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If caregiver AND patient are depressed, then what?

My bf and I are having severe depression issues. I am so depressed from this chronic pain from spinal issues and inability to work and contribute financially to the family, and he is dealing with working and finances and a nasty custody war. We are both borderline suicidal; the only thing that stops us is knowing it is a sin and we believe we will go to hell.

We both go to psychotherapy, both are on antidepressants, have tried revising meds to help, but we just can't seem to help ourselves, must less help each other out of this awful pit.

How can two people sooo depressed help each other out?? We are stuck living away from extended family due to his custody war, and due to my limited abilities, I can't get out much more than doctor appointments. In fact, I've cancelled soo many doctor appointments because I have been unable to move that day, so I miss other things like church, etc.

I also feel like church is not much help anymore because they are a bit "burnt out" from helping us through the winter...

Any advice on what to do is appreciated. Prayers are appreciated, too!

Thank you so much.


  • SugarplumsSSugarplums Posts: 77
    edited 07/31/2012 - 4:54 PM
    Just bringing this back to the top. It's so important if anyone has a bit of advice. Thanks!
  • Sugarplums, I am so very sorry that you and your boyfriend are feeling this way. My husband and I both are chronic pain patients, me with my back and him with his knees and legs. My hubby gets very depressed, I am usually more calm because i have a different outlook on life i guess and I'm more the laid back type. The trick in my opinion is to try to do something to occupy your mind. If all you can do is dwell on the negative you'll never feel better. I know this is way easier said than done. Even if its just a movie that will make you laugh, or reading a book or magazine that will take your mind off things for a little while. I can't imagine how horrible going through a custody battle might feel like but i do know what its like to worry about children, my son is in Afghanistan right now and all i can really do and have been doing is pray that god will take care of him. Luckily those prayers have been answered because he will begin his journey home in 3 weeks.

    You mentioned going to church, have you thought of perhaps visiting another church? Also just because your mobility is limited doesn't necessarily mean that you still can't enjoy things. Try a picnic at the dinner table, try turning on the shower real hot and plug the tub (lots of steam will be produced) and pretend your standing in a tropical beach rain shower, i know it may sound funny but we do things like this, you just need to use your imagination.

    Please do not hurt yourselves, This may sound harsh but, it is selfish because weather or not you realize it, it will hurt more people than you might imagine. And think of that child that is the reason for custody, even if you do not get custody, he or she will still need you and still love you.

    If you need to talk, feel free to contact me anytime, I may not be able to help much, but i can definitely lend an ear.
  • Thank you for the encouragement and kind words.

    Pain in Ohio, I don't think we will look for another church. There are few in our area, and the others in our denomination he are just way too conservative for our tastes. We wont hurt ourselves, I don't think. We do think of how that would affect our families and don't want to do that to anyone.

    Anelsen15, how do I find out if there are any services in my area for mobility issues?

    My bf is depressed from a 3-yr custody battle andd has to pay over 1/2 his take-home pay to his ex because they we married almost 20 years. But that makes it impossible to pay bills so that is very depressing. Both of our cars have been repossessed. I was on TANF, but they cut me off after 2 yrs because it's the policy here, even though I'm unable to work. The social worker seriously told me to just move to another state!!

    So anyway, his ex has brainwashed his older kids into thinking he's a bad dad (he is seriously the BEST Dad in the world), now she's trying to brainwash the youngest one and it's working! Yiikes! So sad to watch it happen. She is such a control freak. One day her kids will see it and will come back to him, but for now it's so heart wrenching he just can't take it!

    I'm pushing my docs to do everything possible for pain management and to FIX the problem, not just band aid it with medicine. I want to get healed, not just be incapacitated and a burden forever!

    We do go to therapy every week and the doc just changed his meds so maybe that will help. So far so good!! :)

