[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/phpbb/session.php on line 585: sizeof(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/phpbb/session.php on line 641: sizeof(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable
Caring for depressed husband - Carers UK Forum

Caring for depressed husband

For issues specific to caring for someone with mental ill health.
His everyone. I'm new to this forum and wanted to share my situation. I am feeling very low and helpless so wanted some advice.

My husband is currently experiencing an episode of depression. He has been suffering with it for many years. I have to take care of him everyday. Our daughter was born in 2015 and that is when it started to get worse. We found out we were expecting again when our daughter was 9 month's old and since then things have got worse and worse. We now have two children under 2, our son is 6 weeks old.
I had to take him to a+e in march as I was worried he would Try to take his own life. He was discharged by the mental health team in now under the gp and is getting CBT and taking medication.
He's depression causes him to make really poor choices. He uses canabis everyday to help him cope and has got himself into lots of debt to support the habit.
He can become very aggressive when he is feeling down. He can also just shut me out.
We are really struggling financially because of him taking out payday loans .he Is not well enough to find another job. He currently works part time but finds it difficult. He is scared of not being able to get another job as he has taken time off sick.

I am often left with the children and feel like we are not a family. We don't really have a relationship anymore. He has little interest in anything outside of the house. I have my family to do things with but I wish he was interested in doing more with me and the children .

We often argue because he takes money from my bank account or from the childrens to buy canabis . I have recently changed all the details so he has no access to the money. This has caused him to become angry at me and won't really talk to me. He spend's his money very quickly as ask's me for money to buy his drugs. He often has suicidal thought and says I'm response for them when we argue.

It's so difficult dealing with this situation. Sorry for the long post. I feel guilty and selfish buy caring for him is getting very difficult. I know he is really struggling but I feel so alone
Kay, this can't go on! Now, whatever caused your husband's depression in the first place, 'self-medicating' (ie, the cannabis) is not acceptable. He has to get to the GP, get off cannabis, get on 'proper' anti-depressants, and get counselling.

I, personally speaking (and it's only 'me' not an expert, just another ordinary person), think that unless he does this NOW, you leave. After all, he's bringing absolutely NOTHING to the family, and the reverse, he's a MAJOR problem for you and your children on every count - financially and practically.

I think it may be 'revealing' that his depression kicked in again when your first baby was born. If (and I'm surmising here, no more than that!) before then he was the only person you paid attention to and spent time on, then having a 'rival' in his baby would be very 'upsetting' for him. A second one would just make things worse. (As an aside, please make sure you don't get pregnant quickly again! Not sure if you were relying on breastfeeding acting like a contraceptive - which it does! - it's not a foolproof one!). (That said, from the kiddies point of view, it will be great they are so close - makes entertaining them more easy in the years ahead - no point having a large age gap!)

I think you have to be firm on all this. You give him a time line. Next week he goes to his GP, and gets ADs prescribed and gets in the queue (and it will be a queue!) for counselling for his depression. He signs up for whatever support is available to de-addict him to cannabis (as he probably is addicted by now?)(oh, and of course, cannabis can kick off all sorts of mental illness as well!)

He puts you in TOTAL charge of finances (well done you for isolating your own finances - ESSENTIAL!) (remember, addicts and depressives have NO 'morality'....their desperation drives them and controls them, and makes them ruthless. He would see you and his kiddies starve before denying himself his next fix, etc etc)

I'm not sure how best to do this, but there must be some way of 'insulating' yourself financially from his debts. You may actually have to divorce to do this, but please get advice form somewhere like the Citizens Advice. It's ESSENTIAL you do not become financially liable. Payday loans are hideous for interest if they are not immediately paid off (and they're bad enough then), so in NO WAY can you be responsible for them.

Now, he MAY be able to do all this for you, and if he has any love for you, or any remaining sense of responsibility then he will do his absolute best to stick to this. But....he may not.

And that's why I think you ALSO have to plan how to take the ultimate step to safeguard yourself, and your two children (who are now your responsibility FIRST before your husband), and that is by leaving this utterly unequal relationship, and getting divorced (to protect yourself from his debts if nothing else)

It's a very sad situation, and it may be that he has 'good cause' for his depression - awful parents, rotten childhood etc etc. But now that he is a father he MUST step up to the plate, and tackle it. It won't be easy for him, or you, but your children deserve the best family life they can have - and having a drug-addicted father with MH/depression, and completely irresponsible with money, running up hideous debts, is NOT what they deserve. And nor do you!

Wishing you all the best possible in a very difficult situation - kindest regards, Jenny
Welcome here. Totally "get" how difficult you (and he) are finding life right now. The chink of light that I see is that although he has been discharged from the mental health team he is, I note, getting CB therapy and appropriate medications.
I hope this will, in due course, help you both.
So little funding for mental health issues..... it's a big problem isn't it?

As for your relationship..... well, yeah, you could just consider splitting the family up. But maybe you could try some counselling ...... RELATE is very experienced charity and may be able to help you both communicate better and find solutions.

(My first marriage only lasted seven years, the second over forty...life does get challenging at times. There is often a way through, we just have to identify the appropriate source of help).

I hope you are both getting any benefits you may be entitled to. And maybe you need advice too on debt management. ??? There are people who can help.
See you another time, perhaps :)
By the way, I don't for one minute think you are selfish. Wish you could ditch the guilt .....try reminding yourself you are doing your best huh? :) and you are reaching out for help. A good plan. ;)
I don't have much to offer in the way of advice but I just wanted to say that you are not alone and it sounds like you are doing an amazing job (though I know it doesn't always feel that way). Also I think changing your bank details was absolutely the right thing to do - don't feel guilty about that. I know it's tough when you feel like you don't have a husband any more, and can't imagine how hard it is to be taking care of your little ones at the same time but know that you are doing the best you can. Follow the advice given above and I hope everything gets better soon.

Also try and get help for yourself e.g. Talking to someone because this is a huge amount for one person to deal with and you need to take care of yourself.
Hi, I am also new to this forum. My partner has bipolar and is currently going through a depressive phase. Reading through some of the threads on here has helped me see that there are others feeling like I am so you are not alone! I also have a young child to look after and at times I feel like a single parent so I can't imagine how you cope with two - sounds like you are doing a terrific job and it's important that you focus on them with no need to feel any guilt. I too get upset when he doesn't want to do anything with us as a family or doesn't get enthusiastic about what I suggest but I am starting to accept it and focus on making sure I still spend time with my daughter and (try to) wait patiently until he starts to come out of it. It can be so hard and incredibly frustrating when he is like this but i've found having time to myself doing something that I enjoy really helps too.
Carly, I think your post shows that someone the non-depressed partner just has to 'get on with their own life'....as best they can. If the depressed person just 'won't or can't' 'improve' then there is no point the non-depressed person sinking to that level as well.

Depressed people can be INCREDIBLY 'draining', and are very, very 'hard work' for other people (and, of course, for themselves alas.)

No easy answers!
In my area there is a carers group for people with mental health issues. Have you had a Carers Assessment from Social Services? If not, ask for one, and then ask if there is a MH carers group local to you, or anyone else who can help.
Many thanks for the wisdom shared here. My hubby gets depressed a lot. Very draining to be around. I have to step back or I will be pulled down.
Thanks so much for everyone's kind words and advise. I have had to learn to step back and try to get on with being a great mum to my littles ones.