friends, he talked about us moving together, he talked about our future kids, talked about trips we could take together, he always said he was so lucky to have found me, that I was making him so happy, he even said he wished we would be together for the rest of our lives, etc. No need to say that I was so so so happy. This guy meant everything for me. We shared the same interests, we had the same tastes for everything, we had the same kind of personality (low-profile and intellectual), we both have demanding jobs (he's a medical resident and I'm a litigation lawyer) so we understood each other on that level and when we wouldn't see each other for few days because of our busy schedules, he always texted me that he misses me and that he loved me and couldn't wait to see me. From August to mid-october he temporarily moved to a city 5 hours from our town, for work. We would talk every day, he would come back every two weeks (he has a car, I don't), we met for a lovely long week-end in a city in-between, and I visited him once.
In mid-November, he started an internship that would last for two month, where he was asked to work approx. 12 to 14 hours a day, plus many night shifts. I knew he had a history of anxiety disorder / and episodes of depressions, but everything was under control until then. He told me honestly that he started to feel that he was entering an episode of depression, but not to worry if he was a little bit more distant, for it had nothing to do with me. I was reassured when he asked me to meet his parents at the end of November, and told me that he was happy to have reach that step with me. The day I met his parents, he had a weird episode of anxiety later that night, where he cried and said that we wanted me so badly to love him. I reassured him and to prove him my commitment, I asked him to meet my parents as well. That day was the last time he told me he loved me.
A week after this, (first week of December) he told me that he wasn't sure he was still in love with me, that he saw everything dark. I asked him if he wanted to take a break, and he said that no, it would kill him to see me dating other guys, that he still wanted me to belong to him, and that he wanted to see me more often. It came as such a shock, the discussion lasted for hour, finishing with both of us crying like babies on the floor of the kitchen and him taking his first pill of antidepressant (from a previous prescription). I told him I didn't know what I wanted and I left his place in the middle of the night. We met the next afternoon, where I told him that I wanted to give our couple a chance, and that I had hope that all his mixed feelings where due to his depression, and that I was ready to be there for him until he would feel the effect of the medication. He told me he was very reassured and agreed, and that he would do everything to save our couple, but that he could not promise me anything for the future. Few days later he met his family doctor, who diagnosed him with a major depression.
All December I was walking on eggshells. Even though he said it was better if he didn't come in my family, nor at my friend's or my firm's Christmas parties to "minimize the damages", I was hopeful everything would work out, because we would see each other more often then ever (on his request), he would be really more cuddly, the sex was amazing and we had nice discussions has always. He even bought me a gift for Christmas, and on December 26th, he asked me if I was interested in seeing a concert with him in February. Since we both had off from December 29th to January 3rd, we planned many activities and I was finally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.
So on January 1st, when he came to my place and told me that he really didn't love me anymore, and wanted to split, I was blown away. He said that his medication was now effective, and that he had fallen out of love not because of depression. He said he couldn't see a future with me, that he was very much sorry, that he had mean everything and had never been dishonest, but now he had changed. He said I had done nothing wrong, he didn't know where that was coming from, that he hadn't met anyone, that I was perfect for him but He. Just. Was. Not. In. Love. Anymore. He said he didn't mind picturing me with other guys and that he just hope I would be happy. He asked me to still be his friend (but to "kill" the boyfriend in him), and he even mentioned that we could still have sex if I wanted to. He told me, I think out of pity, that maybe we could reconsider in one month. I told him that was not an option. All that conversation was done in calm. He wanted to leave my apartment right after, but I kept him for one hour, where we would cuddle and saying to each other how we would miss us.
Since then, I'm miserable. I miss him so much. I miss his soul, his body, his presence, his voice, his touch. I cannot face the fact that my perfect relationship is gone. I'm 27 and he was my first real boyfriend. I haven't barely eaten since then. I cannot concentrate at work. My sleep is disturbed and I have panic attacks. I hide my tears when in public places, and fall apart in private. The only thing that is keeping me sane is that I have that slight hope that he is in fact NOT out of his depression yet, and that he will come to his senses in about a month. I have every intention of texting him in a month to see how he's doing and I have the stupid hopes that he will have miss me, that his medication will be more effective and will want to get back together although nothing in his speech gave me hope.
