It slowly creeps into someone’s life and slowly impacts their relationship with people around them.
Depressed people need to be treated with caution, and it requires patience. Depression and relationships never go hand in hand. Depressions often end beautiful relationships badly.
Then, how to deal with depression in a relationship? You need to identify it first.
When you’ve discovered a depression in a relationship, the entire focus shifts to the one suffering from depression.
You must show patience and be aware of how to deal with a spouse with depression.
Can a relationship cause depression?
It is difficult to point out if the relationship is causing depression or personal reasons. However, they both are interconnected.
When a person feels happy and content in a relationship, both the partners and their relationship flourish. If one out of the two partners is unhappy or depressed, it can cause difficulty in a relationship.
Some people are in healthy relationships and still suffer from depression. In such cases, depression can be cured effectively. However, in other cases where people try to overcome depression but feel utterly unhappy in their relationship, they suffer from mental health issues.
Only a professional therapist can help you find out if the relationship is causing depression or any other factor causes it. However, here are some severe signs that your relationship is harmful and might be causing depression.
Feeling alone and trapped whenever you are with your partner.
Isolating yourself from family and friends.
Not making your decisions for yourself.
Fighting every day.
Feeling insecure and threatened by your partner.
Experiencing any kind of abuse in your relationship.
All the signs above are a warning for an unhealthy relationship that will end up in relationship depression.
How can relationships make you depressed?
Many people love being in a relationship as it is the source of content and peace for them but, some people have a terrifying experience and live with a scar on their soul.
To be in a troubled relationship can impact your mental health. Here are some reasons that can cause relationship depression.
People who have been cheated on can feel betrayed and devastated. It causes emotional trauma that can lead to severe depression.
People who are in an abusive relationship are more prone to depression in relationships. People who have experienced abuse become underconfident, lose their self-respect and start blaming themselves for the unhappy life they lead.
Here is a video explaining more about the psychological abuse in a relationship:
3. Long-distance relationships
Long-distance relationships are one of the most common reasons behind people dealing with depression in relationships. It is challenging for some people to spend a long time apart.
Such people also experience anxiety.
How can relationship depression affect the partners?
If you want to know how to deal with depression in a relationship, there is one thing you must know: how it affects you and your partner.
There are many ways a relationship depression affects a person. If you are not aware of how, here are some symptoms you should remember.
Change in sleeping habits – low energy, sleeping too much, or insomnia
Change in eating habits – suddenly overeating or rarely eating
Mood swings or unable to control emotional outbursts
Inability to handle stress or common daily problems
Withdrawal from family, friends, or other typical social patterns
Difficulty connecting to others
Excessive feelings of guilt, fears, and worries
Feelings of hopelessness, helplessness, isolation, or undeserving If you or someone you love exhibits these symptoms outside of normal behavior, it may indicate a mental health issue arising.
10 Ways for dealing with depression in relationships
Before discussing how you deal with depression in a relationship, it is crucial to understand that being depressed and having depression are entirely different.
You’re sad or depressed when a family member or pet dies – in emotional turmoil, sure, but that is a healthy emotion. It is essentially sadness and grief, part of the healing process. Depression is not.
Depression is when you get stuck in that state and never see a way out of it.
Below are some ways to deal with relationship depression and maintain strength through tough times.
1. Acknowledge it
It’s pretty rare to see depression and love relationships flourishing smoothly under one roof.
If you know how to save your relationship from depression, then you must know that it is only possible if you acknowledge the depression in a relationship.
Acknowledgment changes your entire perspective and viewpoint towards it.
Remember, anyone can suffer from depression. Instead of questioning ‘why you,’ start focusing on how you can handle this.
Once you’ve accepted that your partner is depressed, you can find ways to deal with it. This is what you need the most since you’ve to take care of both of you now.
2. Learn out about how to deal with it
Depression and relationship breakups are linked together.
Most people walk out of a relationship since they’re not able to handle their partner. They may have identified the symptoms and acknowledged that they have depression in a relationship, but they’ve failed to look for ways to deal with it.
Educating oneself about how to deal with depression is important. Managing a person with depression isn’t going to be an easy task for you.
You will have to understand them, support them, help them overcome depression, and bring in confidence in them. Simultaneously, you will have to manage yourself as well. So, make sure you’re well aware and educated about how to handle the situation.
