(Closed) Help me understand bipolar disorder…please

posted 6 years ago in Relationships
Post # 3
Member
753 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2012

These actions are indicative of bipolar disorder, definitely. Mania manifests in many different ways. I actually minored in psychology (working on making it a major) and I’ve done tons of research. Really, research is the BEST way to better understand disorders. I feel like the following links could explain the disorder better than I ever could, so here you go…I also included a few support groups for family and loved ones of bipolar people for you…I hope these help. 

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/bipolar-disorder/DS00356

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMH0001924/

http://www.bpso.org/

http://www.dailystrength.org/c/Family-and-Friends-of-Bipolar/support-group

You are a great lady for wanting to stay with him and support him though he’s suffering from what sounds like a serious mood disorder. I wish you both the best. <3 

Post # 5
Member
753 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2012

@MrsDrRose612:  Oh geez!! I read it wrong! I’m sorry, I’m wearing my contacts and they don’t completely correct my vision, lol. I’m literally almost legally blind in my left eye so I read things wrong a lot. Anyway, maybe pass the links on to your Future Mother-In-Law as well! 

I hope they help! 

Post # 7
Member
248 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

 

As someone who is themselves bipolar, I will try to explain how it can effect the ways I act. 

Neglecting important things: Yep, I can relate to that. All I can say is that when I’m ‘ill’ my sense of priorites goes out the window. I get fixated on very small things, to the point of obsession.  I even know when I’m out of control, but stopping my twisted way of thinking is very very hard.  I don’t do it to hurt people deliberately, but obviously sometimes it does.  Basically I can’t be trusted with important things like paying bills, maintaining a property. Sad, but true. 

Credit card debt: When I’m ill I can spend all my disability on stupid things and leave myself with no money for vital things like food.  Once again, I’m not thinking straight. The illness gets me thinking that I don’t need money and I can waste what I have on things like mobile phones, jewellery, etc.  The solution?  I don’t have credit cards, I don’t have an overdraft and I don’t/won’t have a joint bank account with Fiance. I get my groceries delivered and try and keep out of shops. 

You said  you can’t understand how someone can be so irresponsible.  The illness makes you this way, it’s not a way of acting that you chose.  I frustrate myself all the time.  I don’t like how I think or feel.  The drugs help, but the side effects can be horrible.  I wouldn’t wish this illness on my worst enemy.

Post # 8
Member
5 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: October 2012

Being in a relationship with someone for six years, who I have chosen to spend the rest of my life with that is bipolar I have a lot of experience with this illness. Not everyone will have the same type of disorder and may not have the same types of triggers or symptoms. My fiance is bipolar hypo-manic and I can tell that when he is having a “spell” of mania he can be very irritated and irritating, manic and spur of the moment, he packs bags of nonsense stuff he thinks he might need and makes list because he can’t seem to keep up with how fast he is going. He slurs, drives recklessily, snores loudily, sleeps in the oddest places and seems to pass out just out of pure exhaustion. He makes bad decisions both relationship wise and financially.

There where years where the illness would cause a rift in our relationship because I just could understand or wrap my head around his coldness and how much of a stranger he would become during those times. They where hard to recover from. I have since learned to love him for all the quirkiness and since he has come to terms with the illness himself he has learned to recognize when he is that way and we can turn it around and laugh about it. He has been through counseling and seen a psychiatrist although chooses not to take medicines. He seems to have less “spells” without the medicine although it’s likely we just never had the right dosage or combination. I have also learned over the years how much more he hated the illness than I even did, how much more it hurt him than it EVER hurt me and how much he would absolutely take it all away if he had the power. It’s not something he chose to be, chooses to be to this day or can change at this time. He is who he is and I have to remind myself often that he can’t help how he is and that he would change it if he could. It’s an illness not a lifestyle for sure. A lot of times when people are ashamed they refuse to see what they are doing wrong as well. I have seen for myself that once he became comfortable talking about it and was able to make light of the situation that it seemed to help him realize and even admit to what he was doing.

Post # 9
Member
624 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: November 2011

You will never understand and you have every right to be angry. Your Future Mother-In-Law choose to stay with him so you do not need to feel bad for her.

My father is Bipolar and I hate him, I will always hate him. I have learned to tolerate him over the past number of years because he is a pathetic and incompetent old man. I spent my childhood a victim of his violence and my adolescence a scapegoat for his actions. At 11 years old I was taken to a shrink and told “your father is bipolar, therefore you are bipolar, here’s some lithium.” It took over 10 years escape the diagnosis, even tho I never had a manic episode. My life was hell, because neither him or my mother put importance on therapy.

Unless they are putting all their effort into treatment, I will NEVER tolerate a mentally ill person in my life again.

 

I know that wasn’t the response you were looking for but it’s a very sore subject for me. I have no sympathy for my mother because she choose to stay married to a man who beat her and her children.

 

Post # 11
Member
7695 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2010

Bipolar is such a hard mental illness for friends and family to cope with. There are a lot of mood swings involved and a lot of actions that happen and are not logical at all. One of my best friends in college was bipolar and it was impossible to deal with her at times. She hit one of our other friends in the face one time when she was having a manic episode. She would spend tons of money, stay out all night partying and doing hard drugs, sleep with random guys and have absolutely grandiose ideas and fantasies for her life. It was very difficult for all of us to watch and she lost a lot of friends because of it. When we were friends, I really didn’t understand the illness that well. 

Then I worked for a mental health non profit my first year out of college. Several of my clients had bipolar disorder and it helped me to understand it better. The things people do when they are manic are hard for them to control. They literally have two sides of themselves. If someone with bipolar takes medication properly then it is manageable. The problem is that when they are on their meds, they feel fine and think that because they feel fine they do not need the meds anymore so they stop taking them. Another thing is that people with bipolar need to constantly be having their medication adjusted or else it may not have the right effect on them. 

Is your Future Father-In-Law seeking treatment? I hope that he is seeing a therapist and psychiatrist. I am so sorry you are going through this. It’s extremely frustrating especially because you can’t understand what is going on in his mind. Try to have patience and understanding and empathy for him as I’m sure this isn’t easy on him either. 

Post # 13
Member
7695 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2010

@MrsDrRose612:  Maybe he should go into an inpatient treatment for a few weeks. That’s what my friend did a few times and it definitely helped her a little bit each time. Of course the calm doesn’t stay forever, but inpatient treatment helps. My cousin is schizophrenic/bipolar and has had to go in several times. Maybe that’s what would be best for him?

Post # 15
Member
310 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

@MrsDrRose612:  I tend to see things like that as a reason rather than an excuse. My bipolar has caused me to do some selfish and mean things. It’s a reason, but not an excuse. Owning up to things can be incredibly difficult, but I agree with a PP, it’s hard to sympathize with someone unless they’re actively seeking treatment and part of that is accepting responsibility for your actions as well as having a willingness to change some things.

 

Post # 16
Member
2916 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: March 1996

@TheMsMittens:  Thank you so much for sharing your personal experience! It’s really been helpful to me.

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