Mental illness and the stigma around it can cause many other issues that could be sorted out only if we were more open and acceptable about mental illness. One fact we must all accept is that mental illness is very common and it can happen to anyone. It’s as serious as any other physical illness and the patient requires equal amount of love and care or in fact a little more. Depression is the flag bearer of mental illness, the effects of it are not hidden from us it can get very serious if not acknowledged in time.
People often consider a person in a relationship is happy and can never be depressed. Which is not true again, depression can hit anyone. But due go to this common misunderstanding among people here are some effects of mental illness on romantic relationship.
· Communication issues
First and foremost issue that any couple would face is that of communication issues. Due to stigma around mental illness, there would be a lot of guilt and anger about self which makes it difficult for the patient to express it to his/her partner. People suffering from mental illness often start staying aloof, they avoid talking much and therefore, the couple starts facing communication problems. With all these going on if the partner is not aware of the situation it can take the relationship to breaking point. Therefore, it’s very necessary to talk about your mental health, only then people can understand you and find solutions for you.
· Intimacy problems
Intimacy problems are bound to happen. A person who isn’t feeling mentally well cannot get intimate as his thoughts and his heart is somewhere else. It can make a person disinterested in sex may be due to low self-esteem or performance anxiety or sometimes it’s the side effect of the medicines. Lack of intimacy may disrupt the romantic relationship and affect the bond of the couple.
Co-dependency is a situation which arises when a person is in a relationship with someone who is addicted to something like drugs, alcohol or gambling and the person becomes the caretaker of the other person. Then the person starts to get extremely dependent on another person for its decision and loses one’s sense of identity. This will severely affect any relationship because dependency makes relationship unable to continue as it might cause manipulation, abusing and unhealthy behaviour.
· Instability in relationship
It’s natural with all of the above problems in a relationship, the relationship is bound to be in stable and it might start affecting the other person too. An unstable relationship is difficult to handle and thus can lead to a break-up.