(Closed) FI becoming hermit….rant. Please help.

posted 6 years ago in Relationships
Post # 3
10366 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2010

Just because he insists it isn’t the depression doesn’t mean it isn’t. Maybe find a more constructive way of bringing it up?

Post # 6
7647 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: July 2012

This is a toughie. I would have a heart-to-heart and say you are genuinely concerned, and let him know you are concerned for YOU as well. Just becuase he says he isn’t depressed anymore or that the lack of social outings with his friends ins’t due to it doesn’t mean that’s true.

I wouldn’t move all the way to France until you feel comfortable with this situation. You can go out and have fun with your friends, but I wouldn’t be surprised if that turned out bad in the end. Perhaps you meet someone that you can socialize with better? He may start to resent you at that point…sorry kind of thinking out loud.

I would just do the heart-to-heart, and let him get mad, but he needs to know how you are feeling and take it seriously. If he shuts down and doesn’t want to talk about it then that is a red flag on your communication with him, and he may have to figure out some tough options on if you really want to go through with someone that you can’t talk to about this. I don’t think you can dictate how often he talks and hangs out with his friend, but just say your concerned that doesn’t want to go out with his friends. Maybe something happened between them or something?

Post # 7
191 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: October 2012

This could be depression or maybe he’s just an EXTREME introvert?  My husband also doesn’t have many friends and tends to spend a lot of solo time on his days off (especially since his closest friend moved out of town) and that was something I had to adjust to.  Some people just need or like more alone time than others.  Doesn’t mean something is wrong per se, he may just be wired differently than you.

Your husband’s case does sound extreme, though, if he also doesn’t have any hobbies or other interests (that sounds more like depression than just introversion). Does he enjoy spending time with you at least and going out and doing things just the two of you?  If yes, I’d think you could still be social and be out and about and let your husband sit home if that is what is comfortable for him.  As long as you guys have date nights and enjoy spending time together and he’s willing to go out with you when you want/need him to – no biggie.

BUT the fact that you are so different in the way you socialize and the fact that you view his behavior so negatively and with such concern troubles me.  When you marry someone you need to accept and love ALL of them – warts and all.  If you genuinely feel that your Fiance is too hermit-like to make you happy, or that something is wrong with him, that’s a problem.  Examine that and be honest with yourself…don’t force it if it doesn’t feel right. 

Post # 8
982 posts
Busy bee

@SadMrsToBe:  My SO went through major depression, he was near suicidal. He too became a hermit. It was just us, he didn’t want to go anywhere or do anything. When you’re in the fog of depression, you don’t want to do anything – even getting out of bed is an achievement. Depression totally depletes your motivation. When he started to improve, he started seein his friends again. I was so happy when he told me he had plans. Thing is, you can’t force someone to hang out with their friends- if he doesn’t feel like it, he doesn’t feel like it. It’s not helpful to him to be nagged about it – his mental state is more of a concern than his lack of social life. What helped me was getting information from depression organisations, and calling Lifeline for advice on how to help. He was seeing his doctor weekly, and once I was so worried about him that I sent his doctor a letter – my SO knew about this and was okay with it. His doctor wasn’t going to tell my SO that I’d gotten in touch until my SO mentioned it. His mental state was so bad initially that the doctor wanted to admit him to hospital. His script ran out and he didn’t want to ask for money to refill it (he was unemployed at the time) and he had severe rebound. Those were very dark days, and I have to say that all that mattered to me was that he was okay. It didn’t matter to me that we weren’t doing anything, or that he wasn’t seeing his friends. The most important thing was getting him well enough to feel like getting out there again. Don’t assume that the tablets are all it takes and it’s a quick fix, it’s really not.

My SO is doing a lot better these days, he’s off the medication. He still has stress and down days, but nothing like he was. He’s very open about how he’s feeling, and in the past, I have had to ask him if he had thoughts of suicide. And we would talk and talk. He says I saved his life. 

Being with someone with depression is hard – only for the fact that you can’t fix it. All you can do is be there – in a non-forceful way. They need to know that they can talk to you, can count on you – without judgement. While that part of our relationship was very heart wrenching, I loved him and I wanted to be there. To me, I wasn’t doing anything spectacular, but to him I was the light in the dark. For a couple of months, I was essentially on suicide watch.

