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Mental Health Support
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saved by my kids?

I've been shattered by my wife leaving home in January, I had no idea how badly depressed I had been for so long - or how much it was upsetting her. That's depression at its most destructive, I guess. So I went from mild to severe depression and only the fact that I was left in the family home with our 3 children saved me from self destruction in the first few weeks. I'm exhausted and upset 24/7, but I have a reason to get up and put on a brave face.

I'm on Sertraline and it is definitely helping me to cope - I'm having paralysing anxiety attacks maybe twice a week instead of several times a day, so that's progress of a sort. The kids are being great, they know it upsets me when I see or speak to their Mum - it's not the contact but the coldness and the parting that gets me. I thought I was doing well until this week when I've had a couple of days of absolute despair. My son, who is ten, has got his little sisters up and got them breakfast and ready for school, while I've just about managed to get myself into shape to get them up the road and into school.

I know I'm not coping as well as a grown man should, but I am so proud of my children for understanding, in their own limited way, that Daddy needs help and that they can do a little bit to do that. I wish they didn't have to go through this, I wish that my wife (who I love above all, even now) understood that it's this wretched illness, not the me that is trapped behind it, that she's come to loath so much she's had to leave for her own sanity. I wish I could see a way forward that is also a way back. And if wishes were fishes we'd never go hungry.

There are no good days, but thanks to my little ones the bad days aren't quite so bad.

3 Replies

I hope you r ok. This is such a sad story but maybe your wife just needs a break. Depress is an awful thing but you will come through it a stronger person remember it's all in the mind and you will beat it. Don't let depression ruin your life. Your kids will get you through it and it's nice you still bother with your children most men don't in a marriage split

All the best big hugs

Annie x


Hi there that is very tough on you, but do not blame yourself for being depressed, your wife is maybe cracking up herself, as it is unusual to leave her children. Anyone, depressed or not depressed would be devastated if they were left with two young children. Firstly get all the help you can from your doctor and your family as it would be best not to put too much responisbility on your children. Your wife may come back in time but in the meantime, your priority is not wasting time being bitter or upset, just do the basics love and look after your children as they must be really upset too. I hope you have support in this, if not reach out to friends family for help. You can do it, and this could be a turning point in your life. Take it one day at a time, and check in here and let us know how its going. Big hug to you from Hannah in Dublin.



I'm sorry you've been having such a hard time but as you say it's great that you have children who understand and help you just as you understand and help them. It's much better for them than pretending everything's alright when it isn't, they will learn that when we need help it's ok and that even their dad can do that and still be a great dad.

Do you still love your wife? It sounds as if you do. Maybe you can write and tell her, explain how you've been feeling, maybe why you think the feelings developed and how they came to affect your behaviour towards her and other people. Whether she will come back or not at least she will understand you better and that will make it easier for you to both work well together for your children.



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