How can I be there for him?
This is my first post here because I want to seek some advice about my boyfriend. We have a very loving relationship of almost 4 years and he is the sweetest most genuine person I have ever met. He is so good to me. A few days ago we were out and he wanted to have a serious talk with me. He told me everything had become too much (there were many external factors and his job has been terribly straining on his mental wellbeing) and felt like he wasn't being a good partner to me as a result so he ultimately decided to break up with me. It terrified me because not only was I losing him but he was pushing everyone away and isolating himself when he was feeling on the verge of giving up everything.
The thought of him dealing with these dark feelings all by himself scared me.. I didn't want him to go through it alone. I think I am the only person he has opened up to about how he has been feeling. We talked it through and he took me back because he said giving up on our relationship would be a mistake.
He is someone who needs a lot of space and time to himself so I have been trying my best to give him all of the time he needs. While he rests I have been trying to process everything we talked about and what happened and writing down everything I can. As someone who also has depression (but have been able to maintain it well after many years of therapy and medication), I am trying to create a stable starting foundation for him to begin seeking help. His full-time work won't allow him the time to see a therapist so I found a place that can see him after hours or the weekend.
I think the one thing we struggled with was boundaries (personal space, he needs certain amounts of time to recharge from his stresses) because he felt as though he wasn't open enough about it with me. I told him that we can talk about it together whenever he is ready.
Am I doing the right kind of things or is there anything I need to consider or do better? I really want to help him win this battle he has been struggling with for so long and I want to do anything I can to be as supportive as I can as his partner.
thank you for reading my massive post! ^-^;
Hi Destroyer of sadness,
Great name and welcome to the forums. Thanks for your post. You sound like a very caring and genuine person and it seems like you are doing everything you can to support your partner. There is not much further advice I can give to you. Here is a good link on the beyond blue website on how to support someone with anxiety or depression: https://www.beyondblue.org.au/get-support/support-someone/how-to-help-someone-with-anxiety-or-depres...
As the page details, I highly recommend you make sure you take care of yourself too. Try not to invest all your emotional energy on your partner and remember to be kind to yourself. Set some boundaries of your own. You can only do so much and it is ultimately up to him to both receive support and help strengthen your relationship. You shouldn't be alone.
Hope that helps a bit.