I [28 M] with my [28 F] 4.5 years old; Her clinical depression has had a negative impact on my life and I am thinking of ending it all.

I have been dating my girlfriend for over four years, who suffers from clinical depression, a condition we share. We’ve known this about each other since the beginning of our relationship, and for the first two years, it wasn’t a problem. Since the start of the pandemic, her depression has been getting worse and worse, and it’s been at the point for a long time where it’s negatively affecting my life outside of our relationship, and I’m really worried that if we spend the rest of our lives together, my role will be that of a caregiver rather than a partner. By way of background, we met when we were both in our second year of our respective professional school. We were both doing relatively well, outside of the normal stress and existential dread of life exacerbated by our respective educational and career paths. As I continued with my studies, she quickly became overwhelmed by hers. She called me in tears almost every night, dreading getting up in the morning and going to school and the associated practical component of it. Eventually, she took a six-month depression-related health leave of absence from school. Understandably, she did nothing during this leave, focusing on her mental health, which seemed to improve rapidly while she was doing nothing. She went back to school shortly after the pandemic started, and the same thing happened; she was absolutely miserable. At this point, she had finished 3/4 of her professional education and I had graduated and started an out-of-state internship. She called back almost every night, and every night she sounded so utterly despondent that she was actually afraid that I would wake up the next morning to a voicemail from her mother saying that she had [done something that I cannot mention per Rule 5]. She ended up dropping out of school, which, if she really was making her miserable, was absolutely the right choice for her. She spent some time doing nothing, focusing again on her sanity. By doing nothing, she seemed fine. She started working a part time job. Eventually, she decided that a related profession in the same field as her previous education would probably be a better fit, and got a full-time job working as an assistant in that field, intending to take the standardized test to apply this cycle to attend that school. in 2023. She just started studying for this test, and after working full time and studying about two hours a night, her depression is back to where it was when she was in vocational school. She called me at work today crying in despair and saying that she couldn’t bring herself to take a practice test and that she didn’t want to apply this cycle. She doesn’t need to know what she wants to do for the rest of her life right now (we’re both in our late twenties), and I told her as understandingly as I could. At least she is working full time. That said, and I haven’t told you this part, her depression doesn’t seem to be caused by existential dread, fear of the future, and identity crisis alone; it seems to be caused by my little inconveniences taking her from zero to sixty quickly. She also has quite severe anxiety, to the point where ordinary tasks or daily minutiae are extraordinarily exhausting. For example, she requires a great deal of convincing to come to any function that involves my family, friends, or work, who she doesn’t know well (I actively try to include her in things so she becomes familiar and comfortable with these people, but she almost always refuses). Then she gets mad when I go to these events without her. We live on opposite sides of a densely populated metropolitan area with no public transportation, and she’s not willing to drive to visit me on weekends because driving makes her anxious; every weekend I drive 45 minutes to her and 45 minutes home the next day. I can count on the fingers of one hand the number of times she has returned this courtesy. Also, until recently, we were buying a house, and in today’s market relative to our price range, mathematically we just can’t afford a house that checks all the “boxes” we want. She has insisted that a house with very little bathroom counter space or an odd layout or a variety of other little problems will make her “miserable.” Her depression and anxiety seem to be triggered by anything that requires some degree of discomfort or effort. I can absolutely and wholeheartedly sympathize with the treatable physiological conditions of anxiety and depression. That said, hers seem to manifest when she’s doing something other than what she exactly wants to do, which, increasingly, is absolutely nothing. I’ve seen all of this through the lens of her depression, but it’s becoming clear that many of these things are not the result of a treatable medical condition, but character flaws. Regardless of the cause of it, they are having the effect of making me miserable. I have a full-time professional job that I have very little free time from, and the time I do have is spent doing what she wants. If we spend the rest of our lives together, I don’t see how I’ll be anything other than her caretaker. I recently found out that she hasn’t been taking her prescribed medication for the past few weeks. I have urged her to do so, but she refuses. She is absolutely miserable, and I am afraid that if I walk away, she [do something that I cannot mention per Rule 5]. An additional important detail is that she does not have a support system outside of me and her immediate family; she has no friends At the end of the day, I feel like I don’t have to set myself on fire to keep someone else warm; on the other hand, he is in a mental health crisis; on the other hand, she has been in a revolving door of mental health crisis for years. TL;DR: My girlfriend is severely clinically depressed, and has already reduced my role in our relationship to that of a caretaker, and it’s impacting my life outside of her. WIBTA for breaking things off, even though this would almost certainly make things worse for her.

