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Hey everyone, I'm really happy I found this community. Recently there's a lot happening in my life which leaves me full of confusion and heartbreak. I had the feeling that I need to tell anyone, maybe finding someone who can relate to my situation. I really could use some guidance… I'm sorry that this got so long, it just came over me and I thought I try to draw a full picture here. So… my boyfriend and I met half a year ago when we both started the same studies. It was only three weeks from when we first met to the point when I stayed with him over night and we became a couple. We fell fast for each other. It was this kind of relationship that just feels right from the start and in every fiber of your body, heart and soul. I never felt more loved in my life and he was and is the first person from whom the words "I love you" really mean something and to whom I really feel like they are true and real when I say them. He was honest with me right from the beginning and told me about the psychosis he went through 1 1/2 to 2 years ago which was followed by a severe depression. He told it in a humorous, kind of shy way – I guess he was afraid I could run away as soon as he did. But I was fine. I told him that it's okay, that he's no "crazy person" as he described himself when he told me about it. That I like him for who he is and that I won't go away. Because I had met him when he was in a very good phase – the last months before the beginning of the semester he had recovered from a bad episode and the new beginning and new impressions gave him more perspective – I thought that the disease he told me about would be part of his past. Something he had overcome or learnt to deal with in a good way. At this time I had no idea what "depression" really, REALLY means. I was so naive. Or relationship went on, beautifully, deeply. Times came when he seemed… darker than usual, more distant. Well, can't be a happy person all the time, right? I didn't really think about that these could be symptoms of the depression and thought about other reasons. Maybe our relationship…? Around Christmas he became more distant and I started to worry. Before New Year's Eve he told me that he got some of the psychosis' symptoms again which worried him a lot. So he decided to take his meds again which made him kind of uneasy and tired. We talked about it and I listened to him and his worries, honestly telling him that I'm not sure what I could do or say to help him. He said it's okay – I don't need to say anything, it feels good when I just listen to him. He also has a therapist since the depression first broke out with whom he talks about those new developments and he also has a psychiatrist who supports him on the medical way. So, that's the good thing – he HAS professional help and KNOWS that he is not healthy and he really wants to get better. The next months were tough – our studies required a lot from us which put a lot of stress on both of us. I myself deal with heavy self-doubts and anxiety issues about never being enough or good enough and from time to time slip into very dark, hopeless phases (which are, lucky me, more temporary, but still a problem I have to deal with myself. But in those phases he was always there for me, helping me getting back on my feet – even if it was difficult for him because of the depression. But he did.). So the study's requirements were a lot for me, too. At the same time as we had to finish our final works his life got kind of "bombed" by bad news. Because of his illness he couldn't work for the last years why he got money from the employment office. But because he did not update his new status (being a student) early enough he now had to pay back around 2,000€ – which he does not have as he struggles financially. On top of that, as a student with no income or financial support by his family he now gets financial support from the state to study, but which is not enough to pay for the flat he's living in with his flatmate, paying the health care insurance and not starving every month. So the two of them decided to search for a new apartment both of them can afford. He loves the apartment they're living in and I guess he blames himself as being the only reason why they have to leave… So, many things went wrong and put a lot of stress on him in just a couple of weeks. As I said his mood went darker since the winter months – I guess the lockdown did it's best to make everything even worse. It had a deep impact on me, too, my own issues became more dark and I had problems with it more often. But he really began to struggle a lot. He got more and more distant, wouldn't speak or text me anymore or "colder" as he used to. He got tired early in the evenings, his motivation got less and less. He did not want to do things anymore, watch movies, ride the bike, hang out (lockdown confirmed) with others, didn't want to do anything for his study. I knew he wasn't/isn't a mentally healthy person, but at that time his change often hit me personally and I thought maybe I could be the problem. I only knew those changes in behavior from earlier relationships – when they drop you slowly – and had my problems to handle it. I was hurt and afraid he would start leaving me, that I again wasn't enough to be with