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EllisFord posted:
I'm not sure if this is even the right place to be posting, but I'm a bit lost lately and could use some help. About a month ago my fiance proposed to me and two days later he began acting strange. He would not answer my calls or just generally seemed to avoid me. When I would confront him about it he'd say nothing was wrong. He wouldn't tell his friends or family about our engagement either. I suspected maybe he was having second thoughts as I imagine any girl would.
When I pressed further to find out what was going on he started to tell me really odd things. Things that were very out of character for him. He said he was too young to be married, he hadn't lived enough, we didn't have a spark, he couldn't commit. He's been asking me to marry him since our third date and we've been going out about a year and a half. It was odd, but I thought maybe I'd read everything wrong.
I resigned myself to the fact that he didn't want me and tried to part ways, but when I tried to break it off he'd freak out. Saying I couldn't leave and we were soul mates and he knows we're meant to be together. He'd then say that the things he said before he had made up to push me away. He's all over the board at this point.
There's a strong history of mental illness in his family. His mom is bipolar and agoraphobic and his dad was an alcoholic who abused his mother. I'm not a doctor I don't know whats going on, but it doesn't seem right. He sleeps all the time 12+ hours a day, he doesn't see his friends if he can avoid it, he's afraid of seeing me (won't make any plans), he won't make promises at all no matter how small, he has a very hard time making decisions anymore, he sometimes has shortness of breath and trouble breathing when he's very upset, his mood goes from normal to depressed and worried from day to day (more often than not being the latter). Some days he's open to going to see a dr and some days not. He's afraid of being put on medications that just make him numb. He says no one is going to fix him. That he's just going to be like this forever. Our relationship aside, I'm really worried about him. I love him more than anything in the world and it hurts me so much to see him like this. I don't know what to do.
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McCatMK responded:
Sounds like he's depressed, terrified, and maybe having panic attacks thinking about his life, his mom and dad, and the abuse his mom suffered. If his witnessed the abuse first hand, maybe he is experiencing some sort of trauma. I feel for both of you. Maybe you could find a good therapist that you could go to and tell her/him about your fiance's issues. Perhaps the therapist can suggest an anxiety support group for your fiance. Maybe it would be good to back off about the marriage thing for now and tell him that you love him and that you support him no matter what.
 
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Patricia Farrell, PhD responded:
This must be not only confusing for you but mystifying since his behavior is so difficult to understand. You indicated there is a family history of MI and he said he's afraid "of being put on medications that just make him numb," which leads me to believe that he may have been on medication previously.

He definitely needs a medical exam to rule out anything medical and then, possibly, an evaluation with a psychologist. He doesn't have to live like this and he does deserve to be helped.

There is no way to get someone to help if they refuse it, but his mother may be of some assistance in this. See if she can help to get him to a medical eval.


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