How can I convince my partner to get treatment?
This is a thorny problem for both the significant other as well as the therapist. First of all, once the therapist receives this kind of request, it is already clear that the ill person in question is not much interested in getting help. Persons with depression have too little energy to leave home and feel hopeless, and persons with anxiety often have even more anxiety at the thought of leaving home and meeting a therapist. Many persons with either problem often feel, “there is nothing wrong with me, I’m just in a little funk and this will pass".
Sometimes if the significant other tells their ill partner that they will go to the therapist and will call them from the therapist’s office the person in question may agree to speak on the phone with the therapist. Sometimes, it may be effective if the significant other calls the ill person from the therapist’s office even though they may have declined talking to the therapist before-hand. On occasion, a spouse who moves out of their home may effectively persuade the ill person that they need to get help, although this is a maneuver that requires consideration of the potential risks.
At the end of the day, however, unless the ill person in question is an immediate danger to self or others, everyone is free to refuse treatment and this human right must be respected. If a person is only moderately ill, sometimes waiting until they get worse will result in their acceptance of therapy.
One final twist, on rare occasion the person who complains about their ill significant other may actually be the person who needs help, and the person they complain about may be just a projection of their own illness into a significant other as a defense mechanism to disavow themselves of their own illness.