I’m Pushing My Boyfriend Away Because I Have Depression & He Has No Idea

Depression has always impacted my relationships in one way or another. In fact, I’d say it’s one of the main reasons none of my relationships have worked out, and I’m afraid my mental health is ruining my current one.

  1. I overanalyze everything my partner does. I can’t help but scrutinize every part of our relationship and let my thoughts get the better of me. I overthink what my partner says and I get paranoid about little things. I’m only tormenting myself by reading into things and I worry about his actions when really, it’s all in my head. When I ask him about things like his social media activity, he thinks I’m crazy for caring about stupid things like that.
  2. I get exhausted easily. Spending time with people is tiring and as much as I love hanging out with my boyfriend, I get so tired by the end of the day and I feel like I just need to be alone. I’m full of energy and fun when I first meet him, but after a few hours, I’m not as bubbly and talkative and I worry that I’m boring him. I just need time to recharge to be myself around him.
  3. My mood affects him. If I’m feeling down and depressed around him, he won’t be as fun either and I feel like my low mood rubs off on him which in turn makes me feel incredibly guilty because I just want him to be happy. I try to be my best self when I’m with him, but on down days, I can tell that he’s not having a great time with me.
  4. I have low self-esteem. I always worry that he compares me to the girls that he follows and likes on Instagram or that he’ll like another woman we walk past on the street because she’s more attractive than me. He tells me that I’m beautiful and that he feels lucky to be with me but I make myself think that he’d rather be with someone better, which makes me distance myself from him.
  5. I can’t explain that I have depression. Not only is my depression pushing him away but I’m worried that if I tell him that I’m depressed, I’ll completely lose him. Mental health issues are a huge burden to carry on your own but it can be an even bigger burden for a partner to carry, especially if they don’t understand how depression works. I don’t want him to worry about me or think I’m unstable, so I have to keep this secret to myself. I hate when he asks me what’s wrong and I can’t tell him.
  6. Socializing with him is hard. I find it hard to be myself around his family and friends because I worry they’ll think I’m really shy. I’m a naturally introverted person but having depression has made me retreat into my shell a bit more around people. I feel like I’ll make him look bad in front of his friends because I’m not as sociable as their girlfriends. I want him to be proud of me and want me to hang out with his friends but it’s hard when you’re struggling with depression.
  7. I feel like I bore him. Anyone with depression will know that when you’re depressed, you’re not exactly the most fun person to be around. I struggle to be happy and outgoing all the time and I feel like I straight up bore him sometimes. I want him to want to spend time with me but I feel like he’d rather be doing other things when I’m being boring and don’t have much to say.
  8. Conversations are a drag. I’m terrible at texting back and keeping an interesting conversation going over the phone. I sleep a lot from being depressed and I don’t go out that often, so when he asks me how my day’s been and the answer is usually quite mundane, it can be a struggle to keep talking to him. I want to talk to him all the time but I just don’t have the energy to do so.
  9. He gets annoyed about my sleep schedule. Having depression makes me lack energy and I wake up feeling tired a lot even though I sleep for at least 12 hours every night. My boyfriend’s an early riser and he sees sleeping in as a sign of being lazy. He always says I sleep too much, but I really need to sleep more to feel more energized.
  10. I’m scared to let myself get too attached. I’m too scared to tell him I love him in case he doesn’t say it back. I’m scared to get too emotionally dependent on him in case we break up and I’ll have to deal with the hurt. I’m bad at being affectionate towards him because I don’t want to get too attached in case the relationship ends and I have to go through heartbreak. I’m scared that he thinks I don’t care about him because I don’t kiss him or show signs of affection often enough when really I’m just scared of getting hurt and losing him.
Writer, thinker, storyteller, and lover. Emma is a freelance writer, editor, and owner of thethoughtjournal.com