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Antidepressants and Cheating/Lying


Seventh
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I wanted to ask if any of you out there had any personal experiences with antidepressants (either yourself or others) and how it affected your sexuality or behavior related to fidelity, cheating, lying, obsessive behavior and all that.

 

I have been in a long term realtionship which ended recently in a very sad and tragic way (for me).

 

My ex went on antidepressants almost ten years ago (started on Zoloft) due to a number of very serious problems related to depression and my loss of a job, her father's dying of cancer, her brother's suicide, and childhood sexual abuse (her brother's suicide was precipitated, I believe, by the fact that both he and her were sexually abused from infancy for almost 7-8 years by an uncle who was never prosecuted - the parents did virtually nothing except keep ythem away from the uncle - her brother died at 21).

 

The impact of the antidepressants on our sex life was immediate and serious. She withdrew from the world, dropped out of college (with huge student loans, didn't even finish her last sememster after borrowing many thousands for it)stayed in bed most of the time and did not even really attend to the kids who were little. After awhile when I would approach her at all for romance it was either total rejection or hostility (not something that had happened before. We would try to fool around whenever we had a chance, though due to her abuse history she had some issues with intimacy).

 

At one point she kind of snapped and was horrible to me. Blaming me for everything. She changed her meds ultimately to prozac but before that she cheated on me once (after almost twelve years together, and was romantically obsessional about a celebrity, writing him endless letters in a kind of erotomania (which obsession had existed to a less serious degree prior to the medication, but became more obsessive after the meds).

 

There is a LOT of information online from reliable sources about Prozac and other SSRI's causing mania and obsessions or making them worse, contributing to behavior which damages relationships and caring about family and loved ones, sexual acting out, loss of inhibitions, etc.

 

There is also a lot online about these drugs causing total loss of libido, inability to orgasm, -- which is what most people are familiar with.

 

My question for folks is have you or a loved one had depression, begun antidepressants and had them either totally screww up your relationship, your sex life, or in fact made you or your SO (or friend) engage in risky sexual behaviour, obsessional behavior, indiscriminate sex and promiscuity.

 

About two years ago she began obsessing about a celebrity whom we met and she flipped for - and she began writing him erotic letters and explicit things indicating that she felt they were meant to be together and "he was the one". This went on for over a year before I figured out what was happening shortly after she indicated she wanted to leave me as she was "in love" with this man and wanted to be free to try and be with him (even though he had barely even responded to her except politely - she believed - or wanted to believe - he was sending her signals)

 

I recently discovered that the women I love (or loved), the mother of our two beautiful children, when this celebrity guy didn't pan out or didn't respond, put on her myspace that she is a "swinger", bicurious, she blocked from her myspace (she had previously had it that she was "in a realtionship" and ended up hooking up with a creep from an adult swap site who had been arrested for surreptitiously videotaping a woman he was having "relations" with and putting it on the internet (behind his wife's back and that of another girlfriend who he'd also videotaped secretly doing it with him). She moved out shortly after hooking up with this creep and beginning a sexual relationship with him. I think he conned her by pretending to be a "couple" witha bicurous girlfriend and , from the emails she left on our computer when she left, it appears she never showed up when they hooked up.

 

Neddles to say I have been devastated by this. I worry for my kids and for her.

 

I believe that the Prozac has seriously changed her and damaged her and made her engage in really risky behavior that is totally out of character for her.

 

There is plenty of good research online by reputable authorities that antidepressants cause manias and obsessions and that the loss of sexual inhibitions as well as the loss of romantic and realisitc feelings for your loved ones can harm families and relationships.

 

But the media and pharmaceutical industry seems to be hiding the truth about these very common and serious and sometimes even deadly side-effects,

 

So I wondered if any of you had experiences that might help me understand. It seems that while the antidperessants helped her briefly to get through a serious time when she needed them, but the side effects seem to have made her much much worse. She is addicted to them (gets seriously ill and sucidal without them) but she believes she needs them. They "help her" get over her shyness and inhibitions now.

 

PLEASE comment if you have any experiences or know of any. This is such a serious issue today with so many on drugs like this, and the possibility that they are contributing to the destruction of families and relationships and lives is too important to deny or ignore.

 

PLEASE comment - we all have stories.

