BF has major anxiety and I'm losing hope- Help!

posted 3 years ago in Emotional
Post # 2
Member
546 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

Bee, I’m so sorry you are going through this!  What a huge burden he has placed on you and he is doing nothing to help lighten the load.  Remember that a healthy and strong relationship needs to be a partnership.  This sounds border-line codependency because you have been together for so long.  Remember, you have your own needs too.  What does he do to help meet your needs?  Your post is all what you do for him and what emotional support you give him.  It doesn’t sound like there is really any giving on his part.  Early 20s are when a lot of mental illnesses rear their ugly heads, especially in males.  There is nothing you can do to make him want to get help, he needs to do that on his own.  His wellbeing is NOT your responsibility.  It might help to take a step back from the relationship until he can take care of his own wellbeing and not place it on your shoulders.  Take some time apart, not necessarily forever, but you have to have your emotional needs met.  You are not his therapist, you are not his mother or caretaker.  You are his girlfriend and that does not mean you have signed up for a lifetime of these other responsibilities.  Love blinds us to a lot, but do not lose sight of what you need to be happy.  You are way too young to be dragged down into the black hole of mental illness when your Boyfriend or Best Friend has no desire to get well.

Post # 4
Member
9861 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2016

If he won’t get help there is nothing you can do. He won’t get better without doing anything to get better. He will never wake up one day with all his anxiety magically gone.

Personally, if he didn’t agree to go to therapy I would be gone. 

Post # 6
Member
4058 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: October 2016

First let me say that you should not be shouldering this burden of being the only person he can vent to and talk to about his irrational thoughts. There will come a time, maybe it’s happened already? Where this will take a severe toll on your wellbeing and your rationale.

There is not a chance in hell that his behavior is healthy for you either. I feel so bad for you especially because you truly are alone in this and even he refuses to see the truth of his behavior.

but unfortunately pp is right, he needs to admit that he has a problem and WANT the help. If he doesn’t it is all a moot point. Nothing you can do to convince him if his mind is made up.

However, at this point it warrants a last ditch effort. I think getting both of you some counseling would benefit. You clearly need to talk to someone and he does too. I think therapy could help you see how terrible this is for you to continue placating him and letting your feelings fester. There needs to be some hard lines drawn but I think therapy is a start.

I usually don’t like ultimatums but I really think you need to give him one. This had been terribly hard on you and you are now in pain. That is NOT OKAY. He need to know how he is affecting your psyche. Good luck Bee. 

Post # 8
Member
4058 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: October 2016

fairlybluenow :  I also just read your response to PP. let me be clear. He is absolutely not “the best guy you’ve ever met” trust me when I say he has a serious issue and while he might be all those great things, loyal, helpful, committed etc. he is putting an unfair burden on you daily and refuses to get the help he needs, which is negatively affecting you and your relationship.

He shuts you down when you try to talk to him, he give YOU anxiety about his wellbeing and doesn’t listen to your concerns. He is not a great boyfriend right now. He might be sick but that is no excuse to push aside your feelings. This is a serious problem and it needs to be addressed immediately.

Post # 9
Member
546 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

fairlybluenow :  You say he will “do anything for anyone” but he won’t go to therapy or a doctor for you…It’s time for an ultimatum and if that drives him away, then hopefully it will also drive him to eventually get help for himself.  Remember, you are only 24, don’t convince yourself that he is the only guy who is “Loyal, honest, sweet, romantic, always puts my needs first. He even does things like drive me to work, cooks, cleans, will do anything for anyone and takes care of me.”  A lot of guys are like that and they do not burden you with all of the issues that he has.  Also, you say he puts your needs first, have you told him what a hard time you are having with this?  Would he listen if you really laid it all out on the table or would he continue to get defensive and shut down?

Post # 10
Member
115 posts
Blushing bee

Mental Issues and Anxiety feel like weakness, it’s what society tells us. I personally think it’s worse on males. I didn’t want to take pills for the longest time, it made me feel “less” than whole to need them. I think most people go through this. I think the first thing I would do is tell his mother and ask for her help. It’s a lot easier to hear ” I know how you feel, but living this way is no way to live and I wish I had gotten help too” from someone else who also has anxiety than from someone you doesn’t. You are  probably  A very nice and supportive person but when you bring it up he just feels like he is “less” in your eyes. (Not true I know). 

