Unfortunately, loving a woman does not automatically endow you with the ability to understand and deal with her depression.Keep reading to learn what issues are more likely to surface when dating a woman who struggles with clinical depression and how you should handle them.
Men with depression experience this, but it tends to be more intense for women because they ruminate on it rather than seeking distractions.
This sometimes makes small issues transform into big stressors.
Being depressed and having depression are very different. Do not suggest that it's because I "don't exercise enough," or "don't think positively," or "don't drink green juice," or whatever the hell you think might be the cause of my depression. If I'm in a bad place, for instance, my energy levels and sex drive will be low. Not only does it mean I have the energy to do it, but that boost of seratonin and oxytocin will put me in an even better one.7. And being on said medication doesn't mean I'm throwing-mystery-meat-at-the-wall, giving-the-State-of-the-Union-Address-to-a-chair "crazy." 7 out of 10 Americans take prescription drugs, and I am one of them, and let's all juuuust chilllllll. It also doesn't mean I'm "numb." I'm sorry, is Zach Braff a medical professional or an authority on anything at all besides maybe getting away with rich-person Kickstarting his shitty indie movies? Depression isn't ~**~r Om An Ti C~*~*~* or glamorous or an indicator of True Artistic Genius the way some (dumb) movies and/or books will suggest it is. not cleaning your apartment for a month, not doing laundry for two, never washing my hair until bats start nesting in it, and crying a lot.11.
Specifically, the difference between "My boss yelled at me at work today, ugh" and "My brain is an imbalanced chemical cocktail poorly mixed by a bartender-in-training."2. A goddamn spiritual pep talk about why a legit mental condition I have is basically my fault because I don't bow and murmur "Namaste" to the mouse that lives under my fridge in the winter every night before bed is not gonna get you laid. You have one (1) free pass to make that mistake early in our relationship, but that's it. In the winter, for instance, there will be very little sex unless you're cool with me just lying in the fetal position and doing it in the harsh glow of a therapy lamp. I can't always explain why I feel how I feel, so talking through the feelings like a normal couple might is sometimes twice as frustrating. If I am trying various medications, I might seem weird for a couple weeks, but it's just a phase until I find the right one. If you stick with me through the low points, I'll be the best and most loyal girlfriend you've ever had. I'll be like the golden retriever of girlfriends.14.
Again, it’s important to be patient with partners who suffer from depression.
If they seem to be prioritizing themselves more than usual, know it is the effects of the depression rather than a character flaw.
Help them work through it rather than judging or being resentful.
No matter how psychologically healthy – heck, perfect – you want to believe you are, there’s a little part of you that wants to be your partner’s hero in a relationship.
When he falls into a slump, you want to believe that you have the magic to pull him out of it and make him happy.
Yet anyone who has been in a relationship with someone who’s depressed knows how no hero exists who’s more powerful than depression.
And when I try to explain that to you, you might get mad at me because it seems like I'm minimizing your feelings. If you continue to insist that the answer to my lifelong genetic mental disorder is Soul Cycle, don't let the door hit you on the way out, k? It's sort of a combination of dating and playing Russian Roulette with my brain juice. You don't have to read my mind — you just have to take cues. If I ask you to please go get me an iced coffee and a tuna melt and don't yell at me for eating in bed, please do that, if you're not busy. But you should still feel as lucky — (#blessed), if you will — to have me as I do to have you.