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suddenlyloveless: a wife losing her husband to antidepressants.


suddenlyloveless

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Hello, everyone. I'm not sure if someone in my situation is allowed to post like this, as I realize this is really a site for those that are on the antidepressants themselves, but I need support, and I'm not sure where else to go to find it.

 

I'll try to keep this short, but I will need to do some explaining, so it might get a bit longwinded. My apologies in advance.

 

I met the man of my dreams 11 years ago. Our chemistry was immediate. We dated semi-long-distantly (we were ~3 hours away from each other, normally, a mutual friend is how we were introduced), eventually moving in together, and on our one year anniversary of beginning to date, we got married. I know, I know... really too fast, but he was the one who suggested it. And for those 11 years, things had been going so well. Not perfect - what relationship is, and all that. But so good. We were becoming better people, a better couple, together.

 

Both of us struggle with depression and anxiety, but neither of us had ever been on meds for it. In fact, he seemed to be doing okay, until "brain zaps" started. Yes - brain zaps, a common withdrawal side-effect, while NOT on antidepressants. His doctor got him in for a surgery to deal with some benign nodules in his sinuses in 2021 that was supposed to help reduce or take care of these brain zaps. When they didn't, he was put on antidepressants. I believe it was Lexapro to start, and then they switched him to Cymbalta. The minute they doubled his dose... it was like he was following a script. "You deserve to be with someone better." "You deserve to be with someone who loves you as much as you love them." "I love you, I care about you, but I'm not in love with you anymore."

 

Not in love anymore? It just came out of nowhere. At first, I thought it was a mid-life crisis. He does hate being in his 40s. But then he sent me this documentary about people becoming emotionless zombies on antidepressants, and he said it "gave him a lot to think about". He was willing to talk to his doctor about tapering his dose, and is still willing to go through with that. But... I am still so devastated, and so hurt, because he's still talking about separation. Still talking about divorce. It hasn't been that long since he began tapering, and I know it takes time, and I know I have to be patient, but to hear any success stories of people who went through this, from their own perspective or from their spouses, it would help a lot. I did some searches from before I joined, but I want more information, more details, if that's possible. Because even though he's agreed to taper, even though he admits that yes, it might be the antidepressants that are causing him to feel this way, it's like he still can't see it.

 

To be clear, this is a man who:

- used to take an interest in the things I was interested in, and would try them out... no longer. Now it's just me trying to get into his interests. We've both been gamers ALL OUR LIVES, and when I brought up playing a video game together recently, he actually turned to me and said he now cares more about "out there" (motioning towards outside) than he does a video game. 30 minutes later, what was he doing? Playing a video game.

- was as introverted as I was. Now he's claiming I'm the introvert, and he's extroverted and wants to go out. But he doesn't. His Saturdays consist of his only social activity - going over to a friend's house to play Magic: The Gathering. He has very little interest outside of this, and I have worked on myself to go out more with him when he's interested. This claim to extroversion didn't start until he began Cymbalta.

- HE sought out my grandfather and father to ask their blessing in our getting married, before I even had an inclination. HE looked up the nearest JOPs on our first-year anniversary and brought it to my attention and then got us going to do that. HE is the one that over the years, brought up wanting to have a "real" wedding, or to at least renew our vows.

- Before the JOP said her version of "you may now kiss the bride", he had kissed me, he was that excited and happy.

- While he stopped doing this long before he started taking meds, he used to wake up and, thinking I was still asleep, would whisper about how much he loved me, how I was the greatest thing that had ever happened to him, how he was so happy I was his wife, etc., etc..

- Going into his nodule surgery, he knew I was nervous. I have bad anxiety regarding hospitals, surgeries, etc.. He had, the day before, pre-recorded a video for me, that would get sent to me while he was in the middle of the surgery. It was heart-felt, emotional, and lovely, talking about how proud he was of me and how much he loved me.

- My grandparents and my best friend each state that when I wasn't around, he would light up talking about me.

 

Some other notes:

- he "likes who he is" on the medication. He says his friends like who he is, but he stopped seeing them for his own reasons soon after we got married, and didn't start hanging out with them again until AFTER he began taking medication. They liked him just fine before.

- he likes who he is on the medication because he deals with a lot of toxic masculinity in which emotions = bad. Intense emotions = really bad. He has never taught himself coping mechanisms and thinks it's 100% okay that antidepressants numb everything.

