Do you experience moments of depression when your spouse travels?
If your answer to that question was a “yes,” this article is for you.
I understand this can be challenging, and you want it to stop already.
And it’s usually more difficult for people who have amazing spouses.
So if your partner is a very present husband or wife and parent that you are very in love with, you will likely find it more challenging when they have to travel.
The interesting part about this is that it doesn’t get better with time.
Many people who used to experience this same issue say that even after years of marriage, they still have the same feeling of misery when their spouse has to travel.
This simply means that it is important to find out how to deal with the situation and not just assume it will improve with time.
Any situation that causes depression is serious and should be handled as such.
This is why I’ll be sharing the reasons this happens and practical tips on dealing with it.
Why People Deal With Depression When Their Spouse Travels: 5 Reasons
1. They’re lonely
Loneliness is the primary reason people become depressed when their spouse travels.
Having to deal with the absence of a loved one is not easy, and people have different capacities when it comes to handling things like that.
Some people just get sad and miss their loved ones, but for others, it may progress to depression.
The overwhelming feelings of isolation and loneliness sometimes contribute to depressive symptoms.
You may feel drained because you’re lacking the emotional support your spouse provides when they’re around.
In cases where the absent spouse is the social butterfly in the relationship when they travel, their spouse may have less social interaction with people outside the house, which can contribute to their feeling of loneliness.
Generally, you may miss your spouse and the shared activities you both engage in, and this can create a sense of emptiness within you.
2. Change in routine
When a spouse travels, many things change, including the normal home routine.
The responsibilities they used to handle are now an added burden to their spouse.
When you are confronted with tasks and errands that used to be entirely handled by your spouse, their absence dawns on you more, and feelings of instability may be triggered within you.
You may begin to feel an unease and find it difficult to cope with the change.
Your spouse traveling obviously means additional responsibilities for you.
This, combined with the loneliness you already feel, can be overwhelming.
Fear of the unknown is another leading cause of depression in people dealing with the absence of their spouse.
There are a lot of uncertainties in life, and having your spouse far from you in a place where you can’t see them and have no control over what happens to them adds to the list.
People may find themselves constantly worried about their partners’ well-being and security.
Dwelling on thoughts centered around whether they’re safe and in a good place or not can leave one depressed.
For other people, the fear is for themselves.
They do not feel safe when their spouse travels.
They have built a high level of dependency on their partner, and they feel scared when they’re not around.
Just like I explained above, some people have developed a high level of dependency on their partner, making it difficult to function in their partner’s absence.
The reliance on their spouse emotionally, mentally, and even physically in some ways will make it more challenging for them to cope in their absence.
5. Pre-existing depression
Some people may notice a high level of depression when their spouse travels, but in reality, the depression may have a different root.
External happenings may just trigger it, but it goes way beyond them.
Clinical depression may be the actual culprit, causing individuals to experience moments of deep sadness and misery when their spouse is not around.
People deal with mental health issues, and sometimes, they can easily go undiagnosed.
However, suppose a person has a history of depression or other mental health challenges.
In that case, they are very likely to be susceptible to experiencing moments of extreme sadness and depression when they are subjected to stress or a challenging new situation, such as an absent spouse.
How To Deal With Depression When Your Spouse Travels: 6 Ways
1. Build an independent mindset
Serving joy and satisfaction from your spouse is beautiful, but it should not be the sole source of happiness and fulfillment.
If you find yourself constantly depressed and sad, unable to function whenever your spouse travels, you need to work on your mindset.
I am not encouraging you to detach yourself from your spouse completely; I am encouraging you to remember that you are first an individual before you are their partner.
Have a wholesome relationship with yourself and find your own happiness.
Missing your spouse is normal, but becoming depressed because of it shows that you need to work on your sense of individuality and worth.
2. Get busy
Another way to deal with depression when your spouse travels is to get busy.
You are more likely to notice their absence and feel the impact when you have nothing going on for yourself.
Get busy doing something fun, productive, and nice.
This will help you handle your emotions better, and you are even less likely to have time to entertain depressing thoughts.
3. Maintain a support system
People need people.
Surround yourself with reliable and loving individuals who want the best for you and can understand your feelings.
If you need to, hang out with friends and family, attend events, and confide in your friends.
Maintaining a healthy support system will be of great benefit to you.
4. Engage in activities you enjoy
What better time is there to explore your hobbies than now?
Instead of sitting down and allowing yourself to wallow in sadness, get up and engage in the activities you enjoy doing.
Invest your mind, body, and emotions in things that make you excited.
This will help replace the negative emotions you were feeling.
5. Stay connected with your spouse through regular communication
At the end of the day, regardless of what you do, some feeling of longing for your spouse will persist.
The importance of adequate and consistent communication when you and your spouse are in different locations physically can not be stressed enough.
Being apart can bring a lot of overwhelming feelings for both parties, but these feelings can be lessened when there is constant communication.
You and your spouse must stay committed even over the distance and explore options like FaceTime, voice calls, chats, and texts.
These methods of communication can not be compared with physically being together, but they are the next best thing.
Communicating often with your spouse definitely helps in reducing depressive thoughts.
6. Consider seeking professional help
It is important to explore the option of seeking professional help if you feel depressed for any reason.
If you have noticed that you are constantly sad and miserable when your spouse travels, do not dismiss it as trivial.
Seek the help of a professional, particularly if your depression persists or worsens.
Speaking to a medical doctor, a therapist, or a professional counselor can guide you.
Processing and addressing your feelings helps you live a better and more wholesome life.