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Dr. Z
Dr. Z, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 10643
Experience:  Psy.D. in Clinical Forensic Psychology with a background in treating severe mental illnesses.
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My husband and I became empty nesters in August. I work full

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My husband and I became empty nesters in August. I work full time and there are 4 people in my office. I get upset when I am left out of conversations, business or personal. Am I craving their attention because my kids are gone and there is no group of mine at home? Is it my husband's fault that I don't feel like he is paying enough attention to me? If he was filling my "cup of happiness" then I wouldn't rely on my co-workers to fill me up and make me happy?

Dr. Z :

Hello I believe I can help you with your concerns

Dr. Z :

I am so sorry that you have been experiencing these symptoms, I can imagine how distressing this is for you

Dr. Z :

I would like to ask you a couple questions to get some more information, so that I can better assist you

Dr. Z :

For how long have you been feeling this way at work and in your relationship with your husband?

Dr. Z :

Also may I ask, what antidepressant medications have used in the past?

Customer:

At work I would say for most of this calendar year. With my husband it has bee 2 or three years. Our kids were very active in high school and so our relationship got put on the back burner. I took citalorpham for about 4 months. Sorry for the spelling. I took pristique for one month.

Dr. Z :

So it seems like you and your husband have been as emotionally close as you would like for the last 3 years and that may be an issue beyond just "Empty Nest Syndrome."

Dr. Z :

Does your husband work a lot and not communicate as much as he used to with you?

Customer:

He doesn't work much over 4-

Dr. Z :

So it is possible that you and your husband have grown a part in the last 2-3 years and this causing your symptoms. When your children left the home it most likely has become more noticeable to you though. Have you and your husband considered couple's therapy to help reconnect?

Dr. Z :

Because I do not believe that the problem solely lies with you, even though you have been the one taking the psychotropic medications in the past to help relieve your symptoms.

Customer:

No, I'm sure he thinks everything is fine. I am assuming all his needs are met. I wrote him a letter last summer to discuss my needs. I am a big cryer so it was easier to write. Things were better for a little while, but now it seems like I need to write another letter.

Dr. Z :

Well I think therapy would be a better option for you then just relying on the medications, so you can possibly work on solutions to have your needs met as well (that is only fair in any marriages for both partners to have their needs met). Also the low testosterone and pre-menopausal symptoms can cause an increased sensitivity to this as well, but I still feel that your husband is not meeting all your needs and it should be addressed to the point to find solution that benefits both of you

Dr. Z :

Many times one spouse will go to therapy and the other spouse, out of curiosity, will decide to join to see what it is like, so that can be an option for you as well

Dr. Z :

Also these relationship books can be very helpful for you and your husband as well and may give you some good unique ideas on how to interact with your husband to help him provide you with your needs.

Customer:

Ok. How do I deal with my co-workers? I want to be a part of the group so badly.

Dr. Z :

Well with your co-workers, I would learn their interests and try to gain some knowledge of these interests to talk to them about. Also many individuals like attention, so ask them some details about their lives that you do not know like hobbies, family life, travels, interests, goals, etc...this will be help you get closer to the group and also they will start to ask you questions to get to know you better too

Dr. Z :

In addition, bringing cookies or candy to work and sharing it can be beneficial as well and not very costly either.

Dr. Z :

Also be helpful and try to notice when a co-worker is stressed or overburdened with work and offer to help out will go a long way too

Dr. Z :

Here is also a decent book on basic strategies for initiating conversations and developing interpersonal relationships.

Customer:

I have written down the titles. Thanks!

Dr. Z :

Actually when you finish rating me, this chat will be sent as a link to your email, if it has not already, so you can always use it for future reference. In addition, this chat will be saved in your JA account under My Questions so you can always go back to it when you need to, so all the book titles would be saved for you too

Customer:

One more question, and maybe it is medical and not psychiatric. Since I got upset at work, around 4:00, I have not been able to turn off my tears. Is this menopausal or am I just so upset at my problems?

Dr. Z :

It actually could be a combination of both actually. Like I said I believe these issues are effecting you and causing stress and depressive symptoms, but I also feel that the menopausal symptoms can make you more sensitive to this because of the hormonal fluctuations, which can cause crying spells to distressing stimuli like these issues.

Customer:

Thank you for your help.

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