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Question
Posted by: hunny bun | 2008/10/06

in love with a diagnosed bipolar guy

I' ve recently met this absolute charm of a guy. He is absolutely fantastic, loving, caring, interesting, talkative, well educated, with a good job and from a good family. From very early in our relationship he has been clear on the fact that he is diagnosed and receiving treatment for biopolar disorder.
I am scared that I am so in love with his good side that I don' t see the danger signs! What do I need to know and work on if I want this relationship to work? I have not experienced anything weird or out of the ordinary so far, he has his little mannerisms like any other bachelor of 28 would have.

hunny bun

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Our expert says:
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Its a strong point in his favour that he was honest and open about his diagnosis so early on. Gently discuss with him your concerns, and maybe he can help you ( and maybe even his shrink ) to understand how to help him by assisting in recognizing the early signs of the mood swings --- this can be useful for anyone with Bipolar Disorder. People with this disorder vary quite widely as to how severe it is, and how well it is controlled by their meds. He wouldn't ordinarily be "weird" or out of the ordinary.
Been there and Sg, for instance, are decribing relationships with people with apparently uncontrolled or poorly controlled and very severe Bipolar Disorder, possibly in someone who also had a personality disorder to complicate things. This is not inevitably the case nor the course of such relationships. Maria's experience, fortunately, is more typical.
G shows how sensitive and sensible someone with bipolar can be, between episodes --- with better meds controlling her disorder--- and i she stayed off the Pot which will always tend to destabilize things, she could be happier and more stable

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Our users say:
Posted by: Tangy | 2008/10/08

My partner has bi-polar,when not on meds he took drugs and alcohol, went berserk, his been in an out of affairs, had me locked up for false, accusations, the evil that came out of him was that of a psychopath.Eventually he lost his job, he was out of control, wanted to commit suicide, had to be hospitalised.Now a patient of Tara
It' s been almost two years now that his stuck to his meds and got another job, his realised that he had to change.
Since on his meds his behaved like a normal person, I just dred the day he stops, so honey encourage him to take his meds at all times.With the meds they can lead a normal life.

Reply to Tangy
Posted by: Nika | 2008/10/07

I was involved with a 38 year old divorced bipolar man for over two years. He was the kindest, most loving, gentle, intelligent and romantic man I ever knew. While things were going well, it was the best relationship I ever had. After 18 months thing started going really, really bad. He started gambling, cheating on me, disappearing for weeks, then coming back begging for me to take him back, and so the cycle went on and on. I even went with him to a psychologist to try and see what I can do to help him, but it was a really hard time and it almost broke me down too. In the end I realised that there is nothing I can do and that I had to walk away to safe myself from being destroyed by it all. Today I am so glad and so relieved that I escaped from it all in time, but I do sometimes miss the special relationship that we had until it all went so wrong. My mom is a psychologist and she told me that men very rarely gets diagnosed with bi-polar. She said that it is more likely for men to be psychopaths than bi-polar and very often men are told that they have bi-polar instead of being psychopaths to soften the blow and to keep them positive. Read up on the internet about psychopaths and bi-polar and decide for yourself.

Reply to Nika
Posted by: G. | 2008/10/07

I am a bipolar wife and I feel so sorry for my husband. It' s tough having the illness. You do things that surprises even you. It' s like the control button got jammed, and you' re not in the driver' s seat. I smoke pot, hubby hates it but says nothing. In my mind I' m not hurting anyone. Sometimes I get the oppertunity to look back upon my life and see for the first time from the other people' s view, and I feel horrified at what I have done. I' m destroying myself and my family. I love them dearly, that will never change, but I hurt them and I' m greatly unaware of it. Every time I get to ' see'  myself, I hate myself. I hate my life. I hate that I can' t seem to manage the illness. I' m stable, sometimes, but mostly my mind is not even attached to my brain. It' s way out there.

Reply to G.
Posted by: Maria | 2008/10/07

Hunny bun, it' s not all doom and gloom. My hubby has two bipolar extended family members. The one has been married for many years, educated, good job. She recently had a bad manic episode for the first time in 10 years, which was related to meds changing and other health issues. Yes it was tough on her and on her husband, who hasn' t experienced it before, but they got through it and she is fine and stable now.

I would advise you educate yourself as much as possible. Read up, join a support forum, maybe ask your bf if he would mind you speaking to his psychiatrist. For bipolar people who found that magic mix of meds that stabilises them, life can be pretty normal.

But yes, it can also go badly wrong. On the other hand, you could marry a man with no prior problems who then become an alcoholic, or is disabled in a car crash, or develops diabetes or heart trouble... there are no guarantees.

Reply to Maria
Posted by: Sg | 2008/10/07

I was married to a woman with bipolar and even though I was warned by everyone not to marry her,I did.The marriage last just over a year as my life was a living hell.She was totally controlling with huge mood swings and finally she turned violent.
It led me to have panic attacks and all sorts.A terrible time to say the least.
I am sure there are probably good people out there with bipolar but from my experience I can only suggest you tread very carefully.

Reply to Sg
Posted by: been there | 2008/10/07

if I were you I' d run a hundred miles Hun
unless you have hair on your teeth..
let no one try to convince you otherwise
been there, got the t shirt and watched him eat the book!!
get out while you can

Reply to been there

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