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06/03/2009 01:55 AM

Emotional Distancing - is it just me?

Twigs
 
Posts: 25
Member

Has anyone else found that they feel emotionally distanced from things or bizarrely over emotional at times? For example, I sometimes find myself crying at the news (which I never used to do) or at cute pictures!!

But more worryingly, I seem to have some kind of barrier between me and other people. It kinda feels like I am on the outside watching myself interacting with people. I think "oh, this is where I should laugh, hug, say someting" and have to tell myself to do it. I think that if I got some really bad news that most people would be devastated by I would just go "oh, ok. That sucks but hey". It is making me feel really cold hearted / unemotional and not really helping my relationship with my boyf or family as I just shut myself off. Sometimes, I feel I could quite easily go for weeks without doing seeing or talking to anyone other than my co-workers. It's a pretty poor show when talking to your parents or boyfr is just too much hassle.

I don't know if it is the drugs (provigil) or whether I am just a horrible cold person Sad

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06/03/2009 02:18 AM
eskimogirl
eskimogirlPosts: 17
Member

Wow, I can totally relate to that. I haven't cried in over a year. My parents think I'm heartless because I don't seem to get sad when bad things happen or even in sad movies, but seriously even if I do think something is sad, I can't really FEEL it. Its the same with laughter...I can't remember what its like to laugh for real. I recognize when things are funny but again I can't FEEL it enough to laugh...I have developed a fake laugh that I do whenever I want to laugh, but no matter how funny something is I can't laugh at it. Its like the highs and lows of the emotions I used to feel have been leveled out so that I am always in more or less the same mood. For me I think it is because of the zoloft I am on...I sort of feel numb to strong emotions.

Last summer I realized how weird it was when my boyfriend's dog got run over infront of me and his entire family. Everyone else panicked and ran into the road and they were all crying, but I just felt like I was watching a movie. I felt absolutely nothing...I wasn't sad or afraid, I just watched like a zombie for a minute until I realized I should atleast ACT upset for my boyfriend's sake. I think its my mind's way of protecting me from anything traumatic or emotionally painful, but sometimes I feel like I'm not really human if I can't feel strong emotion.


06/03/2009 02:45 AM
Twigs
 
Posts: 25
Member

Hi! Thanks so much for replying. I am so relieved to hear it isn't just me. I was watching a comedy movie the other day and all my friends were rolling around with laughter. Me, I was sitting on the sofa wondering when the irritating jeuvenille 'humour' was going to stop so I could read my book!

Do you find it makes your relationship with your boyf harder? I only see mine at weekends and sometimes I just don't want to see him cos I don't want to be hugged or have to be nice to him or have to act like a 'normal' person when his friends are round. (how awful does that sound?! - that I feel I'm acting when I'm around other people?) I feel scared that I'm going to push him away but can't seem to overcome this barrier to do anything about it. Crazy huh. Generally he's pretty understanding about my sleepiness, but I know there is no way he would get this.


06/03/2009 03:10 AM
eskimogirl
eskimogirlPosts: 17
Member

Ugh I completely understand the thing with your boyfriend :/ I'm "lucky" I guess because my boyfriend has a very hard outer shell and doesn't get very emotional either. But I do have to force myself to hang out with him sometimes...haha I can relate to the whole "acting like a real person" thing...sometimes its just too much effort to be nice and social to maintain the relationship!

It really is frustrating because how are we supposed to overcome the fact that we don't care enough?

And its hard to explain that we are emotionally distanced without hurting peoples feelings...they tend to take it personally and its hard to make them understand that it is really not about them. Its especially hard when I kind of don't even feel like its worth explaining.

Is your relationship with your bf good otherwise? And have you been together for long? Its great that he is understanding about the sleepiness so I wonder if he could understand this eventually.


06/03/2009 03:41 AM
Twigs
 
Posts: 25
Member

I thought it was pretty good - we've been together for almost 5 years and we've been through the diagnosis and trial meds thing together. Unfortunately, I live in London and he lives & works about 2 hours by train away. Doesn't sound that far but means I only see him at weekends. He's also just got a new job which means he does shift work so I don't always get to speak to him (I work 9-5). We were talking about moving in together in September and both commuting to work (with my commute being the shortest!) which was great. 2 weekends ago though, he had a massive change of heart and isn't sure if he wants to still go out with me or not (and the move has been put back to March earliest). It really hurt me when he told me, but now I feel weirdly detached and wonder if it might not just be easier to break up - despite knowing I'd miss him. It can't be fun if your girlf seems remote on an evening out (even if I am enjoying myself) making him accuse me of not making an effort with his friends. Also, with the regular sleeptimes we are supposed to keep he is worried about waking me up when he's on late or early shifts.

