Starting a relationship while clinically depressed will almost certainly be more difficult than loving without depression, and no one can magically cure your symptoms. Pursuing a romantic relationship while loving with depression is not impossible, however. I have dated and gotten married through and in spite of depression, and have some advice for those looking to enter the dating field.
If you’re depressed, loving can magnify some of your challenges, such as fatigue, irritability, low self-esteem, and reduced libido.
The best way to stay strong? Seek treatment, if you haven’t already.
With greater awareness about depression, the stigma of mental illness has diminished somewhat. Therapy and/or medication use is common and often very successful.
More than 80% of people who seek treatment get relief from symptoms, according to Mental Health America.
Don’t Tell Everything On The First Date:
You don’t owe it to the person to discuss your depression on a first date, Friedman says. If things become more serious, however, you should tell your potential partner.Friedman says a good time might be when you decide to see each other exclusively or when you just feel that you care more deeply about each other.
“There are always individual differences,” she says. “Something may come up in a conversation where it would feel like a natural time or that it would be dishonest not to. You might choose that time to share that you have depression.”
Choose A Postive and Supportive Person:
Typical depression symptoms include low energy, feelings of sadness and hopelessness, and a pattern of negative thoughts. It is important to date someone who doesn’t exacerbate these negative feelings. Although only you can choose your own thoughts and behaviors, the people around you can influence your thoughts, which in turn influence feelings.
Someone without depression can complain or hear complaints and feel invigorated by the shared negativity and plain anger. In contrast, a person with depression can’t “turn off” negative feelings when the conversation is over. Instead, a depressed person absorbs the negativity and internalizes it. Those negative thoughts and symptoms linger on long after you’ve said goodbye. Everyone should be selective when finding a partner, but it is even more important for a depressed person to choose someone who is good for their mental health and recovery. Someone who is generally positive and supportive is a better person to be around than someone who is negative and pessimistic.
Don’t Just Depend On Your Partner:
Don’t depend on someone to save you from your depression. It is unrealistic to believe in the fairytale that if you have a significant other, you will feel better. The only things that will help you get over your depression are time to heal, listening to the directions of a medical professional, and working hard with a therapist. Only you can change your negative thoughts and behaviors.
Only you can take your medication regularly. Only you can exercise and eat a balanced diet. Being on a date may bring a temporary adrenaline rush and lift you from your lowered feelings for an evening, but you still have to go about your normal routine when that person isn’t around. Besides, we all know that the giddy excitement of a new relationship mellows out over time.