- Tips and tricks to create and maintain an everlasting “spark” for you and your soul mate
- Why problems in a relationship at a certain stage arise as often as they do
- How to avoid these problems and being able to get over them with ease
- What it takes to know that both you and your partner are putting in 100% effort into a successful relationship
In reality, most of the mistakes occurring in relationships are not as serious as one or the other partner can make them out to be. Don't let you mind fool you into thinking there is no hope in salvaging your relationship; it will take sacrifice and willingness to move forward from both parts.
My boyfriend and I met a year and a couple of months ago and have been pretty much inseparable since. He's my best friend and, I know it's a huge cliche, but I love him more than I can say. Well, we met on our fourth day of our first year at university, same course. The first essays we had to do were about three months after we met. Now, I had done both of mine fine, finishing the night before and all happy. He, on the other hand, was struggling. It ended up that I spent the whole night before the hand-in sat next to him at the library helping him do his two essays. He got them done by the morning, thankfully. This happened the rest of the year as well: every time we had essays due he had to stay up at the library all night to get them done. I stayed with him, to support him.
A part of me was worried that if I didn't stay with him, he wouldn't get them done and he'd get kicked out of university, and by this time I was very close to him and the idea of going through university without him was horrible. I thought at the time it was maybe because he was just lazy and a bad procrastinator that he would always leave it to last minute. But now we're in our second year of university and I've found it's because his crippling self-esteem issues, mixed with his own impossibly high expectations for himself, mean he finds it extremely hard to start essays. He's seeing professional help at the university to help him and he's been allowed extenuating circumstances because he hasn't handed any essays in on time. He's being encouraged to see a counselor/therapist. He was also encouraged to go on antidepressants but he went on them a few years ago and hated it. All this help is all well and good, being given extra time and all, but it just postpones the problem, it doesn't solve it. Sooner or later he has to get those essays done.
A few times I've had to talk him out of killing himself. The whole thing makes him very, very depressed. He thinks he's fat, ugly, stupid, worthless. His mother used to emotionally abuse him, telling him he was all these things and now she's scarred him so much he won't believe none of it's true, no matter how much I, or anyone else, tries to make him think otherwise. He's sweet, intelligent, funny, kind, adorable and beautiful. But he doesn't see it whatsoever.
I'm sort of thanking my lucky stars that when he gets depressed he doesn't take it out on me like most of you guys. He just internalises it all and gets stressed and quiet. He plays video games a lot and doesn't want to go outside. He gets quite clingy, which I don't mind; he follows me around the house sometimes and asks to be cuddled and spooned a lot. Before he came to university he had a job as a silver service waiter in a restaurant. He worked there for a year or two and despised it. He tried to kill himself twice. Now he vows that when he leaves university he's never going to get a job. He said if he had to drop out of university, or got kicked out, he'd kill himself for sure. Every time I leave him for more than an hour or so I have to make him promise he won't kill himself while I'm gone. It sounds like such a silly little problem, but his inability to write essays makes him feel suicidal. And I'm worried he's going to get kicked out. And I'll be alone. And he might kill himself.
When he was a teenager he used to smoke weed a lot. He failed all of his GCSE's because of it although he's actually very smart and was predicted all A's. I'm pretty sure not getting the grade he was meant to get also was a bad hit to his self-esteem. He told me he was diagnosed with bipolar disorder a few years ago. I'm not sure if he's still got it, but he's definitely got depression. He told me once (although he promised me never to speak of it again) that when he was very depressed he would hallucinate sort of shadowy figures of people, that would be laughing and screaming. I imagine this was a symptom of his depression mixed with marijuana use.
Recently, we were surfing YouTube together and stumbled upon a video that told you what it sounded like to be schizophrenic. One of the voices people would hear is somebody telling you you're worthless. He told me that he thought it was normal to hear a voice in his head, that wasn't his, telling him he's worthless. He told me he hears it when he's by himself, for example walking through town, etc.
Well, anyway, the past few weeks we've had essay hand-ins and, as I said, he didn't hand in his essay. He couldn't even bring himself to start it. The problem's gone from having difficulty starting to him believing he actually cannot do it at all. And because he's both stubborn and a bit of a defeatist, if he doesn't think he can do something, he won't be able to do it. The stress of all this just exacerbated the problem. And it's piling on now, since he still has to do that essay eventually, plus two other essays. He hasn't started any of them. He's too stressed to, and because they're piling up and the deadline's getting closer, the stress is getting worse. It's a vicious circle. And he's getting more and more depressed. He keeps saying his life is over, that he's screwed everything up. I, of course, know that none of this is true - he can put it all back on track if he stops being so stressed and gains a bit of self-esteem.
Nothing I tell him works. I can't help him. I know now there's nothing I can do, except be there for him. The change has to come from him making it. And I'm worried he'll never make the change and set his life back on track. I can't face losing him. I love him so much.
