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Can having a nervous breakdown cause you to leave your partner?

(20 Posts)
66roadshome Mon 08-Feb-16 23:43:01

I thought my DP loved me, no reason at all to think otherwise, but he had a nervous breakdown and his love disappeared as soon as it started.

He says he doesn't feel anything, doesn't love me anymore and wants to be on his own. It's been 8 months now and he doesn't seem to get better and he's just very cold, unlike who he was and doesn't seem to connect at all with me since the illness came.

Can a nervous breakdown cause this to happen?

annandale Mon 08-Feb-16 23:48:07

My experience of my husband having a full strength psychotic episode was like having a different person in the house, and then he left. He did come back some days later and was still a very different personality. He was eventually persuaded to restart one medication and within 24 hours a recognisable version of him was back. I don't like to think too much about the fact that I appear to be in a relationship only with the medicated version of dh but that is probably the truth.

So my answer would be, yes, it could, but it's also possible that he just fell out of love. I'm so sorry. Does he think he had a breakdown?

66roadshome Tue 09-Feb-16 00:09:38

Yes he knows he had a breadown.

Everything was normal and fine with us, but his company he owned went out of business and we found out we were losing our house and he just got quite quiet over 2 - 3 months. Nothing abnormal, he was just down and stressed. In terms of our relationship everything was normal. Normal sex life, normal affection, normal conversation and he was very demonstrative and loving as he always was.

A week before he went I was due to go away on holiday with the girls and he asked me not to go - something he would never normally do - very unlike him so I thought he was depressed and cancelled my trip. He thanked me, told me he loved me and he just didn't want to be without me. He didn't get out of bed that week and he told me he had a sore throat and headache.

We got the news that we couldn't keep the house and on the same day the car got written off and he started to cry and be sick and he left that night. He went to his Mum's and she told me all he did was cry but he didn't want to see me and told me he didn't love me anymore and had to be on his own.

Then for a few weeks he was a bit deranged, almost very aggressive and nasty and made no sense and did illogical things that were very out of character and he was very verybally abusive to me (nothing at all like him).

He was disagnosed with a breakdown and got medication & counselling but has been numb towards me ever since, never came back to who he was, just seems like a completely diferrent person and he has said he doesn't love me anymore.

A few times he has taken that statement back and said it's just his illness talking; but from my perspective we were a loving and very happy couple and I don't know if he ust fell out of love with me or if all this is down to his illness or if that is just impossible.

WhoWants2Know Tue 09-Feb-16 00:51:58

God, no. It's not impossible. I feel so sad for both of you. What you describe sounds exactly like what would happen in a breakdown, and not that he's fallen out of love with you at all.

The trouble is, he feels responsible for the fact that you've lost your house and he feels bad for having a breakdown that made you miss your holiday and probably feels awful for not being the partner that he wanted to be.

The only way he can cope is just to shut down and not feel anything-- including affection for you. His love is so tied up with his guilt that he can't face it right now.

It's going to take some time for him to come to terms with what happened, and it is a life-changing event. He may not be quite the same person that he was before. But hopefully, as he begins to deal with things, he'll be able to move past the negative feelings and start to feel love again.

TheTalkingPresent Tue 09-Feb-16 00:53:27

I just couldn't leave you without responding, because I really feel for you. I think it's entirely possible that your husband's breakdown is creating this coldness and distance. My DH had a nervous breakdown, and although in his case it didn't result in him trying to shut me out, I've seen with another couple we know that it can. If it's at all possible, try to encourage him with the counselling and see how it goes. You shouldn't put up with this forever because you have your own life to lead, but giving it a little bit more time may resolve some of the issues.

Also, see if you can get some support yourself. I found that everyone kept asking after my DH during his breakdown, and no-one ever (apart from my parents) asked about me and it was really hard going (and I had nothing like as much to cope with as you have).

Good luck -- I really hope it gets better.

Poshsausage Tue 09-Feb-16 00:59:29

I've been going through some extreme stress lately and was suicidal
I'm pretty medicated and have to admit I barely feel any feelings of love
I coupd not understand or relate to my children and husband feeling hurt if I died which was how I knew it was all so wrong
I've had extremes of emotion but now I'm just flat inside I think it's some safety switch relating to emotions that's turned itself off from but out or something
I can't tell really
I'm too dopey to have any kind of intelligent conversation my memory is rubbish
I hope over the next year or so he makes a full recovery

I think that life needs to change around him for him to want to reconnect again
Hope it all works out ok sorry yoive been through the

66roadshome Tue 09-Feb-16 21:34:52

Thank you to the people who responded here. I have just been trying to get my head around how he could be so cold and heartless to me or how he could logically think people can or should behave like this because it's felt like he just ran away from his entire life and started a new one.

