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TherapistMarryAnn
TherapistMarryAnn, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5770
Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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I think my husband may be despressed. How can I know for sure

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I think my husband may be despressed. How can I know for sure and how can I help him
Hello, I'd like to help you with your question.

It is very frustrating to watch a loved one cope with depression. One of the most difficult symptoms of depression is lack of motivation and denial. It often keeps people from helping themselves and reaching out to others. And it hurts you because you can see your husband experiencing symptoms but he won't listen to what you are saying about getting help and he won't talk to you about what he needs or what is wrong.

If you feel your husband is not willing to see a therapist or psychiatrist for his depression, see if he will talk to his doctor. Sometimes a person will refuse to see a therapist but will listen to their doctor. And if he will see his doctor, contact the doctor ahead of time to report what is going on with your husband. It can help the doctor so they can talk with your husband about his depression.

But if your husband won't see his doctor, consider calling the doctor anyway. He may be able to call in a script or encourage your husband to come in to see him.

Enlist the help of close family and friends. Sometimes a person won't listen to a spouse, but will listen to others telling them about their depression.

Support your husband as much as you can, but don't get burned out yourself. One of the biggest problems with being a caregiver is the burnout. You become stressed or even want to give up because it is so difficult to see progress. That is why you need support yourself.

Besides having family and friends who can be there for you, consider support groups, either on line or in person for family members who cope with someone who has mental illness. People who are experiencing the same situation as you are can offer invaluable support, ideas and companionship to help you feel less stress. Here is a resource to help:

www.nami.org

http://www.helpguide.org/mental/living_depressed_person.htm

Also, your husband may want to get involved with support for himself. Talking to others who experience the same issues can be invaluable and help him see that he does need help. Here are resources to help you get started:

http://psychcentral.com/resources/Depression/Support_Groups/

http://depression.supportgroups.com/

http://helpguide.org/mental/depression_signs_types_diagnosis_treatment.htm

Unfortunately, the only way to force someone to get treatment is if they show signs of wanting to hurt themselves or someone else. If you do see such signs in your husband, contact your local emergency room to ask about involuntary commitment for your husband. That may get him the treatment he needs.

I hope this has helped you,
Kate
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