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Dr. Z
Dr. Z, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 4438
Experience:  Psy.D. in Clinical Forensic Psychology with a background in treating severe mental illnesses.
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Good afternoon, Thank you for the time to read this, I really

Customer Question

Good afternoon,

Thank you for the time to read this, I really appreciate it. I am writing with reference to my ex boyfriend, with whom I broke up a month ago. I broke up with him due to lifestyle differences, goals and also because I saw reactions and behaviors in him that made me not feel comfortable in the relationship. By taking this distance from him, I now can see more clearly that deep down I left the relationship because of the things he said that happened to him. He said that his father hit him severly when he was a child, being a very strict and conservative christian. He also mentioned that he did not get any kind of affection from either his father or mother, and he resents them for that. But what is disturbing is the fact that his brother also mistreated him and was later diagnosed with bipoler disorder. And he told me that when he was approximately 3 years old he was convinced that his parents were not his real, biological parents and told them that his real parents lived in China and wanted to reunite with them. That behavior went on for months, until his parents sought professional help, and supposedly the psychologist said it was a phase he was going through, but nothing major. Another thing that concerned me is that he says he has always have sleeping problems, but he does not want to take sleeping pills because he does not want to become dependent on them. Honestly, he does not have a job for the past year, and he sleeps at different times, not at a consistent schedule, which to me is quite weird. The other thing is he suffered from what may be panick attacks because he said a few years ago, before he started exercising he would feel short of breath and thought that might be something like a panick attack or not. Then, it seems that he has hallucinations, where he sees spiders but when he was once at home he said he saw one, which was not the case. He also stated that he often wakes up with "weir marks on his body", for no apparent reason, and then the marks go away on their own. I honestly didn't think he had a problem at first, but recently I've seen contradictory statements about his parents, work, he is constantly changing his thoughts about everything, which is startling to me. Some days he says his family doesn't like him, and then he says they are the best people he has known ???
When he told me how his dad abused him physically, I said I was sorry that he was abused, and at that moment he turned things around and defended his father's behavior saying "he did that because that way I would not do bad things anymore". Also, he was raised in the middle of the country and stated that his parents never invited anyone at home and he didn't have friends to play at his house/their house. In sum, I think he really needs professional help and feel bad about not being there to support him. But I am a single mom and chose to end the relationship because I know helping him goes beyond my capacity and I don't want to get hurt either. My question is, should I tell him as a friend that I think it would be good for him to see a psychologist? Would that be positive, or should I stay away from him?

Thank you so much for your time.
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Dr. Z replied 10 months ago.

Dr. Z. :

Hello I believe that I can help you with your concern

Dr. Z. :

I am so sorry that your ex-boyfriend had to endure this treatment growing up and that he has been experiencing these symptoms for quite some time, I can imagine how distressing this must be for him.

Dr. Z. :

I do agree that he definitely has a some severe psychological issues, I would hinder a guess at PTSD with psychotic features, and possibly a personality disorder as well.

Dr. Z. :

I think you can mention to him, as a friend, was that you broke up with him because you felt that he needed to work on himself and that his past issues have caused these current symptoms to the point that he may not be ready for a relationship as this point and that you think seeing a psychologist/therapist would be beneficial for him.

Dr. Z. :

You think that once he can help himself, then he can be ready for a relationship and be the supportive partner that you know he can be.

Customer:

Thank you so much for your reply. I would like to add that he told me that when he was a teen he was doing drugs and doing some type of vandalism, and one day he overdosed and almost died and his parents did not even cry and were in denial. He was almost emotionally alone. It breaks my heart. And I forgot to mention that sometimes when he talked to me, if I said something like "I think what you said was rude, or what you did was rude" he would talk back to me like in a childish voice saying that "he didn't do anything wrong, and that I sounded like the police, etc" it seemed to me that he was talking to his dad, not to me, so strange. I would just back away from the convhersation at that point. Lastly, and sorry to make this so long, he likes to write and wants to become a successful writer and he said that everyday he talks using different "characters and voices" and sometimes he gets scared of himself when he does an evil character. That scared me a little.

Dr. Z. :

Well the childish voice you described could be a sign of regression and dissociation. Also using the different characters and voices could also be a sign of dissociation. Dissociation is a common symptom of PTSD or Dissociative Identity Disorder (formerly called Multiple Personality Disorder) when trauma occurred during childhood. Here are two links describing PTSD and Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID) for you

Dr. Z. :

It is controversial if DID is actually a separate disorder from PTSD, but regardless he is definitely exhibiting symptoms of dissociation and possibly alternate personalities.

Customer:

Ok, I will check the links out. Thank you for your support. I will contact him because he still has some stuff that belong to me and will tell him what you told me. I must say I am a little scared, but I care about him as a person, and I just hope he gets the help he needs so he can have a more healthy, happy life.

