“Our kids are home from school during the COVID-19 outbreak, and I feel like I’m trying my best to entertain them and keep them from feeling worried about what’s happening in the world. But my husband is not helping at all—he can’t get out of his own head. He’s anxious about not being able to go into work and fearing for his job security. How do I talk to him about how I am overwhelmed, too, and want to find a middle ground where we can both be there for our kids and each other?”
As you stay busy with the kids, it seems your husband is spiraling. Not only is this bad for his mental health, but it’s bad for your family—you also deserve the time and space to be in your feelings. You have to pass the hot potato, meaning he can’t dwell in his fears forever, and he also has to allow you time to experience your own anxiety in these uncertain times.
In this instance, talking might not be the best way into your husband’s psyche. He’s already overwhelmed. Instead show—don’t tell—him that you are stronger together. Here’s how.