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Breaking up with a depressed boyfriend?

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CuriousMe

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Sep 15, 2019
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My boyfriend and I have been dating for a year, and it has been a long-distance relationship the entire time. We are both in our mid/late 20s, currently living on the opposite sides of the country. About three/four months into our relationship, he went through a lot of life changes. Getting out of the army (never deployed), moving to a different state, trying to look for a job. He was not adjusting very well, and this is when I started to notice changes in behavior. He would isolate himself, get easily irritated, would shut me out. He started to smoke weed but then stopped few weeks into it. He would get episodes like this for few days every few weeks. Few months of those rollercoasters and he started to talk about how he gets anxious sometimes, does not want to leave his bed, etc. I already started talking to him about getting help at that time, but he kept saying how he can deal with all of it on his own. About four months ago, it got really bad and continues to be like this. In June, I was in the same city as he, but we barely saw each other (earlier he kept saying how me coming would make everything better). He didn’t want to leave the house, see me. He started smoking again, ate junk, and stopped working out. I tried to get him out of the house, bring him some healthy foods. I tried to be a supportive partner and even called VA therapists few times to get advice. I read tons of articles on depression and anxiety. In July, I went back to my side of the country and continued to check in on him, always telling him that I am here for him, how much I care about him, etc. At the end of July, he told me to focus on myself more (he knows I worry a lot) and that he will work on himself and reach out back when he is back to his old self. He also hoped that going to see his family in August would help (they live in a different country). Once he told me to focus on myself more, we basically stopped communicating. I wanted to give him the space he requested. He went to see his family, came back few days ago, and it did change anything. It is mid-September and we have spoken maybe three or four times since late July. I let him come to me first, but he just stops responding. Then a week later texts me again, only to stop responding. He also has continuously refused to get help. Actually, he mentioned few times that he would but never did. I ended up getting a therapist to help myself. At this point, I am doubting everything. We have been together for 12 months but four out of those have been awful. It feels like we are not in a relationship. Part of me even thinks that he thinks we are done, that he got tired of me, decided he didn’t want to be in this relationship. Even though before he got that bad, we had talked about me moving to his side of the country in May (I will be graduating from grad school). We would talk about moving in together and all the things we could do if we were in the same place. But that was months ago. I feel like I have tried everything. I’ve been supportive, there for him, always telling him how much I value and care for him. I tried straight forward approaches with therapy and then just being there for him, without mentioning it. My therapist tells me to say that either he gets help or we cannot be in this relationship any longer. When he talks about therapy, he automatically thinks he would be prescribed meds. And when I try to ease him into the idea of it, talking about CBT, and other non-meds methods, he says he doesn’t want to talk to anyone. I am pretty much the only person he has talked to about this but now he doesn’t even want to speak to me. And yes, I have talked to him about how important it is for us to communicate, I have told him that this has an impact on me as well. I think it may be time to leave. I want to be there for him, but he has to take some actions too. I know he has tried eating healthier, tried to work out a little, but he also went back to smoking weed for few weeks in June. All he says is that weed helps the process, he needs time, and refuses professional help. It’s basically a waiting game.
 
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PsychoPrince

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Please forgive me if I come across as blunt, but I agree that it is time to leave. When professional help is both needed and avoided, disaster tends to follow. Considering the lack of respect he shows for himself (drugs, eating excessive junk) I find it hard to believe he fully understands what it means to respect others, you in this case.

It seems like you have gone out of your way already to help him but the simple truth is he will never get better as long as he refuses to help himself. If I were in your position (not that I would ever tell you what to do) I would say essentially "Get help or lose me" very gently.

I nearly destroyed my life with drugs and an untreated mental state so I have seen what you are going through from his point of view and getting help was easily the best choice I have ever made regarding it.

Again, I don't mean to boss you around or to sound cold, just trying to provide some perspective. Hope this can help you somehow. Love from Prince!
 
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CuriousMe

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Hi Prince! Blunt answers are the best answers so thank you for your honesty. I know he didn't choose to be depressed but he is choosing to refuse treatment. It just all really sucks and hurts
 
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PsychoPrince

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Hi Prince! Blunt answers are the best answers so thank you for your honesty. I know he didn't choose to be depressed but he is choosing to refuse treatment. It just all really sucks and hurts
Hey friend, it's just this moment that sucks. This is a bump in the road and once you are over it, the road of life is smooth again. Have you been able to gain some clarity on this issue?
 
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CuriousMe

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Yes, I have. I just need to figure out how to go about that conversation, what to say, how to say it. I really hope to say something that would push him to therapy, without losing him. But I have to accept that I may just have to leave completely.
 
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PsychoPrince

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Apr 22, 2019
Messages
128
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Yes, I have. I just need to figure out how to go about that conversation, what to say, how to say it. I really hope to say something that would push him to therapy, without losing him. But I have to accept that I may just have to leave completely.
Just let your heart do the talking! His reaction to you laying your heart out in front of him will give you all the answers you need. Not that I am telling you what do do of course, just a suggestion.
 
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CuriousMe

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I do like your suggestions though! The reason why I am here is to get some insight from people who have been through similar things as he has. And from people who have experience what I have.
 
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Rea

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Sep 4, 2019
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I suffer from anxiety and depression and I can tell you that is not my fault if I developed this terrible problem but is my responsibility to take care of myself and follow my treatment.

You are putting a great effort in order to help your partner, but at the moment he is not taking care of himself and he is ignoring also you because he does not think that his behaviour is hurting you.
He has to understand by himself that he needs to seek help.

I would talk to him in a direct way being at the same time really sweet and trying to find a moment where he is calm.
I would explain that he is self-harming, that he has a problem, that there is nothing bad about it but he needs to seek help.
Then I would clearly say that if he does not seek help, the relationship is over because you can't' continue in this way.

If this will trigger a reaction, then it will be really good for your relationship.
If he ignores you, I think that is time to move on. You can always help him but as a friend and not as a girlfriend.
 
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CuriousMe

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I sat down and wrote down all of my thoughts and everything I want to say. So wish me luck for when that actually happens
 
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