Inappropriate behavior caused by M/S

PLEASE HELP !! Getting divorced after marriage of 23 with 4 kids with M/S diagnosis of primary progressive 5 years ago. I love my wife very much. I have found myself talking to other women in a more suggestive way and getting emotionally attached to them. I also feel more alone and This has caused trouble in my marriage and now my wife wants a divorce. In my research I have found that these kinds of behaviours could be caused by the M/S as lesions in brain could be affecting my cognitive dysfunction causing poor judgement. I also feel more alone and need to be around people mostly women. Has anybody else have this problem. M/S has ruined my whole life and stole all my dreams

Can m.s. be blamed for ‘inappropriate behaviour?’

Hugely complex question - hope someone can answer this.

1 Like

So are you saying, hand-on-heart, your marriage was brilliant, and you were both really happy, yet still you felt these strange, “out-of-character” compulsions to seek solace (not necessarily of a sexual nature) with other women?

Or is the truth of it that you were already feeling sad, lonely or isolated in the marriage? If the latter, I don’t think there’s really any need to look for a complicated brain dysfunction, caused by MS. If you were feeling lonely - whether married or not - it would be human nature to want to do something about it. I don’t think that is “cognitive dysfunction”. It’s something that would be quite understandable if all were not well at home. I’m not saying that justifies it. Just that most people wouldn’t consider it some kind of brain dysfunction, if your thoughts and inclinations turned elsewhere when you were lonely.

How honest are you being about how great things really were? Was there really no background to your behaviour, and you destroyed a “perfect” marriage, or was there already a problem?



Have you talked to anyone about the way you suspect your MS has changed your behaviour? I’m thinking your neurologist or MS nurse. If indeed there is a connection between brain lesions and your change of behaviour, then you could be referred to a neuro-psychologist for some help. Of course, if you could demonstrate to your wife that there is a physiological reason for what you are doing, and perhaps get some help with it, then maybe she’d reconsider.

I know there are a number of ways in which people’s cognitive processes can be altered by brain lesions, and (from a purely unscientific basis), it seems to me that it’s possible that this is what’s happening to you.

Of course, if in fact you are doing nothing to prevent yourself acting on these feelings and behaving inappropriately in ways that a) truly damage your otherwise happy marriage or b) make other people feel uncomfortable or threatened, then it’s easy to understand your wife’s reaction to your change in behaviour. Or, if you think back over time and realise that you have always had attractions to other women and/or have been acting in such inappropriate ways for much longer than your MS diagnosis could be responsible for, equally, you couldn’t really 100% put the blame on brain lesions.

I do hope that you can get some help with these feelings, it is always sad to see the end of a longstanding partnership. But you do need to be totally honest with yourself and try to get some help if you find that you can lay all the blame on your MS.

Good luck Sue

1 Like

Tina, we did have a wonderful marriage before the M/S. We did everything as a family. we went on several cruses . But with 4 small kids are life was concentrated around the kids.

Sue, it seems that everything changed after the M/S rely hit me. After the M/S rely hit me I had to quit farming and a landscaping business I started feeling alone and needed to be a round people more. Then while my wife was at work I was at home by myself and made things worse. Then I started taking my wife to work. But when I was out and about grocery shopping, coffee shops to pass time while I was waiting to pick my wife up after work i would be watching other women and having good thoughts. As I can remember before my M/S I had never done that. So I don’t know confused and sad. I am going to neurologist today. Thank You Sue


I think first you need to be getting some behaviour therapy there are some experts who could really look into your mind. eg- Psychiatrist - Psychotherapy- Marriage counselling, etc.

I`ve never heard of MS effecting cognitive dysfunction it will be interesting to see what the outcome of your post will be .

If you have a wife that you love and I take it she loves you, what do you expect will be the outcome . Do think these oyher women you talk yo want to have a serious relationship with someone who has PPMS?

I have SPMS for 21 years and find my wife of 36 years could of found a life of her own if she had not excepted what I have. I am basically good for nothing but my wife is my rock. I would advise you to help asap.

Good Luck


A serious change of circumstances for either party, and, with MS especially, the uncertainty of the future, is a challenge to any relationship.

Whilst it may be true that your marriage was “sound” before the MS diagnosis, I don’t think it necessarily follows that all problems from that date were the result of “cognitive dysfunction” caused by the illness.

I think diagnosis with a serious, incurable illness is a severe blow to self image, especially if we saw ourselves as active capable, yes, even sexy, before this knowledge.

Could it be - whether consciously or not - that you felt a desperate need to prove you still “had what it takes”? Almost like a mid-life crisis, except, in your case, it would have been precipitated not by encroaching age, but by the realisation you were ill?

Some people might react by buying a sports car, or something else always wanted, before it’s “too late”. Others by needing to prove they’re still attractive.

