Sexual Addiction, Depression, and the Emotional Affair

JealousyI am helping my friend, I’ll call her Pam, end an emotional affair. I mean, it’s not the kind of emotional affair where she tells the guy that she loves him. They don’t have secret meetings, or talk every day, or have “code language.” To an outsider, the relationship wouldn’t seem inappropriate in the slightest. Yet she’s invested herself emotionally—letting it take a big chunk out of her heart—which is creating all kinds of guilt and anxiety for her.

Why would I bring up such a topic on a blog about depression and anxiety?

Because shady boundaries with friends of the opposite sex—emotional relationships that give you a shot of dopamine but leave you hung over—are dangerous territory for the person prone to obsessive thinking, addiction, or painful mood fluctuations. I used to write about this topic a lot on Beyond Blue because those pieces always generated a ton of traffic. The amount of mail and comments I received led me to believe almost every person battling a mood disorder, and especially those diagnosed with bipolar disorder, struggle with these kinds of relationships.

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