SINGAPORE: Seemingly on the verge of falling apart, a financially distressed man took to social media to share that he’s been having a hard time shouldering all the bills and not being able to resign even though he wanted to because his wife had been unemployed for two years.
“My wife has been unemployed for 2 years and I’m about to snap,” the man wrote. He revealed in his Reddit post that he had been carrying their household expenses alone for the past two years due to his wife’s depression and lack of income. In his words, his wife had been a “complete freeloader in terms of food, housing, all bills, etc.”
“I have been very explicit about the situation taking a huge toll on my mental health, but her mental health limits her from taking action and getting a job,” he said.
Despite receiving handsome compensation for his work, the man claims that he and his wife are still “struggling financially due to rising costs and him having to carry everything alone.”
“I am also looking to quit my job due to stress, but cannot given our situation,” he added. “I also love her more than anything in the world (she IS my world), so the thought of breaking us up is unbearable. The thought of staying in this claustrophobic situation is also unbearable,” he wrote.
Redditors: “Give her an ultimatum”
Sympathizing with the man, several Redditors told him that it was time for him to give his wife an ultimatum.
One commented, “One of the best quotes i always see on these type of subreddits is “Don’t set yourself on fire to keep others warm.” I dont like ultimatums but i think you need to lay one down at this point.”
While another said, “It might come to making that ultimatum. Either get therapy and other resources, a job (even remote), or leave. This will throw you into resentment, and the marriage will still fail. She has had 2 years. She needs intense professional help.”
However, seeing all the comments, the man decided to reply and said that he couldn’t simply give her an ultimatum as he still wanted to be with her.
“Been there, done that. She simply doesn’t apply for anything… it’s extremely frustrating as I am being too nice in not forcing her. I know I will not be able to enforce any ultimatums (I want to be with her)…,” the man said.
Some offered sound advice as well, telling the man it might be best for her to work in a field related to her interests.
“What are her interests? is there anything specifically she likes to do? i found that i became super depresed when working in food service, but i LOVE the comsetics industry. if not, is there something she can do as a remote job? what is her degree in, if she has one?” one user commented.
What to do if your partner is depressed
If left untreated, depression can have a detrimental effect on relationships and isolate those affected. Here are some ways that you can help your partner overcome depression:
Find out more about depression. Gaining knowledge about the illness is a crucial first step in supporting your partner. According to Psycom, the best ways to learn more about your partner’s experience with depression are through asking open-ended questions and empathic listening; however, you can also read up on the subject and speak with a professional.
Be there for them. Even though researching the best treatment choices and connecting with others going through similar experiences are also beneficial, experts suggest that the best thing you can do for your partner is to be there for them no matter what.
If they want to hold a conversation, give them your full attention and put away your devices. Additionally, refrain from passing judgment or offering counsel after they’ve talked about their personal experiences.
Urge them to get professional help. People believe all too frequently that they just need to push themselves to get better, but depression rarely gets better on its own without medical intervention. Encouraging treatment and attending appointments are two ways you can support your partner.
Cook healthy meals. People with depression may find it challenging to make healthy decisions because the illness can drain their energy and interfere with their ability to sleep and eat. This is why it’s crucial for their partner or immediate family members to make this decision for them until they get better. Avoid eating any junk food or unhealthy meals.
Take her out on a date. Set aside time each week to rent a movie or play board games. Also, encourage your partner to go out with you at least every week. You can do outdoor activities like hiking, camping, or picnics.