3. Don’t take things personally
There might be days when your partner is overwhelmed, and someday they might be underwhelmed.
Their mood swings and depression might impact your personal life as well. It’s pretty usual to take things personally. This is our human nature, and it will happen, but you have to ensure that you keep things out of line.
Their depression has nothing to do with you. You love that person, and they love you equally. Just because they’re depressed and may react differently doesn’t mean you should blame yourself for their condition.
You must learn to keep things separate and treat their depression just as depression.
4. Seek help
One can’t deal with depression in a relationship without any expert’s help.
A depressed person is to be treated with care. They’re not in the condition where you can enjoy the benefits that other couples enjoy.
It would help if you learned how to deal with depression in a relationship with patience. Channel your emotions and thoughts properly.
This is where you would need the help of advice. There are several support groups that you can join or can even take the advice of an expert. They will help you understand your partner correctly and guide you to deal with depression and relationship problems.
5. Always be there for them
Your depressed partner needs you more than you need them.
You’re their go-to person whenever they need help or assistance. You must learn to manage things accordingly and show your support to them by being there for them.
When they start observing that you’re there for them whenever needed, they start to make efforts to come out of depression. Your enthusiasm and effort will surely push them to do better.
They would desire to live their life, free from depression. Your presence can make a lot of difference in the entire process.
As mentioned above, depression in a relationship can put a lot of pressure on you.
You will have to manage your life, their life and should also take care of their medication. In depression, medications do help a lot.
Your depressed partner may skip it, but you have to ensure that they take proper medication. You have to help them and be their support system to pull them out of it.
7. Shower love on them
No two days are going to be the same. It’s a fact, and one must live with it.
Things accelerate a lot when there is depression in a relationship. In such a situation, to love someone unconditionally becomes difficult. Sadness in the relationship becomes common.
You are assured that there will be days when your partner is depressed, but you have to be strong and show your support. Your shower of unconditional love can work wonders on them and eventually will help them over depression.
It would be best if you didn’t give up at all.
8. Monitor eating habits
Whether your partner is a depressed over-eater or under-eater, please take notice of their eating habits.
While chocolate does release “happy” endorphins, the feeling is fleeting, while our thighs are not. Make sure they are eating correctly and healthy.
People who are depressed tend to eat a lot of junk food or avoid eating at all.
Set a routine for food and make sure to understand that it is for their good.
It’s not easy to follow advice on how to deal with depression in a relationship. If you or your partner are looking for ways to combat depression, you should start exercising.
Just move. It would be best if you could be workout partners. Do squats in the living room. Do push-ups, burpees (those are the devil), crunches, run in place – get your blood pumping.
If you like the outdoors and hills, you must go hiking.
10. Take baby steps
Make little goals. Create a list and write down everything. When people are lost in their sorrows, they forget how beautiful life can be.
The depressed state of mind makes a person forget the joy of the little things. Set daily goals and celebrate with your partner after accomplishment.
The little moments of happiness and positivity will give you the courage and inspiration to deal with depression.
What if your partner threatens to commit suicide during the breakup?
Breakups are devastating, and they can cause emotional and mental trauma. The fact that you have to leave a person you love and forget about them is scary, and some people go beyond their means to save it.
If your partner is in the deepest pit of depression about the breakup and threatens to commit suicide, here are some things you should do.
Ask them to calm down and talk to you. Listen to them without any judgments and try to talk them out of it.
Remove all the potential harmful objects around them as a precautionary measure.
Call a local emergency number or a mental health facility.
Do not leave your partner alone before the help arrives. Also, educate your partner about how a professional therapist can help overcome this situation.
In a time when mental health issues are so familiar yet so taboo, it’s our job to educate others on the reality of what we deal with.
The reality is that depression is a bully. But we are stronger. We are not weak, and we are not incapable.
All this information about dealing with depression in a relationship can help you or someone you know.
We battle within ourselves every day, and each day is a minor victory. We will endure, survive and conquer.
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.
Sylvia Smith loves to share insights on how couples can revitalize their love lives in and out of the bedroom. As a writer at Marriage.com, she is a big believer in living consciously and encourages couples to adopt this principle in their lives too. Sylvia believes that every couple can transform their relationship into a happier, healthier one by taking purposeful and wholehearted action.