Helping a partner with undiagnosed mental health problems

My fiance and I have recently gotten engaged.

Over the last 3 months, he has spiralled into a deep and dark depression. He wants to leave and go home but promises that he still loves me. He wants to live a life of solitude but cannot go a few hours without touching me or holding my hand.

I am desperately trying to be an understanding and supportive pillar that takes all of his depressive behaviour unpersonally but recently, it is proving to be very hard. He is lost in himself entirely and seemingly unwilling to try and repair anything. He is trying to improve his mental health. He’s taking anti-depressants and has recently upped his dosage. He’s seeing a therapist and having very open discussions with his family and myself however, I am now beginning to suffer myself. I am an anxious wreck. I have terrible fear that I shall come home and he shall be gone, which is also fuelled by his mother goading him to come home.

I am grieving a relationship that was so utterly perfect and beautiful 3 months ago and is seemingly slipping away from me through no fault of our own. How do I continue to support someone when every time they go to ask me a question that I know is going to be significant, I am throwing up in my mouth through anxiety? Has anyone else ever experienced this or something similar with their partner and if so, how did you manage to help them and overcome your own worries and fears about your relationship?

I am desperate to remind him that fundamentally, we are an extremely good couple and when he isn’t suffering, we are so happy but he cannot see it passed the thick fog that depression has ‘gifted’ him with. Any ideas welcome.

His mother is clearly the problem!!!

Dear Rebekah_2109
Hi I am sorry to hear that you are in a difficult situation and that i am sure you will find help from fellow carers on the forum. I am sorry to hear the problems you have in your relationship with your partner. Just to let you know Carers UK also have a telephone number that i would think would be a good idea to give a ring so that they can help you in your situation. I will give the number below.
So Rebekah I am Kristie and I am an online community host for Carers Uk. I would like to say welcome to the forum. You are not alone in your caring role as I am sure that many on here will understand exactly how you feel and will offer you support. Caring can be very lonely and the pandemic has made caring responsibilities challenging as many carers have been socially restricted and unable to attend social groups etc.
Carers UK are running online weekly meet ups for carers and you can find the information on how to register at Care For A Cuppa:-Online meetups | Carers UK. There is a second online weekly meet ups for carers called Share and Learn:-Share and Learn | Carers UK.
The telephone number for Carers UK is 0808 808 7777 and it is open Monday to Friday between the hours of9am-6pm. The email address is (
They provide information and guidance to unpaid carers. This covers:-
-Benefits And Financial Support
-Your Rights As A Carer In The Workplace
-Carers Assessments And How To Get Support In Your Caring Role
-Services Available To Carers And The People You Care For
-How To Complain Effectively And Challenge Decisions.
I hope you find some answers to your difficult situation.
Best Wishes

Hi Rebekah,
Look - I’m not an expert in mental health, but from reading your post it sounds like your fiance is in the middle of a ‘tug of war’ between you and his mother!! Both fighting for him. This is not a good situation for any of you. It’s no wonder you’re in a state!
My advice is for you to take a big step back.
Let him return to his mum if he wants to. It doesn’t mean that he’s ending the relationship - it just means that he needs to be alone to sort himself out. He probably feels under extreme pressure right now and just wants to escape.
You are important too, so don’t ignore your own needs. Have you friends you can socialise with or family you can visit? Find things you like doing on your own - you don’t have to do everything as a couple.

Make it clear that you are NOT going to get married with things as they are.
I never had a cross word with my MIL in 34 years of marriage.
We never had a tug of war, we both knew how much we both loved him.
I always loved his mum too, a real “mother hen” type, and she always loved my kids as much as I did.
There is no finite amount of love, just because he loves you doesn’t mean he loves her less.
You need to feel happy and loved by his family too, and it really doesn’t sound like it’s happening now?