One of the few positive things I can say I have learned from depression would be the importance of good communication with my partner. Those that suffer from depression know that it can be a crazy, unstable, shitty state of mind. It rarely makes sense and just when you think you’ve found a way to alleviate the symptoms you find that not every episode responds the same as the next. So what worked last time may not be as effective, if at all. Knowing that I turn into this unpredictable vortex of self loathing and sadness I can hardly stand to be around myself, how on earth can I expect anyone else to want to be. A solution that seems to be working so far is that I never expect my boyfriend to know what I’m feeling nor what I need to help me through it. When my emotions are tweaking out on me I will out right tell him what I need, for example, “I need you to sit with me, hold me and say nothing.”
Before I even begin to tell him about something that is bothering me I may start by saying, “I want you to totally back me up on this so agree with me even if you don’t. Right now I just need you on my side.” If I don’t know what I need or what is wrong with me, that is when it is critical I let him know that I’m in that frame of mind. This way he knows my snapping and moodiness is not because of him but because I’m feeling unstable.
Being this transparent with my emotions and needs helps distinguish the justified, ‘we need to work on this’ emotions, the ‘I’m justifiably upset about something’ emotions and the ‘I’m a crazy depressed person and nothing you say will be right’ emotions. Sure this doesn’t always work without a hitch, but it helps in the long run. I hear so often people getting angry and frustrated with their partner for not knowing or understanding their needs. Since I know there is no way for my BF to know my needs on any given day if I don’t tell him that’s not his fault it’s mine.