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  1. #1
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    Unhappy Depressed boyfriend pushing me away

    Thank you for reading this. I would really appreciate any advice you feel you can give me.

    My boyfriend is really struggling with life at the moment. He hates himself, his life, his job, has no motivation to meet up with me. He has a long history of depression. I don't fully understand the causes because he won't open up to me completely, but I know a fair amount of his issues. They are mostly around loss of a close family member and deep regret he feels for his actions in past failed relationships.

    Over the course of our relationship I have been through a few ups and downs with him. About 6 months ago he had a period where he was blowing hot and cold with me for a few weeks and then he suddenly broke up with me. At the time he explained a lot about his background, depression and blamed a previous failed relationships on his unhappiness. I was very understanding and did not resist the break up as he was clearly not happy. We stayed in touch and he came back to me about a month later saying he wanted to be with me and that i made him happy and he lost sight of that for a while.

    He seemed happy with me for a short while thereafter but I have slowly seen him spiral downwards over the last few months and for at least the last month he has been regularly telling me how much he hates himself, his life, his job, everything. He has started smoking a lot more weed than he used to which I have noticed dramatically affects his mood. He says he isn't good enough for me and that he is a bad person - i totally disagree, he is an amazing person, i wish he could see what i see and get out of the haze of smoke and self-hatred he is stuck in.

    Recently he has started to treat me really badly - he never wants to arrange to meet up or go out with me, he hasnt come to visit me for months - if i want to see him i have to go to him, he lets me down and flakes on our plans, its as if he is forcing himself to sit at home and do nothing but smoke weed - he refuses to have fun with me. He is avoiding seeing me in person, although we speak on the phone, through text and on msn ALL THE TIME i am really missing the physical closeness. We have been having small arguments as a result of his negative behaviour towards me. He professes that he doesn't mean to hurt me and that he is genuinely sorry for hurting me, that he just hates himself so much and doesnt want to see me while he's like this, that he has a hard time opening up to people. He thinks that i would be better off without him because he's hurting me, but I just want to be there for him and see him happy again and be happy with him.

    It really starting to destroy me a bit inside that i want to do nothing but help him but he resists all of my efforts to help him. He is starting to plan a move abroad because he feels a need to escape himself and thinks that it may solve his problems if he escapes to the other side of the world. I'm very worried about this because he has made some suicidal comments recently and the last thing i want is for him to leave the country and find himself alone and still depressed having pushed everyone from home away.

    At the moment he has expressed that he doesn't want professional help, he wants to work this out on his own, and the only person who really knows about this depression is myself and his best friend who i told about the depression myself as it was getting too much for me to deal with alone. My question is, how do i continue to provide him with my love and support when he pushes me away? Why is he pushing me away when all i want to do is help him? How can i help him in a positive way for him? I have tried to cut him out of my life but I just can't, i care about him too much and deep down i know he cares about me and he has told me he doesnt want to be this way.

    Please give me some advice or tell me about your experiences with depressed boyfriends. Thank you for reading this and understanding my problem.

  2. #2
    Platinum Member BellaDonna's Avatar
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    Hi and welcome to enotalone. Sorry you are going through this.

    You need to stand up for yourself and refuse to be treated badly. Your BF is taking your for granted. He needs to understand that his refusal to seek professional help could end your relationship.

    At the moment he has expressed that he doesn't want professional help, he wants to work this out on his own
    He has a long history of depression.
    His method of helping himself has not worked so far.

    "Insanity: Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." -Albert Einstein

    Let him know you love him and you want to be there for him to support him through this, but only if he gets the help he needs. Do not let him drag you down with him. Do not enable him to treat you badly. Even if your partner is in a depression, it is crucial that you have boundaries and stay true to your own values. Depression is not an excuse to treat someone badly.

    So far from what you described it sounds like your relationship is almost fully one-sided at this point. His depression has resulted in selective energy? -How does he have the energy to make plans to travel abroad but not plans to see his GF? He doesn't sound as committed to the relationship as you are.

    You know the saying....you can't help someone who does not want to help himself. Protect yourself too in this situation or you too will end up depressed.

    Honestly if he puts no effort into the relationship and closes you out- you might want to ask yourself if the relationship with him is even worth continuing at all.

    Carly, don't be sad
    Life is crazy, life is mad
    Don't be afraid
    Carly, don't be sad
    That's your destiny, the only chance
    Take it, take it in your hands



    Well behaved women rarely make history.





    Please see the forum rules for posting on enotalone:http://www.enotalone.com/forum/forum-rules.php

  3. #3
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    Hi Bella Donna,

    Thank you so much for posting to my thread. You seem to have understood my problem perfectly.

    You're very right, his selective energy doesn't make sense at all. At the moment he seems willing and able to plan things in other areas of his life and with other people, just not with me. It's very sad because I'm sure that a lot of what he is going through is very genuine, but I often find myself questioning whether he has simply lost interest in me and is using this depression as an elaborate cover up story. I am starting to take his depression personally, however I have spoken to friends who have seen him when I haven't been around and they have all reported that he does seem down and subdued at the moment, which makes me think that his negative behaviour towards me is not a reflection of his feelings for me. When I confront him about his feelings towards me he openly says that he doesn't love me, but that from previous counselling sessions it transpires that he has great difficulty in showing and true emotions, particularly surrounding love, as well as with any kind of long term committment, but that he really cares for me and that I have to believe him that its not that he has lost interest in me, it's purely that he is so miserable within himself he can't make me happy while he feels that way.

