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Dealing with Depression/My Boyfriend's self-esteem issues are driving us to the edge


I need your help.

I am 20 and I've been in a long distance relationship with my boyfriend at separate universities for over 3 years. We met in high school and have been in love ever since. He is my rock and to me he has so many positive things about him, and he absolutely adores me.

Although the long distance relationship has been hard, and we've both had a few slip ups (We have both cheated once), the most difficult thing I find with my relationship is how low his self-esteem is. It has been this way ever since I've known him, and he hates almost everything about himself, and it's crushing to watch.

He has tried counselling before, but felt it was just going in circles and wasn't helping him. He has good times, but about once a month he crashes and says he doesn't deserve me and doesn't believe that I still love him, and sometimes he even accuses me of cheating on him.

I try really hard to keep him positive and persuade him that he is still the only man in my life and I truly love him, but sometimes I just can't stand his self-loathing and I'll hit back saying that he needs to get over himself. Of course as soon as I've said it I feel terrible and it just makes him worse, but I just feel so helpless when he's in one of his 'down' moods.

I don't know what to do anymore, I worry about our future, even what he would be like as a father. I want to be with him forever, but if this carries on I don't know if i can cope, please help!

Hello Emily. I am sorry to hear that your relationship doesn't seem to work out as well as you would like to. You say that this is because of your boyfriend's low self-esteem and self-loathing. He does not seem to be comforted by your demonstrations of love and care and you feel terrible when you "hit back" saying that he needs to get over himself.
Why are you feeling terrible? And how exactly does he react? Do you give him the time to react or you apologise strait away? Have you tried to explain to him your fears for the future?
How well you feel you know each other? Is it possible that what he is saying is indeed true? Just some questions to think through.
You are welcome to write back to me if you want to.

Take care,

Dealing with Depression

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Dimitra Vitsaki


I can answer questions about life crises depression and relationship difficulties.In my work I adopt an empathetic and not judgmental approach and believe that our symptoms such as anxiety, fear, distress and sadness are due not only to our upbringing but also to the social context within which we are born, grow and live our lives. I canít give legal or medical advice.


Many years experience working with people from all walks of life, including mothers and babies, adults and families in mental health settings and in private practice. My aim is always the same, to help the person I work with to find their own way in life.

MA in clinical psychology from the University Lyon 2 France. Post-Graduate Certificate in Health and Social Policy from North London University, London UK. Training in psychodrama, psychological therapies, confidence building and dealing with unemployment. Various professional and self development courses.

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Many people from all walks of life.

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