I think I'm suffering with depression but I have a suicidal wife.

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5 weeks ago my wife of 10 years took a massive overdose in order to kill herself. This was full intention of dying and not a cry for help. She's suffered for several years with what the doctor thought was depression and anxiety. On discharge the hospital told us they'd been extremely worried and that we were lucky she's still with us. 

This came about the day after she confessed to a brief, non-sexual affair, where she'd gone gone for a drink a few times with another man and ended up kissing him each time. She claims she didn't find him attractive and that he wasn't a nice guy at all. She can't explain why she did it. She's getting various therapies at the moment and the therapists says the affair is likely linked to a mental health disorder that they have yet to diagnose. The guilt of this led to her trying to take her own life. She's still a huge danger to herself when she gets down, I've twice had to contact her emergency raid team for help. On one of these occasions she's had to be taken in to hospital for a check over. She says she's struggling to have any emotions a lot of the time, that it takes a huge effort to feel normal. When things get stressful she quickly spirals downwards. She's self harming, scratching words into her legs. She's clearly unwell but she is getting the help she needs. 

The problem is I am not coping well. I've forgiven her and I am being understanding to why she did what she did. We are trying to rebuild things and as you can imagine the trust is going to take a lot of work on. 

I now feel I may be suffering with depression. I constantly feel on the edge of crying, I anger easily, I'm irritable, I over analyse everything she says and does. I've become very needy for reassurance from her which annoys her. I'm supposed to keep a brave face on for her given the danger she is to herself but the mask keeps slipping. She knows I'm suffering but she's not sympathetic. She just says I should see the doctor and that she can't keep pulling me back up as she's enough to deal with herself, and I agree. I don't feel suicidal and I doubt I would hurt myself but I honestly feel that I would be better off dead. I struggle to sleep, and I sometimes hope I won't wake up again if I do go to sleep. 

I do forgive her but the hurt is crippling me. I've taken a few online tests that all point to moderate/severe depression but I'm not sure if the way I feel is just because of the recent and extremely traumatic events. I'm terrified that I'll drive her over the edge. I know I need to pull myself together for her but I'm struggling.

I don't really know what I'm asking here, I guess I just had to write it down as I can't discuss it properly with her and I don't want to discuss it with friends either who may judge her on the affair. 

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11 Replies

  • Posted

    When people have affairs - sexual or not brief or not, there has to be a reason, either they are unhappy with their partner, seeking more attention, bored or whatever. It takes both of them to invent the situation that leads to them wanting an affair. Sometimes women stop having sex with their husband and withhold sex from him and then the husband has an affair and the wife complains, but in a way it is her fault.

    You need to decide if you are the carer or the one doing the caring.

    And to be honest if you have depression and are all muddled you are not in a good place and able to care for another. YOu need as much professional help for yourself and for your partner as you can get.

    It always amazes me when people who cannot sort out their own situations try to sort out others. If you love your partner tell them that.

    If you want them in your life tell them that. But leave the analysis, counselling etc to those who know how to do it and do not feel bad about needing this yourself. Make getting appropriate help your priority

    before anything else as these problems ruin everything else if you do not.

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    • Posted

      I know there will be a reason for what she did but I also understand that she can't work out what that reason is. There are several disorders where such a thing can happen for no real reason. She actually had a big personality change about a year ago but she wouldn't see the doctor for a review. She went from being a loving, caring and very selfless person to suddenly being very distant, cold, almost a selfish person and that was noticed by all who know her not just me. I explain this to give you some insight into my own health which is why I am here. She's getting her care, I only went into detail about her to explain what's led me down this path. 

      I'm not trying to counsil her myself, I try to avoid asking questions but it's really hard. I'm trying to just be here for her, to have a hand to hold through all this. I just fear I'm failing miserably at it. 

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    • Posted

      Hi Carmel, I think that Milo needs reassurance that people care about his problem, he faces an awful lot ever single day........ the one thing he does NOT NEED .is a lecture, how do you come to your conclusion that he was counciling his wife..? He needs understanding, sympathy and support.....not being told what not to do... regards Deirdre...
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  • Posted

    Hi Milo, you really need some HELP and support for you..x it is very hard to care for others with problems, it is very wearing emotionally...... I do not think that the kiss is anything to worry about......

