I need to know how to handle this situation with the right heart, and in a Godly way.

Samantha - posted on 07/20/2012 ( 5 moms have responded )

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My husband is a Christian. He has been out of the word and has not had a great walk in the last 6 months or so. The other day I was telling him I need my Depression medicine again, I feel. He said he and I quote "I do not and will not support your drug addiction" I was dumbfounded, as he has seen how I can be without my Depression and ADHD medicine.

I had a baby 13 weeks ago and I have since gone back on my ADHD medicine but not my depression due to the fact that my hormones had not balanced out and I was still on an emotional high due to the baby.

It really hurt my feelings. My husband was raised to believe (from his father who is a pastor) that emotional illnesses are not real, it is weak people who listen to the lies of Satan and if you have Jesus than why do you need medicine.

I just don't know what to do to convince him it is real, that medicine is needed, and that I am not listening to satan? How should I approach him in a godly Manner?

Thanks for your advice and support.

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Alison - posted on 08/13/2012

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I agree that pulling a third party - a pastor or a close friend (male friend) to help him understand that you only want to be equipped to serve your family! If he is open to it, you could maybe bring him to see your doctor or counselor.

This must be so hard! My husband is the exact opposite, every time I cry (usually because he is being insensitive), he thinks I need to get back on some medication. :D

Alisha - posted on 08/06/2012

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I would definitely seek Godly counsel together (talk to him first) from your pastor or someone. I don't know that there really is a way you can convince him your depression is real, how can he deny it??? Does he not notice if you are depressed? Are you opposed to not taking your depression medicine and seeing how it goes? And just really getting closer to Christ. That is tough and I think his use of 'drug addiction' was unnecessary, unless you have one, but if you do he should have confronted you in a more loving way than that. Depression is real but Jesus can really heal all wounds. You need to be in prayer over this as with all things.

Samantha - posted on 07/25/2012

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Thank you Rebekah.

I do go to counseling and I have told him that I think God is using the medicine to help me through this. I do not take the medicine as a cure all.

I will be taking the medicine and counseling as well as praying and in the word daily.

He doesn't want to have a wife who has a mental illness and he fears there is a dependency to any drug when you start taking them and you become an addict.

Rebekah - posted on 07/24/2012

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Congratulations on your new baby!
It is really difficult when someone has been raised to believe that emotional illnesses are not real. If you know that the medication makes a difference for you, then it is important that you follow your doctor's recommendations for it. You certainly don't want to put yourself at risk for postpartum depression right now. I would say that, if your husband is open to it, share with him any scientific articles that explain how the brain chemicals work and how medicine works to stablize that. Perhaps hearing it from a professional would help as well--though if he doesn't believe in emotional illness, then he may not put much stock in what a psychiatrist or counselor says either. What about a pastoral counselor? Does your current church/pastor have a more accepting view of emotional illness/medications that might be of value to your husband?

I work in mental health, so we have conversations all the time about how both medicine AND personal work on issues offers the best prognosis. So maybe it would help to assure your husband that the medication will help to allow you to work on your mental attitude, spiritual focus, and coping skills.

We are all weak at times, aren't we? We are all vulnerable to Satan. Having a clinical illness--physical or emotional--makes one even more vulnerable. Yes, absolutely use your spirituality to cope. But your husband needs to understand that its hard to tap into any coping skills when depression can cause one's perspective, judgement, and motivation to go awry.

As far as doing it in a godly manner, be respectful. Acknowledge his reservations and let him know that you understand where his beliefs come from. Present information on depression or the science behind depression in a manner that isn't defensive, but rather as a way to add to his knowledge base. I know some faith perspectives can be anti-medications or even anti-science, but I view science and medications as a gift, in many cases, that God has allowed us to discover and explore so that we can help others to heal. And healing is something we are called to do, are we not?

Be sure that when you are taking the medication, you are not inadvertently sending messages that the medicine is "all you need" to get better, but rather actively demonstrate that you are also trying to incorporate other ways of altering your lifestyle so that you can work to manage your emotions as healthy as possible (prayer journals, yoga, counseling, creative outlets, support network, etc)

He may have fears that are underlying his beliefs. Why does he view it as a drug addiction? Is his fear that there is a physical addiction and you will become a stereotypical drug addict? Is he fearful of the stigma of mental/emotional illness and being judged by others?

I do hope that you are able to continue with your treatment regardless of your husband's response. I hope that it wouldn't take you suffering a severe depression for him to reconsider his views. Take care of yourself and your baby. Blessings to you, and I hope things look up soon.

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