me. He was annoyed by this and said he found my self-consciousness exhausting. We argued, but found back together. During our relationship he often explained to me how he felt: It put a lot of stress on him having the feeling to be the one making my day worse. To not be able to give to me what I need or what would make me happy. He felt that I was too focused on him, that I wanted to do things with him all the time, planning my day and my/our activities "around" him. He said he would like it if I could do "my thing" more often when we spent time together – just like a couple living together (which he would like to do someday for real). He also said he likes it when I just do "my thing" even when he is struggling with his emotions and can't do anything, because his own darkness or emptiness gets over him. That this would feel good and would take pressure off of him. He did not want to hurt me with that, I know that. At first I felt hurt, but I started to understand what he was trying to tell me – and yes, of course it is absolutely fine and normal not to spent every minute together even if you hang out, I was just still so full of butterflies that I wanted to be around like 24/7 … I started to inform myself intensively about depression and psychosis, I wanted to understand what was going on inside him. And I wanted to be able to be the best support I could be. I even contacted a psychologic counselor online to get some more professional advice on how to help him and deal with the disease. I tried to give him his space when he needed it, to do "my thing" even when he struggled. He often told me that he likes when I just do something I like for myself when I'm around him. That it feels like I feel at home and he can be more relaxed. When he distanced himself I accepted it. I told him I am there for him, that I believe in him and his strength and that I won't go away just because he suffers from a depression. That he is not the disease, but the person I fell in love with and never stopped doing anything else. Not all the time, but when I felt he needed those words the most. I noticed that his condition got worse and worse. Sometimes he would not go out of bed or would go back in it straight away, starring at the wall, not talking, not eating. He often said things like "I want that everything is over. I don't want to live anymore." When I asked him about those thoughts directly he always said he doesn't want to be anymore, but does not want to do anything for it to happen. According to his therapist this is called a passive suicidality. Sentences like this worried me a lot, but he kept saying he had no intention doing anything to himself. He said he had thoughts like this before, in his previous bad episode before we met. That time he'd isolated himself, couldn't talk to anyone anymore and just wanted to be over. During that time they had emphasized the dose of his antidepressants and he had gone back to the day hospital and the occupational therapy in the gardens of the hospital. That helped him a lot. Don't get me wrong. This all sounds like our relationship went all dark and sad and heavy. But it didn't. He was still there. The person I love and that loves me so much was still there and showed himself so often. He was still there for me, wanted me close, wanted to spent time together. He was full of love, missed me and told me when he did, there was laughing and trusting and passion. We still did things together, went for walks, did long rides with the bikes, enjoyed good weather together, … It still was more that I ever thought I would ever get, it felt like everything. I wasn't exhausted from the disease. Yes, it took energy, can't deny, but I was ready to go though this with him all the way, up and down. One day we walked along the river. He was very silent and I tried to entertain both of us a bit, but due to lockdown and my own inner struggling with the situation (can't deny tho, even if I just was very euphoric. But yeah, two sides of the medal, right?) and myself my topics were kind of limited. We sat on a bench and he told me how exhausted he was, how less hope he had. Nothing was fun anymore, just pain and exhaustion. No motivation. No perspective. No hope. No sense. He was so empty. And he said that it would feel like with his last girlfriend in the last year: That the relationship would make everything worse. I asked if that's because he feels under pressure because of being around someone else. He confirmed. It would feel like he's a burden to me, weighing me down – which burdens him retroactively. He broke up with his ex because of this. We did not break up on this day. I was very worried – because of what he said about the relationship, but also about the condition he was in. It really was the worst so far. I told him all the things again, tried to tell him that he is not alone, that I go this way with him. That he does not have to worry about me – that I can deal with the disease and that I want to deal with it, because I love him and it's okay, if he can't give anything right now. That I am fine with giving. Well, we did not break up that day. The next weeks became tough, I cried many tears alone at home, talked to friends and the counselor I mentioned earlier. I was afraid he would leave me, but kept this for me, stayed supportive