 

Thanx.

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I am so sorry ot hear you are going, and went through all of this.

 

I too have heard the horror stories about antidepressants. I have never been on them, but I have friends who take them and have had worse symptoms and mental problems on the drugs then off.

 

And it sounds like this guy will only cause her more mental problems.

 

I hope things get better for you. You sound like a nice guy.

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Thanks Faeries -

 

Tell me some of the horror stories you've heard.

 

I am trying to collect what I can so I can write about my experiences (I am a writer too), but mostly I feel people need to hear about these horror stories so they can be informed.

 

The thing is I AM a nice guy. I have my flaws. I was never abusive to her and, aside from having problems making a decent enough living for the both of us, I always did my best to love her and the kids and to achieve goals to get ahead. I built her a home I designed myself with a friend so she would have the security she craved but we had to live in difficult circumstances while that was happening.

 

I feel like I was too nice and too trusting. She only recently disclosed her affair (a one time thing) from abput 7-8 years ago, basically justifying her need to fool around saying it had been a long time coming. She denied that it was after she had started on the antidepressants, but then I showed her that it was afterwards, after she had started them and almost completely stopped being responsive to me. But in recent years we had had some wonderful moments where she indicated we would be together for the rest of our lives.

 

I really appreciate your kind words, Faerie, but - really, if you or anyone can tell me about the actual experiences people you know had that would really help. I have been thinking about putting together an article about this problem --- but also I think it might make sense or fit with some of the experiences of others on this site.

 

People on antidepressants seem to often cheat or act out in ways that seriously hurt their lovers, spouses, or families...

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what were you taking and what kind of things did you do ?were any of these things of a sexual nature (if you don't mind saying)?

 

also what were you taking it for?

 

and how do you feel now? Did it make you "better" and were there side effects afterwards or other side effects during the time you took it?

 

Thank you for answering. This sounds consistent with what I have researched online.

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you did not say how old she is... it could be the antidepressants causing her behavior, but it could also be complicated by hormonal changes in menopause if these problems started in her 40s... or she could be an undiagnosed bi-polar which can get worse with age or with certain drugs...

 

i understand your desire to ask for people's opinions and stories about this, but i suggest that she REALLY seems to need to see a psychiatrist if you really want to help her... not just a family doctor who prescribes antidepressants, but a psychiatrist who can do a full evaluation and determine the root of her problem. they use very different medication to treat bi-polar disorder, so she really needs to get help before she does something that damages herself permanently through her unwise choices.

 

Prozac and SSRIs are well known to inhibit sexual desire, so a rampaging desire to cheat and obsess really sounds more like undiagnosed bi-polar problems... the medication may be helping this or making it worse, but she needs a personal evaluation by a psychiatrist, who are all trained on all types of medication and its affect on mental problems... (a psychologist won't do, because they are not medical doctors, and a family practice doctor is not an expert on psychological/drug interaction issues).

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Seventh

 

I don't have any stories, but I really appreciate this thread. This week, my doctor prescribed me Effexor, and I haven't had the courage to take them yet. It's not so much the stigma around the meds, it's that I'm not convinced that they are for me. When he gave me his diagnosis, he showed me a poster with 9 questions, all vague queries about how you feel, does anyone in your family have depression, etc. And if you answer yes to five of the questions, then you apparently are depressed. I noticed the Effexor logo on the poster, which made me feel distrustful. I wish there was a better way of diagnosing depression than asking some simple vague questions.

 

Anyway, I hope things work out for you. It's obvious that you really love her and don't want to see her hurting.

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Thanks. I agree, but she has no interest in changing anything.

 

I have quite a bit of experience with bipolar disorder and agree that things seem like that may be the case, but she does not manifest the mood swings so much as a constant need for, right now, sexual stimulation through this and possibly other no obligation realtionships.

 

She just turned forty and has had lots of hormonal difficulties in the past --- but the approach of her 40th birthday really seemed to trigger her anxiety and stress to take off into this abyss. She HAD said she wants to be oin love and told me today that she still thinks she has a chance with this celebrity. That is a form of erotomania.

 

The thing is that risky and irrational behavior, and mania, is right out of the medical (PDR, for example) literature on prozac and other ssri's.

