Many fathers began to suffer depression before and after the divorce. It is completely normal. People don’t understand why divorce can cause fathers to have depression because they didn’t feel what fathers felt. A father’s family values and hard work all disappeared at the moment of divorce. Goodwill was responded with malice. The house he bought was taken away. The only hope in life: the child, was also gone. His wife ran away from home with the children and left her husband an empty house. The father didn’t even have time to be sad as he had to work tomorrow morning. It is hard not to suffer from depression.
“Side effects” of a father’s depression from divorce
While fighting with depression is important, fighting with the “side effects” of the depression should be a priority. Fathers should first attend the side effects, especially those which have negative impacts on the divorce trial in the family court or the unresolved custody battle of the children. The divorced fathers have to ensure the following steps to avoid the side effects.
1. Seek medical treatment:
When fathers go seek medical treatment for the depression, please do it in private first. Try not to disclose this matter to anyone. It’s not because being in a depression is shameful. Even if it is just a quick visit to the hospital, without a diagnosis, it will potentially be used by your wife or ex-wife as an evidence against you. So be very careful. If the doctor prescribes medicine, it must also be properly hidden in a place like your workplace.
2. Collect evidences that you are not affected by depression when with children
Try to leave evidence to prove that you can take care of your children. Depression is caused by you loving children too much. You are a more suitable caregiver. Unfortunately, your wife can use your depression as a weapon to prove that you are not suitable for taking care of children. It is a tragedy. Therefore, leave a lot of evidence that you and your children are getting alone happily. Photos and videos would be very helpful. The testimony of the child is also important. Show the court the interactions with the children you recorded, and the children said that I love Dad.
3. Ensure the evidences support that divorce comes first before depression, NOT AFTER
If you have to explain your depression in court, then the most important argument is to ensure the “sequence” is right. For instance, the date of your first doctor meeting should be a clear proof that it is after your divorce crisis, not before. For example, say you went to the doctor for the first time a month after you were blocked from seeing your children. Some wives will try to argue that your depression makes you no longer a good dad to the children and pushes her towards divorcing from you and taking children away from you. Such false accusations will make you worse. If you can get a doctor’s note saying in the diagnosis that the depression was caused by obstruction in seeing your child, and there was no such situation before, then it is a plus.
How to treat the depressive divorce?
Many fathers suffer only minor depression symptons but the enormous life-changing stress (because his family is shattered) and the tight working schedule make these fathers under a very difficult period of time. If you don’t resolve it now, you will get more pressure coming against you afterwards. So, it is highly recommended that fathers should take proactive measures to counter the depression ASAP.
The treatment for depression varies from person to person and depends on the severity of the depression and any coexisting conditions. However, some common treatments for depression include:
Talk Therapy: formally called Psychotherapy, it involves talking to a mental health professional about your feelings, thoughts, and behaviors. This treatment is common for fathers to get started.
Antidepressant Medication: Antidepressants work by adjusting the levels of neurotransmitters, such as serotonin and norepinephrine, in the brain. This is by far the most effective method for fathers because the doctors/pharmacists can prescribe a small dose to immediately help with your sleep during the difficult time.
Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT): ECT is a medical procedure that involves applying electrical stimulation to the brain to treat severe depression that hasn’t responded to other treatments. This is rare for the fathers as the severity of fathers is usually not that high.
Other types of therapy: such as the Light Therapy which involves exposure to bright light, usually in the morning, to help regulate the body’s natural sleep-wake cycle and the Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) which is a noninvasive procedure that uses magnetic fields to stimulate nerve cells in the brain to treat depression.
Some fathers may see improvement in their symptoms after just a few weeks of treatment, while others may take several months to a year or more to fully recover. The severity of the depression, the type of treatment being used, and individual factors, such as the presence of coexisting medical or psychological conditions, can all impact the length of time it takes to cure depression.
The goal of treatment for depression is not necessarily to cure it completely, but rather to reduce symptoms and improve the person’s overall functioning and quality of life. With the right treatment, many people with depression are able to manage their symptoms and live fulfilling lives.