By: Elizabeth Fiore
The minute I met my ex-husband I immediately fell in love. He was handsome, charming, and charismatic. We had an instant connection. We seemed to make each other so happy. We laughed all the time. I didn’t realize it then but there were signs that something wasn’t 100 percent right but I over looked it because I was in love and I was also young. We met when I was 22 and fresh out of college.
Within a few months of dating his behavior began to change. At times, I felt like I was on a roller coaster, there were so many ups and downs. Things would be fine for a few months and then bam all of the sudden he wouldn’t want to wake up to or go to work. He was very distant and private. The harder I tried to get close to him he would push me away. Our conversations were empty; the laughs had turned in petty fights over the fact that he didn’t want to help in daily chores such as paying bills , or taking the garbage out. He had a hard time sleeping at night and wanted to sleep during the day because he was so exhausted. I often felt like a nag or as if I was acting more like his mother rather then his partner, but then it would pass. Some life changing event would snap him out of his funk for example, the birth of our daughter. Things were good for a while but slowly I could see his behavior changing again. I could never understand why or what it was. I had no idea that it was the dreaded word depression. I always thought, maybe he just didn’t love me, or he wasn’t happy with me and I would try any and everything to please him. It was exhausting. I didn’t even think about myself anymore getting our relationship back to that happy place was all I could think and concentrate on. I got so used to this cycle of highs and lows however, when we were in a good place I always had the fearful thought of when would the next low would come because I always knew it would. I began experiencing anxiety over this. I would be in such fear because each low was worse than the last. At our lowest point, he lost his well-paying job that provided our family with health benefits; luckily I had a good job and was able to make it by with the help of my family. For over a year and a half he refused to find a career. He worked odd jobs but mostly laid on the couch watching TV or would hang out with his friends. I was the enemy in his eyes because I would tell him he needed to see someone, that this wasn’t normal and his response was, “I am fine everything will be ok, I’m just not happy with you.” I heard this line countless times throughout our marriage that I couldn’t hear it anymore. I was beaten down mentally and had little self-esteem. One day I walked out, put my house for sale and didn’t look back. It may sounds easy but it wasn’t. I am still in therapy of the loss of my love and the life I hoped to have.
If any of this sounds familiar you are not alone. It isn’t easy to recognize the signs of depression in your partner and it isn’t easy to get them to recognize they need help. Make sure you find a therapist to help you cope and manage your relationship before it gets to a point where too much damage has been done and it can’t be fixed. Don’t let depression win.
7 Signs of Depression:
•Feelings of hopelessness
•Loss of interest
•Abnormal Sleeping patterns
•Changes in appetite and weight
•Thoughts about death or suicide