If you’re considering marriage with him, you have to consider that depression is an illness. He may recover and he may not – He may have had depression his whole life. Are you ready to be there through thick and thin? I really think you need to drop the issue of him going out with his friends. You can gently suggest it, but don’t force the issue. Maybe he feels most at peace when he’s at home. When he’s ready, he may start doing all the things he used to do. The only thing I’d be concerned about is him distancing himself from other people (not because he’s being ‘boring’)- ask him how he’s really doing. Because you don’t live nearby, if you get concerned, you can always ask a close friend of his, or his brother, to drop by and see how he’s doing (but not mention that you’ve asked them to do so). he might be creating distance because he simply doesn’t want to go out, but people who may want to harm themselves can also create distance – it’s hard to know, unless you ask. What he needs from you is for you to listen, without judgement. Don’t get angry at him. People with depression tend to feel worthless, and a burden to others. The last thing he needs from you is nagging about going out, he already feels bad enough.

sorry this is so long, but I wanted to share my experience with you, hopefully some of it helps your situation.

Post # 9
741 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

Hi there! I’ve been in France for a few years now with my Darling Husband.

It does sound a bit extreme, but a part of it might be cultural too. My Darling Husband and a lot of French guys (not all though) I know are kinda hermits. I feel like in France there is less of a cultural of needing to be constantly entertained. It drove me crazy at first, but we came to an understanding – if I wanted to go out with my friends and he didn’t want to go out, we wouldn’t feel guilty. Likewise if I was too tired to deal with the language barrier with his friends I’d get a pass. But every now and then we know it’s important to be connected to each others lives, so at least every other week we try to either go on a date or out with people. Most of the time, Darling Husband is happy to just stay home and watch a movie and eat good food (I can’t blame him too much, it’s freaking cold outside now….). 

Where in France would you be moving? If it’s Paris, you won’t be alone…there are so many expats in this city who have made that jump and there are a lot of resources. You’ll be able to find a social life outside of your marriage, although you need to be clear that you do expect him to compromise and go out occationally.

PM if you want to talk 🙂

Post # 10
6355 posts
Bee Keeper

He may be much more introverted than you.

He may actually prefer his quiet weekends “in”. That’s sort of what it sounds like.

If he used to go out more, then chances are good that he will again in the future, though maybe not at that previous level. Married folks in general tend to settle down, and with kids in the picture, even more so.

If he is much less extroverted than you, you have to think about whether it’s something you’ll be happy with for the rest of your life.

Post # 11
4656 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

Is it possible he’s just really introverted? Or has become more introverted over time? People do change. I’ve definitely become more introverted since FH and I met. Fortunately, he has too. We spend most of our weekends in our apartment, surfing the internet, playing video games, and watching movies and we’re not depressed, we’re very happy and comfortable. 😀

We still go out to dinner or travel occasionally, but most weekends we just stay in. I feel like this problem is more a difference between what you want to do and what he wants to do, not necessarily an inherent problem with what he wants to do. If you look at his preference for staying in as a valid feeling, instead of just a product of depression, it might be a better starting point for the conversation.

See if he’d be willing to compromise, maybe start with a quiet dinner in a neighborhood restaurant, just you two, on a Friday night, and he has the rest of the weekend to be a hermit. Small steps, if you want to drag him out. 

Post # 12
141 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

My Fiance is an extreme, extreme introvert.  He doesn’t really have friends.  He talks to some people online and had a good friend who moved away, and that’s pretty much it.  Like your Fiance, he prefers sitting in and doing things alone. I’m exactly the opposite, I’m pretty extroverted. My mental health and happiness is increased by cultivating relatiomships with people.  

You said he goes out with you when you invite him out with you and your social circle, right?  My Fiance will also go out with me and my friends (if I beg :P).  But that’s just not his thing.  

My dad is exactly the same and I can’t remember through all the years I’ve been aware of him ever having a friend.  If you ask him my dad says, “I have a friend: your mom.”  FI is the same and says he has me as his friend.  

If you can rule out depression, this just may be the way he is.  Why is it so important for you for him to be social?  In the beginning, I felt similiarly with Fiance, but, over time, I realized – it has nothing to do with me.  If this is what makes him happy and he’s not stopping me from socializing and will humor me by socializing with me at times, then why should it matter?

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