 

Also, although the lack of desire is most often reported, the sexual mania is something that is, according to medical reports, also a side effect in some cases.

 

There is a Harvard psychiatrist who writes about these irrational and dangerous obsessions (like the columbine shooters and other kids and others involved in incidents of severe acting out and violence or suicide who were on ssri's).

 

Thanks for the advice, but she has no insurance (nor do I) and her nurse practitioner just keeps doling the prozac out to her every month and recommends increasing doses when she is feeling worse.

 

I was hoping by posting here that I might find out if there were others who got dumped (or dumped people) by those on prozac or similar drugs who went in pursuit of fleeting gratification or obsessions.

 

The fact is that her abuse plays a huge role in this as she was abused for 8 years severely in a sexual manner and when she reported (told a friend) at age nine she was accused of "acting provocative and causing it).

 

I feel so sad for her and lost...

 

My son, whose twelve and very angry with her for leaving, cried the other night saying "I've lost my mom". And both he and my daughter noticed that when she reduced her dose or took another medication to help her other than antidepressants she seemed closer to normal - warm, loving and caring. On the prozac she has been withdrawn, uncaring and sometimes mean to the kids.

 

But she will not see a psychiatrist b for this because she does not see it as a problem. She would probably not disclose anything embarrassing (like hooking up with strangers) which is also characteristic of a prozac-fueled mania and risky conduct and most doctors do not either believe or want to believe that Prozac or other ssri's are causing her to do this.

 

BTW, the guy who she got involved with told her it was bs (or that it is not even him, she didn't seem sure which excuse he used or both)- but I have read the newspaper reports of his arrest and know it is him because of his work and military status and age and his m.o. (internet swaprooms).

 

I could use a little help...

 

It all makes me so sad and depressed...

 

She used to be such a beautiful and caring mother and lover.

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I took Prozac for almost ten years.

 

No dramatic stories, and mania was the furthest from my feelings while in that cocoon of blandness. Getting off it was stimulating to some degree.

At one time Prozac was damned by observations that people on it were more likely to be suicidal. Well, since it is often prescribed for suicidals, you'd think it makes sense, but that doesn't sell on the 6 o'clock news.

It seems she has a bundle of problems, and the meds are just one facet.

That's just my opinion.

 

I really hope you can cope with this. It's clearly a challenge.

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I take lexapro for depression. It helps a lot. What the original poster seems to be describing is manic-depression. I have had a little drop in my libido, which is pretty high so I can take the drop . I don't have the mood swings or risky behavior that he described with his wife.

I recently went through a break up and the lexapro has saved me from the huge depression I know I would have had. It takes the edge off of everything.

The wife has much more serious problems than just depression. She may need an anti-pyscotic. Or a heavy duty anti-depressant.

The obsession with the celebrity sounds like total delusion to me.

With my depression and anti-depressant, I have never been delusional.

I don't think you are talking about "average" depression here. She needs to see a physciatrist ASAP.

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Seventh

 

I don't have any stories, but I really appreciate this thread. This week, my doctor prescribed me Effexor, and I haven't had the courage to take them yet. It's not so much the stigma around the meds, it's that I'm not convinced that they are for me. When he gave me his diagnosis, he showed me a poster with 9 questions, all vague queries about how you feel, does anyone in your family have depression, etc. And if you answer yes to five of the questions, then you apparently are depressed. I noticed the Effexor logo on the poster, which made me feel distrustful. I wish there was a better way of diagnosing depression than asking some simple vague questions.

 

Anyway, I hope things work out for you. It's obvious that you really love her and don't want to see her hurting.

 

 

Thanks reluctant -

 

I urge you to do a lot of research on the internet before going into that way of dealing (the meds). I am no doctor, but my experience is that certain of these meds can make your condition worse. However, the better informed you are, especially about side effects, the better you can monitor your own response to the medication.

 

I suggest too that you read some of the research directly on the pros and cons of effexor.

 

Here is just one site, for example, which states that one side effect of effexor is depression (not to mention delayed orgasm - which might be a good thing for some but might be incapacitating for you):

 

link removed

 

Here is the harvard doctor who says we must use extreme caution and have full awareness when using ssri's (which effexor is):

 

Click here: link removed

 

I have also researched this issue and the studies show that cognitive behavioral therapy is more effective than ssri's for clinical depression. I was in the graduate level of psychology studies when I left that profession to go into another professional field where research is a key component.

