Re: My wife is depressed and nothing I do is ever good enough for her, what can I do?
I have dealt with a depressed wife in both of my marriages. I have developed some techniques for compassionately dealing with depression.
Here's number one; depressed people may resent happy people. Try giving her a call on the phone before you get home in the evening, to assess her mood. If she is depressed, do not come in the door all geared up and excited. If it is a particularly "bad" evening for her, you may even want to front a negative emotion yourself. Try something like "my boss got angry at me for a mistake someone else made" or "I spilled coffee on myself on the way home" or " I stepped in dog poo on my way into work..." If there is a hint of humor, you may be able to lift her out of the mood.
Perhaps the best technique is what I call "something now, something later" This takes a little planning, but its worth it. You will need to take some time and buy some little gifts. I've bought silk flowers, silver charms and necklaces, cool flower pots, stuffed animals, coffee cups, bowls.... Hide them somewhere with some gift bags and cards. In the meantime, be thinking about planning some kind of event with her. Could be a weekend getaway, maybe a daytrip but something special. Anytime she needs a boost, grab one of your cards and gift, and surprise her with it. Later that day, mention that you want to plan a little trip for a weekend a few weeks away. This will give her something to look forward to that really isn't that far away. Keep up this routine as best you can (you can repeat it over and over), but make sure to keep the excitement churning on your event.
I have one more, but I'm out of time.