Depressed Boyfriend Shutting Me Out

By Daniel J. Tomasulo, PhD, TEP, MFA, MAPP

I’ve been dating a guy for about 6 months. We had such a connection we jumped right into a relationship. Things were amazing, we communicated well, had fun together and were attracted to one another. We had similar interests and goals.

But he is going through a very stressful time right now and fell into a depressive state. He’s struggled with depression before. He keeps trying to end the relationship because he can’t feel anything right now, but I know he cares for me. I think he is stressed out and depressed and it’s affecting his whole life and his feelings for me. I want to help but know I’m not qualified.

I told him he needs to just take time to himself and see his therapist and think this through. That ending the relationship because he doesn’t want to hurt me isn’t the same as ending it because he doesn’t want to be with me. I’m scared, but I know he does like me and is just lost right now.

Is there anything I can do? Or am I making it worse for him?

A: You’re asking a very good question. I don’t think it is worth it to push him. If he wants to end the relationship, and you persuade him not to he will find a way to sabotage it. You may want to reach a compromise. Perhaps a month off to see if he improves in some way. But if after a month there is little or no change I think it would be time to move on.

Wishing you patience and peace,
Dr. Dan
Proof Positive Blog @ PsychCentral

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 27 Aug 2014

APA Reference
Tomasulo, D. (2014). Depressed Boyfriend Shutting Me Out. Psych Central. Retrieved on October 30, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2014/08/27/depressed-boyfriend-shutting-me-out/