And because it's so painful and exhausting, all of this, trying to keep a smile on my face, trying to cheer him up, cooking meals, helping him through everything, trying to boost his self-esteem - and none of it helping, sometimes I wish I had never met him. Because I'm at the end of my tether. It's making me depressed. I cry every day. Sometimes when I'm cuddling him, I have to stop myself crying. He knows his problems upset me a lot, but I don't want to prolong him having to worry about me, because it'll only make his own stress worse - and that'll just make the entire problem worse. I call my mum every few days, crying down the phone to her, but she never really knows what to say. What can you say?? A few times a day it crosses my mind to kill myself. I wouldn't ever be able to do it, but the notion is sometimes tempting. I've arranged to see a professional from the university to help me cope; I'm speaking to her tomorrow.
Sometimes I think maybe I should just give up and break up with him. I'm not sure it'd work well though, since we live in the same university house, share the same friends and commute to uni together (I drive, he has to sit next to me because I'm still a learner driver. He won't drive because he hates it and it makes him panic). And if I look at him and imagine myself not with him, I can't imagine myself ever not loving him, or ever loving anyone else the way I love him. But then, I suppose you can't imagine it at the time, when afterwards you're glad you're left.
I don't know what to do. I can't give anymore.
It's sad to say, but I understand your situation all too well. I have been through numerous ups and downs with my boyfriend over the last year and a half. I'm at the point now where I have to get out. I've been on an emotional roller coaster for so long and hurt by his action AND lack of action so much that I know if I stay in this relationship much longer I will become depressed myself. My boyfriend won't consider treatment even though he has been to therapy and on medication in the past. Unfortunately, he feels that he can turn do it himself without the help of others and uses his depression as a crutch to excuse his bad behaviour, e.g. lack of commitment. Currently, he is in another depressive episode and I haven't heard from him in over a month. I KNOW how hard it is to even think about leaving. I questioned my own relationship after only a few months in because of the depression-related behaviour I was experiencing from him (although I didn't know it was depression-related at the time), but I stuck it out because I had visions of spending the rest of my life with this fellow and thought it would all go away in time and he was a great, kind guy to be with when he was well. It turns out however, that unless the sufferer is committed to getting help and getting better and recognizing that their depression is a real illness, you will be going through these ups and downs the entire relationship. I've realized that is where I have to draw the line - do I want to spend the rest of my life so unhappy and anxious and unable to really trust my significant other? It's a huge sacrifice to make, even if your partner is committed to getting better. I suppose that's the best I can offer, you have to weigh the pros and cons of a relationship like this and decide whether you're willing to put your needs aside or have them come second to your boyfriend's for the entirety of your relationship. I completely empathize with what a difficult and painful situation you're dealing with. I've not spoken to my boyfriend in over a month, have no idea when the next time is that he will decide to contact me, have no idea how he's doing, what he's thinking, whether he's blaming me for all of this and I have to be strong enough to make the decision to end the "relationship" (quotations because this really isn't what you would call a healthy relationship) the very next time I talk to him. I would suggest reading some of the articles and posts on the website below, I've found a lot of support here and learned much about the disease and what it does to the thoughts and actions of the person who's suffering.
Good luck to you and stay strong!
I feel like I see so many similarities between our situations. My bf has never been a drug addict, but I feel very much the same as you've described.
I've been with my bf for almost 4yrs. When we met, he did try to tell me that he had issues. 2 of his 3 gf physically abused him, and his upbringing with his dad was very tough. I knew he had anxiety+panic attacks until a little later, but he tried to explain to me that he was not okay. He had just broken up with his abusive ex 5mo prior, and I with my ex 2mo (yes, I know too soon). Bc of his past, he hesitated to label us as anything until a year later. But I just wanted to believe that I could be the change he needed. I made him promises that he now holds against me, like "I don't yell", "I like to resolve things before they escalate".
Being with him was like a relationship I had never been in before. His mood swings threw me off and I didn't understand why I couldn't yell at someone who would say hurtful things to me like "I was on my way to being better before I met you" or "you're just like all of them". I would have panic attacks while I was being yelled at, that he would feel bad and apologize. The next day, it was like nothing happened. To be fair, I wouldn't be the most supportive during panic attacks or depressed episodes bc I didn't know what to do. My frustration was so bad that I would get mad. I know it's not fair to him, and he always reminds me of why I can't be supportive to a person I supposedly love.
Everything has just gotten worse. I find myself not being me. His depression has gotten worse bc of other bad things that have happened (leaving school, having to take care of his sick mother etc). His suicide thoughts are something I don't know how to help with. He talks to his mom but has pushed his friends away. I feel like a terrible person for wanting to leave but I'm scared of what will happen to him if I do. I'm scared I won't find anyone like him, but I am miserable. We fight all the time bc of something I said. He can't see what he's done, and says I can't hold it against him bc it was during an episode. I know if he was sane he prob wouldn't say some things but it still hurts. I hesitate to say "I love you too" bc he's such a different person, even when he's not having a episode. I just feel like a terrible person for being unhappy with someone who warned me.