Living with a Depressed Spouse - Tips to Deal with the Situation
Are you living with a depressed spouse and wish to learn how to better deal with the situation?
Every adult relationship has its own set of challenges, and one of the most delicate and extremely intimate relationships is that between a husband and wife. The institution of marriage involves handling situations, circumstances, and challenges with utmost care and maturity.
Living with a spouse who is suffering from depression can be extremely trying and testing on one, mainly because it requires a lot of patience, self-belief, extraordinary determination, and faith in one's own abilities to stay calm and stress-free, especially so that one can help the spouse overcome depression.
Listed below are a few tips on how to stay peaceful and calm while living with a depressed spouse, as well as how to help him or her overcome depression.
To be able to live with and help a depressed husband or wife, it is absolutely necessary for one to be extremely peaceful, as this will help garner the huge amount of physical strength and emotional bandwidth that is required.
One should make sure that one gets enough rest, exercise, and healthy food to eat on time. Even if only one of the above three is neglected, chances are it will affect one's physical and / or emotional strength and one will find it very difficult to cope with the challenges of living with a depressed spouse.
A depressed spouse can easily affect the mood and attitude of his or her partner just by being around and spreading gloom and doom. Negativity, pessimism, self-doubt, self-loathing, low self esteem and self confidence, defeatist attitudes, and lack of passion for life are some of the emotions exhibited by a depressed spouse. All these will, of course, affect the other, mainly because depression cannot be cured overnight and dealing with these negative emotions and sentiments is not easy.
Therefore, while living with a depressed spouse, one must make some time for oneself and enjoy the peace by oneself. It is easy to get carried in the negative wave of depression, and this can happen without one's realization. Hence, it is important to remain positive and trust that one has the ability to overcome this challenge without suffering oneself.
Patience and Perseverance
These qualities are very important when living with a depressed spouse.
In an intimate relationship like that between husband and wife, it is extremely difficult to stay unaffected when one's partner is going through pain and suffering. However, if one starts sympathizing and giving in to the demands of the other, the road to recovery will be slow and full of obstacles. Therefore, in living with a depressed spouse, it is important to be patient and not give in to all the demands he or she is making.
Another step in the right direction while living with a depressed spouse would be to persistently go after what is blocking the spouse's energies and release them. It could be fear of certain issues, challenges, difficulties, health and illness, etc, that need to be dealt with effectively. Helping them unchain or untangle themselves from the web of guilt, fear, shame, and / or any other inhibitions, requires a lot of patience and fortitude. Therefore, one must stay calm and deal with it one day at a time and never let go anywhere in between.
In living with a depressed spouse, realize that day two will always be better than day one, and day three will be better than day two; ultimately, one will see progress being made and eventually, one can help one's spouse get over the tendency to get depressed by nipping the causes in the bud.
Sharing of Thoughts and Emotions
As and when time permits, one must encourage one's spouse to speak his or her mind freely without being fearful that you will judge him or her. Many people tend to be closed about sharing certain experiences, and all these bottled up emotions will be repressed for such a long time that they create havoc in their minds.
Encourage your spouse to be open and to discuss his or her fears with you, so that he or she is no longer carrying any baggage and his or her mind is free of all the burdens that he or she has been living with thus far. This will go a long way in ensuring that he or she is at peace, and this peace will translate into joy which will kill depression and any other negative thoughts that they harbor.
While it is not easy living with a depressed spouse and not feel depressed oneself, it is very important to find ways and means to drag one's spouse out of depression rather than give in and get depressed oneself.
The spirit to fight and overcome the challenge should motivate the other to want to follow you and do what it takes to overcome depression. Thus, the determination, the will, and the support to fight depression should first come from the unaffected spouse, and then later from within the depressed spouse.
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