 

Best of luck, reluctant. I haven't read any of your posts yet (I have stayed away from here for awhile because, at the time I left, it was just bringing up too much emotion as I identified with everyone and felt all the pain, which made mine kinda worse. Right now I need the companionship of those who are suffering from all this after breaking up.

 

I was with my ex for 18 years - most of them good and committed -- so my recovery is going to be long and hard --- and with kids I still have to deal with her every day almost.

 

Thanks for all the responses.

 

Please add your stories, folks.

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Frankly I would leave the woman, and get her as completely out of my life as possible. Take care of your kids, try to get custody of them, keep your crazy baggage lady out of their lives until she straightens up.

 

Anti depressents or not, theres no excuse for her behavior. Anyone who did half of that to me would be out the door, I dont care what their reasons.

 

Im about to scream the next time I hear some boondoggled crazy explaination for someone just being or acting like a bad loony person. Whatever happened to someone just being bad, a jerk, mean, etc. Now its this problem or that problem, they were abused, they took prozac blah blah blah. Sometimes people have just gotta fess up and take responsibility for their actions and quit trying to blame society, or who knows what else.

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Seventh

 

I don't have any stories, but I really appreciate this thread. This week, my doctor prescribed me Effexor, and I haven't had the courage to take them yet. It's not so much the stigma around the meds, it's that I'm not convinced that they are for me. When he gave me his diagnosis, he showed me a poster with 9 questions, all vague queries about how you feel, does anyone in your family have depression, etc. And if you answer yes to five of the questions, then you apparently are depressed. I noticed the Effexor logoon the poster, which made me feel distrustful. I wish there was a better way of diagnosing depression than asking some simple vague questions.

 

Anyway, I hope things work out for you. It's obvious that you really love her and don't want to see her hurting.

I was on Effexor for awhile, they did help with my depression, but there were some awful side effects as well. For one, my sex drive was pretty much shot, and orgasms, a mere impossibilty. While on it, I felt "happier" I guess but also a bit estranged from my emotions, like it didn't allow me to feel too happy, or too upset, or too much of anything. Also, if I forgot to take it one day, I'd get this crazy searing headache. Lastly, some of my peers thought I acted crazier on them, then off.

 

I guess it doesn't hurt to try them, and of all the meds I tried, they seemed to be the most effective.

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I was taking Lexapro. I was putting myself at risk a lot. My occupation is somewhat hazardous. I started making very impulsive decisions and I'm very lucky that I didn't end up getting into trouble. I also became very, outspoken... I guess thats what I'd call it. Very loud. I'd insult people (the wrong people). Pick fights with everyone. My hostile/rude behavior was pretty consistent, even in situations where it really would not be appropriate. I've always been a very calm person, so it was quite a change.

 

I started smoking (a habit I have yet to kick), drinking heavily/frequently (which you are NOT supposed to mix with the drug), and doing some harder drugs more regularly (coke, meth). I already smoked marijuana, that didn't change

 

I also started going out a lot, to clubs, and parties (which I was never really into before I started taking it... and I don't really do much of that now that I'm off it). I'd pick up random girls and have sex with them, most of the time unprotected. It's something I'd do a few times a week. I'm amazed that I didn't get HIV. I would also be mean and treat them badly afterwards (and sometimes during). There are some other things I did (sexually) which I can't admit to, but lets just say... not very smart.

 

I ended up having to take a break for a semester because my life was so violently disrupted.

 

 

 

I was taking it for generalized anxiety disorder and depression.

 

 

 

Well, I stopped taking it about 2 1/2 years ago. I'm pretty much back to my old self. I think the depression stemmed from the GAD. After stopping, I switched to Klonopin (a tranquilizer) to get rid of the anxiety, and now I'm no longer depressed. I do have some regrets though. I also feel disconnected from my memories during that time period. Almost as if that wasn't me.

 

QUOTE]

 

Thanks for responding. It pretty much sums up my experience with my ex...

 

What was it that made you stop taking the lexapro? And when you were taking it - did you have any inkling that what you were doing was off the wall and dangerous?

