Caring for a Spouse with Mental Illness
Mental Illness is different than cancer, Alzheimer's, diabetes, or other conditions that society accepts as organic and 'real'. Have you chosen to stay with your spouse or care for someone who suffers from a mental illness? This groups is here to support you.
Help spread the support to more people in need -- Please tell a friend or two. Thanks!
What's New Today
11 days ago
Today I'm feeling like the worst wife in the world and so selfish! My husband has been suffering with mental health for a while now, he had a few weeks in hospital last year and since then has had lots of different people involved but still we have no clear diagnosis. It's so frustrating, sometimes we feel like we're past from person to person and no one really seems to know the answers. We've struggled through, I've learnt that I'm not allowed to disgust my feelings or address the Alfie way he talks to me or treats us, I'm not allowed to mention the fact that he finds it so hard to do 'normal' family activities, if I do say anything ever it just kicks everything off, he'll smash stuff, shout at me, sulk etc etc I've learnt to be a single mum to our kids, to except that he finds it hard at the moment and console myself with the facts that we love each other and we will get through this together that it's just a blip and that once they know the actual diagnosis things will start to go back to how they was. But today I'm wondering if I should just except that this is how it is now, maybe we will find better ways to cope with it and we might have more good days than bad, but what if this is our life forever now?? I want to stay together, I love him with all my heart but I miss the old him, I miss our old life we had before he got ill and I miss the future I fear we won't have now. I feel like the worst person in the world for questioning if I can stay for much longer... I know he doesn't mean it but if he wasn't ill it wouldn't be ok to mentally and emotionally abuse me the way he does, so why is it ok now? I don't want my children growing up thinking this is the correct way to be treated, although I try to Shield them from as much as I can, it's so hard to have to hold it altogether all the time. I'm desperate for him to notice me again to feel like his wife and not just his career. Sorry for the rant. x
21 days ago
I understand my husband has a mental illness. Some of the things I thought were quirky now make sense with his diagnosis. What's bothering me is I see the good, decent, caring man he is, but clearly these people who are here to help him only see him as an opportunity to discover as many "broken" things they can. He no longer is being treated as a person but as a disease. He wants help. He's co operating and the results he gets is 1. He is lying 2. He's making great improvement but we need X,Y and Z 3. Well thanks for X,Y, and Z but that's not exactly what we were asking for 4. Well now we don't have time to talk about these things or they are actually the responsibility of someone else. I'm starting to loose hope. I can see the improvements with getting him on medication yet there's always something more then the previous time I talk to someone about the progress my husband is making. I'm done! Im frustrated! I miss my husband.
21 days ago
I have been married to my husband for 22 years. I knew he had some mental health issues when we got together but we were both young and not very well versed on such. He has since been diagnosed with BP disorder and is on medication. It has been very rough and trying at times but when he is "normal" he is a wonderful, loving and funny guy. He has not worked in about 6 years and often does nothing around the house. This is a constant thorn in my side as I am left to not only work FT but do most of the household chores as well. I also find myself raging inside when all he wants to do is sleep all freaking day and stay up all night. I keep reminding myself that this is a mental illness and of his good points such as not abusive, not a cheater, and such but it IS hard.....I find myself feeling depressed and angry when these episodes arise
about 1 month ago
Hello, My husband suffers from anxiety & depression. It began about 5 years ago with a breakdown. He recovered after some months and was able to go back to work and has since changed employers. Last month he suffered another setback and is once again unable to work. He has a short term disability policy with his new employer (he's been employed there now for a little over 2 years) We are in the process of applying for this disability. One of the followup questions the insurance carrier has asked is:
Do you have a past psychiatric history or a family psychiatric history? If Yes, provide details (relationship to you, diagnosis, etc ..
I was wondering if his insurance company can deny the claim based on a pre-existing condition? Has anyone had any experience with this?
about 1 month ago
Hello, I'm new here, I have been with my fiancé for 5.5 years and are currently planning our wedding for October 2018. I was still in high school when we met (he was a sophomore in college) and he was not showing any symptoms yet. However, his dad and at least one uncle (most likely two) were diagnosed with severe BP. His dad has been working with medication since my fiancé was a teenager. Even with the genetic background, my fiancé had a very hard time accepting the fact that he has BP, and it took me 1.5 years to convince him to try medication. He has been trying medication for almost 3 years now, and he is still very volatile. It's very hard to cope with all of the extreme ups and downs. I feel like i can't talk about it with the people close to me because they will not understand and just want me to leave him. When he is mentally stable, he is everything I want in a husband; but when he experiences mood swings he is hateful and intimidating. I just want to know that I am not alone, and someone else out there understands what I am going through. I am struggling with the decision to go through with this wedding because I currently have no binding ties with him. He is constantly trying to work on and better his BP; he routinely sees both his psychiatrist and also a therapist. So I find myself feeling guilty that I would ever consider leaving him, when the BP is not his fault, and he is doing everything he can to get better. I also suffer from ADHD and Depression, so I don't always handle his blow ups like I should. I've grown resentful and I just want to get back to how we were.
