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How Does Depression Affect Relationships?

 |  General

Depression is common in our society today, and it affects quite a few people, young and old alike. A recent study by Boston University reveals that about 32.8% of American adults are depressed. Increased irritability, loss of interest in favorite activities, feelings of unworthiness, and feeling bad from time to time are some common symptoms of depression.

Unfortunately, chronic depression can wreak havoc on all aspects of your life, affecting even your relationships. Read on to learn how depression can affect your relationships and how and where to get help.

How Relationships Can Impact Depression

Relationships and depression tend to complement each other. A healthy, honest relationship can add to your overall well-being and help you cope with depression. Subsequently, a bad relationship can significantly determine whether you end up depressed.

Relationships provide a support system of family, friends, and loved ones you can rely on when things go south. These people can help you maintain a positive perspective and make you feel less lonely.

Some studies on relationships and depression suggest that individuals in unhealthy relationships are equally at a high risk of suffering depression symptoms as those who aren’t. Simply put, a troubled relationship is a recipe for depression. Evidence also shows that about 60 percent of depressed people think relationship troubles are the primary cause of their condition.

Warning Signs that Depression Is Impacting Your Relationship

Depression symptoms vary in progression from one individual to another. Sometimes, these signs may gradually rise from mild (like wanting to spend time alone) to more severe episodes (like suicidal thoughts or troubled sleep patterns).

But how does depression affect relationships? Here are common warning signs that depression is taking a toll on your relationships.

  • Anxiety impacts your functioning: In mental health, anxiety and depression are often paired together and act as comorbidities. People with a mixture of anxiety and depression may suffer from concentration difficulties, irritability issues, and being always on guard. If they persist, these problems may cause feelings of uncertainty, which is a significant threat to your relationships.
  • You’re tempted to act out: Depressed individuals, especially men, are more likely to act out their depression. In most cases, they may resolve to drinking alcohol, having affairs, withdrawing, and other aggressive behaviors.
  • Emotions are difficult: Dealing with negative emotions is never easy, whether you’re depressed or not. However, when you’re depressed, you get overwhelmed, and you can easily shut down if strong emotions arise. Some depressed individuals may become overly self-critical or ruminative, while others ignore or deny their feelings.
  • You’re feeling hopeless: One of the most critical symptoms of depression is developing a sense of hopelessness which often leads to suicidal ideation. Feeling hopeless about your partner may make it seem like your relationship is over. However, a persistent feeling of hopelessness may signify depression, impacting your perception.
  • Your sex life is not what it used to be: Approximately 75 percent of people with depression report a decreased sex drive. Although it is normal to have fluctuations in your sex life, a long-term lack of partner connection may indicate depression.

Helping Loved Ones with Depression

When one person is depressed in a relationship, it affects the well-being of the other. Therefore, if a loved one is struggling with depression, there are ways to help them deal with their problem. Besides providing moral and emotional support, you should also consider treatment for healing.

Contact Bayless for Support

Relationships can feel difficult with depression. That’s why the team at Bayless Healthcare is committed to providing the best evaluation and treatment to put you or your loved one on the path of healing and hope restoration.

Schedule an appointment with our mental health professionals today for comprehensive telehealth therapy appointments.