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My wife and I are separating and I'm struggling to cope

Community Member

Thanks in advance to anyone who reads or helps me ..

1 week ago my wife came home and told me she wants to seperate - it was out of the blue as I didn't see or know our situation was as bad as it was.

we have been together for 6 years and married for 1 - she's 26 and I'm 30 - through our relationship we have had many ups and downs but always worked through them, I have suffered with myself and my depression for long periods of time in our relationship and it's come at a cost as this is what's made her decide to seperate.

ive spend the last 3-4 months in a withdrawn state and shut off emotionally and physically to her, the problem is I didn't even know I was doing it so I couldn't do anything about it, she bought up little issues but I wasn't aware I was or we were this bad. I've had help before and it's improved me a lot but my biggest failure is that I get to a stage and don't think I need help anymore and so I stop and then down the track I let myself go again.

she was to seperate and give each other a chance to find ourselves and see what we actually both want in life- she doesn't know if she wants to be with me and wants space to be by herself and find what she wants and needs.

I don't want to be without her, I want to get help and I can be so much better to her and for us but I don't know if I can do it on my own, I need her by my side to give me the strength to do it for her.

i don't know what to gain in posting this,in waiting to see my psychologist but it will take a week and I'm beside myself in knowing what to do and I'm totally broken and lost inside .

we are both good people and have no bad feelings towards each other , I just want to save us but she won't give me another chance to do it .

if anyone can help please let me know


26 Replies 26

Community Member
Hi there MJA9,

Welcome to Beyond Blue and thank you for coming here and providing your post.

I can relate to a few things that you’ve posted about, but at this present time, me and my partner are still hanging in there; that’s despite me struggling with my issues for many years.

So you’ve had ups and downs before and worked through them and this on top of your depression. Which I assume your wife knows full well about? In the past, I’m guessing it’s never come to this stage before? Where your wife wanted to separate?

If it’s purely to do with your depression and how you are when it gets a hold of you … then, surely she should be willing to give you another chance to get yourself treated again? But this time, you really need to keep at it … I’m not trying to be harsh here and hope it didn’t come across as that.

But with depression, even if we can overcome parts of it and we get to be feeling ‘in a good place’; that’s largely bought about by what mechanisms we’ve put in place for this to occur. Visits to our Doc, psychs (if needed), medications, plus the other things we need to input in our daily routines to help keep the dog in his kennel.

It sounds like you’ve been successful before at doing this, and I’d be encouraging you to follow the path you’ve done in the past … and to do that as soon as possible.

What was your wife’s response in regard to you saying that you’ll get back to seeking help and assistance? Is it only the depression that’s the main issue with your wife wanting to separate? How final do you think this is, in regard to the separation? Are you still living together? Did she mention where she might go and/or for how long? I only ask that as it’ll give an indication for how much she’s actually been thinking about this.

I do hope you can get back to us … and I’m sure there’ll be others who’ll respond to you as well.

Kind regards


Ps: I hope this helped, even a little.

Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member

MJA9, very sorry mate that things have come to the point where they have. I want to say though that it is great that you have found the forums and asked for some advice, takes courage to do and you have done that so i congratulate you.

I think the first thing you need to concentrate on is you. You need to be somewhat selfish and put yourself first. It is great that you have a psych appointment coming up and to get you through to that date, you need to make sure that your self care is on point.

I say this because unless you get yourself right and show that you are on a steady path of being healthy, it is likely that your marriage will not be saved. If you can show your wife that you are engaging with your depression, understanding it and actively overcoming it to live a fully functioning life, you may be able to save the marriage, but none of this can happen until you take it on.

The next week you need to stay off alcohol, you need to eat really well, you need to exercise and you need to practice mindfulness. All of these are really critical to positive mental health and the better shape you are in heading into treatment, the more effective it could be.

I think there are a whole lot of people who get to a certain level and then drop medication or stop doing what they are doing to keep themselves mentally healthy. It is an easy trap to fall into so once you are level again, you have to tell yourself to maintain what you are doing so you do not drop again.

You can live a great life. When we look at the stats, 1 in 5 female and 1 in 7 males live with depression in Australia. That is a massive number and the majority lead fully functioning lives, including me so you can do it.

Keep engaging with me in here and lets get you through to the psych appointment and then past that.


Community Member

Hi Neil , firstly thankyou for your reply, I don't have much of a support network around my as my friends and family are all interstate so I can only call them so just getting your reply has helped a lot.

my wife is full aware of my depression - she is more aware of it than I am and we have worked through it before but she says it's got to a point where she ha no more fight left, she wants me to get help for me and she even feels like she's part of the problem which is causing her to think that is seperating is the right thing to do. She also has got to a stage where she is putting her self and happiness first and what she wants out of life and if our marriage is right for her, which I fully understand I just thought that when we made that commitment that she and we would fight through think and thin and not do this when the going gets tough.

ive outlined what I'm willing to do and the changes I can make to help myself and our relationship but I've pushed her away that much that she doesn't want to work through it together.

