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Hello. I have been married for twenty-eight years to an extremely loving, thoughtful man who loves me with all of his heart. I too love him with all of my heart. He was diagnosed with Parkinson's a few years ago, and was forced to retire at 47. He is now 50. For his better health, we have rented our of house, sold all of our belongings and moved to another Country where he enjoys the lifestyle more than living in California. We have three kids, ages 21, 22 and 25 who are still in the California. He has always been the breadwinner in the family, working tremendous hours to provide a beautiful life for me and the kids. I want for nothing, he encourages me to buy myself nice things, and constantly buys nice things for me as well. Sounds like a perfect life, but here is the glitch...he won't/can't stop spending money. He means well, but he keeps spending. When he thought that he only had a short time left because of his disease, he illegally accessed his retirement account and drained it dry within one year. He bought me expensive gifts during this time frame, and he qualifies it by that. I thought he was using the money that he was taking so freely out of our joint account to buy the gifts. He has a fabulous retirement income, netting us over $4,000 to spend as we see fit every month. We are so lucky!! Unfortunately, he withdrawals $200 to $400 every day...quickly draining us dry. Our oldest son is getting married in May of 2013. He promised him $10,000. He announced his engagement one year ago, and not one dime has been saved because he keeps withdrawing it all from the bank. I consistently sit down and create a budget with him, which he ignores. He will go for periods of time without access to any funds, but he will bully me into giving him my bank card again. He has gone through most of the monthly budget already, it's the 3rd of December and I have Christmas presents yet to buy. When asked where this recent large chunk of money went, he says he planned a dream vacation for us....I turn in to the bad guy when I mention my financial goals. He said today that he thought his Parkinson's was worse and that he didn't think he had much more time to live. I tried to get him to talk more about it, but he is giving me the silent treatment. Hasn't talked to me all day because I am a nagging brat about money. All I care about if money....says he. In my opinion, I am a financially responsible individual who can live like a Queen with so much slush per month while only paying $330 a month for rent to live in South America. When I talk/complain about his excessive spending habits, he mopes and pouts. He also buys watches (10 this past month) on eBay. Not expensive ones, but why so many watches?? It makes me unhappy to be the constant bad guy, the crusher of his dreams and wants. He became despondent two weeks ago because I was unhappy. Said that he spent his whole life trying to make me happy, if he couldn't do it then it was time to call it quits and attempted suicide. Extremely difficult night but gratefully, he was not successful. Lots of talking afterwards, I thought things would change. He agreed, but instantly took to using the bank card again and said he "changed his mind" he "wanted some "nice things" and he won't stop spending....when I couldn't wake him up easily from a nap today he accused me of being disappointed that he wasn't dead....love him to pieces, not sure what to do. I have absolutely NO ONE to talk to about this. How do you talk about this? He is currently out for a walk in the pouring rain/freezing cold rather than be in the house with me.....I am so sad and afraid.
 

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That's so interesting you posted this. Something I posted a little while ago in another thread with regards to a man having major spending problems:


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Your husband sounds manic. Mania is the opposite of depression - it means a person is unreasonably optimistic about everything. It's usually caused by bipolar disorder or drug abuse. Stimulants like meth cause mania, but the mania goes away after the drugs wear off.
Have you ever noticed that car dealerships always have free coffee? Coffee is a powerful stimulant. It's not as powerful as meth, but it has the same effect of making people a bit more optimistic and a bit more willing to spend money they wouldn't normally spend.

I have been married to my husband for 5 years. It has been some what rough. He has been arrested for stealing,
Mania will do that. If a person is absolutely convinced they can get away with it, then why not? Compulsive stealing is called kleptomania.

Well one, he has a bad spending problem. This isnt what is strange, but what is strange is that he spends like there is no tomorrow and doesnt really try hiding it. Well he tries hiding the receits, but he knows I can call the bank or see the bank statement and see all that he has spent.
Easily explainable by mania. The manic stage of bipolar disorder can be extremely dangerous because people do ridiculous things like buy a new truck they don't need or have unprotected sex with lots of different people. This applies to drug-induced mania as well. There's a strong correlation between using meth and catching HIV because the manic episode caused by meth leads people to believe they don't need condoms. It can also lead to really dumb excuses because they're confident that a dumb answer is good enough. A lot of prescription drugs increase dopamine firing in the brain, and those drugs usually have a warning about mania. Some people have done things like take an MAO-B inhibitor to treat parkinson's disease then suddenly they have an extreme gambling or shopping addiction. Is he on any medications, or is he naturally manic like this?