- SI, anxiety, depression, self-loathing, all of it has become INCREASINGLY worse on the meds.

- The youtube watching is through the roof. I'm fine with him doing whatever he wants to do on his own time, but projects he was interested in? Hobbies he was into? No interest anymore.

 

When I asked him when he started to fall out of love with me, he said 2021. When I asked him when he started Cymbalta, he said 2021. I asked him if he saw a connection and he said yes. When I asked him if it was about our lack of sex since he started Cymablta, he agreed it might be. I said we could work on that and he said that it would feel like he was taking advantage of me since he was trying to break up with me. He did agree that it might be because of his medication that he feels this way.

 

I feel like I've already written so much, too much, but I guess a better explanation of what I'm looking for is... this "logic" they present, this idea they attach to that they aren't happy, aren't in love anymore, how do I... get past that? How do I break through? How do I get him to remember we were fine and getting better until this poison they gave him? Again, I know I need to be patient, but I'm terrified. Any little bit of help, of advice, of just... empathy and knowing I'm not alone... would help so much.

 

Thank you.

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  • Moderator

Hi suddenlyloveless,

 

Welcome to SA. We are a site dedicated to safely tapering from psychiatric medication.

 

Given that your husband is the one on medication, I would encourage you to speak to him and see if he would like to join and start a thread here.

 

We do also foster community so I will open your thread up for comments from other members.

 

Thanks,

 

Firefly

 

Pre- October 2022: Wellbutrin, Escitalopram, CitalopramSertraline, Adderall IR, Vyvanse, Propranolol, Buspar, Ativan, and Latuda

Oct 13, 2022 - Oct 24, 2022 and Oct 31, 2022 - Present: Zyprexa (2.5 mg). Jan 14, 2023 -> Began transition to liquid suspension. Jan 29, 2023 = 2.375mg -> Feb 12, 2023 = 2.25mg -> Feb 27, 2023 = 2.14mg -> Mar 12, 2023 = 2.025mg -> Mar 27, 2023 = 1.93mg -> Apr 10, 2023 = 1.82mg -> Apr 23, 2023 = 1.74mg -> May 7, 2023 = 1.64mg -> May 21, 2023 = 1.56mg -> June 4, 2023 = 1.48mg -> June 19, 2023 = 1.4mg -> July 2, 2023 = 1.33mg -> July 16, 2023 = 1.26mg -> July 31, 2023 = 1.2mg -> Aug 13, 2023 = 1.14mg -> Aug 27, 2023 = 1.08mg -> Sep 13, 2023 = 1.02mg -> Jan 22, 2024 = 0.97mg -> Feb 4, 2024 = 0.92mg -> Feb 19, 2024 = 0.87mg -> Mar 3, 2024 = 0.83mg -> Mar 17, 2024 = 0.78mg -> Mar 31, 2024 = 0.74mg -> Apr 14, 2024 = 0.7mg -> Apr 28, 2024 = 0.66mg -> May 12, 2024 = 0.63mg -> May 27, 2024 = 0.6mg -> June 9, 2024 = 0.57mg -> June 24, 2024 = 0.54mg -> July 6, 2024 = 0.51mg

Oct 14, 2022 - Present: Prozac (40mg) upped from 20mg on Nov 1, 2022.

Oct 31, 2022 - Present: Gabapentin (300mg 3x day) -> May 3, 2023 = 300mg 2x day -> Oct 1, 2023 = 570mg -> Oct 15, 2023 = 540mg -> Oct 29, 2023 = 510mg -> Nov 13, 2023 = 484mg -> Nov 27, 2023 = 460mg -> Dec 9, 2023 = 436mg -> Dec 24, 2023 = 414mg -> Jan 7, 2024 = 400mg

 

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Thank you very much for the welcome, FireflyFyte.

 

I would love to get him started on this site, however he "likes who he is" on the antidepressant, so I'm just thankful he's still willing to taper. I know that this community is really for the people on them, so I still appreciate being welcomed and allowed to talk about my story. I will try to work up the courage to ask (not that he would react violently in any way, just that I have an anxiety that I may push too hard during this period, when all I want is my husband back, or at least to have him clear headed before he makes any rash decisions).

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  • Moderator Emeritus
Posted (edited)

Hi there and welcome from me too, @suddenlyloveless

And oh....it sounds just awful, when the man you married has completely changed.  Know you are not alone.  I wanted to point you toward some topics in our "Relationships and social life" forum, where I think you'll find others who can relate.  It's a forum just for members, so that the general public can't see discussions or topics there.