 

Finally - WHY would you consider going back on it after those experiences and your feelings afterwards?

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lets say u were had taken a drug, such as cocaine, and were looking for every possible way to ensure that u never relapse and we all know that it is during the chemical brain fart shift when u stop that makes u wanna go back - so, if i took something like lexa - then over time lowered the dosage until my noodle back noodling, am i way off base on this? hey, u already know how dumb i am - right? wink

 

 

 

Lexapro is from the family of drugs known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors or SSRIs. Lexapro helps to restore the brain's chemical balance by increasing the supply of a chemical messenger in the brain called serotonin. Lexapro appears to relieve the symptoms of depression and anxiety by increasing serotonin with minimal effect on many of the other chemicals in the brain.

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Thanks for the responses, easy.

 

I guess that folks get that feeling of the ssri's it is hard to do without them.

 

I have researched a lot on the fact that depression can be from hypothyroid disorder and there is a website under a Dr Broda Barnes and a book which says that this may be the problem for many of us who are depressed, but the blood tests do not always catch it (low body temperature is a key symptom). My wife was diagnosed with it at one point but discontinued on it and felt the prozac was all she needed.

 

How do you feel you would respond to it next time in terms of the behavior you went through before when you were on it? Does that worry you at all ?

 

Do you worry that you might start acting recklessly again?

 

ALSO --- anyone else care to comment on this subject.

 

I really could use some more input. I am sure there must be hundreds of you who have experiences you could share.

 

Thanks. I need the support here and I KNOW it is not my imagination that the prozac changed her completely.

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Thanks for your response.

 

With the events of the past week or so NC is much much easier and finality as far as knowing that I cannot resume in a relationship with someone so far gone is much more certain. It seems to have lifted the depression but it still has not resolved all of the hurt and anger and the disturbing aspects of it all.

 

It is a Jekyl and Hyde situation and I pity her. She seems a lost soul.

 

Still would like others to give me their input on the antidepressants.

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I was on Paxil a few years ago for about a year. I regret taking the pills simply because it didn't really do much. Sometimes my dose was higher so I wouldn't feel sad (or much of anything negative). After a while I just decided to ween myself off (so hard!) and I've been doing a lot better with just therapy.

 

My sex drive was non-existant. I naturally have a high sex drive so you can see how that effected my relationship at the time. And I had trouble reaching orgasm for the first three months of taking it.

 

The issue of risky behaviour is an interesting one. I wasn't obsessing more or doing inappropriate things that I could blame the drugs for. Everything I've done has been because of me not meds. It's an interesting topic though. The meds are given to those that are already suffering from a mental illness...does it enhance risky behaviour or is it a convenient excuse?

 

I happen to believe it's an excuse. It's like those reports that state that anti-depressants cause suicide...well, aren't the people taking already suicidal to begin with?

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It sure is strange how ADs effect people so differently. My wife has only been on it for a couple of months, so my experience is limited. She has definitely improved as far as her general attitude...but I DEFINITELY see signs of * * * attitude. She is definitely more reckless. But she is also more apologetic...ALWAYS apolgizing for everything. She used to get really hurt when I would comment about something could have been done differently. Now, she smiles and listens...and legitimately seems to be ok with learning how might have been a better way to do something. On the other hand, she could care less about putting her feet ont he furniture for example. Who cares if it is getting scratched. Kid took a bite out of the furniture...oh well!

 

Then there is the sex. Definite difference. As I reported in another thread...my wifes ability to climax is dropped to almost impossible. She wants to have sex more...and she has a better attitude about it...but that is it.

 

I wish I could offer you something positive about your situation. It really worries me to read the reports here. Thanks for posting your experience. Easy, wow! That really scares me. What scares me the most is my wife went into this thinking she would only need to be on it for 6 months. There is no way. Then I read the comments here. I think my wife believes that once her levels are brought back up to normal...then she can get off them, that her body will produce the right chemical...but I just don't see that happening. If I got off my thyroid meds...my body will not have repaired itself...and I would be in a pickle.

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First - I am interested to hear about the thyroid meds. thyroid plays a HUGE role in depression and may resolve depression even when the blood tests say there is no problem (they are WRONG - but most doctors do not understand this).