and loved. And yeah, he still loved back. The last weeks were, after a long period of darkness, beautiful again. Full of love, it felt like in the beginning. We spent a lot time together. He hold me in his arms, not letting me go, initiated contact – and sex – himself, made plans for activities. We were tender, loving, passionate, supportive – we were like we were never to end, even if there still was distance or darkness from time to time. I knew that that's the disease speaking – not him. I really felt like our relationship gave him something after all and that he felt good being with me. Then last week. On monday he asked if I want to come over, cook something together. His texting was very communicative and he asked if I would like to meet his brother the next day. He would be very happy if I liked to. When I arrived at his apartment he was distant again. We ate something and watched a movie, but we did not really speak. I was in a mood, too. I was stressed by my own issues and felt my own heavy self-doubts and anxiety rumbling under my surface and was a bit insecure/tentative about his mood. But regardless of that he searched for me at night and held my hand in his. The next day already started with me knowing that it wouldn't be a good day. My own issues kept crawling to the surface. He helped me with some things for our studies, but I couldn't hold my own struggle anymore, started crying and feeling empty and anxious at the same time. We had a fight. To keep it short: I was struggling with my issues and his reaction hurt me. He said right and true words, but also words that hurt me. He wanted to help me, but couldn't deal with it at this moment. What I wished for that moment was just a hug, a sign that I am not alone. Not even words, just empathy. Instead he became ignoring and I became mad, because I didn't feel respected and as if my problems would be too less to be important. It got loud, it got ugly, everybody said things that hurt. At the end he talked calmly (but "shaken" from the fight) for a while and his words, well, hurt, because they were true, but helped. But the day was gone and full of bad emotions. I just wanted to visit his brother with him, get something good out of this messed up day. But he said he wanted to visit his brother alone, without me, the mood would be too bad. I panicked, I was so afraid that when I leave his place a distance would start and he would go away from me. I hated myself for what happened, for how hard I snapped that day. I could not stand myself – how could he? I was so sad and frustrated and angry and in shock that I questioned our relationship – and regretted what I said while the words came through my mouth. He froze, did not say a word. I tried to take the words back, tried to explain what was happening in my head. I wanted him to say something. But he did not answer or react, just said he would go to his brother now, didn't want to say anything and left. I could not hold him back or get an answer or a relief. I was so shocked. What had I done. In the evening he texted me: He was still like frozen, didn't know what was happening and going on now and asked for some time to think. I guess I knew what would happen in that moment, but I apologized for everything, told him that I did not mean anything I said. That I don't want us to end, that I want to be with him and that I love him. And I gave him some days time to get his head clear. Last Friday, three days after we had the fight, he broke up with me. He said, I did nothing wrong, it's okay to explode and feel bad from time to time, it's understandable and he wouldn't be mad at all. In fact he believes he would be the one who messed up the most, during the fight and in general. He said he thinks he can't be in a relationship right now. He couldn't give me what I need, he could just take energy and be a burden. He would be unable to be a good partner. He said he just feels really really bad and miserable and he just doesn't want to live anymore. He does not feel like being able to connect or talk with anybody. All he wants is to be dead or alone. He does not see a future for him in which he is healthy, he does not see a perspective or better times. Everything is just taking energy from him and everything will just stay the same, dark, hopeless, senseless, miserable. This would have nothing to do with me, but with the/a relationship in general and he thinks he might be better without it, alone. I knew this would happen. I knew it from the point when we both left after the fight. But I was shocked. Again I tried to give him all my support, my love. Tried to make clear how much I understand and want to understand and that I understand more and more everyday. How much I believe in him and us, that I believe he is stronger than this disease. I tried to remind him of the good moments and good things that still were there and came to him, even if everything was at it's darkest. I told him that getting better IS a possibility for him, that there really CAN BE a way, something better. But all this is not enough. I told him I believe in our love, that I KNOW that it is true and real and there. He can't deny that he did – and does – feel the same way I feel for him. I don't believe him that all our time together would have been just painful, I believe