Marriage crumbling from husbands anxiety
JG7 - Mar 21 2017 at 12:31
Some background: my husband has always been sort of a negative, introverted person- but he could turn it on and off. I chalked it up to him growing up with a family that is very negative and always complaining about something. He has some OCD tendencies and is also super critical of himself. He never thinks he's good enough, not smart enough, his (custom) clothes don't fit right, he doesn't make enough money. He also can't stand to be uncomfortable and has a tendency to run or quit anything that's out of his comfort zone. He hated his job, he hated the state we lived in, and swore everything would be better if he could just get a transfer.
Fast forward, he gets the temporary 18 month out of state transfer he so desperately wanted. I was on maternity leave with our infant, so I let my job know I wasn't coming back and we moved. This new position pays for our housing costs while we're here so it was great timing and a great opportunity for me to be able to stay home with our baby.
His old position didn't demand much of him but this new one has him drowning. It doesn't seem like much to me but he's overwhelmed by multiple projects and deadlines and public speaking. He says he's in over his head and not smart enough for the position- that he doesn't know what he's doing and this was all a big mistake. He comes home, sighs, says he has a headache or stomach ache, lays on the couch, talks about how he's failing me and my baby. When we argue, he's reduced to tears at how miserable he is right now. I try to make his favorite dinners or plan fun family outings, but the depression always comes back. I know he loves our baby but he doesn't participate much and doesn't seem as enamored by the milestones as I am.
I've finally woken up to realize he has severe anxiety and/or depression. He can't get on medication because of the nature of his job. He vents that he's stuck and needs to quit and get a meaningless job "digging ditches" but I don't know if quitting the job would even solve his problems at this point. We spend nights watching tv in silence on our phones, we don't kiss, we haven't had sex since I was pregnant.. and our baby is 8 months.
I've gone cold and emotionless. I feel nothing when he cries. I can't help thinking of him as pathetic. I don't even know what advice I'm looking for. Maybe I just need to vent.
I HEAR you! Thank you for your courage to share your personal struggles. I empathize your situation with your husband. I’m glad that you finally saw your husband’s severe and /or depression. That’s a red flag. That may be the culprit of why he’s feeling so down and unhappy. Anxiety and depression are complicated conditions and it various each individual. As I was reading your post, several thoughts came to my mind (hope you don’t mind it). Would he be willing to talk to someone perhaps man to man conversation or seek a professional help where he can talk about it? Perhap share this with his good friend but your husband doesn’t have to know that it comes from you. What about his spirituality?
You and your husband are in my thoughts and prayers.
You need to continue to have courage here for the sake of your child... who needs both you and him. You've been understanding (and you need to continue to be), but in a different way. He needs counseling and you & He need counseling to help work through ways to avoid these pits which are drowning both of you. You need to find a therapist which deals with depression & OCD symptoms and confront him, in a loving and direct way, that he needs help and you & he, as partners, can find a way through this "together." It will not be easy and there's always a reason not to seek help, but it takes a first step in admitting that sometimes we are powerless before we can reach out to find solutions. :-)