These past couple of weeks have been...challenging, to say the least. My bf has recently disclosed some mental health issues that he is currently battling. He mentioned that in all his years he finally realizes that he has anxiety and depression (lightheartedly calls himself "crazy"). He further went on saying that he tends to worry a lot and that his mind is just scattered, paralyzing him with all these fears, doubts and concerns. He hasn't elaborated on what these worries entail but he did clue in about facing the unknown after his release (in two years' time).
It really pains me to read the shift of tone in his recent letters. He tries so hard to sound positive so that I don't get worried, which made it worse for me, emotionally. Prior to this, he would discuss his excitement and hope for the future and all the fun activities (talks about marriage quite a lot) that we would do. But now, he has discounted all that aside and it breaks his heart to read about my optimism due to his issues. He wrote that he wasn't sure if I would ever want to hear from him due to him being "crazy" -- that hit an emotional chord.
As much as it really hurts, I really appreciated his honesty (he always honoured that from Day 1) and for being completely opened about how he is feeling. I told him that my loyalty is not easily shaken so he doesn't need to feel afraid of losing me, and I asked him what I could do to further support him so that he doesn't have to feel alone in this. He apologized and felt really guilty for being so behind in his letters but I told him that I understand and his wellbeing was more important to me. In terms of family support, he is only close to his sister whom I'm not sure if she knows what's happening (she still has to get her phone replaced so they haven't been in contact for awhile). Otherwise, it's just me.
I am trained and certified in providing Mental Health First Aid and after referring to my notes, I feel that I need more input and advice, given the sensitive nature of the prison environment. Any feedback and suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Has anyone experienced this? I'm just so disheartened tonight...sleepless nights and hard to concentrate at work.