The other thing about pills was I felt a difference right away. Maybe you could phrase it like you can’t stand seeing him like this and you think if pills help even a little why wouldn’t he try it for X time. If he doesn’t like them, feels sick on them (side effects), or they don’t work he can stop. Make sure a doctor knows this when prescribing so you know how long’how to wean him off if needed etc. It might be easier to do an “expirement” as a trial run than to commit to having issues forever. He may see a difference after he starts. 

Maybe you could start going to a support group for the families of people with mental issues too, you shouldn’t have to care his burden alone. Then you could say you think they are helping you deal with stress (if true) and you feel no shame getting a bit of extra help. Other than that you need to point out when he brings up these feelings that no one should live their lives in fear and you can’t be a person he dumps on, he needs to see s professional that can teach him how to cope. It is possible that said professional will find nothing wrong with him (not likely based on your post but still) if he is so sure what’s the harm in getting that professional opinion .

But in the end for therapy/drugs to work he has to want them too. You can’t force him to be ready for help if he won’t. Good Luck Bee. 

 

Post # 11
Member
2741 posts
Sugar bee

Is he aware of how hard this is on you? I would suggest that he or both of you go to therapy, remind him that it’s not ‘just for crazy people’ it’s great for EVERYONE. My entire family goes at least now and then. My parents have been going to therapy for 35 years and are the sweetest most loving couple on the planet. It can really just give you some support and advice that is more objective and capable of seeing the whole situation. The advice and guidance given by people that love us is never objective. It’s complicated by your relationship and the feelings involved in that. 

I think working toward removing the stigma of therapy and drugs would be helpful. try to read up on that a bit to get some good arguments and advice. He needs to think of it as empowering himself, not just that it automatically makes him crazy.

 

Post # 12
Member
2176 posts
Buzzing bee

While our relationship’s aren’t the same, I am living this same thing right now. Except we are married, have no health insurance, he won’t take medicine and doesn’t believe in therapy. 

I haven’t read through everyone’s responses here, but this is something you really have to address before you take this relationship any further. 

I can’t really give you any advice, I only now for me that I do not want to live the rest of my life with someone who will not seek any professional help for issues that affect his wife in a negative way. I am seriously contemplating divorce. 

Post # 13
Member
2272 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: March 2017

There’s no way to force him to decide that it is time to talk to a doctor about his problem. He will get help when he is ready–which could be never. It is unfair that he puts all this burden of his anxiety on just you. I suggest that you go to counseling for yourself. Get help on how to set boundaries. It’s important that you learn how to let go from his anxieties. It is not your job to heal him, have him get help, be his counselor. You should be his partner, not his therapist. Once you heal yourself and learn to set limits, you’ll have the chance to have a healthy relationship. He may then decide to get help for himself when you are no longer his sounding board. Or, he may look for someone to have a codependent relationship with and it’ll be time for you to find a healthy relationship. 

Post # 14
Member
5578 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: October 2017

So I was the one with the major anxieties. I’m trying to remember exactly how it all went down because my boyfriend at the time (we got engaged but ended up splitting, but it was my most significant relationship until the one with my fiance now) was the reason why I went to therapy.

It might have been the time that I screamed and yelled and threw a fit on my way home from work because he hadn’t put the air conditioners in (an insurmountable task for me that I worried and worried about and was so relieved that he would do it when I wasn’t home). I had a full blown, can’t breathe, crying, panic attack while his friend was there. Luckily the friend didn’t see me in that state (I was on the phone, not at the apartment) but he knew I was screaming and pissed. We realized that I was having a panic attack, it’s not always picked up on by the person having the attack until it starts to subside… but I remember sitting on the couch with him and crying and apologizing, I even called his friend to apologize, and telling him that I wanted to be better, that I wanted to feel better.

The thing that you might be missing is his desire to feel better. Without him wanting to feel better, there is literally nothing you can do to help him.

One of the things that really pushed me was seeing how badly my anxiety affected him, how unfair it was that I treated him badly at times.

Can you tell him how much it affects you, how it worries you, how you lose sleep at night? Maybe offer to go to one of the first few sessions with him so that you can explain what you are seeing?

I’m sorry bee… it hurts so badly to see someone you love suffer like this and it’s beyond frustrating to have them refuse help.

Post # 15
Member
115 posts
Blushing bee

Sansa85 :  I’m pretty sure you just told a story about my own life. No joke either…I sat there at the end of a full blown panic attack and just thought how did that just happen…who was that person because it certainly wasn’t me…ok really something is not right with me. My SO got me through it but admitting the problem was the hardest part. And your right I didn’t really get help for me but because I couldn’t treat him like that much longer and not expect to lose him. I’d do practically anything to avoid hurting the love of my life. 

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