Dr. Z. :

These can occur during times of stress, like when he thought you were accusing of him of being rude and he took it as a personal attack, he may have regressed back to his childhood or a child alternate personality.

Customer:

That's exactly what I thought!

Customer:

I couldnt' say anything remotely negative because he would go on the defense

Dr. Z. :

When dissociation is present it is a difficult symptom to treat and takes a lot of intensive psychotherapy.

Customer:

I mentioned that to him once, but he denied it

Dr. Z. :

Well most times they do not remember dissociating, so it is no surprise that he did not remember it actually.

Dr. Z. :

And that is probably why he denied it

Customer:

Oh God...now I understand when he once said "I din't say that" :(

Dr. Z. :

Yeah, he definitely has some deep rooted psychological issues and should see a psychologist/therapist that specializes in dissociation.

Customer:

Ok. But I should not tell him something so specific because he would get defensive, right? Or should I try?

Dr. Z. :

No I would not tell him anything specific, I think a mental health professional should tell him, but you can mention that you think what his parents did to him have left him psychologically scarred and that you believe it would be helpful for him to talk to a therapist about it. This way you are not blaming him, but blaming the way his parents treated him

Customer:

I understand, will do.

Customer:

May I contact you back in case I need it later on?

Dr. Z. :

Of course, you can contact me at anytime. If you want to post a new question you can put before your question "For DoctorZ only." If you want to ask a follow up question you can do so on this chat after your rate me at no charge to you.

Customer:

Wonderful. Thank you so much for your help.

Dr. Z. :

Anytime, I am always happy to help. I wish you the best of luck with your ex-boyfriend. My goal is to provide you with excellent service, so if you ever have any further questions or concerns please do not hesitate to contact me at anytime.

Customer:

Ok, have a great rest of the day.

Dr. Z. :

You as well, have a great rest of your weekend :)

Dr. Z, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 4438
Experience: Psy.D. in Clinical Forensic Psychology with a background in treating severe mental illnesses.
Dr. Z and 3 other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 10 months ago.

Hello,


 


I would like to follow up on my question from the other day. I'd like to know your opinion on the following: we ended the relationship on amicable terms (or so I thought) and my ex wanted to meet me on my daughter's birthday to give me back my clothes (of course, I think that was an excuse to see me and try to get back). He said how much he loved me, and he will always remember me, etc. Since I was still vulnerable at the time, I answered him briefly and said it would be better to hold off on meeting because he had just broken up and everything was still fresh, so it would be better to meet again when both of us are at a better place, and maybe we could later meet up, have coffee,return things and talk as good friends. He replied "ok :)". After about 10 days I felt ready to meet up, and emailed him to meet up and he never replied. So I waited till today, when I texted him telling him about the email I sent and I wasn't sure if he got it.


He replied briefly, and in a tone as if he never knew me. He said he had been busy and that we don't need to have coffee and he can come BY MY HOUSE and drop things off this week when I am back from work. To me that's a little strange, because he is mad at me, so why not meet at a neutral place to exchange things?It's like he's hurt and wants nothing to do with me, but at the same time he wants to come home when I am home. I feel a little nervous about that. I told him it's ok, and he said he may come this Thursday or Friday, he will let me know tomorrow. My question is: is it safe to let him come by my house, given the possibility that he may act in a hostile way towards me, now that we there isnothing between us, and considering that he has serious psychological issue?

Expert:  Dr. Z replied 10 months ago.
Hello again,

I think with the serious psychological issues that he has and the possibility that he may dissociate into a more hostile alternate personality can be problematic and I think the neutral site location is a better idea for you or have some friends over at your place when he comes over. I do not think he is mad at you, but more mad at the situation and I agree that he is using this as an excuse to try to get you back.
Customer: replied 10 months ago.

Hello Dr.,



Thank you so much again for answering my question. I will definitely ask a friend to come over, or if no one can, i will just see him at the door of my apartment building and keep the conversation short.

Expert:  Dr. Z replied 10 months ago.
Yeah I think with his dissociations, he can be unpredictable and I want you to be safe. If you can keep the conversations short at the front door of your apartment building will be a good idea. Remember even if you feel sorry for him, try not to let him into your apartment. Just make an excuse that you have to run out real quick because you have a prior engagement. This will help the situation, so that he does not feel like you are purposely trying not to see him or that you do not like him because if he feels negatively about himself then it can cause a further psychological decline and I know you do not want that. Good luck with everything and if you need anything else, please feel free to contact me at anytime.
Customer: replied 10 months ago.

Thank you :)

Expert:  Dr. Z replied 10 months ago.
Anytime, I am always happy to help. Have a great rest of your week :)
Customer: replied 10 months ago.

Thank you, you too :)

Expert:  Dr. Z replied 10 months ago.
You are most welcome :)

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