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Withdrawing off medication affecting our marriage



New member
Feb 2, 2009
Hi all,

I'm writing this message to try and get some support for my situation as I feel so alone.

My message is about my husband who is now off sulpride. He slowly withdrew off it middle of 2007 and the beginning of last year he has been off them totally. Although he hasn't had a breakdown or had psychotic thoughts during this long period which is great, he has been very negative and defensive.

I suffer with anxiety and depression and have anger issues so the arguing has been very bad last year and it started with staying over at my parents every weekend and now it has been 3 months since i have stayed with my parents. Although i was the one packing the suitcase it was a joint decision that one of us should go because the arguing was suffering us both so much. For me the last straw was the emotional withdrawal and staying out til really late.

Now we are having to cope with all the separation pain and so the arguments are continuing. He wants to withdraw and not have contact with me because he says it will keep him out of hospital. For me being emotionally abandoned is causing great difficulty as we used to be so close. I wake up with pain in my heart and i have lost one job already because i was too emotional. I am finding it so hard in trying to make a life for myself in another area when I don't want to be away from my husband whom i love. I feel that building a new life would mean i'm walking away and its so hard living with the worry of the possibility he may be on the start to having a breakdown again and not be in contact to monitor him.

It is really hard coping with the arguments. there is like a 3 fold thing to them: I am finding that he is acting outrageously unreasonable and so then i retaliate with anger and hurt and then he retaliates by shaming me for my negative hurt response - so i am getting hurt twice! I can't help thinking that this is part of the withdrawing symptom that he is unable to be rational and see two sides to a story or if its just projection onto me to avoid looking at his bad behaviour. I guess if he's in a state of trying to protect himself as he is coping off meds then he's not wanting to look at what he's doing wrong. But its been a year now and 3 months since we split and nothing is changing. I wish he could see how his behaviour has affected our marriage and not just my anger.

Anyone else in this situation of coping with someone like this - be nice to share. Thanks


yoiu have been through so much together already. I always think that sometimes when people come off meds they are then left to their own devices to easily, I wonder if people know how to behave once off of the thing that has kept them psychologically dependant. It is a lot for you to deal with as well, I bet no one has given you advice or assistance have they. why should you understand or even be able to cope with someone else who has clearly shut off, maybe this is to avoid things, maybe this is a reaction to coming off meds. I cannot answer, but I think that you both would rather be together and happy.
although your hubby is doing extremely well in not having a psychotic episode it still sounds like he is having issues with his emotions.
is there any way you can both go to relate or something like that to get some outside and unbiased help and advice?
I feel your anguish. take care


New member
Feb 2, 2009
Thanks for that kind reply. It was nice to hear someone feeling compassion for me for a change.
We are in couples counselling for a year now but i am going to try and swap because i don't think the counsellor is very good. I think she could help us handle the problems better in the session - as it is we just air our grievances and nothing seems to come from it. I also think she knows i don't believe in her as a counsellor and therefore if affects things and i feel she is more on his side anyway. So therefore we are always reluctant to go to counselling as we are just getting blamed and told off by each other and there seems to be no point. We can't even hold a conversation over the phone so living together again is not an option at the moment. I can't stand it when he says he doesn't want contact with me and says "he has to go now" or abruptly leaves the counselling session. I hope he is outside waiting for me but he has gone. I check my emails and my mobile but nothing. I had hoped that leaving might push him into action to do something to change his withdrawing from me but he seems persistent to continue with me not there in (our home). His main goal is being off his meds and it seems that is the only thing that is important to him - regardless of the fact that I've left. He's even convinced himself its all my fault, that my anger and my hurts are all made up. If he wasn't ill then i would probably not bother with him. But i don't know which is the real person. I do feel stupid for allowing myself to continue with him but i remember how nice he was and how good it was a few years ago.


people do tend to focus on the person with the problem and forget those around them. Youi are going through as much as he is by association.

If he wasn't ill then i would probably not bother with him.

thats an interesting phrase. sorry I have to ask; why are you with him then?, out of sympathy?, loyalty?, love ? what?.

he seem very wrapped up in his own problems and unfortunately sometimes that is very hard to remedy because of their fear of their own emotions, hence the withdrawal.
please do not turn this on yourself, he obviously says things that clearly hurt your feeling and is lashing out blaming the nearest person, you.
you deserve to be happy as well and although I admire your trying through thick and thin, he need to change himself and want to before you get the old person you new back.
I agree a counsellor who you trust and who you feel is impartial is very improtant, if he/she is making you feel like this then they will never be ale to help in a positive way, you already are untrusting of her/him so will not be congruent.
It might help also if you tried to find a counsellor just for you, but one you feel totally at ease with, this is the point. and you might have to change a few times till you find the right person, when you do you will know.
It is acceptable to ask for a change in counsellors because of this reason.

