Relationship Unsure if I make him happy anymore

lauren1house

New Here
Hey I’m new.

I have a boyfriend of 6 years. Earlier this year he told me he had plans to propose. Then he fell into a depression after graduating college in May. He admitted it was the first time in his life that he ever had the chance to feel safe and stable.

Slowly he started second guessing himself. He wasn’t sure I made him happy anymore and he didn’t know why. He told me the proposal was off. Then he told me he wasn’t sure he wanted to be with me anymore. We got relationship counseling. We’ve found out it’s a mixture of depression and trauma causing an emotional shut down. It’s also possible he pushes me away so hard because I make him feel happy but feeling one emotion opens the doors to feeling all emotions.

We are currently on a break. I’m praying he gets healthy and we live our happy life together. Does anyone have stories of hope? Advice? Info? I’m in a lot of pain (but I’m willing to go through it for him) and need I need support.
 
Slowly he started second guessing himself. He wasn’t sure I made him happy anymore and he didn’t know why.
hello lauren. welcome to the forum.

dunno about your s.o. but i can't even love myself when i get like this. when i can't love myself, i have no love to give anybody. not even the love of my life.

i'm still not sure why, but i think i might be gaining some clues i have yet to find gentle words for.
 
The great humourist Jim Unger of Herman fame put it best: All the happiness in the world is between your own two ears. I say this to remind you that this is an issue he has to work on himself, and that giving him the time and space to work on his own issues is so much better for both of you than you driving yourself crazy trying everything under the sun to “make” him happy. I think you guys are on the right track by seeking counselling, but if his is trauma based I hope that he is continuing to have counselling for himself. In the mean time, look after what is between your own two ears, your own happiness, things that you can do for yourself to help you through your difficult time. Maintain your own friendships and activities, counselling for yourself. No one can guarantee the relationship will work out. Feeling safe and stable in a relationship is so important, but sometimes feeling too comfortable may mean staying in a relationship that may not be the right one. Only he can know his own mind. I am sorry that you are going through this, there isn't a quick fix even with therapy, that waiting game is the worst. Look after yourself.
 
Then he fell into a depression after graduating college in May.
About 6mo after? Because it’s unfortunately NORMAL to fall into a suicidal depression about 6mo after graduation or retirement. The only stats that are higher for suicide are death of a child, or testifying in a rape case.

If you happen to work in a psych-adjacent field, they know this, and send people for continuing Ed &/or survival courses to spike the adrenaline… but otherwise? Unless it’s a live-or-die field… most people “just” hate life for about a year until the effects wear off/ want to die/ end relationships/ move/ drink-drug-gamble-starve, and about a year later? Life becomes fun, again. No bad habits needed. Unless you’re an addict, and just found out.

It’s a neurochem thing… that has adapted to midterms/finals/break… and suddenly finds itself in a new environment, and takes awhile to adapt to it. Essentially? It’s the brain jonesing for what it expects, and doesn’t find, twice. After about a year (IE twice/thrice as long as the first gap) it adapts. If a person survives the first hard hit, they’re totally fine again. It’s “just” the gap that’s dangerous. Unless you’re an addict. And find the relief from the pain as necessary as air. Everyone else? Kills themselves, or gets through it. And moves on.

If ^^^this^^^ is what’s happening? You are as important as the leaf you didn’t notice last Tuesday. It has nothing to do with you. It’s “just” biology/part of being human. He’ll get through it, or off himself, and you will your life, with him just a memory of “I wonder how he’s doing?” when reminded of him, every few years.

Nothing PTSD in play. Just being human. And the girlfriend in uni.
 
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