But I love him anyway. Not only does he not understand, he told me that all of the medications I’ve been on do not work. When I argued that the medications stop the negative voices that tell me life is hopeless and that I’m worthless, he argues that it’s all a placebo effect.
How can I live with a guy who doesn’t believe in my mental illness? I trust on some intrinsic level he does but his pragmatic side doesn’t. He read some article that said all antidepressants are the same and he talked to some guy friends who seem to think depression is just a crutch to blame for our frailty. That’s his opinion.
My husband’s mother left him when he was 7 years old. He and his sisters were raised by a domineering father. When we first met, he shared that painful time in his life. How he would wait for his mom to return but she never did. She moved to a different state and all but forgot him. He cried at the memory and then, with my help, began to rebuild a relationship with her. We visited her with our children. He called her “mom” even though he says he doesn’t think of her that way. Basically, he accepted the past and moved on.
My brother sexually molested me when I was 11 and it changed my thinking forever. I blamed myself and learned to hide the secret and my pain. I can’t let it go and move on (unless I’m treated with antidepressants, than I can consider it history).
My husband and I have talked about how we both had painful childhoods but I can’t leave mine in the past. There’s some faulty wiring in my brain that causes me to relive the trauma. My husband agrees that he isn’t preoccupied with his past. It’s a non-issue for him but he knows that it’s different for me. So, he says one thing like “depression is all in your head.” But when push comes to shove, he has supported me by being patient and caring through many periods in my life when I was depressed and suffering PTSD. He stuck by me when I cried that I was not worth his time. He held me when I wanted to die. He dealt with my family when I couldn’t take their calls or visits. He went along with me when I cut my family out of my life for a couple of years. He’s put up with my silences, my anger, my rages and my sadness whether it was directed at others or him.
Actions speak louder than words and my husband’s behaviors have consistently proven he does understand the vulnerable state of my mental health. He has never belittled me or used it against me. (But that goes back to my last post about how he argues in the moment and doesn’t see how all things are connected, this is probably why he doesn’t “get” my depression).
Fast forward to the present — I now rely on my girlfriends and therapist to talk about my depression and medications. Years of marriage have taught me men are good for some things but not to satisfy every need and desire we have. That’s when it’s good to have a close friend (or therapist) to help with difficult feelings and thoughts.
It’s taken many years to get to this place where my strength comes from inside and knowing I need to be properly monitored for major depression. My husband and I have a stronger relationship now that I don’t depend on him for every bit of my happiness or blame him for all of my sorrows. ♥