Seems odd to share such a sensitive subject on-line, but well....I'm at my wit's end, exhausted, and need outside perspectives.


My husband is in a very bad place right now. Depressed, drinking constantly, and very angry. I'm often caught in the middle of his furious outbursts. At best, I'm in the middle of his constant stream of negativity. I say, "heal yourself", he says he'd rather die." I say, "Get help," he says therapists and psychologists are just quacks with paramedicals." I say, "pray" and he says "there is no god. You're a fool to believe." It hurts. I've dealt with depression before, so I can empathize to a certain point. But I'm so drained, so frustrated by his seeming unwillingness to help himself, that I'm at a loss. 


So I was hoping you folks might share your experiences dealing with another's depression and/or addiction. How do you stay bright when someone you love is dark? Do you feel you were able to help them? Did you get hurt? Did you leave? How did you and your love find healing?



~Tangled Macrame

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Replies to This Discussion

Oh God, I empathize. I've had my share of problems and have fought so hard. I evntually got some footing. I counseled addicts for 2 years at a facility in NYC and have been of service in one way or another for a lot, there's a lot to talk about. Denial puts a wall to protect the itself against health. It's self destructiveness protecting itself and it's like a demon. Hence "therapists are quacks" etc. Look, I know some of them are and I am wary of psychopharmacology and religion too, but quality help and a spiritual ideas are both to be distinguished from these! The right therapist can be a great friend! Also, think about it, it's Ok for champion athletes to have "coaches" to help them right? So, why is having a "mind coach" so taboo? Foolish stigma, and an ignorant public, that's why! I used have this self defeating, pseudo-intellectual comeback as well. It would be great to find some help that changes his mind - someone who he can identify with. You are going to have to take care of yourself too - I don't know what you are doing right now i.e. help/support for you but it could help you both, so please investigate with a really open mind because I'm assuming that you don't have the disadvantage of denial right now. Remember, no group, idea, book, pamphlet or therapist can really mess you up ultimately - you are the final doctor and can choose and this is what I'd hold close to your heart if you investigate one of the programs...there is good help and it will be an education. Open mind first and willingness to stop suffering.



I'm looking in to finding some support for myself after the holidays. The college I attend offers personal counselling, so that will probably be my first stop. One of my thoughts (in addition to really needing some guidance myself) was that if I form a relationship with the "quacks" perhaps he'll see they could help him too.
You can also wander into a local al-anon, just to listen. Or you could call them now just to talk and more importantly listen. Please keep in mind the little demon factor that would try to nip this in the bud though. Your personal help for you may have to be a bit private at first. Drinkers hate preachers or anything that seems like one...

Hi TM, I believe counselling can really help a person access their own truth and totally change their life and the path they're on, but not everyone out there thinks this. And sometimes a person has to seek out the right therapist. It's like having the right dentist. You don't want to open up for someone who you're not totally comfortable around... At the same time, we're already out of our comfort zone and sometimes the stranger is the best solution for clear reflections. It sounds like you know that the support is out there for you. I have loved many people who drink and it's not easy. Take care of yourself and stick with your plan for getting counselling, and keep talking to people! I think it's great that you reached out to your community here at HC to get some love and support. I have noticed it's difficult for some people, men especially sometimes but not always, to go to therapy, cry, be vulnerable, etc. They are not raised to think this is a good thing or place to be in. I personally think the one's who do go in are the warriors. It takes some serious grit to go for counselling and let down all the guards, and there's nothing like it for healing yourself as a whole being~ xxoo Best of luck!

There is a really positive book I was told to read when I started acknowledging my demons and chose the path to healing.. it's called You Can Heal Your Life. by Louise Hay.. She is a powerful woman . It is difficult when people we love aren't facing the pain and just masking .. Work on your self healing and hopefully he will see that a healthier, happier lifestyle is a possibility. Peace to you, Maura
sorry to hear you are going through this--all i can say is, use the internet to find an Al-Anon meeting near you, and don't tell him right away: this is something you can do for YOU. it is a 12-step fellowship that helps the family members and loved ones of persons who are drinking, depressed...basically, sick. yes, it is not necessarily his fault, but it is also not yours, and your primary concern right now needs to be YOU. until you learn tools for how to own your "stuff", and seperate it from his emotional stuff, it is a losing battle.
Great advice.  I feel for you.  Find supportive groups that can teach YOU how to cope and get through it.  Try not to get sucked into the black hole, sometimes it can be hard to hang on.  This process is to give you the tools to get through this, not necessarily to give you the tools to fix him.  He has to want that for himself and there is no telling when that will happen, it may not be on your timeline.  May you find strength in friends and family to help you and good luck.

TM...  First of all I want to say I am so sorry this is happening to you.  You are a beautiful person and you do not deserve this.  Your family doesn't deserve this.  No one really deserves this.  But unfortunately it's very common in society...  And I know he doesn't want to be doing this to everyone.  The mind is a power thing.  It needs to be taken care of just like the heart, lungs, liver, etc...  I think he needs to understand that, despite his hang up with counselors and such (some people have been burned so much in the past it makes it hard to trust) he NEEDS to do this for his family.  That's number one.  It may be a hard realization to come to.  Some may feel it's like admitting defeat.  Of course it is not.  That's like blaming yourself for congential heart disease.  But right now you definitely need to seek out help.  Everyone else gave great advice as to places you can find that help. 


I believe you will get through this if everyone is willing to work hard for it and have open minds and hearts.

Sending my love,


Thank you, beautiful hoop friends, for your well-wishes and thoughtful advice.
Hi.  I just had to post something.  I am not a guru but my personal experiences may help.  I suffer from depression, anxiety, addiction, self destructive behavior of various means....God--it's exhausting!  I have gone to rehab, NA, blah blah blah.  My last reHAB had a class about addiction and the neurochemistry involved.  I think I have expended a lot of energy in the why.  It's really a waste.  It doesn't matter.  I think your husband needs someone to ask him why he is so angry and bitter?  What happened that set him off?  There is absolutely nothing you can do to help him.  To mire in that dark--soul sucking is to only hurt you.  I am SO sorry that he is not in a good place, but love doesn't mean that you have to share that space with him.  It is where HE is...not where you need to stay.  Please be a little selfish and realize that no matter what he might decide to do to deal with his misery, it is HIS.  You are probably feeling a little emotionally hostage in the environment.  If you can get out then please do so.  Just as you take healthy steps to deal with llife, he continues to make unhealthy ones.  There is no magic answer.  Addicts are usually immature and magical in thinking.  We usually are expecting a big voice to tell us what we need to do, or hand us happiness.  It's WORK.  Plain and simple.  I would suggest cutting your losses and remove yourself from that situation asap.  Maybe that will help him realize that behavior has consequences and he has to suffer them like the rest of us.  Loving someone doesnt entitle them to disrespect you, abuse you, or subject you to daily emotional torture.  We all have moments in life.  If he decides to to walk that doesnt help him to go with him down it.  Stay on your path and let him make his way.  Give him an opportunity to make the decision and then make your own.  We have one life that I know of, and it so wasteful to spend it in that situation.  You have choices to.  Exercise your right to live!  Peace! 


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