I would like to seek help if anyone know about the length of time it takes for anti-depressants to be effective. If you anyone could tell me if depression can really make you fall out of love and if, reading my story, such thing could be reversible? Also seeking generals impression on my situation.
I am sorry to hear about your story : everything seemed to go so well and suddenly - no more - nothing - black-out
if your bf suffers from depression and anxiety he should see a counselor or therapist and find out where this comes from : of course working 14h a day + night shifts can be too much for one single man and cause a nervous break-down which in turn can activate any lingering depression and augment anxiety which can then lead to no longer feeling capable of taking anything on - thus letting it fall : the suddenness of his absolute decision is revealing of this not being able "to take it anymore"
it could be it has nothing to do with you and that he in fact does love you but feels incapable to handle it all when he has to handle what's going on inside him : he really should see someone and get psychological help - seeing a doctor for antidepressants is one thing but doctors are not therapists or counselors and the dosage of an antidepressant must be closely monitored and adjusted accordingly to the patient's mental and emotional as well as physical state - besides - antidepressants can cause some people to entertain suicidal thoughts : so one has to be careful when handling these prescriptions
I would suggest you invite him to go and find a counselor or therapist that suits him (might need to see a few before finding one he likes and feels comfortable with) to get to the root of this problem that can be handled
other then that - give him some space to "come to his senses" about these abrupt decisions that have been made by him so suddenly : he will come back to you if he feels the need - let him know you're there for him
as for you - take extra care of yourself - keep yourself busy with your own life and get into positive and healthy activities - see people : don't sit at home "withering away" all by your own (unless you need personal time to think and ponder and digest all this) - give time some time ..
Thank you for your kind answer. It confirms my impression that I should give him some space for some times. I will contact him upon your suggestion but in February, just to tell him that I hope that he is ok and hopefully we can meet at that time. Everyone of my friends is telling me I should never never never recontact with him but this thought just makes me even more sad.
You are right that not being alone is the best I can do. But I cannot avoid waking up and going to bed alone in my empty apartment and see the ghosts of our relationship . I cannot help but take the public transport alone, I cannot avoid sitting alone at my desk surrounded by uncomprehending colleagues. Walk from destination A to B, alone. Those are definitely the worst moments, always fighting back tears and have a vague desire to throw myself under the bus.
I hope that time will heal. Everyday is really 0.00001% less worst than the previous. Lillian xx
I wonder why it is your friends tell you to never contact him again : what's so terrible about him that they seem to see ?
as for you - it's an occasion to learn how to be happy with yourself - on your own : of course this might not be so easy - relationships create habits that come from bonding that basically is a chemical/hormonal/brain process - this process is now interrupted - so you need to get off the "addiction" of bonding and find a new balance within the actual configuration - going out with good friends to do pleasurable things might help to not feel disconnected and isolated while restructuring yourself
I understand all this is hard on you but you can not do anything else but accept - that for now - that's the way it is - that said : cry if you must, write or paint, do sports - anything to get the surplus of emotion out of your system - take naps : sleep is a very good healer because it allows the unconscious to "clean up" its inner spaces and put things in proper place which then gives the conscious you more perspective and a lesser feeling of inner stress, struggle and imbalance - breathe : it's a very effective relaxant
as you say - one day after the other
Thank you for your kind message again. The thing is, I know exactly why my friends are thinking I should never ever recontact him. It's because they think it's so hopeless that I will just reactivate the grief. The progress they hope I will do in the month to come will just vanish, in their opinion. They believe that he has done everything in his power to keep us together but that now it's vain. For my own sake and self preservation, the discussion should not be postponed in one month as he has made everything very clear.
Right now I am so numb there is nothing I enjoy doing, except being with friends I can't read, I can't cook, I can't play piano, I can't run, I can't watch a movie. Anyway, today I ate a complete lunch, that is a huge improvement since 5 days.