Married To Three Partners

No this is not about polygamy though I’m sure some people will say it feels that way as I explain  things. 

As of the beginning of 2017 I have been married to an amazing woman for 19 years but we’ve been together for 23 years in total. We met in our last year of high school and have been together since then. Now I’m going to admit it hasn’t all been smooth sailing, a very large portion of the problems came from me. We both come from a generation in which mental illness was rarely ever discussed if at all. Most of the time it was covered up by comments of ‘toughen up’or ‘just get over it’. So no surprise that I wasn’t aware of what to look out for either in myself or my wife. 

It was in 2000 that we moved away from our families and started our new life in Brisbane. Between my working long hours thanks to commuting and my wife caring for our 2 children we didn’t see much of each other. We only had a few family members on her side down here so we didn’t have much social contacts outside of family. It was during this time that partner number 2, Depressed Wife, showed up and made her self at home.

In hind sight I should have realised things weren’t right but it was almost a decade before we figured things out. Depressed Wife impacted us both at times. She would cry for no reason. We used to have arguments over the silliest of things. We’d go to bed angry. She would find reasons not to spend time around me. The list of complications got rather large. During all this I blamed my wife for things without realising it was Depressed Wife who was causing the issues. 

If I had known better, I would have done more to sort through things but then again I had another partner who was popping in without me realising, Depressed Husband. Now see he was a master of stealth. He stayed hidden for many years, manipulating me from the shadows like some distorted puppeteer. I began to loose myself in online text based roleplaying. I found I chatted with others online more than in person.  At times I found myself resenting my family and my life as a whole. Depressed Husband made sure to pick fights with Depressed Wife at every chance he got. Between the 4 of us it was a miracle that we managed to last for as long as we did. 

We saw doctors who suggested medications for depression, which never seemed to work successfully for either of us. We tried counselling but hard to work through things when each person feels they aren’t the issue. There even came a point when I moved out for 6 months after Depressed Husband indicated that it was the only way I could be happy. I sat alone late one night, in the small house I was renting, and that’s when I saw what Depressed Husband had been doing for such a long time. He had lied to me so much I had lost view of what was important in my life. It was from then that I started to work with Depressed Husband always in full view of my mind. He wasn’t going to color my view of life anymore. 

As the years have progressed our understandings of each other have grown greatly. My wife and I work together now and we both keep an eye on each other’s Depressed personality. When we see the Depressed spouse starting to voice their opinions on things we work together to address what’s needed so they can go back to virtual sleep and let us work on our family.

Convoluted you might say but we aren’t all simply one person in our minds. We all have different parts that will show over time and in this case our Depressed spouses have certainly made it difficult. While medication does help it’s only through understanding how and when depression affects us that we can change directions. Dedication to each other and a desire to grow makes a big difference in the world today.

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