My biggest regret is not sticking with treatment and I have realised that I had a close friend pass away in January and I never probably grieved or got help and it's caused me to shut off and put me in this mindset .

She has decided that we will have some time apart and work ourself out invidivually but I don't know if I have the strength to do it without her by my side or our relationship as a way to make things better as I blame myself for being in this position .

shes always been so supportive of me and I've put her through so much that I guess she had enough, I just wish I could show her and get the chance to turn things around for her.

Community Member

Hi mark - once again thanks for the reply, I don't have much support around me as my family and friends are interstate and so u turned to this hoping I'd get some help and you have made my day with your reply ...

what you have advised is exactly what she has said to do, get better get help totally turn my self around but I have to do it by myself for myself and not with her or our relationship - she's given me no promises or guarantees as she needs to go on her own journey but I guess I have hope but I know once she steps away and realises she is much happier without me there will be no turning back , and that breaks my heart.

im not much of a drinker and I love to exercise so that will be what I'll turn too- I haven't eaten anything in 3 days only smoothies as I can't stomach anything as I feel completely sick and numb.

as I've said my biggest regret is not getting on going help and thinking I was on top of it about 18 months ago and then not seeing the signs that I was going down hill and pushing her away, what I'll struggle to deal with is that I don't get the chance to show her the kind of person I can be and she feel in love with .

i want to be with her, she's my world and all I want to do is make her happy - I have just received confirmation that my psych appointment isn't for 2 weeks and in that time she has asked me to find my own place . It's just a lot to process and be able to handle when all I feel is pain and I'm broken.

white knight
Community Champion
Community Champion


Google the following

Topic: the best praise you'll ever get- beyondblue

Topic: motivation, search and rescue it- beyondblue

Topic: the balance of your life- beyondblue

Good luck. Hey, sometimes it isnt your fault.

Tony WK

Thanks tony - my name is matt by the way, just knowing someone read my post and then also had the thoughtfulness to reply had touched me more than I thought it could ..

i googled all your topics and they are lovely to read and things I can take in and look at if and when I have the ability to move forward - at the moment all I have is pain, and it hurts , is just trying to get myself through that and through each moment of the day and my own thoughts before I can find the courage to attack what's next .

thankyou again


Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member

Matt, do not live with regret, that is one thing we cannot afford to do. Hindsight is such a wonderful thing and it achieves very little. Just concentrate on what is in front of you and what you want to achieve - your health being back to where you want it to be.

Just concentrate on what you need to do, continue to exercise, concentrate on you and your health.

I really like what Tony has said above, "Hey, sometimes it isn't your fault".


Community Member
Hi there MJA

I think that’s particularly harsh that she’s asking you to move and find somewhere else … considering how you are at this current time. Just my thought on that.

Now, you say you feel like you don’t have the strength to work through this without her by your side … but a way of turning that around a little, is to think, that if you can seek out your sources of help and get the assistance you need and you need to do this in order to hopefully get back with her. Then that would hopefully be a terrific source of motivation for you … ok, she’s not there at this current time, but she’s like the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow now for you.

If you can get in and battle hard and do the hard yards, the end result hopefully will be that you’ll be back together again?

Has she given a time-frame for this separation?


Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni
hello Matt, I also know how difficult a marriage/r/ship can be when one of you is suffering from depression, there is help from the beginning, wanting you to get better, but after awhile they get impatient, because you aren't getting any better, so they become slightly annoyed and wonder why after all this treatment and medication you aren't feeling better, because to them it's like taking a pill for a headache, it goes away so why isn't the depression going away.
With depression it never happens that way instantly, it's a long process you have to go through, and one which your wife doesn't understand, this doesn't mean that she doesn't love you, it means that she doesn't like the way you never improve, but she can't blame you, no one should criticise anybody when they get depression.
My wife left me several times and each time she always said that it was great not to have any negativity in the house, this was a critism to try and shock me out of my depression, I wished it had worked, but there were too many issues that kept circling around me, and many my wife never knew about but also she said that 'she's part of the problem'and thought it would be best to go.
I never ever wanted her to leave because I needed her to be beside me, I needed that security, but on the other hand I wanted to be alone, a rather complex scenario, but this was added onto all my other problems, and it's very difficult to try and explain that thought to them and how they take it.
Hope to hear back from you. Geoff.