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I seem to have lost any empathy for other people


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#1 CaptainSteve

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Posted 17 October 2006 - 11:03 PM

Hi all,
My life has been hell the last few days as my depression has seemed to take on a new character. I seem to have lost any empathy for other people. I've been depressed for about a year and have lost most of my interest or pleasure in everything. However, I've still generally cared about other people.
For the last week, I simply cannot relate to other people or give a stuff about how things affect them. I care little for how my depression affects my family, when normally that is important to me. I have often had violent thoughts against myself and others and at the moment would not care if i hurt somone, although i certainly don't intend to do so. I absolutely hate this side of the depression. I'm emotionally numb, and could care little about whether i lived or died. (btw, not suicidal)
I started on prozac about a month ago after a large dose of effexor didn't work for me. The first few weeks were better with quite an increase in energy. The last week i've felt completely flat, which i've felt before, but all my feelings going awol is new and very scary. I have an appointment with the psychiatrist in under two weeks, and definitely intend to talk to him about it. I hope things change, as i've really only been like this for about a week, but this is the time when the prozac should really be kicking in.
Has anyone else lost empathy or feeling for other people before, particulary if it is related to meds issues. Any advice?

#2 surgeon2006

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Posted 17 October 2006 - 11:07 PM

CaptainSteve,

Sorry to hear things are going this way...however how is your over all mood on the prozac?

It is possible the prozac is causing you to feel this way towards others,however you should consult your doc about it.
We go through different phases on the road to recovery and its always possible these thoughts and feelings could be related to this as well.

Hang in there...give your doc a call or make an appointment to be on the safe side.
SO6
Life is too short to wake up with regrets,
So love the people who treat you right.
Forget about the ones who don't.
Believe everything happens for a reason.
If you get a second chance, grab it with both hands.
If it changes your life, let it.
Nobody said life would be easy....
they just promised itd be worth it.

#3 blondekat

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Posted 18 October 2006 - 02:06 AM

Hi all,
My life has been hell the last few days as my depression has seemed to take on a new character. I seem to have lost any empathy for other people. I've been depressed for about a year and have lost most of my interest or pleasure in everything. However, I've still generally cared about other people.
For the last week, I simply cannot relate to other people or give a stuff about how things affect them. I care little for how my depression affects my family, when normally that is important to me. I have often had violent thoughts against myself and others and at the moment would not care if i hurt somone, although i certainly don't intend to do so. I absolutely hate this side of the depression. I'm emotionally numb, and could care little about whether i lived or died. (btw, not suicidal)
I started on prozac about a month ago after a large dose of effexor didn't work for me. The first few weeks were better with quite an increase in energy. The last week i've felt completely flat, which i've felt before, but all my feelings going awol is new and very scary. I have an appointment with the psychiatrist in under two weeks, and definitely intend to talk to him about it. I hope things change, as i've really only been like this for about a week, but this is the time when the prozac should really be kicking in.
Has anyone else lost empathy or feeling for other people before, particulary if it is related to meds issues. Any advice?



yes...my total lack of feeling toward anything and anyone but most of all my family is what finally made me seek out a med change. how awful as this sounds i felt like someone could have their throat slit in front of me and i would have no response other than to perhaps step over them and walk away!! talk about scary! i no longer felt or feel human. i even felt empty toward my children. i found an article on it online and they named it and said it was a certain type of depression tho tratment seems to be the same. i say this as i'm sick as a dog from my 4th day of wellbutrin and seriously considering not taking it tomorrow. im assuming feelings for others return if the meds work. heres prayin for both of us.

#4 Jkm

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Posted 18 October 2006 - 07:22 AM

It's a symptom and a side effect. I felt this when I first got on meds a couple of years ago, and it really bugged me. I had tons of anxiety with my depression and thought even anxiety was better than feeling nothing. I was relieved when it went away.

I also felt this during an intense grief period and it lifted after I started meds. I had one of those types of depression where my body felt like it weighed a 1000lbs. I guess it was okay, as I felt suidical at the time and didn't have the energy to do anything but sit and think. Meds pulled me out of that, too.

