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My partner and I are both struggling with mental health

Community Member

my current boyfriend and I have been together since late September/early October 2021. I had not long come out of a severely abusive relationship and now have ptsd as a result, as well as a pre exisiting anxiety condition. My partner also opened up about having a depression diagnosis and I suspect he also has cfs, but was well at the time. The first 2-3 months he was fine mentally then around month 4/5 he started to go down hill but was able to pick himself up, however, since March he has being in a severely depressed hole. We used to see each other every 1-2 weeks, since his depression has gotten worse we only see each other about 1-2 times a month. he is also a full time mechanic and we live an hour away from each other too so doesn’t help. I’ve often struggled with intrusive/trauma based thoughts since getting into a healthy relationship despite having evidence to prove those thoughts wrong, hence my diagnosis of ptsd (as that is a symptom) and what it’s cottoned onto over the last few months is that it tells me that we’ll never see each other again, he doesn’t love me and things will never get better with his depression. When I do see him next in person, whenever that may be I will try and talk to him about how I’ve been feeling about his depression and hoping he gets some help like I am for my mental health. Despite other people including my psychologist and worker telling me the complete opposite to what my mind says it’s still really hard to deal with and my worker actually has said that this is a trauma response. But I really do hope that my boyfriend gets help for his mental health as it is really quite bad and I don’t like seeing him like this.

12 Replies 12

Hi maddie_faye
Welcome to the forums and thank you for being a member of this open, kind and helpful community.
Dealing with relationship issues can be challenging; we also know that it can be incredibly difficult to share our story, so we want to say thank you for showing such courage in posting and sharing that experience - you never know who will read this post and feel less alone on their own journey as also for you too.
We are here 24/7 on 1300 22 4636 or via our webchat.  Our team who answer the phones are ready to have a supportive and non-judgmental chat whenever you need it. You might also find the following organization helpful in terms of your relationship concerns.
Relationships Australia Click Here
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Thank you again for joining us here and for starting this conversation. Please feel free to come back and update us on how you are feeling, if you are comfortable.
Kind regards,
Sophie M

I personally see this as more of a mental health thing and not the relationship itself as my psychologist said - but thanks for replying

Hello maddie_faye, when two people meet, depression can be quite easier pushed into the background because love between you dominates and can last for various months depending on the relationship.

When someone suffering from any type of depression tells a person they had loved that they won't see each other any more, this can't be known because it's this illness that's making them say this and doesn't necessarily mean what they've said.

Can I ask you to google 'intrusive thoughts' because this is a symptom from another particular illness, as I'm not a doctor I can't say, but let us know what you think.

My best.


Hi Geoff,

As I mentioned before i also have a pre-existing anxiety condition as well. He has never said the words “I never want to see you again” and he’s definitely not the type to string me along because as he would say “what would he gain from doing that?” I have had intrusive thoughts for years ,however, since getting out of that abusive relationship it’s gotten to a level I’ve never experienced before.

Community Member
Hi Maddie. Your situation sounds so similar to mine although me being the male of the couple. Im sorry to hear what your going through . My partner has PTSD. We have seperated in the last six weeks and i feel distraught about it. I know its been hard as a couple with these problems. At times i have been distant and not as communicative as i could be.. This i think is a result of my overthinking things. I wish you well and would like to let you know im willing to talk about things from my perspective if you wish. Brett

Hello Brett,

it’s good that I’m not alone in this and I know that if we were to break up my boyfriend would be distraught, even tho he finds it difficult to show his emotions/explain how he’s feeling. But what makes it difficult is the intrusive/trauma based thoughts which as my worker said is related to my severe relationship trauma.

Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

Hi maddie_faye,

I am really sorry to hear you have been through past trauma and that you are still experiencing intrusive thoughts and anxiety. It's great to hear you have professional support and are on a journey to manage your symptoms and feel better. This is really positive.

I empathize with you about the struggle of doing your own work on yourself and seeking help, only to see people close to you who need it too not willing to do it too. It's tough. But you should know that you are setting a really positive example, and even if it takes a bit longer you are showing your partner the benefits of getting help/addressing mental health first hand. This is worth a lot.

Can I ask, given you both live far away from each other do you have access to a car or easy public transport to catch up? If so, maybe you should gently push him to do a bit more together. Getting out in nature is really effective for depression, or plan some activities he would enjoy (hobbies? movie nights? catch up with friends?)

If not, maybe you can find other ways to feel more connected and assured about your relationship. What about writing each other letters and sending in the mail? Or a weekly Zoom call where you play a game like trivia or something that requires just a little bit more planning than a regular phone call so it's something to look forward to. Just some ideas.

Let us know how you're getting on when you can.

Yes we both have our licenses and own cars but it’s still a fair drive through lots of traffic so that makes it a bit difficult.

with the going Out thing before he got into a depressive episode we would go out on dates, but we haven’t really done that because of how bad his mental health is and he’s also exhausted from working a full time and physically demanding job and possibly having other health issues and maybe undiagnosed cfs.

Hello maddie_faye, before you were diagnosed with PTSD was there any suggestion that as you have anxiety and intrusive thoughts, another illness was mentioned.