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You Asked: Depression Follow Up - My Boyfriend's Trying Too Hard

You Asked: Depression Follow Up - My Boyfriend's Trying Too Hard

Dear Sugar--

A while ago I wrote in about my depression and how to work through it with my boyfriend. I got some great advice from all you sugars, and started to make some progress with therapy and my relationship.

About a week ago my therapist suggested allowing my boyfriend to take care of me instead of always worrying about how my depression is affecting him. So I talked with him about it, and he was very gung-ho about being there for me. We also talked about how my sex drive is nonexistent, and how that's affected him. He said we'll just go with the flow, no pressure.

The problem is that every night, he tries harder than ever to turn me on and have sex with me. Ever since our talk, he's become overbearing ("Do you need anything? Are you okay? Are you sure?") and very forward with his sexual advances. Tonight he told me about big plans he has for us for the weekend - including dinner, dancing, and for the grand finale, a hotel stay.

I'm more frustrated, confused, and somehow hurt, than I was before we had our "groundbreaking" talk. I'm afraid he has grand expectations for this hotel stay that makes me feel like I am being pressured. It's not that I don't want to try, but lately I'm not comfortable being naked with myself, let alone anyone else. I feel like I've put a huge amount of pressure on him to pamper me and bring out the sexual goddess that's been hiding these past few months. Now, more than ever, I just feel like giving up on our relationship because I'm so emotionally exhausted. Dear Sugar, do you have any insight?

-Feeling Pressured and Still Depressed Debra

To see Dear Sugar's answer

Dear Feeling Pressure and Still Depressed Debra--

It sounds like your boyfriend has sweet intentions, but unfortunately they are coming across as overwhelming. He's probably really excited that you reached out for him and now he's trying to give you everything he's got. It sounds like he misunderstood you asking for support as giving him the green light to turn on the moves. I totally understand that that's probably the complete opposite of what you want from him right now, so talk to him.

I'm sure this depression has taken hold of your life, and if your boyfriend is constantly checking in with you and treating you like a helpless woman, it'll just be a reminder of the depression you're trying so hard to forget. I would be honest and have another heart-to-heart talk with him. Explain that you appreciate his kind support, but that it's a little overkill. Ask him to tone it down on the help and the sexual advances.

Perhaps a weekend together with him at some gorgeous hotel isn't what you need right now but rather a weekend apart. Having a chance to be alone with your thoughts might bring you a world of insight. But on the other hand, maybe you should just go with the flow and see where this romantic weekend away takes you. Getting out of your day to day life may be just the thing to get you out of this funk. It's totally up to you, so do what ever makes you comfortable. I hope this helps!

