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Woman Considers Ending Her Relationship After Learning Her Boyfriend Struggled With Depression In College

Photo: Antonio Guillem / Marjan Apostolovic / Shutterstock
Sad man and woman

One woman was having doubts about whether she should still date her boyfriend because of a secret from his college years.

The woman then wrote to Slate’s advice column, “Dear Prudence” to ask for some guidance on her situation.

She explained that she recently met a guy and has been happier than ever but was now facing a bump in the road.

The woman’s boyfriend battled with depression when he was in college.

“They have alluded to a depressive period in their college years and I didn’t think much of it but recently it came up and they acknowledged that diagnosed depression doesn’t really ever fully go away,” the woman wrote.

Her boyfriend is quite open about his mental health now and is no longer struggling.

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The woman respected her partner's honesty and openness regarding his mental health but still has her fears.

The woman added, “They called their past depression severe, and I am afraid I could eventually be living on the edge again, always scared that it might come back.”

Her fears to be with her boyfriend stem from her past experience dating someone who struggled with mental health.

As the person she was dating was struggling with mental health issues, the woman was struggling too.

“The relationship became extremely difficult in its last years and I told myself after it was over that I simply can’t date another person struggling with their mental health. It just took too much of a toll,” she explained.

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As she is back in the same place with her current partner, she can’t help but think back to her previous relationship and the problems she had to face.

She wrote, “I never want to go back to that awful, helpless place where my life was controlled by my partner’s mental health problem, and now I can’t help but question the future I see with them.”

‘Prudence’ advised the woman to not break up with her boyfriend just because of his depression.

“I understand that you don’t want to endure another relationship that takes such a toll on you. I don’t want that for you either. But there’s a better way to protect yourself here,” Prudence wrote.

"Commit to never again staying in a relationship that is extremely difficult for multiple years."

Prudence explained that avoiding people with a past of mental health isn’t a solution as many people have similar issues. 

Choosing a person who hasn’t had any mental health issues can also cause stress as no relationship is perfect and everyone has their flaws.

The right to ensure one doesn’t have to suffer in a relationship is by recognizing when their relationship isn’t working anymore and it’s time to walk away.

"If you can do that, then you simply won’t ever be back in an 'awful, helpless place' where your life is bad because of someone else—due to their mental health challenges, infidelity, abuse, or even just incompatibility," Prudence continued.

“You’re in love with this guy! Keep dating him! Chances are if it ends it will just be because, well, most relationships end, not because of his depression.”

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Sanika Nalgirkar is a News & Entertainment Writer for YourTango. She has a master's degree in Creative Writing. See more of her writing on her website.

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