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Parenting a Depressed Spouse

I’ve got three children, and being a mom is my favorite thing in the whole world. There have been times over the years, though, when I’ve been forced to act like a parent to someone I never wanted to be a mom to: my depressed husband.

Things are much better now, for both of us. But a situation I became involved in this week brought back some pretty bad memories that I’d just as soon have kept buried.

In response to a situation that took place last weekend, I had to make a phone call to someone who is in the position of parenting her seriously depressed husband. The husband had done something that showed incredibly poor judgment, and I needed her help resolving the issue and keeping an eye on him in the future. It could have been an unpleasant, uncomfortable conversation. Thankfully, she and I had had a long conversation some time ago about our struggles with living with a depressed spouse. She knew I’d been in her shoes, and I was able to let her know I have great empathy for where she is right now. It turned out to be a positive encounter, and I feel confident we can handle any future situations together.

But it was a rough couple of days for me. I ended up re-living in my mind the time so many years ago when my husband was at his lowest point, when I had to keep tabs on him every hour of every day. Scars like that may get shoved back into the far recesses of our minds, but I discovered that they’re still capable of resurfacing and causing pain.

Thankfully, my husband is in a very good place right now. After more than a year of a downhill slide, things have turned around again for him. Life is good. And on the whole, I’m not sorry to have been reminded that others are still struggling, and that my experiences can potentially help someone else. That’s what happens when we’re willing to break through the stigma of depression.



2 Responses

  1. Amy, thank you for an honest, heartfelt post.

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