that it was something good and precious. He said it is good that it felt good for me, but for him it was just costing energy and causing exhaustion. Every small thing he did, every kiss, every word, every small touch would have just demanded a lot from him… I believe him. I really do. I saw how much he is struggling. I felt how much he is struggling. And I understand how hard it must be to love and try to be there for someone if you have to fight your own demons every god damn dark day. I know all of this and I really do understand. But I believe so much in us, I love this person so much. He means the world to me. Just one week ago he hold me in his arms, wanted to be with me, wouldn't let me go, made plans for us. Told me how much he loves me. On friday this same person gave me a last, mechanical cold hug and left me. We didn't speak or text since then. Everything inside me feels hurt. The day after the break up I left and went to my family home – I can't be alone or in the same town right now. I cried a lot, sometimes it's getting better and I can think clearer and of something else and laugh with others, but I feel so empty most of the time. I still can't believe what happened. This person was home from me, despite all the dark, depressive times, and it hurts so much to know that I may not come home anymore. I had much time to think, too. As I said, I do understand why he made this decision and somehow I always knew how fragile our relationship was in the core because of his disease. But I believed in it anyway and I know that we were real. That we were different than he and his ex (his flatmate told me the same – the way we were together was different, more loving, and in the end of his and his ex' relationship there were also other things for him that caused the breakup, too, and made him stop believing in it. But well, who knows…) and that we could've go on. I guess this last fight was like a huuge momentum of stress knocking down on him at once – and pushing him to the edge of breaking up. I blame myself so much. I want to believe that there is still hope for us and there are moments when I really feel this hope, when I kind of SEE our future together again. I can't lie – I want him back. I know we are good together and that he felt the same and WAS happy. I am totally aware of what being back together would mean. Yes, being with someone with depression hurts. It is dark and hard and takes so much of yourself and yes, maybe it is better to take it how it is and just go my own way. I have my problems myself which are heavy. I need to heal myself, too – for my sake. But also to really be a support. How can I be there if I weigh myself down and with this him, too? I can image how bad it must have felt for him to see me struggle and not being able to be there for me or not being there ENOUGH. I was fine – I understand that you can't be there all the time. People struggle, have their days when nothing is possible – whether you're healthy or not. It's okay if you can't give everything everyday and I never demanded it. What he could give was always enough. But not for him, he can't see that and I do not blame him for it, for anything. He is ill. His view is blurred. I will give him the time he needs. When he says he's not able to be with someone I believe him and I accept it. I just can't let him go. I mean, I can't even make a clear cut – we study together, have projects together. Everyday I have to see him in our online courses, have to hear his voice which used to be "mine", but is not anymore and it hurts. I update Instagram like every 15mins to see if there's anything new from him. I am so confused and don't know what to do, how to stay close or, more than that, get close(r) again. I want him to know that I am still there for him. I know that love, that I, can't heal him. Only he can. I am happy that he already has professionell support and does not deny his situation. He wants to get better, but has lost his hope and all his energy right now. Life is too dark at the moment. I hope that if some of the "side problems" – like finding a new, nice and more affordable flat – can lift the weight on his shoulders a bit. It won't change everything for good, but maybe it would take some insecurity and pressure from him. I am just so afraid that maybe he really is over us, that we are dead for him, that I am just somebody he used to know. That maybe he really feels better without me now, that I really was a burden he is happy to got rid of… What can I do? I don't want to force myself on him. If he wants time and space to deal with things himself, I respect that. But I can't give us up just now… I am searching for psychological help myself at the moment and try to get my things together, too. I want to find my own strength again I lost years ago and I feel how much I could reflect and learn and understand during our relationship and in the last days. I believe that when we see each other again, I can be a more cleared up version of myself. And yeah, maybe there will still be a chance. I don't know… I love this person so much, I want to go with him all his and our way, through the darkest and the lightest. Thank you for sticking with me till this point. I know it was a lot of text, but it means a lot to me. Thank you so much. Much much love Leonie