You are lucky your bf isn't the touchy feely type. Mine is and I know that telling him I feel distanced would hurt him lots. I bet he'd start wondering if I'd leave him as he'd think it means I don't really love him. I have no idea how to explain to him that I don't think I'm capable of 'love' anymore, but that what I am capable of I feel for him. Does that make any sense?

BTW - isn't it really early for you?!


06/03/2009 07:22 AM
eskimogirl
eskimogirlPosts: 17
Member

First of all, it is so cool that you live in London Smile haha, and yes it was like 3 am when I wrote...I woke up cause I was really hot but I saw your post and had to respond because it sounded so much like me!

Anyway, 5 years is a long time...I've never had a relationship that long so I can't say I fully relate, but I do know exactly what you mean about being hurt at first and then feeling detached. My boyfriend and I were having problems last February and for a while I was really sad about it but then it was like I ran out of the energy I needed to be sad about it, so I just broke up with him so I wouldn't have to deal with it anymore. I kind of went crazy after that though...like I had completely stopped caring about everything and I was blocking out any kind of unpleasant feelings, so I had this attitude like I could do whatever I wanted. I started partying way too much, hooking up with a bunch of random guys, and making really impulsive decisions like getting new piercings and adopting pets without thinking about it. Then I got back with my boyfriend and I was totally myself again.

I'm not really sure what the moral of that story was...haha I thought I was going somewhere with it but I got lost. I wish I had advice for you about what to do with your boyfriend but I'm still figuring it out for myself :/

Question- Have you had any kind of especially difficult thing in your life? Because I think my whole emotional detachment thing started when I was like 8 years old and my family was kind of unstable...I never knew from day to day if we would be moving to another state or if my parents would get divorced, and I think I dealt with the constant uncertainty by emotionally removing myself from the situation and acting like everything was fine so that my little brother and sister wouldn't think anything was wrong. So I wonder if maybe there is some reason behind your distancing too.


06/03/2009 07:38 AM
MissStacey
MissStacey  
Posts: 14845
VIP Member
I'm an Advocate

Not to butt into your conversation but Eskimo Girl Zoloft is a very heavy drug when I took it I had absolutely no emotions at all either, I didnt like that, it could be effecting your relationship with your bf. Maybe you can explore another option so you can get your regular life back. I am also bipolar II and some of the things you spoke of after your break up like the promiscuity and compulsiveness are major signs of bipolar, I am no dr so please dont be offended by that but it really could be something to look into. If you did have it by chance you would have been taking the wrong meds all this time.

06/03/2009 07:42 AM
MissStacey
MissStacey  
Posts: 14845
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Twigs I dont think Provigil has that effect because its more of a prescription caffiene pill but its not to say you arent experiencing something from it. You should talk to your doc and see if you should see a psychiatrist to deal with these issues. I only say psychiatrist and not therapist because they can prescribe something to you if needed. Good Luck with your boyfriend.

06/03/2009 08:02 AM
eskimogirl
eskimogirlPosts: 17
Member

Stacey, I read the book Unquiet Mind (about bipolar) and the description of her manic episodes was EXACTLY how I felt, but I didn't look into bipolar because I don't have the long, intense periods of depression that she described. I have definitely had times of depression but never felt suicidal or anything. As I'm writing this, though, I'm realizIng that her book was just one account of the disorder...I don't know much else about it. What is the difference between bipolar I and II?

Oh and don't apologize for joining the convo, it is always good to get insight from other peoples lives Smile


06/03/2009 08:06 AM
MissStacey
MissStacey  
Posts: 14845
VIP Member
I'm an Advocate

BPI is more severe BPII is the lesser of the 2 evils. I dont have lone periods of depression I may have a bout now and then and I have never been suicidal. You can def have the disorder without all that but def with the other symptoms you had named. I hope this has helped. Smile
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