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Depressed Boyfriend, I Don't Know What To Say...

I started going out with my current boyfriends 8 months ago. From the beginning I could tell that he had mood swings, but as I learned more about him I realized it was much more than that. He is on Anti-depressants and another medication. One day he will be happy and energetic. We'll be on a date and he'll be acting completely normal and happy...Then he gets home and calls me, and he turns into a completely different person. He starts looking down on himself and saying how he doesn't know how long he can handle his rough family life. (He has an abusive father, and a mother who is too afraid to step in. Along with a brother who does nothing but frown on him) It scares me. I start crying because I'm scared for him. I just want him to be safe... that's all I want. It kills me that I can't do anything about it. I have tried to get him to tell people that can professionally help him but he refuses to, telling me it will only make things worse. When he calls me in this low state of mind, and he is on the edge of a mental breakdown...I am at a loss of what to say. I say things like "Everything is going to be okay" and "I'm going to be here for you every step of the way, I am not going anywhere. I will never give up on you." He says he believes me but that its hard for him to believe it. I have not had a much better childhood than he has and he makes it seem like I don't know what he's going through, when I go through basically the same thing. I just wish I knew what to say to get him back on track. If you have anything please tell me.

Breizz Breizz 16-17, F 1 Response Jan 18, 2010

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I can relate to your story quite well. I have been with my boyfriend for almost 9 months now and he too has violent mood swings. I can never predict when he's going to be normal and relatively happy and when he's going to be desperately depressed and suicidal. During his low days he says that life seems pointless to him. He seems stuck somehow and he can't get out. <br />
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I too feel quite helpless because I can't take it away, but believe me when I say this: you CAN NOT allow yourself to think it's your fault that you can't. You can't blame yourself. The only person who can pull him out of this is himself, and if he needs help to figure out how, then he's gonna have to find someone who can. A professional. <br />
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This is the second time I've been in a relationship with someone who was depressed. When I was your age I dated a boy who had been physically and mentally abused by his mother. He was severely traumatized and depressed, and with him I made the mistake of... getting too involved in his grief. It ended up consuming me too. On top of that I felt guilty because I couldn't help him. These are feelings you shouldn't allow yourself to have. These things are horrible, but it's not your fault. <br />
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What I try to do is stimulate my boyfriend to do things that will distract him. I take him on long walks, I encourage him to find a summer job. I listen to him when he needs me to and I let him cry if he wants to. But I have fun with him too. I need to. Because I want this relationship to be fulfilling for both of us, and fortunately he feels the same way.<br />
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Unfortunately there isn't anything you can say to get him back on track. This is something he's going to have to do by himself. That doesn't mean you can't love and support him, and it doesn't mean there is no hope. I feel exactly the same way you do, but I try to tell myself(and him) that it's going to be alright. Because it is. I have hope, and so should you. That alone might help him. <br />
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Good luck. I wish you strength. If you ever want to talk, you're free to message me :)