Along with the many good times in marriage, there are also some tough times. Sometimes these times cause people to become depressed. When your marriage is in trouble already, depression makes it even harder. A lot of people, married or not, are depressed. Depression doesn't have to hurt your marriage. Here are three signs (in no particular order) that your spouse may be suffering from depression, and things that you can do to help them.
Many depressed people suffer from fatigue. Constantly tired. Even if they don't do anything to make a person tired, they are exhausted. Instead of getting mad at your spouse, or thinking they are just lazy, talk to them about it. Tell them that you are worried about them.
Depressed people seem sad a lot. That's because they are. They are sad, or feel hopeless or that they aren't good enough for anyone to love them. This sadness can sometimes be so severe that the depressed person thinks that no one will miss them if they die. This is extreme depression, which not too many people have, but it still exists - in more people than you can imagine.
If your spouse is withdrawn, has no desire to do anything or see anyone, doesn't do things that they used to do, or anything else along these lines, then they are probably depressed. You can try to help them by introducing them to something new. Try to get them to go and see a movie with you, or even for a walk.
Some people experience anger with depression. Sometimes that anger is so strong they may think about actually hurting someone. There is usually no reason for that anger, but their mind just isn't thinking right. A depressed person could be fine one minute, and extremely angry the next.
If your spouse is like this, you can still help them. Don't try to calm them down if they are in a state of pure anger, it will just make matters worse. Instead, give them time to cool off, and then talk to them. Tell them that you are worried about them. They are acting like a completely different person, and that they are scaring you.
A truly depressed person doesn't see any of these differences in themselves. That's why a lot of depressed people don't seek help - they don't know something's wrong.
Tell your spouse that you are very worried about them. Get them to see a doctor, to see what is wrong. If they say no, then you could tell them that YOU need to see a doctor, and that you would like them to go with you.
It used to be that you had to go to a therapist of some kind to treat depression. Now, so many people are depressed, that your regular family doctor can prescribe medicine that will help beat depression.
Above all else, please don't think that you did anything to cause this. Nor did your spouse, or kids if you have them. Depression happens. Anyone can suffer from it, at one time or another.
What is important right now is that you know the signs, and do whatever you can to help your spouse.