    You both need help asap.....please, please talk to your doctor and.get MUCH more support for you both...... I truly wish you a better, simpler and a happy life for you both....... TALK TO SOMEONE.... Deirdre XXX

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    • Posted

      She is getting her help. I've decided this morning to go and see our doctor about myself now. I'm hoping I've notmgotmdepression but I do accept I'm probably on the fringes of it and I need help before it gets too bad. She needs me to be the positive one and I'm not managing to do that right now. We've got small children too that are depending on us. 
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  • Posted

    Hi good for you Milo, I am sure that it will help the both of you, and you have a beautiful BOND of young children, big hugs for all of you....

    Ignore what CARMEL says, she does not understand......

    I wish you, your wife and your precious children a happier, healthier and a 2015 filled with hope and joy.... regards to you all.... Deirdre xxx

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  • Posted

    I can understand why you are feeling the way you are and yes you can forgive but never forget and understanding why someone will do that to you It will always haunt you

    if your partner is really remorseful and showing kindness it  helps the wounds even though they will never go away

    what you need is time for yourself  as your wife is draining all your energy and bringing you down ,im sorry to say this and dont mean to sound harsh but you have to make good time and happy thoughts posative thoughts go for a walk alone and get away from negativity as you are like a magnet at the moment

    If you make yourself better you will help your wife then when you are feeling good you can rebuild your relationship back if you still want to 

    but you can only do this from a higher position and not a level position ,Like if you were sick you would need a well doctor as a sick doctor would not be able to help you.

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  • Posted

    Hi Milo

    I think you have been under so much stress for so long that you have overtaxed all your brain chemicals, whic

    ch increase in response to personal stress.  The stress you have been under has worn you down.  My first thoughts are that a naturopath may be able to help with a supplement to your diet which will just help replace what you are draining from your system, on a daily basis.  

    You have coped remarkably well but ongoing stress has to take its toll on your emotions.  Please try to get help and diet and supplements seem like a good first step.  You also are obsessing so much over your wifes illness (understandably) that I think that if your wife is in good professional hands then you would be kinder to your own health to let her illness be taken care of by professionals and focus on keeping well and just being your wifes friend and partner.  I think that is what Carmel was suggesting too.  This will benefit both you and your wife.

    Keep in touch for ongoing support with this forum.

    All the best to you, your wife and children.  You will make it.  I just know it.

    Hugs

     

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    • Posted

      I thought if best check it. It's been a long week.

      Last week we got into a minor argument and I know I should avoid these with her but I just snapped, I couldn't stop myself from arguing with her. It led to her leaving the house and going missing for 3 hours. Given her state of mind the police were contacted, who were brilliant. Eventually she came home of her own accord having nearly driven the car off the road deliberately. She was taken to hospital for a check up and allowed to return home that night.

      Even with this event the next night she snapped at me about something and I couldn't control myself not to argue back. It was horrible but at least she stayed home and went to bed. Since then she's been much calmer, her counsilling the next day helped settle her.

      As a result of all this I saw the doctor for myself and she agreed with what I suspected, I'm not suffering from depression but I am teetering on the edge. She's prescribed me Citalopram to try and counter any depression before it takes too much of a hold. my fear is that reading the information it seems it could get worse before it gets better. I really need to focus now on keeping my cool when faced with such frustration.

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  • Posted

    Thanks for checking in and being honest. It s a very good thing you have help for yourself now.  As you say its hard to be a support person for someone who is suffering without suffering yourself.

    I think you will be one of the lucky ones that may not feel worse at the beginning of Citalopram because your depression is related to stressful events rather than an episode that has come out of nowhere, and because you are starting on it before you get to the point where you are imobilised by a depressive illness.  Anyway that would be a bonus for you, but at least you know not to give up the meds if they make you feel a bit odd in the beginning while your brain adjusts.   

    You sound like a sensible, practical and capable person.

    All the very very best and keep posting.

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  • Posted

    Hi Milo I am so glad that you have got some support for yourself, I am sure that you will have no problems with your medication... I have been on sertraline for very many years, ( we too had many bad, and sad years on almost constant suicide watch with two of our three mentally ill sons ) we never thought that we would make it a happy life for them again.... but it can and does even out, all three live with us, we are a happy supportive family..... you will have this with your wife, but you need and deserve help too.... never ever feel that you are alone, I so wish you and your family, joy, happiness, peace of mind and a life easier day by day... SINCERE REGARDS to you, Deirdre, xxx
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