    Very complicated. It's so hard to know what is really going on inside his head and I really think he is probably even more confused about it all than I am. My friends and family tell me to walk away, but I really can't, I've tried to, he persues me or gets really angry with me and then I go back to him.

    I suppose I will be there for him until I really know he is not worth my time anymore, because I seem unable to cut the cord all the while I don't know for sure whether he is just playing games with me.

    ARGH!!!!!!

  4. #4
    Platinum Member BellaDonna's Avatar
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    When I confront him about his feelings towards me he openly says that he doesn't love me,
    If that is what he is saying, I think you should end it with him. I know it is easier said than done, but what benefit could you possibly have from staying in this situation with someone that a.) won't make it a priority to see you b.) treats you badly c.) says he doesn't love you ????

    Don't hold on to him out of fear of being alone. There are more fish in the sea and surely there is someone out there that will love you and want a reciprocal relationship. You deserve better.

    Carly, don't be sad
    Life is crazy, life is mad
    Don't be afraid
    Carly, don't be sad
    That's your destiny, the only chance
    Take it, take it in your hands



    Well behaved women rarely make history.





    Please see the forum rules for posting on enotalone:http://www.enotalone.com/forum/forum-rules.php

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  6. #5
    Gold Member cazmoore's Avatar
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    I didn't really have to go too in depth to know that what you're going through is where I was 3 years ago.

    I was with my ex for a little over two and a half years, and our relationship ended in October 2007.

    Before we started dating, I knew he was a quiet, with drawn guy, but something about him drew me in. He was beautiful. His family was amazing and even today, I still miss them. About 9 months into our relationship, things changed.. his behaviour changed. He was miserable.

    So.. my experience with depression? My boyfriend would sleep all weekend when he wasn't working. I would stay at his place, wake up around 8 and he wouldn't roll out of bed until 2 or so. He wouldn't call me during the week. Sometimes he would wait 2 or 3 days or until I called him. We eventually had no sex life. He told me that everything in his life was too much for him and that he could easily cut me out of his life if he needed to. He didn't 'need' me around, he just chose to have me there. Life was too stressful for him. Life? He worked as an apprentice and his mood swings meant our relationship suffered.

    I remember sitting there with him stroking his hair for hours in bed while he stared at the wall. He never hugged me, or kissed me just 'because'.

    I went with him to doctors appointments - he was on celexa. I felt the longer we were together, the more he resented me. I think I would start fights with him on purpose for attention because I felt so neglected in the relationship.

    my parents knew he was depressed. THey told me they didn't want me to end up being with him because I would end up being a care taker. I wasn't strong enough to look after someone who was sick.

    I was doing everything i could to be there with him. I tried to make it easier for him. I eventually would stay at his place for a couple weeks in a row.. doing his laundry, cleaning his room, making him lunch for work, making him lunch to come home from work.. I never got a single thank you.

    When we'd fight, we would sit in the same room for hours not talking to each other. He would completely ignore me, but I could only get home if he drove me home.

    Eventually.. I was depressed. His depression sucked me in, and when I finally found the courage to talk to him about it, he walked away from me. And I pleaded for him! I was on Effexor for 6 months.

    I loved my ex very much, but that relationship ripped me apart, and destroyed me for a very long, long time... it was an emotionally abusive, co-dependent relationship. I became sick myself. My ex wasn't happy when I got accepted into nursing school. In fact, he was annoyed because I wasn't available enough and insisted I thought I was better than him.

    Listen... what makes this guy SO SPECIAL? Why should YOU have to give up YOURSELF to look after him? I know you love him, but to be with someone who is depressed, means you are going to miss out on a LOT. Doing things YOU want to do. You're only as happy as you make your mind up to be.. I get depression.. I understand it's a mental health issue, but I don't think you should be with someone if you can't be happy yourself.

    I should also add, that I adopted his behaviour, his attitude, I started dressing differently, I wouldn't do my make up anymore or fix my hair.

    It's your choice if you want to be with him, but this whole depression issue... let me tell you - it's a slipperly slope. If you stay with him, you better be prepared for your needs to always be coming second and that you will not matter. He's sick, and you'll be the care taker. So get use to the idea if you want to stay with him.
    Last edited by cazmoore; 09-05-2010 at 11:10 PM.
    Oh my God, wait and see
    What will soon become of me
    This frozen heart
    And screaming wheels
    Does that screaming come from me?
    I'm so damn lucky
    That you went on ahead...

  7. #6
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    Thank you so much for your replies.

