What Do You Do When You Notice Your Partner is Depressed?

When we notice changes in mood or behavior in someone we know, it can be tough to speak up, especially when it is our partner. Often, with couples, we wait things out or we say “We’ll let them work it out for themselves; they’ll ask me if they want help,” but depression is something that needs attention right away. Not only because the person experiencing it needs help, but because it can affect a relationship. Depression is ‘contagious’ in a partnership in that the relationship often takes on that energy.

What Are the Signs of Depression in My Partner?

The signs of depression are sometimes subtle. Depression isn’t necessarily what we’ve been taught it is – sadness – but can actually show up in plenty of other ways. Pay attention when you start to notice these subtle signs of depression:

  • Physical Pain
  • Fatigue
  • Irritability
  • Change in Mood
  • Change in Behavior

While we often think of depression as being sad, it’s more characterized by a loss of motivation or interest in things the person used to be interested in. They may not want to work, participate in their hobbies, or see friends.

What To Do When Your Partner is Depressed

Just like any illness or injury, depression, or any other mental health condition, needs to be addressed by both people in the relationship. You would help them if they had a broken leg, right? You would help them get around, give them rides to the doctor, and whatever else you needed to do. It would be considered natural, and expected by most people. So when your person is depressed, you can help them to recognize what’s going on (because depression is often overlooked or misunderstood, even by someone experiencing it), and, most importantly, let them know that you are in it with them!

Letting your person know that they’re not alone is the most effective way to make your love work, even through depression.

In the following video, I go deeper into these signs of depression and how you can help your partner.

Develop a Deeper Connection

This LoveWorks is more than therapy – it’s a process of relational transformation that uses the most relevant, accessible, and cutting edge techniques and information available. Through This LoveWorks, you and your partner can understand and shore up areas of weakness, improve communication and navigate choppy waters in times of crisis, resulting in a stronger bond and a deeper connection.

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