Trying to help

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-14-2012
Trying to help
6
Wed, 03-14-2012 - 5:06pm

In the past, my boyfriend has suffered from severe depression, and anxiety attacks. While they're mostly under control now (and were before we ever started dating), he will occasionally have bouts of time where he gets hit all over again. He's in therapy, and is on a couple of different medications to control the problems, but sometimes, I guess, that just isn't enough.

When these attacks occur, he always tells me about them, and says that being with me makes him feel calm and collected and happy. However, it seems that whenever this happens, and I ask him to come be with me, to let me help him, he turns down the offer. While part of this I know has to do with work, and him not wanting to miss it, and part is male ego, I can't help but feel helpless.

If he won't let me help him, what can I do?

I do my best, reminding him that I love him, offering time together (that I know he'll turn down), but beyond that, my hands are tied. Has anyone dealt with something like this? Depression doesn't just affect the person that's depressed, it affects everyone around them, and so I thought that perhaps, someone would have some advice for me.

Thanks in advance.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-20-2005
Thu, 03-15-2012 - 5:20am

Your boyfriend is very fortunate to have you in his life and that is huge.

Avatar for theresa_winger
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-23-2009
Thu, 03-15-2012 - 7:54am

He is fortunate to have you.


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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-14-2012
Thu, 03-15-2012 - 9:30am

Thank you both very much. It's nice to know that, even though I feel ineffective, I'm doing something to help.

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-06-2009
Thu, 03-15-2012 - 9:51am

Depression affects people differently, and your boyfriend seems to prefer being alone when it hits.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-14-2012
Thu, 03-15-2012 - 10:07am

He's a strange one. He does, and doesn't, want me to see him like that, at the same time. Like yesterday, he didn't want to take off work early to come over, but he was here the second he got off.

As for meds, he got on new ones about a month ago. I know it takes a couple of weeks for things to even out, but this has happened before and after the med switch, so I don't really think that's the problem.

I don't know. I'm at a loss at how to help him, and frankly, I've got my own issues to deal with as well. It's hard to help him and take care of myself at the same time, you know? Especially when "helping" him is closer to sitting around worrying my head sore about him, because he won't let me do anything. I know that sometimes all a person can do is be there, but at this point, all I feel is helpless.

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-06-2009
Thu, 03-15-2012 - 2:14pm

Yes, it's very hard to know what to do.