Citalopram is the divorce drug

and that one ^ may seem a bit bleak, still looking for the one where couples did manage to work it out......and I do see a topic on couples therapy there as well, in that forum....... that you might be interested in.  Especially if you found a therapist who was aware of the changes in personalities seen sometimes induced by these drugs.

Marriages destroyed by SSRI SNRI and I do think this one has some happy endings in the 22 pages.

 

If you do find someone whose story is like yours, that you can relate to......then you can post there with a notification, or PM them to see if they are still active here and wish to communicate.  To notify just use the @  symbol and begin typing in their user name until you see it- then click.  The PM system you'll see a little envelope icon at the top of your screen, click on that, then type in the members name, a subject......and you might be able to communicate with someone who has dealt with similar that way more privately.

 

Wishing you the best, and that he does become willing to see how he's changed..........and (((((suddenlyloveless)))))

 

Love, peace, healing, and growth,

manymoretodays(mmt)

Edited by manymoretodays
added notification

Late 2023- gone to emeritus status, inactive, don't @ me, I can check who I've posted on, and I'm not really here like I used to be......thanks.

Started with psycho meds/psychiatric care circa 1988.  In retrospect, and on contemplation, situational overwhelm.

Rounding up to 30 years of medications(30 medication trials, poly-pharmacy maximum was 3 at one time).

5/28/2015-off Adderal salts 2.5mg. (I had been on that since hospital 10/2014)

12/2015---just holding, holding, holding, with trileptal/oxcarb at 75 mg. 1/2 tab at hs.  My last psycho med ever!  Tapered @ 10% every 4 weeks, sometimes 2 weeks to

2016 Dec 16 medication free!!

Longer signature post here, with current supplements.

Herb and alcohol free since 5/15/2016.  And.....I quit smoking 11/2021. Lapsed.  Redo of quit smoking 9/28/2022, and again finally 5/25/24.  Can you say Hallelujah?(took me long enough)💜

None of my posts are intended as medical advice.  Please discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical provider.  My success story:  Blue skies ahead, clear sailing

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

And here is one more:

support-sites-for-caretakers-of-those-on-psychiatric-drugs

^ apparently a link to a FB private group, for those whose marriages have been affected by psych drugs.  The last posts in that topic are from several years ago now.....so unknown if the group is still active.  Might be useful.

Do scroll through the topics in that forum, the relationships and social life, as I think you may find more that pertain.

 

And best.

 

Late 2023- gone to emeritus status, inactive, don't @ me, I can check who I've posted on, and I'm not really here like I used to be......thanks.

Started with psycho meds/psychiatric care circa 1988.  In retrospect, and on contemplation, situational overwhelm.

Rounding up to 30 years of medications(30 medication trials, poly-pharmacy maximum was 3 at one time).

5/28/2015-off Adderal salts 2.5mg. (I had been on that since hospital 10/2014)

12/2015---just holding, holding, holding, with trileptal/oxcarb at 75 mg. 1/2 tab at hs.  My last psycho med ever!  Tapered @ 10% every 4 weeks, sometimes 2 weeks to

2016 Dec 16 medication free!!

Longer signature post here, with current supplements.

Herb and alcohol free since 5/15/2016.  And.....I quit smoking 11/2021. Lapsed.  Redo of quit smoking 9/28/2022, and again finally 5/25/24.  Can you say Hallelujah?(took me long enough)💜

None of my posts are intended as medical advice.  Please discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical provider.  My success story:  Blue skies ahead, clear sailing

 

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@manymoretodays Thank you so much for the links, and the kind words. We're both seeing therapists of our own, as well as a couple's therapist. I have to keep telling myself that... the fact that he's tapering, the fact that he's going with me to see the couple's therapist, the fact that he's watching the videos I send him about how antidepressants absolutely can affect relationships... that should be enough. Actions speak louder than words... even if we just had THIS conversation.

 

Me: I just have to side-eye that you say you started Cymbalta in 2021 and fell out of love with me in 2021
Him: I'm bad with timelines so...
Me: No, the video I sent you (of him reassuring me before his surgery) was in late 2021, and that was not the video of someone not in love
Him: Well I wasn't on Cymbalta then

 

Hm... almost made me laugh during this terrible time!

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