Partner is like a different person/anger management groups

Apologies, this is quite a long story, but I’ll try to keep it as short as possible. I guess everything started 2 years ago, when my partner’s Mum passed away. It was a very traumatic time. But we did just crack on, until the 1st anniversary of passing, when my partner had his first episode where he couldn’t get out of bed and go to work. I could see cracks starting to show, but he’s the kind of person who thinks he needs to carry everyone, neglecting himself. Fast forward to now, he is a completely different person. About 4 months ago he started changing so much. Apart from low mood and not being able to get out of bed, he started talking about how bulls**t it is that we have to work and how little time is ours, how doctors are only big Pharmaceutical giant that look for profit, not to help people, how he despises taking antidepressants for this exact reason etc. Smoking weed and drinking a lot as well. About a month ago he broke to me that he’s been taking cocaine ‘all the time, for months’ (last 10 months). This totally crushed me, I knew about weed, didn’t like it, but thought it might help him relax, and didn’t want to be on him about it all the time. The cocaine was an absolute shock, and break of trust. We’re supposed to be getting married next year, and I don’t know whether I can build my future with someone who’s been lying to me for nearly a year, spent all of his savings. He did say that he chose the drugs over a bridge, which is scary. I presume his antidepressants did nothing because he was on coke all this time, plus he neglected repeating his prescription, and had 5 days breaks in between.

He did seek private therapy, and drug therapy. He stopped taking cocaine, but now smokes more than ever, even at 8am, then goes back to bed. This week he’s been worse than ever before. Missed his therapy, started being horrible to me, which has never happened before, and keeps going into dark corners of the internet, searching for everything’s that’s wrong with the world. He’s also obsessing over what’s caused him to feel like this, so he’s ‘doing his own research’. He went from trauma to Autism as a reason for his mental health problems, and is obsessing over the fact that he might have Autism. If he wants to get checked then that’s fine. But this self diagnosis and looking into things make him sound completely out of it. I can’t stand anything he’s saying anymore. He’s always been so grounded. Now, he seems so detached from reality, and I get frustrated and angry with him. He always enjoyed working, was very ambitious, and now says it feel cathartic to stick his finger up to his employer and tell him he’s not coming in. I wonder whether this is just depression talking, or whether this is really who he is, which is not the person I fell in love with.

So I guess I’m looking for some reassurance, that my old partner is still there. And perhaps any anger management/support groups for me. I keep shouting at him, trying to challenge him and we end up yelling at each other, like we have never done before. I feel like my mental health has declined so much as well, I don’t have the capacity to look after him anymore, and went into the fight mode. I’ve started counselling, they’ve suggested CBT, but so far I’m struggling to match it to my circumstances.

He’s gone to his sister’s for couple of weeks. So I want to use that time to refuel, and maybe work on myself so I can support him, rather than making things worse. I’ve told myself I’ll madidate everyday, but I haven’t seen many groups for people who support people with depression.

I know comparitively little about mental health issues, but was married for 34 years without a serious slanging match, before I was widowed suddenly.
From that experience, I know that this is no basis for a marriage, it should be the two of you dealing with things together.

Who owns your home? I’ve been through some terrible traumas, but vowed that I wouldn’t take it out on anyone.
I think you need to separate, he needs to sort things out and have counselling, and it would benefit you too.

He is clearly very angry with the world but has no right to take it out on anyone else.
he has to sort this out for himself, like an alcoholic.

This is why this breaks my heart. Before his problems we were the couple everyone looked up to, and it felt that way. We barely argued, and if we did, it was more like bickering. We were always able to put ourselves in each others shoes, and always apologised and moved on. He’s never disrespected me like that before, always thought of me and it really felt like he is my person and I will never be able to find anyone better. He’s always been my and everybody else’s rock, and I think that lack of self care has led to this

This seems like a different person, like he’s got some sort of existential crisis. Clearly can’t connect to reality atm. It’s like he knows he’s hurting me but doesn’t give a sh*t. I’ve been supporting him for the last 2 years, whilst dealing with my own issues. But now I just feel like I’ve ran out of fuel. He is doing all the right things, like seeking therapy and going on meds. I’m not making excuses for him at all, but I just wonder whether what’s happening now is a mixture of him coming off drugs, the meds starting to work, and therapy starts unwrapping things. But still, the betrayal is there, and I’d be investing my whole future, future kids into this. How can I trust that he won’t have another breakdown, and that he will be the partner I fell in love with in the first place?

