Find answers to some of the more frequently asked questions on the Forums.

Forums guidelines

Our guidelines keep the Forums a safe place for people to share and learn information.

Husband has depression and left home to get himself right

Community Member

I don't know where to start with this all but 2 weeks ago my husband told me he needed a break from our marriage and originally moved into the spare room. It was so hard on me as we have a 2 year old and it was confusing for him why Dadda was sleeping in the spare room. He eventually told me that he as been suffering in a black fog for the past 3 months and that he doesn't know anything anymore, including us. He even told me he had dark thoughts while I was away but thankfully it scared him and he has since gone to the GP. He is on Anti depressants and booked into see a Pysch. In the meantime he is talking to a counsellor online I think. A little bit of background, my hubby was adopted and always held a hatred for his birth mother, he has had low self esteem and never feels good enough. We have been together 9 years and married for 6 years. His adoptive mother is interesting as well and never really handled things right with the adoption. Anyway, recently (October) she told my husband that she knows his birth name and has some documents from his adoption. This has sent him into a tale spin, I noticed him changing from there. He says he no longer knows who he is or what his life is.

We recently sold a house and purchased Land to build. This has added to his stress....I told him that I would support him through this but he has decided that he needs to go and left, ironically to his mothers. I am heartbroken, I don't know what to do and how to support him. He sends me messages that he wants to build the house and that we are just taking a break while he sorts himself out. Then will say that he wants to build the house so I and my son have a roof over our head. I told him that I can't afford to live in it on my own. He came over on Saturday for 3 hours and when he left I was a mess. He was dark and moody but walked around the house like he still lived here, it was very weird. He says he doesn't know how he feels. I am confused as well, we ended up fighting and I feel he wants me to say its over. I have no idea if he will come back or not. I wanted to do this together but he has left.

How do I deal with this? Do I disconnect and let him work it out, or try and support him?

42 Replies 42

Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member
I don’t have advice unfortunately but your story has really hit home. 3.5 weeks ago my husband walked out because he is “unhappy”. Told me he loved me and just needed time to get his head right. 9 years together and 3 years married with an energetic 15 month old. It’s really hard!!! My husband hasn’t seeked help yet unfortunately, he’s still trying to work on it by himself. I cry heaps. Especially when I see him and he leaves. It leaves me in shattered pieces and I don’t know how long it will be for. I’m ready to support him and help begin the healing process but he’s just not ready yet. I feel like every day is just another battle but somehow we make it through. Hang tight love! We will get there xx

Community Member

I feel so bad for both of you and totally understand your pain. I also had my husband leave in November and it was heartbreaking. I think my husband is still getting help and I am sure he is taken his medication. What I cannot recommend enough for you is to see a physiologist. Thankfully I have been seeing mine and he has helped me understand and also give me the clarity to make choices about my life and children.

Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member

Hello, I am sorry to hear about your heartbreak. Amongst all of this just remember that this is all a transition period in life and in time you will both heal. Just continue to have faith and hope, that either way you will both ok. He will be ok, and so will you. Be patient with the situation, try forget about the noise that may run through your head and be in the present moment. As the present is a present to yourself.

I hope this helps 🙂

Thank you everyone for replying....Its very heart warming and sorry that there are so many of us going through these moments. Things took a turn for the worse and then came out again, my hubby was suppose to go camping with his best mate for the Australia Day weekend which I was happy with and I was going away to our van. Anyway, he was texting me and sending me mixed messages and I ended up calling him and asking if our Marriage was Over and he blew up at me and was swearing, I hung up on him and then he went missing, he didnt turn up to camping with is best mate and we all went into overdrive. He ended up going to a fishing spot and decided he needed to clear his head but didn't tell anyone. I tell you, that I thought I had lost him. I really did. I finally got hold of him and said are you okay and safe, he promised he was and that I needed to leave him be for the moment. His best mate called him and he told him, he wasn't going to hurt himself and needed time. He didnt want to talk to anyone!! So I was a little bit of a mess all weekend. He checked in about 2 pm the following day after sleeping for 12 hours.

Anyway, he sent me a message today and I asked him to come home, I feel that staying with his mother will be toxic for him, as she is some of the problem with all of this. He said no he needs to do this on his own and man up. I said you can stay in the spare room....anyway, he is coming over tomorrow night to visit our son and also talk. He sounded almost calm on the phone but didnt want to talk to me over the phone. He said he will be back and that I need to let him do this. So for now I am leaving it. See what tomorrow brings, I know that tomorrow might be a different story with his mood but at least I felt a little break through tonight.

