Can you Catch your Partner's Depression?
The popular fact that happiness spreads from being with happy people applies to sadness as well. Several studies have found that the more people that one has in his or her life, the more he or she is happy. The studies also showed a positive result when contagiousness of sadness or depression among people was analysed. The latter result has serious implications for someone, who is in a relationship with a depressed person notwithstanding the cause of it, which may be personal health, health of the relationship or both. In such a relationship, the caregiver gets so caught up with helping or getting help for the depressed spouse that he or she ends up neglecting own needs in terms of eating, exercising or devoting energy to other chores. Such a state of neglect of one’s own needs to address those of the depressed partner or individual leads to an onslaught of seclusion, feeling of resentment and depression for the caregiver.
Any amount or kind of stress is detrimental to the way a person functions. If a person in a relationship is depressed, he or she exposes the partner to it as well. Studies have found that break-up rate was higher in marriages and relationships because either of partners was depressed. Although, the mere thought of depression and its dire consequences is haunting, here are ways one can make oneself and his or her partner feel better.
Get professional assistance
If you have sensed a sign of depression in your partner, make sure he or she gets the treatment. It makes sense to consult a doctor as soon as depression is suspected because depression goes deeper in terms of severity and you sure don’t want to wait until your partner gets violent or extremely restless to be taken care of. An easy way of checking if your partner has depression is by watching out for symptoms such as poor sleep, crying, change in appetite, racing thoughts, low energy, poor digestion or pounding heart.
Make sure you let your partner communicate openly. Emphasize on your support. The key is to be patient throughout the process of getting your partner treated.
Keep yourself healthy
If you are a caregiver, do not overlook the fact that you need to keep yourself strong throughout the recovering phase. Keep yourself busy in chores, exercising, socialising, eating right etc. Do not throw yourself guilty for your partner’s depression.
Read more articles on Relationship Help.
Source: Onlymyhealth editorial team Feb 10, 2012
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