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Dr. Mark
Dr. Mark, Psychotherapist
Category: Mental Health
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Experience:  Dr. Mark is a PhD in psychology in private practice
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My wife left and has been acting very different. She was a

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My wife left and has been acting very different. She was a Christian woman with great morals and a deep love for me (her husband) and our beautiful daughter. Her mother has been diagnosed with manic depressive psychosis. My wife has told me she does not love me. She says she has never been happy with me. She is blocking out everything good that has happened in our marriage and even dating. She is blowing every little thing completely out of proportion. She says that I never help her, and I don't help with her daughter, and she feels like she is raising our daughter by herself. I have helped her and am always appreciative to her for everything. She says she's depressed and feels so low. A Week before she left she wanted to be a stay at home mom and now she wants to work. 3 months ago she had a miscarriage. The day after, a guy told her she should leave me for him, but she left and didn't go to him. She says she just wants to be alone. Everyone that knows her thinks this is way put of her character. Her mom acts this way all the time. I am afraid that she has a genetic psychological problem. Based upon the background I have provided, what is your opinion? Do you think she could have bd? If so is their anyway to get her to understand that she may have a problem? She always said she did not want to act in the manner that her mother has. She may not want to face the problem if she is noticing it because of those feelings. I have also noticed alot of changes over the last 18 months (which is when we had our daughter). She has been bossy and controling. Lately her sex drive has been up and down (since the miscarriage). She also has lost interest in things we always liked to do, in fact she finds things to be down about in everything. Since she has left, she tells me she is at peace. She has went out with friends bowling and shopping and leaving our daughter at her mothers (which is where she is staying) telling me I can not see her. She has been disregarding our daughter (whom I know she still loves) and is going places she would never dare go before. I saw pictures on facebook of her with her friends and alcohol on the table in front of them. Prior to her leaving, she never touched alcohol in her life, or even tobacco for that matter. I am scared not only of losing my family but also for my wife knowing she could have a terrible life ahead of her and also for my daughter because her life will be severely changed by the divorce and I want her to be raised in anhome that will teach her morals and help her to build a good character. Im sorry to write so long of a message. I wanted to give you information to base your answer upon.

Thank you
Darron combs

Hi! I believe I can be of help with this issue.

First, let me say I can imagine how confusing and distressing this situation must be for you. You are clearly a caring and loving husband and you feel like you have been blindsided by something and you're not sure what it is. Your wife has changed emotionally in unpredictable ways. You are correct to be concerned that her situation might become more unpredictable and she could do things that may be hard to reverse in her life.

And this is actually the key to my answer to you that you need to consider and think about. That you love your wife is the first and most important tool we have. But it is only a tool. We have to find some way to use it. Why?

Because one of two things is most likely happening to your wife. You are correct that one of them may be the onset of Bipolar Disorder (BD). Why now?

The number one cause on the radar screen is actually the second likely thing that your wife might be undergoing. She may be having a major morbidity reaction to the miscarriage. A study about 4 years ago found that 50% of women who miscarry have some serious problem requiring treatment. Most often it is an anxiety or major depressive disorder and grief.

So it is possible that this is the problem. Or it is possible that the grief and shock and attendant psychological morbidity of the miscarriage triggered the onset of BD. BD in adults is very often triggered by some event that is psychologically devastating and anxiety provoking. So what to do?

If at all possible, I want you to print out my answer and take it with her to a Starbucks or other quiet place and discuss it. She is an adult and she has to make her own decisions. You can only pray for her.

So, present these possibilities that I am putting forth. Depending on where she is in her processing of the miscarriage, she will be either willing to consider that she needs help or not. And that the help is in two areas: psychological and spiritual. She cannot deny either one. To deny that she needs psychological help will make the spiritual attempt that she is struggling with to understand her life and what she wants unworthy of an answer. Why?

Because she will not be healthy enough to understand G-d's answers clearly. So, you must propose to her this opportunity to get help and then ask her to talk and you listen.

I wish you the very best!

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