 

Your post was edited so that the KIND of recklessness is inclear . Can you say it in a way that is not punishable by a moderator. It is important.

 

I was in graduate school for psychology (I was a psych major and work with abused children and adults in these families) until I left and my career took another direction. But ecent research at my graduate school showed that cognitive beahvioral therapy is much better than Antidepressants for resolving depression (and other related problems). For many. like my ex, the doctors just give you higher and higher doses if they are not working well (and they do not even inquire about behavioral acting out like my ex or sucide or other manic and obsessive/compulsive beahviors likley triggered or worsened by the Prozac or other ssri's).I take st john's wort at night and it helps me get through the night with fewer horrifying "infidelity" dreams (which were relentless for months before I got all the facts that she WAS cheating and with whom and for how long.).

 

Thanks for the response.

 

I suggest you look into st johns wort, other herbals like passionflower, valerian, even kavakava as well as cognitive behavioral therapy for her.

 

Sooner or later the difficulties with the sex will cause her to go bonkers and it will hurt your relationship severely.

 

If I'd only known earlier what I know now I might have saved my marriage before she began her quest for insatiable sex with strangers.

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Hmm, I love valerian and kavakava! It works great for my anxiety.

 

I have been working with herbs for more than 30 years off and on and my father was into them as well - so I feel comfortable with recommending them. Especially if you do your research online (most studies and dangers can be found easily).

 

I currently am in love with Rooibos (Redbush or honeybush - from South Africa which has amazing properties and is the best tasting tea I've ever had.

 

I tried to get my ex to work with a number of things, like st john's wort - but she just act4ed like I was full of baloney and said the drugs worked best for her. Now she is iun such a deep hole that I doubt she will ever recover.

 

My poor son (just turned twelve) said last night (she hasn't called except once in the past two weeks -says she doesn't want to deal with me because I discovered the twisted emails and arrest of her current "yuckbuddy" and said I could not have that in my kids' life) - that "he doesn't think she cares about him at all".

 

I think the meds have done more damage than anyone can even imagine. Her judgment is gone. Her discretion. Her memory. Her empathy. Her caring for her children/ All seemingly gone.

 

And i finally feel that I am done with her --- but of course I have to make it possible for her and our kids to have time together.

 

The herbs have helped me immeasurably. I wish she had tried them --- but alas it was not to be.

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Rooibos is excellent, I have tried that as well.

 

I feel so badly for your children (and you too as well), this is no doubt hard. I was wondering though...

 

Is it possible that you may have to take an extra step besides just recommending her to take herbs? Is involuntary committment to a mental institution necessary? I live in North Carolina, and a spouse can legally commit their spouse involuntarily to a mental hospital if there is a reason to do so. It sounds to me like there might be a valid reason in this case, as well.

 

The only problem with that is they would medicate her heavily no doubt, with the very drugs you fear have ruined her. But, if they have a reason to hold her long enough, they may be able to figure out what the problem is and how to treat it.

 

It's great that you feel you can break free from her now; but it is concerning that someone so unstable may be around children. I would get a temporary custody order ex parte if I was you, and have supervised visitation (so that she's not exposing them to types like the Yuckbuddy and her delusions.)

 

Well, please post back and update us on what's going on. And good luck. You have come off as an excellent father in the world of chaos the mother has put you all through, and I commend you.

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  • 6 years later...

This post was from several years ago but I am looking for answers myself and read your post. I completely agree that antidepressants and infidelity are linked. They are helpful in some instances but all risk factors need to be explained to the patient. Before being given a drug therapy should be sought out. I have been and antidepressants for over 10 years and at first I noticed a change in the way I was spending. I no longer cared about the spending. I by no means am a psychology major or even have any background in medicine. But I am living through the worse time of my life. I have been married for 22 years with two beautiful children. In the last 2 years or so I have been extremely distant from my husband pushing him away being cold to him and acting as if I didn't care. I ended up having an affair on him and initiating in risky sexual behavior with men I did not know. This was never me. I was so against cheating that when I think back to what I did I have extreme guilt and shame. This personality changing behavior from these medications need to be brought out to the patients. Right now I do not know where my marriage will end up but if this post helps anyone else that may be thinking about going on antidepressants I would definitely think twice; try some other form of counseling or therapy.

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