How to combat your partner's bad mood without letting it affect yours
When someone is in a bad mood, it can affect those around him or her and the person may not even realize it.
Here are some things that can you do in those situations when someone’s bad mood is affecting you
1) State the obvious. Well, it may be obvious to you, but not to the other person. You can gently make the person aware that you are aware of their mood: “You don’t seem like your usual self. Are things going okay?”
Provide an invitation for some dialogue:
“Sometimes life gets really challenging. I am here for you."
2) Give support and then give space. Let’s say your partner got a speeding ticket and he is really stressed about how it will affect his insurance rates and how he will come up with the money for it. You can give support by looking into ways he can contest the ticket, or if he can go to traffic school. You can do this research and give him some resources. Be prepared though, that your partner may not be ready to be open to this, and so give him some space to process what he is going through.
When the time is right for him, he may be more ready to receive the help you are offering.
3) Do something nice they've enjoyed in the past. Does your girlfriend like fresh flowers? Consider leaving some on her front doorstep for her as a surprise. Does your husband like to run? Offer to go on a run with him after work. Or offer to give your partner a massage.
It's these little things that can make a difference in some one’s mood. It lets the person know that you care about them during a difficult time.
4) Take care of yourself. Is your partner’s sour mood a little too much for you to deal with? Or are you cranky as well and may snap and say something you regret?
Have you tried to lighten things up and it is not working?
It is okay to excuse yourself and say, “This day was really hard. I am going to go to Zumba class and sweat it out a bit. I will be back tonight and we can talk some more.”
Sometimes a change of scenery or a good workout, or a chat with a friend can help you take care of yourself so that you can be the most supportive partner you can be.
5) Get them some resources. If your partner’s mood is consistently down, there may be something going on that, regardless of your efforts and your partner’s efforts, will not change. It could be untreated anxiety, depression, substance use or a medical condition such as hypothyroidism.
At this point, it is important to seek professional assistance—to help your person, to help you and also to help the relationship continue.
Seeing a therapist or psychiatrist can make a difference.
With some good boundaries and tools, you can be there for your partner while also being good to yourself!