One of the most difficult problems in dealing with mental illness is denial by that person due to the societal stigma associated with this type of illness. When that person is of adult age, they have certain legal rights. If they are not a danger to themselves or others, it can be very difficult if not impossible to have them properly evaluated if they are resistant. If you are acting as the caretaker, close friend or even the spouse for this person, you may not be able to get them the proper treatment simply because they: a) deny that there is any problem; and b) lash out at you for even suggesting that a problem even exists. In all likelihood, if you are very close to this person, you will be blamed for their problems which they are in denial about and very likely will be subjected to abuse and manipulation in order to cause you to drop the subject and leave them to their misery. Keep in mind that no matter how bad the anger, denial, and manipulation by them can get, you are not to blame. This is a medical problem.
If this person is just a close friend or possibly a potential partner, the easiest solution may be to just walk away from it. Even if you are a caring and determined person, some problems are just not fixable when the person needing the help is in complete denial. Trying to fix something like this can drain you emotionally and physically.
However, if the person is your spouse, the situation becomes infinitely more complicated. You are emotionally, legally and financially tied to them. When the anger, denial and transformation of this person continue to degrade to the point that they are no longer recognizable as the person that you once loved and considered your lifelong best friend, you face the real danger that you may begin reacting to them and be vulnerable to being dragged down due their emotional state. In other words, they can cause you to become depressed. However, this type of depression that they may cause has a very real reason and therefore is not considered clinical in contrast to their depression from genetics, hormonal changes, or possibly changes within their brain.
Many of these marriages end in divorce or abandonment. You reach a point where you are unable to deal with their problems when they are unwilling to even accept that the problems exist. In many of these cases, depression is just tip of the problem. There may also be other issues which are lurking in them such as bipolar, schizophrenia, and an assorted mixture or other mental issues … that are not being addressed.
If you are married to this sort of person who is in denial and is refusing treatment there are a few ways to survive this:
a) Seek a competent psychologist to help you map a plan on how to proceed. They will also be monitoring your own condition and stress at the same time and will be available to offer you advice on how to get through this with your own stability intact.
b) Seek a good family divorce attorney for legal advice. There is a high probability that if you fail to turn the condition of this spouse around, you will need to protect the family’s assets from their manic, out-of-control, behavior. You also may need to prepare to the inevitability that this person cannot be helped and the only solution is to end it.
c) If you are either very stubborn or married to this person for a very long period of time and therefore insistent that your can bring them back from the depths of their illness, then the only tools you have available are love, hugs, and prayer. Many people succeed with just these tools alone. Many however are destroyed by watching the steady deterioration of a loved one. However, once you pick this road, you are committed to not giving up. It takes a very strong person to purposely take this course, survive the abuse thrown at them, and to eventually succeed.
Or if you have stored up a supply of airline mileage points, grab you dive gear, your camera and underwater housing, and take a break from all this stress and go diving with a school of fish off of the Cayman Islands. Much more preferable to dealing with someone in complete denial. You may decide not to come back.