    What have you guys done to help your mate better understand pain days and days when you're ok, and how you really can't control it?
  • Hey Sugarplums, I just seen your post and wanted to let you know that you are not alone and I am here anytime you need to talk. I have suffered from depression since my daughter was born in 1984 and would go days without sleep and cried 24/7. I was taking Prozac and had therapy several days a week and it seemed to be under control for awhile so I stopped medication. Then in 1989 I attempted suicide and after medication changes and intensive therapy i improved but realized I would be on medication for life. I have suffered from anxiety and panic attacks when situations would get out of my control which is life but had learned over the yrs. to look for signs and would call my doctor. My husband has always been my rock for the past 28 yrs. Then Feb. 19, 2011 our lives changed forever when he suffered sudden cardiac arrest and son performed CPR and then had quadruple by-pass. I had heard from others that by-pass can change personalities and I truly believe that now. Experts don't know why but think that chemical changes in blood during by-pass can cause this. Needless to say I am at a loss on how to deal with his depression and anger issues now that he realizes he will be a heart patient for life and also worries that it may happen again and he may die. The first 6 months he cried daily and woudl get so angry at us. He also has chronic pain from legs due to vein harvesting. His legs hurt all the time and they swell and all the medications he takes now cause side effects like insomnia. I have been dealing with increased pain this year due to thoracic herniation. Now we are both dealing with depression and anger issues but I recently started back with Psychiatrist and changed medication to Cymbalta along with Xanax and I do feel better mentally.
    What I want to say is please hang in there. There is still anger issues and hurt from my suicide attampt. When my mama was dying from cancer we had a talk one day and she brought up the fact that she was still angry with me for what happened 14 yrs earlier. I never knew how she felt. She was so afraid even after, that she would lose me....It broke my heart. I now have 2 children and a grandson and am so happy that the Lord saw fit for leave me here because I would have missed out on so much:) Even though I live with chronic pain and I received my termination papers a few weeks ago I know that I will be okay no matter what. I have also struggled with my faith. I stopped going to church about 8 yrs ago and was so angry with God after watching my mama die that I still have not returned. We have issues with a new pastor who was total opposite of our other one and did not agree with him...I have made my peace with God and actually have a very good relationship with him now and hopefully will find a church that I like. I do miss having a church family to turn to. Please Please if you ever need to talk just let me know. i will PM you and give you my cell if you ever just need someone to just listen. Just remember that there are alot of people who care about you and would be so sad if something happened to you

  • Thanks, Kelli for your encouragement. This is going to be a particularly stressful week.... I'm not sure how I'm going to handle it. I may take you up on your offer. Thanks!
  • Hey, Kelli! How are you doing now? I've been praying for you and your husband. I'm stuck in the middle of a nightmare move right now. We got scammed by a moving company and had to save more money to hire a new company. We will finally go to MN this next weekend, God willing!!
  • Hi Sugarplums, I am trying to hang in there. I have been having a really hard time too. My husband has been going through a really hard time lately and it is affecting our marriage. It has been a very tough 18 months between his heart surgery and my back surgery and ongoing problems. He would always say it will be okay but he doesn't say that anymore and it scares me:( We have been through alot in 28 yrs. but this seems to be different. I feel like he is tired of dealing with all my problems and doesn't even ask how I am everyday. He used to call from work daily to see how I felt but hasn't in weeks:( I can't do anything but pray that things work out.

    I am sorry your move has not gone smoothly. I can't believe how some people will cheat and lie to make money. I ony hope it comes back on them. You need to file charges against them and report to BBB. I talked to my friend finally about the list of pain management clinics and she will see what she can find out this week for me:) Hopefully you can find someone who will be good to you. Please keep my informed and as soon as I hear something from her I will PM you.

  • Jerome001Jerome001 Cocoa Beach, FloridaPosts: 118
    I lost my first marriage because of my illness. Fortunately, I finally recovered and went back to work but shortly thereafter my back problems began in earnest and I had a fusion in December 2005. My second wife knew about my prior medical issues and seemed about everything. My medical condition really started downhill in the summer of 2005 and she is totally shut down to my pain issues and with me being on disability again. She has no empathy for my pain and expects me to go out and be active like I was before everything got so bad. She doesn't go with me to my appointments, and didn't when she did not work either. In fact, for my last fusion in May of last year, I had to get a coworker to take me to the hospital for the surgery and to pick me up and did not visit during my hospital stay. I don't want to lay out all the times she has left me alone including a couple of times over 3 - 4 days right after surgery and I was alone with 3 dogs to take care of too. Anyway, my point is that dealing with the pain is tough enough when the people that love you are supportive but when you have no support, the pain becomes over whelming. I have wished many times that I had died from my cancer several years ago instead of being in this situation. I can't work so I don't have my colleagues anymore and I don't feel up to socialising so I am very isolated too. Depressed? LOL, Of course. I hope that you have the internal fortitude to keep putting one foot in front of the other and hopefully, those of us on the boards can help you through the really dark times. At the very least, we can cry together and wallow together in our tears (and be sarcastic and make fun of ourselves :) ). LOL Hang in there, Jerome
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