2 months ago
My husband is bipolar/ adhd and has cluster b personality disorder. I met him and married him before his diagnosis even knowing his flaws. It is hard not knowing if I will get called horrible names or how his mood will be getting through the days. He can't keep a job even though he is incredible at his trade on good days. I have no privacy. He checks all my messages and if I leave the room to long or go out of the house without him he checks up on me because he constantly thinks I'm cheating on him even though I have given him no reason to think these things. In our town his doctor sucks. We beg for help when he gets to his lowest but the doctor just turns him away. I ended up taking him to emerg after him cutting his wrists in front of me. I called mental health and all they do is put him in support groups that make him very uncomfortable. When I looked for help for myself I was told that I needed to leave him. How does a mental health worker find it better to leave someone mentally ill when u love them so much? Sometimes I feel so alone because I deal with him alone.
3 months ago
My wife of 6.5 years left me a week before Christmas. She has been depressed since we met nine years ago. She hid her depression from me until we moved in together 6 months before we got married and she was flunking out of college as she slept into the afternoon everyday. I did everything I could to support her, but the financial strain of her spending and lack of gainful employment put a constant strain on our marriage. She withdrew from all conflict letting sentiment build between us. About twice a year I would push when she withdrew during conflict raising my voice at her. She is very sensitive and would react as if I had physically struck her. I feel so ashamed of my anger, but could never express any discontent. I did all of the cooking, major cleaning, finances, life planning, and started a business three years ago which she owned half of, but didn't participate in unless pushed to. I did everything I could to salvage our relationship. Every winter she would fall deeper into depression and become angry if I asked for simple things like dropping off trash while I was at work. I did everything I could the past six months to help. I avoided conflict, did the grocery shopping, cleaned (as I always did), cooked and came home from work every afternoon to try and get her out of bed. Now she left because I raised my voice in an argument we had on election night when Trump won. I had phone banked for Hillary and we both voted for her. She was devastated by his win. She moved out with her Mom (who had just gotten divorced from her father who she is estranged from) while I was working. I came home right as she was leaving and she cried and hugged me as she said she needed a few months to clear her head at her Mom's house. We have talked and texted since she left. She has said she sees more clearly how outside influences had hurt our marriage, but still blames everything on my reaction to her in conflict. She takes no responsibility for how hard it was to deal with her depression or how much effort I put in. She says she will need at least a year or more before we might come back together. In the meantime she has said I love you at the end of our few phone conversations and even texted me a podcast about marriage counseling. She says I need to move on, but she was my best friend and the love of my life. She has completely cut off all of her friends and family except her mother since she left and continues to avoid taking any responsibility for her own life, like getting student loans taken care of and helping me file taxes. She quit the one job she had for nine months (the first job in two years) when she moved and isn't looking for another job. She has fallen back into her old routine of sleeping late and staying up late.
Is there any hope of a depressed spouse such as her coming back or agreeing to work things out? My heart is broken into pieces. I'm working on myself and going to anxiety group while taking a new anxiety medication. I also canceled my home internet and got a 24 hour gym membership. She has added to my stress by claiming I owe her alimony and separation support even though we have no children and we are in our early thirties. I am at such a loss. She was my best friend. I have taken credit for my anger and am working on it. I have apologized, but all she can focus on is me while taking no responsibility for her actions. I still have hope as I am a very resilient and persistent person. In our state we have to be legally separated a year before being able to divorce. I plan to continue to reach out up until the day she files the divorce papers. I just don't know what else to do.
3 months ago
My husband is going through depression, he makes me feel he doesn't love me, and he makes me feel he is not attracted to me, he knows he is going through depression and currently going through therapy, He and I have no emotional connection in my eyes but in his everything is still there. He wants our marriage and I do to but this is so hard. He don't love himself so its hard for him to show me love I feel so alone.
Greg S said...
3 months ago
My wife has battled bi-polar, anxiety and manic depression her entire adult life. She seems to be at a breaking point and I don't know where to take her for help. I can't just sit by and watch her suffer any longer and her doctors have done virtually nothing for her. Does anyone have any suggestions?
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