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03/21/2009 08:33 PM

Understanding the Emotional Disconnect

Posts: 312

Can anyone explain or try to explain how it feels to be disconnected from your loved ones. Do you just know that you once loved them, and know that somewhere in your heart that you do, but have no emotions for them at any given time.

One of the hardest things that I am dealing with is the being so so alone because my husband with Bipolar is so disconnected from me and our son.

How many of you feel this sort of disconnect and is this feeling from the Bipolar or is it from the medications. Do you only lack these emotions while you are in a mania or depressed? I am having such a hard time coming to grips with this part of his illness. I miss my husband so desperately. I remember laying in bed at night before his mania hit counting my blessings and smiling at how happy we were and going to sleep with a smile on my face. Now, my heart is just breaking for everything my family is going through.

Sorry, Im feeling so emotional tonight, I just need to try and move this part of his illness from my heart to my brain.


03/21/2009 09:07 PM
Posts: 7846
VIP Member


I can understand your personal disconect for sure . I am in a long distance realtionship . now we do not see each other for sometimes 2 months or 3 months at a time . now when i am there he tends to be on the unemtional side and self isolates . So I feel like I am ignored most of the time .I know for him it is because he is no longer medicated and stopped self medicating with other things . when we met he was totally another different person . now i am only left with the memory of how he once was .

Post edited by: grafxbydiane, at: 03/21/2009 21:09

03/21/2009 10:42 PM
maMONaPosts: 1168
Senior Member


that is one question i just cannot answer, but i am the same way you describe your husband.

I have bp type I. I know in my heart that i love my family to death...mostly my kids.i worry constantly about them.almost to an extreme.

the ironic part of me is that I can be cold with them. I will distance myself from them. I simply cannot get close. I know it is wrong....i just can;t help it

I am rarely affectionate with my 14 yr old daughter...i tell her i love her many times though.

My 2 yr old has autism. he is who i worry about and cry about the most. But i can STILL be cold and distant with him.

My husband is a stay t home dad and he works well with my son. he is the fun, playful, energetic dad that my son loves. I am then the one who spends time researching, reading and planning tasks for my husband and I do implement to help our son, with the autism.

in an extreme case, when my grandfather died years back, I never shed a tear. not one. i was stone cold and numb. I just shut myself out from everyone.

We DO NOT do this on purpose, this i know. i have cried, gotten depressed and debated why I get like this, but i just do.

Possibly a self-defense mechanism , I assume.

03/21/2009 10:49 PM
maMONaPosts: 1168
Senior Member


I know what you mean about "remembering how he was before."

That is what my husband tells me often. That i was not like this...why cant i be like the way i was? he asks.

I dont mean to sound negative, but that is the sick part of our illness. I have tried and tried to understand it, control it with meds and without, but the illness' always seems to run its course. that is why i have written before that it takes a HELL of a person to love and live with someone who has BP.

Do we feel guilty when we know you are suffering emotionally when we turn our backs on you and isolate ourselves?


It just is SO damn hard to break that damn shell many times.

03/21/2009 11:01 PM
taurusPosts: 2893
Senior Member

I do the same thing. And just don't understand why, some of it is the meds. I honestlydon't have an answer fro you and I have an answer for everything.

03/22/2009 04:35 AM
Posts: 5493
VIP Member

I am the same way. I feel no affection for anyone except my granddaughter. I used to love to snuggle on the couch with my husband and watch movies. We held hands when we were out and told each other we loved each other all the time.

Now we rarely even touch one another. We don't even kiss anymore. I don't even remember the last time I told him I love him(although I do). I tell my kids I love them all the time but it just feels like a robot response.

I miss the closeness but I just don't feel it any more. I'm not sure if it's the meds or just the nature of the disease, but it sucks ass and I really feel sorry for my husband who frequently will ask if I'm having an affair because of the way I treat him. Yeah I'd like another man in my life that I ignore and treat like shit.

