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Husband Depressed

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My husband has suffered from depression for about 5 years. He was not diagnosed until about 3 years ago and was put on Welbutrin. He started feeling better and decided he did not want to take medication, so he weaned himself off of it. It is not a habit-forming drug, but he did not want to be on it. Now he has been off of it for about a year and has had small episodes of depression, but nothing major. Now he is reverting back and it is major like it used to be....mood swings, not happy with himself, no sex drive, loss of care for anyone (including his family), having pity parties for himself, will not get out of the house much.

It is has been like this for 5 years and we have been married for 6. It is getting very old that everything is about him and I feel that I am constantly having to uplift him and help him along through life. I am completely wore down and would like him to focus on his family. We have talks, but they don't seem to help. He apologizes and says he hates that I have to go through this, but I have even considered leaving and hoping that would get his attention. I really don't want to leave, but if it would make him wake up it would be worth it. I have suggested him getting back on Welbutrin, but he doesn't want to. Any suggestions or has anyone been through this? I have prayed about it and so has he. I just need a break!! Crying or Very sad
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replied July 25th, 2003
husband depressed
my heart goes out to you I share your pain Paxil has helped us it had to be increased and that worked started 12.5 went to 25mg
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replied August 5th, 2003
Experienced User
I believe in the statement, "behind every great man, is a better woman." it means that you're very strong to be able to endure through the responsibility of having to uplift him in his time of need.

I think if you did leave him, the saying, "you don't know what you got 'till it's gone" would take effect on him, and he'd miss your great efforts to ease his pain.

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replied August 8th, 2003
Is there anything that your husband would probably take other than welbutrin. There are so many meds on the market that there has to be something that he could use. If it was helping him, then why did he stop?
I've been from one med to another, paxil, remerom, prozac, welbutrin, zoloft and on and on and have gotten no relief but gave me worse panic attacks than I already had, on top of depression. Some made me so high, and rubber feeling I couldn't function normally. Some made my spine feel like steel up into my neck and so tense.

I understand how you feel. I wish you the best.
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replied September 11th, 2007

I can definitely sympathize with your situation. My husband has suffered from depression for most of his life, although he wasn't diagnosed for many years. He tried several different meds, but a combination of Wellbutrin and therapy helped him. He has been off his medication for approximately 3 years and is no longer seeing a therapist. He has had experiences similar to your husband in that he has had small bouts from time to time, but is now experiencing a backslide.

I can share in your frustration and anger. We now have a four month old and more than ever I feel that I am less helpful and sympathetic to his condition. I have to keep reminding myself that it is an illness, just like diabetes or heart disease, etc. Unfortunately, as you and I know, the illness itself sometimes makes it hard for someone to seek help. I know my husband has a horrible time asking for help and would rather do everything himself. He feels that going back on meds is a sign of weakness and just makes him feel worse about himself.

As for whether or not leaving would help, it may or may not. It could have the opposite reaction and just solidify his feelings of poor self-worth, which may not help the relationship recover. However, my husband and I had a counsellor (who was horrible btw) who suggested I should leave him so he "could learn to stand on his own two feet." This fear did seem to motivate him to continue seeking help and he eventually found a solution that worked for him. Ultimately though, I think you need to do what is best for you too. If he isn't willing to get some kind of help (meds, therapy, etc.) maybe you need to consider leaving.

Sorry this post was so long...I need to learn to be more concise. Hope it helps to know someone else shares your frustration though.
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