Yes, MS can change personality - at least theoretically - although on the whole, I think moodiness or depression are more likely than a compulsive urge to socialise with or “chat up” the opposite sex. But it is profound news in itself, and I think people can react to that in many different, and sometimes unexpected, ways - not all of them directly caused by the disease itself, but sometimes just as a psychological consequence of being faced with a difficult and uncertain future.

We’d all like reassurance at such times that we’re still OK really - perhaps even attractive, lovable to someone new.

So would it be so weird to want to test this, even if you weren’t serious about going through with it, and didn’t foresee the impact on your marriage?

I’m very sceptical of the “brain lesions made me do it” explanation, although you may have had perfectly understandable reasons for acting differently. Being diagnosed with incurable illness is (for most of us, we hope) a pretty once-in-lifetime thing, isn’t it? Some people might react by doing things never previously considered.


1 Like

Don’t post often but do come on for a look around quite regularly.

There’s some very good advice in here, as well as some very self-searching questions to ask yourself. Some I have been asking myself recently. Others I need to ask and answer.

Al-Anon + counselling due to my ex’s serious alcohol problem taught me to do self analysis!!

Had an affair when I was married to her because of loneliness. Or that’s what I told myself at the time. With hindsight I think that was just a way of justifying it to myself.

Not sure if I’m pushing my better half away because I want her to have a better life with someone else: keep thinking to myself I don’t want her wasting her life looking after me when this s**t gets worse (if it ever gets worse!!). I’m self employed and get no money if I can’t work. I also have a knack nowadays of feeling sorry for myself (although very rarely thankfully.)

I am and always have been a bit of a flirt. Probably less nowadays as I don’t want to lose my beautiful baby by her thinking I’m having an affair (been there- done that and have the T shirt saying I’m a muppet !.). She is used to me being ‘friendly’ it’s her and my gorgeous daughter who call it flirting! They both know I mean no harm and do genuinely see it as being friendly. Sometimes I’ll do it to try and embarrass someone as a joke- always apologise immediately if I upset (or they appear to be upset) someone with banter

Do you really, truthfully want to lose your responsible adult? Or are you consciously/ subconsciously pushing her away because you don’t want her to watch you possibly getting worse? Don’t want her taking care of you later on?

Are you just feeling sorry for yourself?

Do you think you’ve “lost your attractiveness” and are just looking for reassurance?

Have you tried a new hobby to attempt to pass the extra time you have?

Tread softly.Don’t let things get to the point where she or you can’t change your minds because of things said or done until you are 100% sure that’s what you want.

Good luck with life.

You won’t get out of it alive. But give it a go anyway and try to be the first


i read somewhere a long time ago that the myelin sheath takes a while to form, and it is one of the reasons teenagers behave the way they do. for me, one problem i sometimes have is an impetuosity which can make me say things without thinking about them first, like a teenager. a more defined problem is changing my mind at the last moment, and i tend to be aware of this most when driving, like i have decided to go a certain route, and then change my mind, turning left instead of going straight on, and then, at the last moment changing it back again, which is what happens when trying to draw a circle with my right hand - which has a very strong intentional tremor - it keeps correcting itself with the result that my circle looks more like a daisy head.

i can see how behaviours like that could impact on a relationship; my wife managed okay, but she had her own problems with depression which led to her death a couple of years ago.

(there are no caps here as i can only use my left hand on the key board.)

I think this page explains behavioural issues in MS.

Your just lonely, thats it in a nutshell. You have given yourself an empty life. If you can drive still why cant you get a job even albeit a small one to fill up your days.

Your brain used to be active and full of ideas now its just dulls ville.

You say you were a landscape gardener, well you can still design gardens cant you i know one of my friends does so with software, and he has helpers who do the main work, whilst he runs his business.

There are ways to do things. You are just vegetating and bored, and boredom= equals inappropriate thoughts. Perhaps you are testing to see if other women still find you attractive who knows how a mans mind works lol.

You need to get out there again and find something to do.

MS screws with our emotions big time. I have turned into a bitch at times i never used to be like that ever, i was a teacher with massive patience, now little things irk me and i could scream or throw things. Noise drives me mad, and yes i am lonely, so i have started a few poultry groups and i help people with their chicken problems lol. It is keeping my brain active.

MS does screw our brain, but we cant use it as an excuse to have sexual fantasies about being with women, thats a whole other subject lol…

Lonely you need something to do you have a great brain so use it. find a way. Good luck, talk to your wife communicate with her explain tell her what you have told us.

I talk openly with my husband i tell him i am a beeeetch and i love him, so when i am a beeeetch he must ignore me, its not me, its the alien who has possessed my brain called MS. He totally gets it, and we manage to stay friendly lol.

the kids must have grown up too cant you get more involved with them as well maybe help them more?

anyway see i am off on one, i start to close then remember something else lol.

again good luck, get busy … rosie.