Mental Health In Romantic Relationships
How mental issues may affect your relationship.
Mental Health 05th Jun, 2021
Nearly half of all individuals will suffer from a mental disorder at some point in their lives. Mental illness can lead to a lower quality of life, decreased productivity and employment, and even physical health problems. Post-traumatic stress disorder, major depressive disorder, generalised anxiety disorder, and alcoholism are among mental illnesses that can impact a person’s relationships. In fact, according to experts, a romantic relationship may be the most damaged by a mental illness.
The good news is that having a healthy, loving, and long-term relationship with someone who has a mental condition is feasible. If this applies to you, be aware of the unique problems you and your spouse may face, and use tools and tactics to strengthen and nourish your connection.
How can Mental Illness Affect Intimate Relationships?
The challenges listed below are frequent among couples who are dealing with mental illness. As no two relationships are identical, it’s critical to consider yours to determine where you might need further help:
- Shame And Resentment Are All Emotions That People Experience:
It’s difficult enough to have a mental illness. Still, the stigma connected with mental illnesses can add an extra layer of stress for both spouses. A person with a mental illness may experience shame, humiliation, or guilt due to their condition. They may try to conceal their symptoms or neglect to seek care. In the meantime, their partner may be perplexed or frustrated by their inability to assist them. A person suffering from depression or anxiety may find it challenging to complete domestic activities. Also, they have limited emotional availability, struggle to keep a job, and lack the desire to socialise, among other things. These actions and obstacles can put a strain on their connection with their partner.
- Problems With Intimacy:
A person with a mental illness may become uninterested in sex, either due to the disease itself or their therapy. Many people with mental illnesses have feelings of inadequacy, performance anxiety, and low self-esteem. This can result in fewer opportunities for bonding and unmet needs for both partners.
- Codependent Tendencies Pose A Danger:
Codependency is a dysfunctional relationship pattern in which one spouse supports the other’s poor mental health, addiction, and/or coping mechanisms. The self-worth of a person with mental illness may begin to be determined by how much they are “needed” or how much they can “take care of” their loved one. Codependency can lead to abusive behaviours such as manipulation, name-calling, and other toxic dynamics in extreme circumstances. It will assist if you can tell the difference between the need to encourage and help and the codependent nature of controlling the other person’s symptoms.
When both parties have the skills and understanding to handle and communicate through these challenges, dealing with a mental health problem can be managed. This is why there needs to be a paradigm shift: people should feel empowered to seek care if they or a loved one suffers from mental illness. Mental illness is neither a moral nor a character weakness. People must be held accountable for their choices and behaviors. Still, they also deserve context, understanding, and support to learn how to manage their health and recover from trauma.
Learn about mental illness as a couple. This will help you understand it better and show you how the symptoms emerge in your marriage or relationship. You’ll be better able to help each other and your family if you take care of your physical and mental health. To take better care of yourself, plan beneficial self-care actions such as frequent exercise, a good diet, and consistent sleep.