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kaymichele01

Boyfriend Won’t Get Help

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I feel like a broken record because I feel like this topic has been brought up over and over but I need some advice.

I struggle with anxiety and depression and obsessive behavior. I have dealt with it for years now and I am on medication and functioning. My boyfriend and I have been together for 7 years now and he was there for me through all of it, but now and the past few years, he’s been so depressed and he refuses to open up about it at all. He is not one to share emotions or feelings in the slightest and prefers to keep them tightly to himself. He doesn’t like to talk about anything and it’s really effecting our relationship. He won’t go see a doctor, refuses to take medication and just prefers to suffer through it. No offense to you guys out there, but why are y’all SO stubborn when it comes to accepting help? Idk what to do anymore! 

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It can be really draining and frustrating when someone you love is struggling with depression.  When it gets down to it, he is the only one who can take action.  And that's probably one of the most frustrating things.  Thank you for trying to be supportive.  Part of trying to be there for him is to make sure that you don't let yourself get burned out or dragged under with him.  Make sure you have your own support in place, and things you can go that help you maintain balance.  As far as getting him to talk about stuff, I can really sympathize with that.  My spouse, early on in our marriage, was extremely reluctant to communicate. He wasn't being stubborn, he just saw himself as not having any value.  I was very patient and persistent and loving in getting him to communicate, and it took a very long time. You might think about talking to a therapist about this, to help you find a healthy way forward. Even if he won't talk to a counselor, it might help you figure out how to approach him.  

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13 hours ago, kaymichele01 said:

No offense to you guys out there, but why are y’all SO stubborn when it comes to accepting help?

This is obviously a generalization but a common reason is that it makes us feel emasculated, all of our lives were told that a "real man" needs to be strong and stoic. For many of us something simple as asking for directions when we're lost feels humiliating so having to admit that we cannot handle our own life and emotions is something that goes completely against the masculine values we have been instilled. "Man up" is a sentence that we hear from our fathers, other male role models and the media. We constantly see that weak men don't get much respect, they tend to be bullied and ridiculed by other men and rejected by women, the mere thought of showing weakness terrifies us to the core.

Point being that it takes a LOT of suffering before we ever consider seeking help. As long as our suffering doesn't exceed the pain of the perceived humiliation we'll be hesitant to talk to someone. Add to that that depression tends to make us believe that our situation is unique and way worse than anyone else's and it just seems futile to bother trying.

@20YearsandCounting's suggestions to stay persistent and patient and ask a therapist how you can approach him are great! Another avenue may be trying to recruit others to help you support him, does he have any relatives or close friends who could assist you? Also, like she said you definitely need to take care of yourself so you don't end up getting dragged down by him, particularly since you have your own history of depression.  At some point there may come a time that you need to give him a "get help or I'll leave"-ultimatum... You definitely don't just want to throw the relationship away but if it comes to it you need to protect yourself, it doesn't do anyone any good if both of you end up a victim of his depression. 

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Hi- It's difficult to see that someone you love is hurting and refuses treatment. I have a friend, her daughter has depression and she also stopped counselling and medications. My friend gathers information about treatment so that she knows how to deal with her daughter. You can also help your boyfriend by providing information on the treatment, tell him the reasons you believe treatment is important and help him to understand that he will feel better. I hope things will work well for both of you.
 
I pray that you and your boyfriend will get better soon.Thank you for sharing. Keep posting, we are here for you.

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