Most of us are aware about the havoc that depression can wreak on somebody. The symptoms can be almost paralyzing; a sensation that a dark cloud stalks them or a pit lingers in their stomach every waking moment. It can be easy to forget the impact of depression on intimate relationships.
Unless you’ve been depressed – or have been with someone who has struggled with it, you may not have ever considered this. Most people think of depression as a solitary experience for the individual. But the reality is, a partner struggles along with the depressed person not only while they observe the person they care about in pain – but his/her inability to engage them in the relationship.
If depression is left unattended, not only can the person affected continue to suffer but the relationship they are in can slowly unravel as affected person spends much of the time “checked out” and sitting in their pain.
If you have a partner who is depressed and hasn’t done anything about it – ask them to seek help for the sake of the relationship. Sometimes this is enough to motivate change. If he/she won’t seek help – at least seek some support for yourself.1