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Old 01-31-2019, 02:31 AM
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Default Re: Wife depressed?

Originally Posted by pythocles View Post
Thanks for your reply. It has been a gradual process of withdrawing ever since we got married (many years ago). We have three children. When they were at home and in school, she was very occupied with them and not much interested in a social life beyond the family, whether adults or children. Now, in their 30s, the two boys are grown and have lives of their own far away. Our youngest, a daughter, is living at home after having lived apart at various times during her studies. She is 29 years old and still embarking on her career. My wife's introverted behavior started to become more pronounced several years ago. She has never had a job and doesn't drive (refuses to get a license). My daughter and I do all the shopping and chores. My wife no longer shops, cooks, cleans, etc. for us. She does not have a disability. She is overweight and with all the inactivity very out of shape. But she takes care of her personal hygiene, makes her bed, does her laundry. She gets up to use the restroom and the kitchen, goes outside to smoke. But she has no interest in doing anything with me. Occasionally, my daughter gets her to go out, but they sometimes argue and afterwards my wife seems to regret having gone. As for anhedonia, I would say she gets little pleasure out of anything but reading, which she does incessantly. She is very intelligent, but also tends to fantasize and fabricate stories in communicating with others (usually they focus on how special she is and how much she knows about highly specialized subjects). I have tried talking to her many times about it, but she claims that she is not depressed, not even unhappy. She seems to think that my complaining about her reflects something wrong with me. I went to a therapist for several months, but she would not go. Mostly, she is quite passive-aggressive about the problem and most everything else that concerns our relationship. She ignores me and then acts as if she had done nothing. Which, though true, is very annoying.
Oh Pythocles. What a sad and frustrating situation for you. I wonder if your wife was so focused on the children when they were younger that now she's sort of lost because they don't really need her anymore and have grown up? Perhaps she didn't develop other aspects of her Self and has now given up in a sense?

She certainly sounds depressed. Lots of people are living with it and will not acknowledge it or even angrily reject the very idea. And we cannot change anyone, right? Or convince them how to think, even if the person is our spouse.

May I ask if therapy helped you? You said you went for a few months. What did the therapist recommend?

I'm going to ask a few questions. You need not answer them. But they may be helpful for you to think over.

Do you love your wife?
Do you feel loved by your wife?
Does your marriage enrich your life in some way?
What are you willing to accept/not accept in the future?
If you fantasize about a happy future for yourself...what does that look like? Who's there with you?

I am not trying to steer you one way or another. Only you can know what's right for yourself. Given the duration of this problem and the fact that you seem to be the only one willing to try to improve things...that's why I asked those Qs.

I was deeply unhappy in a marriage once (for different reasons than yours). You have my empathy. My husband refused to join me in therapy or to try anything that could help. I eventually gave up and divorced him. That was the right choice for me. But every person's story is so unique. You and your wife have been together a lot longer than my ex and I were. You've basically shared a lifetime together, right? And we never had children.

Just my thoughts for you. Sorry in advance if any of it seemed too candid. I am coming from a place of care and regard. I wish you peace.

Last edited by Anonymous57363; 01-31-2019 at 03:09 AM.
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