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#5 Sheepwoman

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Posted 18 October 2006 - 07:31 AM

The only time I felt flat or have no empathy with othere was when I was on a very high dose of Elavil. Prozac was just the opposite. However, we all metabolize meds differently and our responses to them will be different. You should be just beginning to have some benefit from the Prozac. Talk to your pdoc about how you are feeling. The dose maybe wrong or maybe this is not the right med for you.
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It is not the life I lived; but the life I leave behind. Posted Image
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God will give you no more than you can handle. This is all a test to see if you are really ready for the good things that are going to come your way. All this pain is going to come back and make me stronger.-Clarence Clemmons 1942-2011

Everything I know, I know because I love. Leo Tolstoy War and Peace

#6 marion

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Posted 18 October 2006 - 07:40 AM

Hi all,
My life has been hell the last few days as my depression has seemed to take on a new character. I seem to have lost any empathy for other people. I've been depressed for about a year and have lost most of my interest or pleasure in everything. However, I've still generally cared about other people.
For the last week, I simply cannot relate to other people or give a stuff about how things affect them. I care little for how my depression affects my family, when normally that is important to me. I have often had violent thoughts against myself and others and at the moment would not care if i hurt somone, although i certainly don't intend to do so. I absolutely hate this side of the depression. I'm emotionally numb, and could care little about whether i lived or died. (btw, not suicidal)
I started on prozac about a month ago after a large dose of effexor didn't work for me. The first few weeks were better with quite an increase in energy. The last week i've felt completely flat, which i've felt before, but all my feelings going awol is new and very scary. I have an appointment with the psychiatrist in under two weeks, and definitely intend to talk to him about it. I hope things change, as i've really only been like this for about a week, but this is the time when the prozac should really be kicking in.
Has anyone else lost empathy or feeling for other people before, particulary if it is related to meds issues. Any advice?

Sorry to hear you're feeling so lost and empty. I truly think the change in your medication will be making you feel this way and you have to hang in there and let it work, this mood will pass. :hearts:

#7 CaptainSteve

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Posted 18 October 2006 - 10:22 AM

Thanks for the replies
As I said, the complete lack of empathy has really only been apparent for a few days so i'm hoping that it will change. I should have a good idea if its a temporary or more permanent problem due to the medication and be able to take action in a couple of weeks with the pdoc.
As blondekat said, feeling this way very much feels like you're not really human. Its scary and not particulary safe if it continues.

#8 Guest_sarah-nicole_*

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Posted 18 October 2006 - 12:01 PM

CaptainSteve,

When is your next appointment with your pdoc? I hope you can hang in there until then............however please do not hesitate to call your doc if you start feeling out of control and are no longer safe!!

Taking care of you should be your first priority right now :bump:

Good luck,

SN :hearts:

#9 pandora

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Posted 18 October 2006 - 12:41 PM

Hi CaptainSteve,

I'm really sorry to hear that you're feeling that way! I went through a slight period of numbness when I started on Wellbutrin. I went from feeling completely awful from the depression, to feeling nothing, and then I finally started to feel good again. I think that sometimes that may be a part of the meds kicking in, but you should definately talk to your pdoc, especially if those symptoms get more severe.

Good luck! :hearts:
From childhood's hour I have not been
As others were; I have not seen
As others saw; I could not bring
My passions from a common spring.
Alone - Edgar Allen Poe

#10 hugakittytoday

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Posted 18 October 2006 - 03:42 PM

Hey all. I understand the feelings of... well not feeling! Just loss of feelings for other people's feelings (if that makes sense). I think I've experienced this at times due to my depression, and other times due to meds. Some meds (mood stablizers especially) can make you feel very flat about EVERYTHING. Its so hard to decide to live a life feeling flat on meds but stable, or able to experience highs and LOWS.

#11 Sacred Journey

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Posted 18 October 2006 - 04:16 PM

It is terrible that you are experiencing this, CaptainSteve. I too experienced something similar when I took Prozac, although I do not remember feeling a lack of sentiment for others. The "numbness" was definitely unsettling. I ended up stopping the medication, and my emotion, [or at least, perception of it] returned.

Although, for your situation, I reiterate others' comments: Many people are affected differently; the feeling might cease for you eventually, or this particular medication might not be right for you. Speaking with your doctor about this is definitely important.

I might be wrong, but the fact that you have posted about the problem and seek advice indicates you are, at least slightly, still experiencing some regard for yourself and others. Alternatively, though, how would we know true pleasure [or anger, or misery] if we had nothing to compare it with? If every day I sat in my white room, at my white desk and chair, and noticed one day, upon entering the room that the chair was red, I would wonder why it was red, and probably seek the cause, but it would still be the same chair with the same function, and aside from my curiosity to its alteration in color, it probably wouldn't change how I worked at the desk. Well, that was an obvious and silly example, but I hope the issue becomes resolved soon, if it hasn't already.
"I long to accomplish a great and noble task, but it is my chief duty to accomplish small tasks as if they were great and noble." -- Helen Keller

"Sow a thought, reap an action; sow an action, reap a habit; sow a habit, reap a character; sow a character, reap a destiny."

"Courage is the first of human qualities because it is the quality that gaurantees all the others." --W.C.




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