Now our family is going without things we need, like food and a vehicle because we cant afford right now to get insured until next month and he acts like he has done nothing wrong at all. He has denied all wrongs. When I finally did confront him that I knew he didnt pay on the insurance, he turned it around on me, and he said that the reason why he quit paying the bills was because I am uncommitted to our marriage.
It's possible that he really doesn't believe he did anything wrong. Mania is also linked to depersonalization. Depersonalization is hard to explain because it doesn't make sense unless you've felt it before. Depersonalization is when a person doesn't feel like they are in control of their body. It's like your body is on autopilot, and all you can do is watch. This is actually a very common side effect of drugs. Some people experience depersonalization when drunk. Depersonalization is also very common when taking a drug like meth or PCP.


This is not him at all. He sneaks around, he lies quite a bit, I catch him just about everyday in a new lie, he isnt even good at it anymore, he is annoyed and mean to our kids and he acts like our bills are no worries or concerns to him and that I am just a worry wort.
Classic sign of mania. When my doctor gave me a certain drug, I remember him saying "if you suddenly feel like you have infinite money and bills are not a problem, immediately stop taking this medication." The medication was a dopamine stimulant.

He will even become angry for and flustered for what seems like no reason at times. I ask him what is wrong, and I always try (not perfect at this but make an effort) to be calm and ask him whats wrong and if something is bothering him. He just yells and says "WHY DO YOU ALWAYS THINK SOMETHING IS WRONG WITH ME, JUST LEAVE ME THE HELL ALONE"!
That's very common in people who have bipolar disorder.
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Why Drugs For Parkinson's Cause Mania:
For starters, what is parkinson's disease? It's a condition of very poor muscle control due to a lack of dopamine. Somewhere in the chain of reactions to create dopamine, there is a problem. Maybe phenylalanine is not converted to tyrosine properly. Maybe tyrosine is not converted to L-DOPA properly. Typical dopamine boosting drugs like amphetamine do nothing to treat parkinson's because those drugs can only release dopamine that is already in the body. The proper treatment for parkinson's involves boosting the amount of dopamine created, and this is done by taking a supplement called L-DOPA. Similar to taking 5-HTP supplements to boost serotonin because 5-HTP is the precursor to serotonin, taking L-DOPA boosts dopamine because L-DOPA is the precursor to dopamine. In addition to creating more dopamine, the treatment can also include a drug that prevents dopamine from being destroyed. The enzyme responsible for destroying dopamine is called MonoAmine Oxidase (MAO), so drugs that block this enzyme are called MonoAmine Oxidase Inhibitors (MAOI). The MAO enzyme has 2 variants, A and B. Blocking MAO-A is usually for treating depression, and blocking MAO-B is for treating parkinson's disease.

Taking L-DOPA and an MAO-B inhibitor at the same time can have the same effects as taking a regular dopamine releasing drug like meth. Doing things like drinking coffee, drinking alcohol, and smoking cigarettes can make this mania even more extreme. Your husband should try lowering his dosage of L-DOPA or MAO-B inhibitors because mania would indicate that his dopamine levels are too high.
 

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Struggling, I agree with Shawn. In addition to the problem with medication, PD itself can result in an ICD (Impulse Control Disorder). On this topic, a psychiatrist at Johns Hopkins says a recent study found that 9% of PD sufferers below the age of 65 had acquired ICDs. He says the ICDs most often take the form of "pathological gambling, excessive spending and hypersexuality." He writes:
The treatment of impulse control disorders in PD is challenging because the medications that are needed to treat the movement disorder aspect of PD are often the precipitating agents of ICDs. Stopping anti-parkinson's medications altogether in order to treat an ICD is not practical. However, stopping or reducing the dose of the suspected agent often helps. Usually, when a dopamine agonist is suspected of contributing to an ICD, the patient can be switched to levodopa. See Articles - Impulse Control Disorders in Parkinson's Disease - Young Parkinsons.
 
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