04/15/2009 10:00 PM

I feel so sad when I read these posts. My husband is BP type II and has been emotionally shut off since 1.5 months now. All he says is you are a wonderful woman and you deserve better. He even gets angry that he cannot feel the emotional connection..I try to be as patient as possible but it still makes me feel very lonely.

04/16/2009 12:03 AM
maMONaPosts: 1168
Senior Member


yes. I also tell my husband the same thing. he deserves better. i have asked him to leave me many times but he refuses.

On a very personal and sad note, I had tried the drug ecstasy about 3 times in my life. within a span of about 2 yrs.

I am NOT condoning this drug use, for i know the risks and long term effects of using it, but.....when i DID use it....ALL my pain, anger, coldness, harshness vanished. I was so happy, empathetic and i just WISHEd SO BADLY i could be so considerate and loving like that always. And I am NOT talking about the hyped up effects you normally hear about with taking it like crazy behavior, the 'sex' drug....NO.

My point is that i just wish and prayed that i could be that same person naturally.....

If there was only a prescribed med with the same effects.....

Those 3 times were the ONLY times i was that kind, affectionate, empathetic person.

i'm just wrapped up in this shell and cant get out.

04/16/2009 07:57 AM

But Mamona- do you "really" want him to go? At times do you feel like you can fall back on him for support? I try to be supportive and go ti support groups for me. I want to understand what and how he is feeling so we can together be a stronger couple. I'm just lost. Its like having a partner just on paper..

05/08/2013 11:10 PM
Posts: 1
New Member

what does it feel like to not feel love toward your loved ones? confusing as hell. at times, i just have to "know" i love someone. the feelings may not be accessible at that time, but i know that i have those feelings w/in me. it feels like, nothing. you're not really feeling anything. it's not that i don't love these people, it's just that my brain and heart have been disconnected from one another. i used to lay in bed as a child and test my feelings. i didn't know i was bipo then. i would sit there and imagine what it would feel like if my mom died. some nights i would have tears running down my face, others, complete indifference. i didn't understand why sometimes that thought would stricken me with fear and sorrow to the point where i was sobbing and other nights i couldn't think about it long enough before my thoughts would bounce around to other things like softball practice. i get scared when i read stories about scary evil people doing really messed up things and they have this lack of empathy, emotions. it makes me feel like i am like them. but even though i may not actively feel a loving feeling toward someone at a specific point in time, it doesn't mean i don't love them, nor that i've forgotten my love. knowing that if i said the things in my head out loud, people would think i was crazy and w/o heart. yet i'll read a sappy news story about a lost teddy bear and bawl my eyes out for the pain the little girl must be feeling at losing her friend. sometimes i feel love, and sometimes i think it. i know i act differently toward my loved ones, but not on purpose. it's just cuz i'm not aware of it b/c i'm not necessarily feeling anything right then. it's hard to explain. i'm in that mood right now where i'm picturing a world w/o my loved ones and it doesn't bother me. i'm trying to figure out how to explain this feeling. obviously if i sit here and think about it, of course it DOES bother me. but it's just that first level of thought that is indifferent. like if you go further down, you'll find those emotions. but just like i can't choose to feel joy if i want to instead of being upset, i can't choose love if i'm feeling indifferent. but that's not a real feeling. those are bipo feelings. the real me, those feelings are real. the love i have for people, that's real. the indifference and apathy i have occasionally, that's false, that's not me. ok, here's the best i can explain it: you know when you're reading a book and you're really into it and then something terrible happens to the characters and you're sad, then you put the book down for the night, and you wake up the next morning and you're not sad, you're just going about your day, getting ready? well, i guess that's the closest i can come. you still know those characters and when you're able to come back to them you'll still feel all the feelings you have for them, just that when you're not attached to them, you don't feel the emotion like you did. but that's just what it feels like. that's not what's going on, i'm just trying to help you out w/ understanding the feeling part of not feeling. you're just preoccupied almost. even though you're not. it's very frustrating being disconnected from yourself and your loved ones. not only are you and your son feeling not present in your husband's mind, he is probably yearning for his true self w/in him to come out and take control of his body and mind instead of the bipo monster emotionless thing. hugs

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