[II can't stand it when he says he doesn't want contact with me and says "he has to go now" or abruptly leaves the counselling session./I]

I think this a coping mechanism, to run away and hide or avoid contact is typical of someone who is finding things hard to cope or come to terms with.
he is not running from you however, he is running from himself. please do not take it personally because you have done nothing wrong.

You deserve a happy life so be honest with yourself about what you really want. youi can only help someone to a certain extent, sometime too much help can be as bad as too little, if that makes sense.

take care hun
Rambuie Perspecador

Rambuie Perspecador

Well-known member
Founding Member
Dec 21, 2007
I feel very sympathetic, though I have little experience to offer. Sulpiride has the reputation for being relatively benign. I did wonder what put it into his head to come off them, if you were both contented with a balanced relationship and things going for you before he did that?

It is almost like peer pressure - that he has to have a goal, and his goal is to expunge the memory that he has a chemical imbalance that requires a pharmaceutical intervention? Has he talked this through - with you, or anyone else? Was the advice Sound, or did it have an element of Appeasement and 'he'll learn the hard way' about it? Sorry, I don't mean to interrogate, but it does not sound like a wise decision to me.


New member
Feb 2, 2009
Thank you for your replies they are very helpful and supportive.

I actually don't know why he wanted to come off them. I was questioning it today and I think its like an obsessional thing about feeling unclean with it in his body and knowing that it stifles creativity maybe one reason because he is a creative person but he is creative anyway. He also seemed to be in a rush to quit smoking a couple of times during the withdrawal which i don't see the rush to come off a second drug.

Its like the importance of doing this is more important than what its doing to our relationship.

I always felt he didn't discuss or take into consideration my opinion of them and i remember i always thought it was too soon after (7 months or so) our ectopic pregnancy which he seemed to suffer from more than me and I think he was always envious of me coming off prozac a few years before (my reasons were because i was happier and didn't want to become pregnant with it in my system). I think also there is a spiritual element of purity and reliance on God to not need medication to keep us happy (in general terms slighty naive i know).

I'd like to find out why its so important but he can't see that its caused any problems in our relationship despite me not living there.

Saffron, you asked why are am bothering with him. I said if he wasn't ill i wouldn't bother with him - not because i don't love him - but because in the separation he is treating me so badly with his neglect and extreme conceitedness and judgements towards me etc that i realise this categorises as abuse (of which i have had in a past relationship) and it touches home a lot. But i seem to want to keep trying - because I can't cope without him. I know that I could if I decided to leave him permanently but for the time being this is just a separation. I love him and we had something really good before (although there were flaws of course) but the friendship and closeness like soul mates, sometimes i even indulged in feeling sorry for other couples because it was so good. And definately loyalty because we are both committed christians and I believe that God wants to resolve issues instead. But i am also aware that nothing can be resolved if my husband doesn't want to admit any faults. I wish I could get on with making a life in this area but sometimes i am so distraught with worry that his illness is keeping him hostage and all his pain is locked up and he does feel all the same things as me deeply. I guess i should just wait and force myself to be happy with another life for the time being. I fear that if i don't contact that he never will and we will end up divorcing and the illness would have won.


hi Buiscuit
sorry I oviously hit a nerve, but I think you answered your own question then, you still need him and I am sure he needs you, although sometimes it is hard to admit you need someone when you are trying to be strong. even though you need a break from each other you can still support each other and remind him that things were good and you are soul mates, sometimes its so frustrating eh. but sometimes people also focus on the wrong thing and worry about the negative and not focusing on the positive, sometime people forget how to be a friend and offer support but it is also easy to take it to heart if they are not ready for it. maybe you could instigate a date that is similar to something you used to do or something you think you both like, almost like seducing him again.
you may need to get some support ,though so you can be strong for him and be able to understand how to support him in the best possible way and still keep your own 'sanity', (as they say,).
maybe he did come off the meds too quick, but if he is determined to not go back on them then he needs to understand the impact of it and learn new coping techniques, probably easier said than done, but there must be something you can do to rekindle your close friendship? I really wish I could give you the answer as I feel you have tried so hard so far, and you should be really proud of yourself.
I wish you all the luck and really hope this ends in a positive way for you both.
take care
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