Thanks for listening xx

Dear HopeforSmiles and MummaAK

A warm welcome to Beyond Blue to both of you. It's always good when someone posts here and gets help and support. I do hope you can stay. Perhaps you could start your own threads. You can of course continue posting here in support of MishnLink and that would be great. However if you would also like to talk about your own worries please start your own thread. That way you will receive posts from others just as you are supporting MishnLinc. You become 'visible' to others who write in here.

Hello MishnLinc

So distressing for both you and your son. I really feel for you, it's such a hard time. Please take heart your husband is getting help. I think this is not the case for the ladies posting above. Have you seen your GP. I think you had an appointment but not sure. Do you think you can tell the GP what is happening in your life? She/he may be able to help and send you to talk to a counsellor. This would be great as the counsellor can listen to you as you explain your difficulties. You can get ideas about coping which will help with your tiredness.

I understand how difficult it is to carry on as though nothing is wrong and I think you should take notice of what your body is telling you. Slow down or stop doing those unnecessary jobs and do nice things for yourself and your son. I'm not sure you can live as though your husband has left for good as your friend suggests. He is still making time to visit you and your son and is beginning to realise how all this has impacted on you. I think it unlikely you can believe he has gone for good.

Building a new home is stressful itself without the added stress of manage your present circumstances. I have built two homes. The house I live in now I built as part of my separation from my husband. If you can I suggest you try and pick the paint etc for your new home. It may seem a useless task if you are not going to be reunited, but if you are going to stay together then I guess this home will be a symbol for both of you making a new start.


Thank you White Rose (Mary),

Well he came over to talk last night and I feel that it was a little bit of a breakthorough. I asked him to come home but he said he can't at the moment. He is still admanant to do this on his own, but he told me what he has been telling the counsellors and that he has booked into Anger Management as well. I told him that the longer he is away the harder it is for him to come back to us, he can't just slot back in, he will need to work on things with us all. Especially his son. He said he noticed a change in him over the month and noticed that he is missing out. He told me that he will be back and that I need to just give him time. He feels that he needs to do this but he is opening up to me a little bit.

He is wanting to come with me on Wednesday for the Colour selections for the house, I have resolved myself now that whatever happens, I will live in it. Its still hard and I am still just getting by, I work in a very supportive environment and my boss has been amazing. My husband even text me last night going to bed and said that he misses me and that I looked fantastic and it hurt him to see me. I think he feels a little overwhelmed with everything at our place. I am glad that he is talking to the Counsellors though and like you said, making steps to make himself better. It was interesting though the depth of depression, he said to me I have to do this one thing right and I said, you have done so much right and are a good person, he said he can't see that and all he can see is his failures. I hope that all these appointments will eventually lead to him getting in the right direction. I told him that he didnt need to be fixed to be coming home, this is not a quick fix. He just needs to be heading in the right direction.

Thanks for Listening MishnLinc

Hello MishnLinc

Lovely to know your husband is making an attempt to talk with you. It's the start of getting together again. I was surprised when you said he was getting some anger management. Has he been angry since you got together?

I can see a little bit of what you are both thinking about him returning home. I think it's true the longer he stays away the harder it will be to return. I hope he is discussing this with his counsellor. I can also understand to some extent why he wants to get well by himself. To not feel he is incompetent or lacking in some way. I wonder though if he has thought how long this recovery will take. The initial crisis has passed and he has accepted he has an illness, but that's not the end of the story. It may take several years to feel he is really on top of it all. Once a long period of time has elapsed one or both of you may decide it's better to stay single.

Good sign he is coming with you to pick colours. Taking part in joint activities and making joint decisions will help to keep you together and keep in contact. It was also a nice sign that he texted you last night

So pleased you are being supported at work. Sadly some workplaces have a very different attitude. At least you do not have pretend all is well with you.

I can understand being overwhelmed. This was and still is to some extent a problem I have when major problems hit me. I just want to run away. Not much use though as I would be taking my problems with me.

Depression can dig into our lives and cause all sorts of havoc. Did I suggest you read some of the information on BB about depression? There is information about depression in general but there is also information for family and friends which gives some help understanding it from the person's point of view. I think you would find it helpful. By the way, does he still work with the online counsellor?

I said, you have done so much right and are a good person, he said he can't see that and all he can see is his failures. This is such a common feeling in depression, believing you are an OK person. Being OK is an ambition, anything more seems out of reach no matter how good the person has been. I do understand that as it has taken me many years to believe I have some good points. Depression truly is the black dog.