Also, I know this all sounds like I’m a classic case of victim blaming… but I am aware it probably is me who starts most of the fights. I get frustrated by him not getting out of bed/ talking nonsense, so I challenge him. He then accuses me of not wanting to listen/belittling him. Then we shout. He himself is normally a very levelled, calm person. Yesterday before he left I’ve managed to keep my cool. He still worked himself up just talking, but it diffused because I didn’t engage as much. And he did get out of bed and did some garden work. That’s why I think perhaps me dealing with my emotions and not getting triggered by him being the way he is atm, might be the way forward. I don’t want to just leave him to it, I want to encourage him to get out of bed and do small tasks. But I want to try and do it calmly. I’m quite a fiery person, and he triggers a lot of my anger atm.

We both own the house, 50/50.

He needs to talk to someone, but it has to be the right person, and finding that person is going to be so difficult.
You mention work - is there anyone at work he might talk to? Are they even aware that he has a problem?
Sending you a huge (HUG) as I know you must be going through hell at the moment.

Thank you, I am also very sorry for losing your other half suddenly after such a long time. He’s been in touch with work and they have been great. They told him he can have as much time as he needs. But the way he is now he is now, he said he’s not worried if he loses his job because he can just go and be a post man, he believes it’s an easy job. If he wants to retrain then that’s fine, but he needs to make those decisions when he’s well.
I’ve edited my previous reply. Like I said, I am aware that I get triggered by him, so I probably start most of the fights, because I’m frustrated by his behaviour.
He seems to be getting on really well with his therapist, who suggested I come in at some point too. He does seem like a good guy. So I just hope that it is just time, that his therapist is the right person, and that the time apart we’ve got atm will do us good. But you’re right, he needs to deal with his issues before he does come back.

I would suggest that you need to see the therapist yourself, without your partner’s knowledge.
The therapist wouldn’t tell you what your partner has said to him, but it would be helpful for him to hear your side of the story from your point of view. He might be able to give you ideas about what amounts to rebuilding your relationship.
It’s such a shame that a good partnership has collapsed so disastrously.
Did it all start with his mum dying?

Yeah, might not be a bad idea. I did start counselling, just the NHS one for now. But I wonder whether seeing the same therapist is a better idea, or whether it’s a bit of a conflict of interest for him?

And yeah, it does feel like this is when the walls started crumbling. He reckons he’s struggled with other things in the past, mostly to do with Autism symptoms (Always feeling like an outsider, really overthinking what’s been said etc). And he did suffer a lot of trauma in his childhood, so I wonder whether he’s just not dealt with it and it’s all coming out now. His Mum’s passing/lockdown might have been triggers for much bigger issues. He’s always been grounded, looking after himself, enjoyed working. We’ve achieved a lot together. So it’s scary to think that all of this wasn’t him, that he was just doing what people expected of him. That’s why I try and hold onto hope that this is depression talking, and not the real him I’ve known for the last 7 years.

We are going to look into couple’s counselling too, but I think he needs to get at least a little bit better for that.

I would suggest that one counsellor deals with you and him, with regard to your relationship, otherwise your partner will have to repeat things endlessly. Ring up the counsellor and explain the situation and ask to meet him, if only once.

Yes this is what we’re planning to do, the therapist suggested that himself. I’m not sure whether it’ll just be one session, or couples counselling for a few weeks, but my partner got an impression it’ll be a few sessions. Fingers crossed.

Thank you for taking time to read and reply to this. I guess only time will tell now x

Dear Justyna_2110
Hi i am Kristie i am an online community host for Carers UK. I am sorry to hear the problems you have with your partner and i am sure that the fellow carers on the forum will be able to help you. Carers UK also have a telephone number and email address which i will give to you below.
So welcome to the forum. You are not alone in your caring role and i am sure that many carers on here will understand exactly how you feel and will offer you their 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:- The second online weekly meet up is called Share And Learn:-Share and Learn | Carers UK.
Carers UK have a telephone number you can telephone them and this is 0808 808 7777 and is open from Monday to Friday from 9am-6pm. Our 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.
Best Wishes

Just thought I’d pop on here with an update.
He came home for couple of days for his therapy, I didn’t want him to drive there and back as its a 5hr round trip.
I did see some progress, and he said he is feeling a bit better. But those couple of days were a bit of a disaster. He keeps saying how now he Hayes the whole industry he’s in (first time um hearing that) and how he doesn’t want to do that job anymore. I said to him then it’s fine, but he needs to be making those decisions when he’s well. That didn’t go down well, he ended up being mean again and I ended up in tears. He did come into the bedroom after awhile and tried to diffuse things, which is a progress I guess. Normally he would just hide in the spare room.
We did have another fights just before he left back to his sisters though, because I’ve asked him not to smoke weed an hour before he’s supposed to be driving for over 2 hrs. And if he gets pulled over he could lose his license. This ended with him saying he can’t even think for himself, and punching a hole through the desk, and destroying the draw below it.
He then left in tears, but came back an hour later, and we had calmer conversation. He is back at his sister’s, but I feel like we didn’t really get anywhere.