    I have been very strong this week and have decided to cut him out of my life. I'm doing it slowly, not responding to his text messages, not signing in to msn to talk to him online, not calling him up or trying to arrange to see him, I guess he has got the message because I haven't heard much from him. It's actually a lot easier than I thought it would be because I'm SO MUCH HAPPIER not worrying about how he's going to let me down or disappoint me every day. I don't have to listen to his problems or try to help him anymore, its like a weight has been lifted off of me. I found myself actually singing to myself down the road earlier - I haven't done this for a long time. It helps that I'm mega busy at work too and i've got a large group of friends and family who are absolutely great and are always doing their best to cheer me up!

    You are right Cazmoore, I didn't realise it at the time, but I think his miserableness had actually started to wear off on me, and that's the last thing i need in my life!

    And you're right Bella Donna, if he says he doesn't love me, what the hell am i doing sticking around?!?! I've been with him for MONTHS now, it's just ridiculous. I can't believe I stuck around this long in all honesty, but sometimes you just have to learn the hard way and see these things through to their bitter end no matter what advice people give you.

    Thanks again, you've really helped me.

  8. #7
    Platinum Member BellaDonna's Avatar
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    Good for you. Stay strong.

    Carly, don't be sad
    Life is crazy, life is mad
    Don't be afraid
    Carly, don't be sad
    That's your destiny, the only chance
    Take it, take it in your hands



    Well behaved women rarely make history.





    Please see the forum rules for posting on enotalone:http://www.enotalone.com/forum/forum-rules.php

  9. #8
    Gold Member catcountry's Avatar
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    OMG...I can't tell you how much this sounds like me. His depression was causing me to lose hair...one day I couldn't evn stand to look at food, the next I couldn't get enough...I was having constant severe headache's. I was affecting me at work, at home...it was all consuming. The day after I said ENOUGH...the headache's...gone. Just like that. I worry about him, but I needed to get off that rollercoaster badly.

  10. #9
    Platinum Member faithful14's Avatar
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    Hi Kaye,
    I was in your shoes about 4/5 years ago with an ex. It was the same exact thing: no motivation for school, for job, always depressed, never making any effort in the relationship, constantly picking fights, and breaking up over stupid things and then coming back a month later......oy.... this guy is going to suck you into his miserable life and take away all your happiness..

    It's good that you have decided to slowly cut off contact. It might seem hard but at least he can't hurt you anymore. You will definitely start to feel like your normal self soon. Let him be someone else's problem. you deserve better.

  11. #10
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    It's so helpful to hear about all of your experiences. No-one I know seems to understand my situation at all so I'm really grateful of your replies as you seem to understand exactly where I'm coming from so thank you so much.

    He has been contacting me every day despite me ignoring him (since Monday). I guess he wants my attention, so today I actually replied and I ended up ripping him a new * * * * * * * . I told him exactly how I felt, that I had no more time for him if he had no time for me anymore, that his depression was not an excuse for treating me so badly. I got the same list of excuses and apologies - He says that he is in a hole, so miserable, has no money, no motivation for life, nothing. He tried to blame ME saying I had been cold towards him lately, leaving hours before replying to his text messages and he was doing some really petty things such as reading too much into perfectly innocent text messages I had sent him, trying to make out that MY BEHAVIOUR was the reason he didn't want to meet up. He says that our recent arguments make him think we won't have fun anymore if we meet up and that i don't make him feel welcome to visit me when I am cold. I don't believe any of it. For months i have been so kind and caring and patient and understanding, it is just the last week or so I have started not to pander to him and he is using that against me! I told him how I thought it was all excuses since he seemed capable of arranging to meet his friends and planning his move abroad, yet didn't have the motivation to see me. Things just don't add up.

    His response was basically, its a month since the anniversary of his relative's death, its hit him really hard this year, which is why he's pushing me away. he's so miserable, can't look at himself in the mirror, he knows he's treated me badly, he hates himself, he doesn't deserve me, he said some more suicidal stuff, but tried to excuse himself by saying he told me months ago when we got together that he didn't want a serious relationship.

    In the end I went NUTS. He tried to get me to stop, saying it was making him feel bad, but I just didn't care anymore. He needed to know that the way he has treated me is unacceptable. He has really pushed me too far now, mostly because he ended up having the day off work today so he could have come to see me if he had wanted to, but obviously he didn't come. He thinks he's got the day off work tomorrow too but so far has made no plan to see me so I told him thats it, I can't be the one to make the effort all the time.

    In the end he seems genuinely sorry about it that he can't give me what I need, we spoke for hours, but got nowhere. He said he wished he could just grab hold of himself and sort things out with me.

    I tried to pin him down and make him tell me that it was in all honesty that he just wasn't that interested in me, but he says every time that it's not that. It's his depression. That he can't love me while he doesn't even like himself. He says he loves hanging out with me, has a lovely time with me. It's very hard to walk away from him when he is saying things like that but it just makes no sense to me that he won't get off his backside and actually arrange to meet me if all of these things are true!!!!

    COMPLICATED!!!!!!!
    Anyway, to cut a long story short, I will give him this ONE LAST CHANCE. If he doesn't end up working tomorrow and he comes up to see me to sort things out and get my help thru his depression i will talk to him. BUT if he doesn't end up working again and STILL doesn't come to see me, I will just have to delete every trace of him from my life and concentrate on the people who really DO care about me and want me in their lives.

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