I was left without a house too and lost my partner with no wanring and all through it he's refused to speak to me really or show empathy or consideration or even have a basic conversation with me and I can't really understand what happenned to the DP I had and loved.

He's just got no feelings at all and has barely spoken to me.

Whensmyturn Tue 09-Feb-16 22:08:54

It sounds classic depressive behavior or nervous breakdown to me. He can't cope with feeling he's failed you so shuts off or can't cope with the pressure of trying to care for you or feels you would be better off finding someone else. Men feel so responsible sometimes.

Sixinabed Tue 09-Feb-16 22:33:04

I'm so sorry you're going through this. Do you have family to support you?

I agree with pp that it is wholly possible that it is the breakdown/depression talking and making him act this way. Depression is a cruel cruel illness, both to the sufferer and to those around them.

My DP has bipolar disorder. When he is depressed he actively tries to push me away in many ways - it is horrible, really hard to deal with. It is like another person comes to live in the house for a bit, not a particularly nice person. Then he comes back and tells me that he didn't mean it, but when he's depressed he feels like he doesn't deserve me and I would be better off without him so tries to push me away.

You need to look after yourself as much as you can. thanks

66roadshome Tue 09-Feb-16 23:18:30

Yes I have support and everything. Thanks all. I just find it hard to understand that this illness could have affected him to the point where he can't stop himself from acting this way. I feel hurt, angry, rejectedand worse like he has died. He's not the same person, like a stranger.

cestlavielife Tue 09-Feb-16 23:23:09

Are you getting professional support eg counsellor ? For you.
Are you able to speak to his psychiatrist with his permission ?
You could also call mind or rethink

66roadshome Tue 09-Feb-16 23:30:42

He left and told me it was over and he doesn't want to see me, speak to me or have me involved in his life - so no. I can't be involve at all. He just said he didnt love me anymore and to move on.

66roadshome Tue 09-Feb-16 23:36:01

And I have read a lot about this, and have seen in lots of places people saying depression can dampen feelings or whatever but have not seen in said that they outright leave partners out of nowhere.

I've been trying to understand it all and just can't. He won't even speak to me, just disappeared. I tink it's more than depression, he just seems so weird. Very cold, mean, cries a lot, says such strange things.

cestlavielife Tue 09-Feb-16 23:36:36

I think you need to focus on getting support for you and get help to deal with it. Ýou can't change what he thinks .
It may be because of his illness but that doesn't help really.

66roadshome Tue 09-Feb-16 23:43:18

I am okay. Have been in counselling, but I just don't know whether moving forward for the rest of my life when people ask me why we broke up I say "he had a nervous breakdown" or I say "he stopped loving me".

I didn't think people could just stop loving you on a Wednesday and just disappear after a lot of years together, but I also don't want to give him a hallpass with this breakdown thing. I can't help feeling like he could have done better by me.

marika56 Tue 09-Feb-16 23:49:08

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

Tabsicle Tue 09-Feb-16 23:52:53

I'm bipolar. During one particularly bad episode I couldn't feel anything for my OH. To be fair, I wasn't feeling much for anyone. All I had was this sense of being totally overwhelmed. Some days it almost literally felt as if I were drowning - I couldn't breathe. I couldn't move. Just breathing was work - I didn't get some days why my heart kept beating, why I was still here. I wanted to die, desperately, and just staying alive sapped me of every reserve I had.

I didn't have space left for loving my OH.

Thankfully, he rode it out and we are now very solid and very much in love. Looking back, I never stopped loving him. But because I was drowning in my own brain I couldn't see it, like a drowning man might not notice the sunrise, if that makes sense and doesn't sound too cheesy?

Having said that, I'm so sorry you're going through this. It sounds horrendous. Please do make sure you're getting help and support too.

66roadshome Tue 09-Feb-16 23:57:00

He has said all of that Tabiscle, described it using almost the same words.

I just don't understand why he didn't "ride it out". We were happy! He seemed to forget it all

Tabsicle Wed 10-Feb-16 00:32:37

Because the crazy frowns out everything.

It colours your memories, your perception, your everything. And at its worst it seems impossible that things will ever get better again. To ride it out, you need to know that there's a safe haven out there, that you can make it.

And some days you just can't even imagine that shore.

66roadshome Wed 10-Feb-16 12:13:47

I don't think I will ever be able to wrap my head around it but I appreciate the help with realising it could well be down to the breakdown. I hope it was.

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