I think you are feeling a little better and it's great.


White Rose said:

Hello MishnLinc

Lovely to know your husband is making an attempt to talk with you. It's the start of getting together again. I was surprised when you said he was getting some anger management. Has he been angry since you got together?

Depression can dig into our lives and cause all sorts of havoc. Did I suggest you read some of the information on BB about depression? There is information about depression in general but there is also information for family and friends which gives some help understanding it from the person's point of view. I think you would find it helpful. By the way, does he still work with the online counsellor?

I think you are feeling a little better and it's great.


Yes over the years he has signs of anger, more yelling but never to the point where I felt in danger, I had noticed a change in him before xmas and he was losing his cool alot, especially at work and yes he is still working. He yelled at our son who is 2 and really scared him. He said he has dark thoughts and he is full of so much anger. He wants to get control of it. I will continue to leave the lines of communication open. He promises me that he will be back, I hope it is soon and he realises what he is missing.

I have told him that there is a time limit on this, I am not going to tell him or put pressure on him but I am not going to continue to put my life on hold forever, eventually there will be a time and day that I stop asking you to come home.

He is still talking to the online counsellors and from what he has told me, calling them every few days and has an appointment with the Pyschiatrist on the 9th Feb.

Hello MishnLinc

You continue to be strong and I admire that. I have thought this is a characteristic of yours since you first posted. It doesn't of course mean that you do not feel hurt and sad, but you are keeping a mostly objective outlook.

Great your husband has an appointment with a psychiatrist soon. And also the online support. I find I need several sources of support. Of course it would be easy to cherry pick the advice and comments but I find I get different view points of the same topic and this combined support helps me to understand what is happening when one voice does not always register.

Has he ever thought about the source of his anger? Of course we all get annoyed from time to time but this irritation does not last for long. It may be part of the reason he wants to demonstrate his ability to get well on his own, or at least without your help. Perhaps he has felt in the past, including childhood, no one has shown they believe he can manage. This is his big chance.

No idea if any of this is valid but perhaps you can think about it for him. Generally I think we need each other to support us through life and where we have a spouse it seems the logical person. With our MH we can get very defensive about ourselves. In the professional field I have a psychiatrist, GP and counsellor in my corner. I am also blessed to have friends who will rally round at those times when I hit the dark spots. I really believe it's incredibly difficult to manage our MH alone.

The strain of trying to contain our less acceptable emotions can shoot us off in all sorts of directions. It sounds like he is finding this accumulation of anger and possibly other emotions is no longer easily contained. Years of hard work to remain in control seems like a lost cause. In realty he cam manage these emotions if he gets to know why he feels this way and can release his anger in safety. Maybe this is also a factor in his decision to stay away.


Yesterday, I hit rock bottom, I was a complete mess at work, lucky we have a wellbeing department and I was able to go down there and talk to a psychologist. I think it was picking the House colours that finally tipped me over the edge and that with no contact from my hubby was the thing that tipped me over the edge.

Anyway, she was great and told me a few things and that I need to take care of myself, which is what I haven't been doing? Not very well anyway, especially when you have a 2 yo. Anyway, I was not functioning very well but I stayed there and did my best. When I got home my husband was there as he had picked up my son from childcare and had mowed the lawns and cleaned up a bit. He took one look at me and took me into the room and asked if I was okay. I said that I wasn't and today felt like the end. He again said to me that he will be back, that is why he wants to go out on Sunday as a family, apparently one of the counsellors has told him he needs to ease his way back in. I asked him point blank...why won't you come home? he said it is not me but he needs to deal with a few things first....I think the anger is the big one. He also said, he cares for me too much and would tell me if he didn't love me anymore or if he had fallen out of love with me. He was very calm and is the best I have seen him in awhile. I said its hard when I see that you look like you are okay with this and he said..I am not I called the counsellor at 2am this morning as I was not coping again.

So today I took the advise of the Psychologist I seen and bought a book, I was reading it while my son slept and thought..what happened to me, where did I go. She said I needed to find that woman again the one before I got married. So, while I will still offer hubby support, I think I am going to go find me again. What makes me happy? What makes me tick? I hope that our marriage survives this, he seems to think it will. I hope that I have his faith.

Thank you Mary, its funny talking to people and they say, well he is always grumpy and I have to agree, he was. I think he has always had this view on life that he was missed or something, so if he feels he is left out, not consulted he gets angry. He is a strong personality. I better go - thank you once again 🙂