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princess_eab princess_eab 8 years
Hon, I responded to your last post too, and to be honest, I think you're in a very confused state right now. Think about how your mood and state of mind are affecting your boyfriend, too. I know exactly how you feel because I suffer depression as well-- nothing is good enough, or feels "right", nobody understands you, you don't have the energy to participate in anything. Last time, your boyfriend wasn't doing enough-- now it's too much. I hate to tell you, the guy is probably confused and will be even more so when/if you tell him to back off. My point is-- consider the possibility that a relationship may be too much for you right now. I know you've isolated yourself and you feel you need him, but also consider his feelings and what he deserves in a relationship. I know it's hard to think about this, but he obviously cares about you-- your relationship just sounds really stretched to its limit.
CanadianKate CanadianKate 8 years
I think you're being too hard on the guy! Instead of assuming your hotel stay is all a scheme to get you naked, take it as he is trying to give you a special and relaxing weekend that he feels you deserve. You are lucky to have a boyfriend who is so supportive, most guys would just sit there twiddiling their thumbs. This doesn't mean you shouldn't tell him exactly how you feel about the upcoming event. rather, tell him your insecurities and that may help you feel less pressured.You're doing so well and seem like you have come a long way. So try to let yourself enjoy this specail gift your boyfriend is giving you, even if there is no sex :) He will understand
CanadianKate CanadianKate 8 years
I think you're being too hard on the guy! Instead of assuming your hotel stay is all a scheme to get you naked, take it as he is trying to give you a special and relaxing weekend that he feels you deserve. You are lucky to have a boyfriend who is so supportive, most guys would just sit there twiddiling their thumbs. This doesn't mean you shouldn't tell him exactly how you feel about the upcoming event. rather, tell him your insecurities and that may help you feel less pressured. You're doing so well and seem like you have come a long way. So try to let yourself enjoy this specail gift your boyfriend is giving you, even if there is no sex :) He will understand
Julienne Julienne 8 years
themagicalbean: you said that very well and like you understand the condition someone is in while a depression
areasontohope areasontohope 8 years
It seems like he cares, and he's obviously trying to help... but I can understand where it gets to the point of being annoyed and frustrating. Just take it a step at a time.
JessBear JessBear 8 years
I've been in almost the exact same situation with my boyfriend. The constant pressure to have sex just made me want to have it even less, which I didn't think was possible.The thing to keep in mind is that you're not going to solve everything with one "groundbreaking" talk. You're going to have to have LOTS of talks, cluing each other in to your needs and wants. I know it's HARD when you're in a depression, but communication of your feelings helps. Let him know that the pressure for sex only makes things worse. Have him agree to back off completely for a while, just to give you a breather. At the same time, make a private goal that you will try to have sex at least once a month, on your terms. It really is good for you. It makes you feel closer to your partner and releases endorphines. And, in my experience at least, the less I have it, the less I want it, but the more I have it, the more I want it.
JessBear JessBear 8 years
I've been in almost the exact same situation with my boyfriend. The constant pressure to have sex just made me want to have it even less, which I didn't think was possible. The thing to keep in mind is that you're not going to solve everything with one "groundbreaking" talk. You're going to have to have LOTS of talks, cluing each other in to your needs and wants. I know it's HARD when you're in a depression, but communication of your feelings helps. Let him know that the pressure for sex only makes things worse. Have him agree to back off completely for a while, just to give you a breather. At the same time, make a private goal that you will try to have sex at least once a month, on your terms. It really is good for you. It makes you feel closer to your partner and releases endorphines. And, in my experience at least, the less I have it, the less I want it, but the more I have it, the more I want it.
themagicalbean themagicalbean 8 years
One of the worst parts of depression is the overwhelming need to give up. Even the smallest of tasks, such as brushing your teeth, can feel fruitless and trivial. The fact that you're searching for answers and being honest is commendable. Don't give up on your boyfriend. Don't give up on the people who refuse to give up on you.
vanyvrgs vanyvrgs 8 years
Just talk to him again. Tell him how you feel -- he can't read your mind.
Masqueraded_Angel Masqueraded_Angel 8 years
I'm really trying to understand where you're coming from. In your first post, you were upset with your bf because you said that he wasn't trying hard enough to help you. Now you're upset with him for trying too hard to help you. The poor guy is doing whatever he can to help you feel better about yourself and your relationship with him. And you're still contemplating leaving him, just like you were in your first post.To me, it honestly seems as though you aren't ready for this relationship with him. Now, I know that depression is a horrible, horrible condition. My mother-in-law goes through it regularly, and is currently on medication that doesn't work. I believe that you should let him go...not because he deserves better or anything like that, but because until you learn to love yourself, you're not going to be able to give 100% to this relationship.In the meantime, continue your visits with your counselor/therapist. You'll get better, I promise. :)
Masqueraded_Angel Masqueraded_Angel 8 years
I'm really trying to understand where you're coming from. In your first post, you were upset with your bf because you said that he wasn't trying hard enough to help you. Now you're upset with him for trying too hard to help you. The poor guy is doing whatever he can to help you feel better about yourself and your relationship with him. And you're still contemplating leaving him, just like you were in your first post. To me, it honestly seems as though you aren't ready for this relationship with him. Now, I know that depression is a horrible, horrible condition. My mother-in-law goes through it regularly, and is currently on medication that doesn't work. I believe that you should let him go...not because he deserves better or anything like that, but because until you learn to love yourself, you're not going to be able to give 100% to this relationship. In the meantime, continue your visits with your counselor/therapist. You'll get better, I promise. :)
popgoestheworld popgoestheworld 8 years
It sounds like this guy wants to do what he can to help you feel good.Problem: apparently he got the wrong message. Solution: tell him exactly how you want him to behave.He really sounds willing to do what it takes, so once you set him straight hopefully things will improve.Good luck.
popgoestheworld popgoestheworld 8 years
It sounds like this guy wants to do what he can to help you feel good. Problem: apparently he got the wrong message. Solution: tell him exactly how you want him to behave. He really sounds willing to do what it takes, so once you set him straight hopefully things will improve. Good luck.
Marci Marci 8 years
You really need to focus on yourself right now and trying to work through what the underlying causes are for your depression. As good as your boyfriend's intentions are, he is UNintentionally adding alot of pressure to your life because you feel guilty that he's being so sweet and trying so hard.
Marci Marci 8 years
You really need to focus on yourself right now and trying to work through what the underlying causes are for your depression. As good as your boyfriend's intentions are, he is UNintentionally adding alot of pressure to your life because you feel guilty that he's being so sweet and trying so hard.
maddiemay maddiemay 8 years
I agree w/ Sugar-- I think he really cares and doesn't understand he can't be the hero and 'save' you from depression. I think you need to let him know it means a lot that he's trying, but that you're not 'broken' and want his support, not rescuing as the more he tries the more you focus on the issue of depression itself.Maybe have the talk and let the wknd be a fun getaway and start to new outlook for boyfriend which may relieve some of the pressure from you and allow you to enjoy yourself!
maddiemay maddiemay 8 years
I agree w/ Sugar-- I think he really cares and doesn't understand he can't be the hero and 'save' you from depression. I think you need to let him know it means a lot that he's trying, but that you're not 'broken' and want his support, not rescuing as the more he tries the more you focus on the issue of depression itself. Maybe have the talk and let the wknd be a fun getaway and start to new outlook for boyfriend which may relieve some of the pressure from you and allow you to enjoy yourself!
maddiemay maddiemay 8 years
I agree w/ Sugar-- I think he really cares and doesn't understand he can't be the hero and 'save' you from depression. I think you need to let him know it means a lot that he's trying, but that you're not 'broken' and want his support, not rescuing as the more he tries the more you focus on the issue of depression itself. Maybe have the talk and let the wknd be a fun getaway and start to new outlook for boyfriend which may relieve some of the pressure from you and allow you to enjoy yourself!
maddiemay maddiemay 8 years
I agree w/ Sugar-- I think he really cares and doesn't understand he can't be the hero and 'save' you from depression. I think you need to let him know it means a lot that he's trying, but that you're not 'broken' and want his support, not rescuing as the more he tries the more you focus on the issue of depression itself. Maybe have the talk and let the wknd be a fun getaway and start to new outlook for boyfriend which may relieve some of the pressure from you and allow you to enjoy yourself!
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