I have been dating my girlfriend for over four years, who suffers from clinical depression, a condition we share. We’ve known this about each other since the beginning of our relationship, and for the first two years, it wasn’t a problem. Since the start of the pandemic, her depression has been getting worse and worse, and it’s been at the point for a long time where it’s negatively affecting my life outside of our relationship, and I’m really worried that if we spend the rest of our lives together, my role will be that of a caregiver rather than a partner. By way of background, we met when we were both in our second year of our respective professional school. We were both doing relatively well, outside of the normal stress and existential dread of life exacerbated by our respective educational and career paths. As I continued with my studies, she quickly became overwhelmed by hers. She called me in tears almost every night, dreading getting up in the morning and going to school and the associated practical component of it. Eventually, she took a six-month depression-related health leave of absence from school. Understandably, she did nothing during this leave, focusing on her mental health, which seemed to improve rapidly while she was doing nothing. She went back to school shortly after the pandemic started, and the same thing happened; she was absolutely miserable. At this point, she had finished 3/4 of her professional education and I had graduated and started an out-of-state internship. She called back almost every night, and every night she sounded so utterly despondent that she was actually afraid that I would wake up the next morning to a voicemail from her mother saying that she had [done something that I cannot mention per Rule 5]. She ended up dropping out of school, which, if she really was making her miserable, was absolutely the right choice for her. She spent some time doing nothing, focusing again on her sanity. By doing nothing, she seemed fine. She started working a part time job. Eventually, she decided that a related profession in the same field as her previous education would probably be a better fit, and got a full-time job working as an assistant in that field, intending to take the standardized test to apply this cycle to attend that school. in 2023. She just started studying for this test, and after working full time and studying about two hours a night, her depression is back to where it was when she was in vocational school. She called me at work today crying in despair and saying that she couldn’t bring herself to take a practice test and that she didn’t want to apply this cycle. She doesn’t need to know what she wants to do for the rest of her life right now (we’re both in our late twenties), and I told her as understandingly as I could. At least she is working full time. That said, and I haven’t told you this part, her depression doesn’t seem to be caused by existential dread, fear of the future, and identity crisis alone; it seems to be caused by my little inconveniences taking her from zero to sixty quickly. She also has quite severe anxiety, to the point where ordinary tasks or daily minutiae are extraordinarily exhausting. For example, she requires a great deal of convincing to come to any function that involves my family, friends, or work, who she doesn’t know well (I actively try to include her in things so she becomes familiar and comfortable with these people, but she almost always refuses). Then she gets mad when I go to these events without her. We live on opposite sides of a densely populated metropolitan area with no public transportation, and she’s not willing to drive to visit me on weekends because driving makes her anxious; every weekend I drive 45 minutes to her and 45 minutes home the next day. I can count on the fingers of one hand the number of times she has returned this courtesy. Also, until recently, we were buying a house, and in today’s market relative to our price range, mathematically we just can’t afford a house that checks all the “boxes” we want. She has insisted that a house with very little bathroom counter space or an odd layout or a variety of other little problems will make her “miserable.” Her depression and anxiety seem to be triggered by anything that requires some degree of discomfort or effort. I can absolutely and wholeheartedly sympathize with the treatable physiological conditions of anxiety and depression. That said, hers seem to manifest when she’s doing something other than what she exactly wants to do, which, increasingly, is absolutely nothing. I’ve seen all of this through the lens of her depression, but it’s becoming clear that many of these things are not the result of a treatable medical condition, but character flaws. Regardless of the cause of it, they are having the effect of making me miserable. I have a full-time professional job that I have very little free time from, and the time I do have is spent doing what she wants. If we spend the rest of our lives together, I don’t see how I’ll be anything other than her caretaker. I recently found out that she hasn’t been taking her prescribed medication for the past few weeks. I have urged her to do so, but she refuses. She is absolutely miserable, and I am afraid that if I walk away, she [do something that I cannot mention per Rule 5]. An additional important detail is that she does not have a support system outside of me and her immediate family; she has no friends At the end of the day, I feel like I don’t have to set myself on fire to keep someone else warm; on the other hand, he is in a mental health crisis; on the other hand, she has been in a revolving door of mental health crisis for years. TL;DR: My girlfriend is severely clinically depressed, and has already reduced my role in our relationship to that of a caretaker, and it’s impacting my life outside of her. WIBTA for breaking things off, even though this would almost certainly make things worse for her.

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