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Struggling & confused mumma -unhappy with relationship or am I just depressed?

Community Member

I'll start by saying this is my first post and I hope I'm doing this right.

By way of background, I had a pretty shitty childhood which lead to a pretty shitty 20's and a lot of bad decisions made on my part. I've been in and out of therapy and on and off medication for the better part of 5 years (initiated after a suicide attempt in 2014). I've only very recently started seeing a psychiatrist again after nearly 2 years, and have been put back on a mood stabiliser which I stopped taking when I fell pregnant with my son in mid-2016. Doses are being staggered and I'm on week 3, I don't know if this is all a reaction to the meds or because I finally opened up about how I've been feeling or if it's because I have to accept that I'm not happy with my relationship.

I fell pregnant two months into our relationship. Upon moving in a few weeks later, discovered my partner was a high-functioning alcoholic (should have seen the signs...) which made my pregnancy and first year of motherhood absolute hell. Now after many years of fighting, of begging and pleading, of threats and a stint of separation, he's come a long way. Still drinks, but it's nowhere near as bad as it used to be. It's manageable. It's acceptable. Right now, it's the least of my worries.

I love my partner, I do. I'm fond of him, I care about him, but I am not "in love" with him anymore. There's too much water under the bridge and I've seen some really ugly sides of him that have diminished that passion. Now I know that what I might have to say next sounds contradictory after saying I love him, but he's a real arsehole. He's grumpy all the time, he's spiteful and mean, he's snappy and irritable and sometimes just really horrible to be around. He offloads to me but won't go and talk to anyone professionally. He leaves everything up to me with the house, kids (our son plus his daughter from another relationship), waits for me to get home from work to do everything. Me asking him to do anything ends up with him sulking and me feeling like shit. He knows how badly I've been struggling lately, and he hasn't done a single thing to try and make this time easier for me. I'm beginning to resent him and it's causing a massive rift.

I don't know if I'm feeling like this because I'm in such a low place, or if I genuinely don't want to be with him anymore. I don't know how to stop reacting to everything, I know it mostly comes down to my own insecurities but I just have no idea what to do anymore.

2 Replies 2

Community Member

Hey bamc, welcome to the forums.

There’s no judgement here so feel free to express yourself as you wish. It sounds like there are a lot of factors that are contributing to the way you are feeling right now, and definitely starting a new medication can have some strong side effects. It might be helpful to talk to your psychiatrist to help tease out what feelings may be triggered by the medication you’re on.

With all that you have been through, I think it’s important to take the time to admire all that you have accomplished. You’ve been involved in therapy, become a mum, and have managed a tough relationship with your partner while supporting his recovery - time and time again showing your strength and resilience in working through what life throws at you. From what you have shared, I hear that a lot of time has been dedicated to supporting others but who has been there to support you with your own wellbeing? Your partner seems to have put you in a situation that makes it difficult for you to put your needs first. You have mentioned that he knows you’re struggling but is he also aware that you are not happy in your relationship? If not, what clear boundaries could you set to show that you need things to change in order to move forward?

Hope your day is going well,


Community Champion
Community Champion

Dear Bamc~

Welcome to the Forum. And yes you are doing things quite right here. The circumstances don't sound to be as a result of insecurities, far from it.

True, it can be confusing. Some medications can cause different feelings as they stabilize, and different again later on, I guess you talk to your psych about that.

You have started talking anyway, and are wondering if the talking itself has had a poor effect, or if in fact you are reaching the point where you are really seeing the relationship as unsatisfactory.

Frankly I think talking may well have given you some perspective to see things more clearly - well, it did with me.

Even if you leave all of the above to one side the facts are not that good. You have two children to look after -one being probably a bit under two, plus work, plus housework plus a very difficult partner. It might not be worth the hassle to ask for help, would that be right?

Is there anyone on your side? Family or friend to talk with who cares? It can help.

There are some positive things. You are seeking medical support. You hare a pretty strong person to cope as you have, and that coping goes back over more than 5 years. Dealing with suicidal thoughts and actions -then going on after is impressive (I should know)

You helped your partner reduce his drinking with "many years of fighting, of begging and pleading, of threats and a stint of separation".

What do you think was the big factor in all that which worked - at least partially?

It really is not acceptable to leave everything to one partner, there has to be some sort of balance, wiht effort by both persons. Without that it is not a partnership, it is being a servant.

As you mention you love this person so I'd guess you want things to work out rather than separate, would that be right? I doubt thngs can stay as they are for much longer, your exhaustion and resentment will only build, and your self esteem go lower still.

May I suggest a short pause to give your medications a chance to stabilize? This of course is partly how you will get to feel and partly what you psych has to say. With luck you will reach the stage where you are in a better position to make decisions - and deal with the consequences.

At that point I suppose you have to decide if there is any way to again modify your partner's behavior, live with things as-is, or go separate ways. I don't really want to discuss these at the moment. Later on sure.

I'd like it if you came back and talked some more