Loss of Interest

By Renée Grinnell

A loss of interest or a loss of pleasure refers to a person who simply loses interest in activities in their life — including friendships, hobbies, reading or even watching TV — that they enjoyed doing in the past. A person who is experiencing a loss of interest may report feeling less interested in hobbies, “not caring anymore” or not feeling any enjoyment in activities that were previously considered fun or full of pleasure for the person.

Family members or friends will often notice a person will become more withdrawn, and will decline spending time with the family member or friend. If this occurs once, it’s not a concern. If it occurs time and time again without any reasonable explanation or excuse, it may be a sign of loss of interest.

For example, a formerly avid golfer who loses all interest in playing golf any longer, or a child who used to enjoy soccer finds excuses not to practice over and over again.

Loss of interest can extend into sexual activities with one’s romantic partner as well. However, the side effects of many commonly prescribed antidepressant medications include a reduced interest in sexual activity.

Loss of interest is only of concern when it occurs over and over again in the person, and is a common symptom of many mental health issues, including depression.


    Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 27 Apr 2010