It’s hard isn’t it? To watch her struggle with something you have no control over.
Watching your wife suffer from depression is no easy task. You want to take away her pain. You want to tell her it’s all going to be okay. You want to fix it, but you can’t. You are used to fixing things around you, but you can’t fix this and that’s incredibly frustrating isn’t it?
I see you pick up dinner because she’s too exhausted to cook. I see you pick up the mail and run errands for her. I see you get the groceries because she hasn’t been able to leave the house for days. I know you worry about her every day, but there is something you need to know. You are doing everything right. You’re helping her more than you know. You may not be able to fix it, but your love helps her heal in more ways than one.
Every time you help her with a task that overwhelms her, you’re helping.
Every time you tell her to give herself grace because she canceled plans to stay home, you’re helping. You may not be able to fix it for her, but your presence at her side means the world to her. Trust me.
Depression is something I never thought I’d deal with. Anxiety was always my battle, until my brother died and my two sons were diagnosed with a degenerative disease. Something happened to my brain chemistry through all that trauma. Suddenly, everything was overwhelming, painful and exhausting. Suddenly I had no energy, motivation or confidence.
I started listening to the lies that depression tells you.
It would shout at me in my mind…“You are failing. You will never be able to handle such a life. You are not good enough.” Depression reminds you to focus on the parts of your life that hurt, instead of the parts that you’re so grateful for. It blinds you from seeing the good things and brings your focus back to the pain. It forces you to see the future through a dark lens. I will never be okay again, you keep hearing over and over again in your mind.
Someday I know I will find the right treatment, the right help and the right perspective again. I know God will help me feel like myself again. Someday I will get back up and dust off the lies depression uses to bring me down. Someday I will help others who deal with the same issues. Someday soon I will be okay, but until then I will fight.
There’s something important you need to remember about your wife though.
Her beauty is not defined by her weakness or brokenness, quite the opposite actually. Her strength may seem fragile, but I assure you it takes more strength to fight a battle like this. It takes more strength to get back up when the world feels so heavy on your shoulders that you can barely stand. When you look at her, don’t look at her weakness, look at her accomplishments. Look at her ability to fight when depression keeps telling her she can’t do it.
And if you’ve ever feel sick and tired of watching her struggle, that’s okay – you’re human too. Just try to remember that she’s sick and tired of it too. So tired…
Just try to be patient. Give her grace, confidence and unconditional love. Give her the beautiful gift of a husband who sees past her pain, into her heart. Have faith in her dear husband.
I know you feel helpless watching her struggle, but you are doing so much more than you may realize. You are loving someone who feels unlovable. You’re comforting someone who feels an invisible pain that most people don’t understand. You are giving her hope, when she feels hopeless.
You are telling her she’s beautiful, when all she feels is broken.
To all the husbands that are by their wife’s side through sickness and health, you are amazing. Your love, faith and hope give her strength. When she can’t see past her own thoughts, your love gives her hope. Only God can heal her, but He can use you to help her fight the battle she’s in.
From a wife who suffers from depression, thank you.
Thank you to all the husbands who see past the darkness and focus on the light inside of us. Thank you for holding us up when we feel too weak to stand. Thank you for staying by our sides through it all.
And, to my husband. Thank you for loving me the way you do. God has used you to help me in so many ways. I promise to always be by your side through your hardships too. I love you more than words can say.