advertisement
Question
Posted by: Jacques | 2011/01/08

Supporting a loved one who suffers from Bipolar

A very close friend of mine has been diagnosed with bipolar. How do i best support them. what are the most comin do''s and dont''s?

Not what you were looking for? Try searching again, or ask your own question
Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Your friend is lucky that you are so concerned to be helpful. Maybe the local Anxiety / Depression Support Group ( number on this page ) Someone with Bipolar Disorder MUST be sen, and assessed, and treated by a proper specialist psychiatrist. To be most helpful, really, just be a really good friend. Supportive of healthy behaviours and encouraging them to follow the expert advice. Listening when they want to talk. Tracey's advice makes good sense. And beyond the usual general advice, learn about the condition, and you could helpfully help the individual to recogniz when their mood is becoming unduly high or low for more than a day at a time, as some folks find it hard to recognize when they are starting to slip down either of those slopes, early enough for it to be easier to correct

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

4
Our users say:
Posted by: Tracey | 2011/01/09

I also thought perhaps keeping a mood diary your friend may be able to track feelings and moods. Perhaps this will help the friend recognise and stay in tough with his/her daily moods.

Thanks Rainman for your comments.

Reply to Tracey
Posted by: Rainmain | 2011/01/09

I agree with Tracey''s advice, great advice!

One thing i would like to add is it all boils down to behaviour, the condition causes behavioural changes, this may be the hardest thing to accept especially if your friend goes manic and you experience mania, but with the right medication and compliance hopefully your friend wont suffer to much depression or mania

Reply to Rainmain
Posted by: cybershrink | 2011/01/09

Your friend is lucky that you are so concerned to be helpful. Maybe the local Anxiety / Depression Support Group ( number on this page ) Someone with Bipolar Disorder MUST be sen, and assessed, and treated by a proper specialist psychiatrist. To be most helpful, really, just be a really good friend. Supportive of healthy behaviours and encouraging them to follow the expert advice. Listening when they want to talk. Tracey's advice makes good sense. And beyond the usual general advice, learn about the condition, and you could helpfully help the individual to recogniz when their mood is becoming unduly high or low for more than a day at a time, as some folks find it hard to recognize when they are starting to slip down either of those slopes, early enough for it to be easier to correct

Reply to cybershrink
Posted by: Tracey | 2011/01/08

Hi Jacques,

You can support your friend by being a friend. Not judging, criticising and accepting the friend. Also treat the friend with empathy. Be aware of friend''s changing moods and compliance of taking medication regularly. Many bipolars are in denial and often stop medication, which causes problems .... their condition can be controlled with regular visits to their psychiatrist who will monitor them as well as regular blood tests if they have been put on lithium, depending what medication is prescribed.

Controlling the bipolar is most important. For the bipolar to be treated as normal. Knowing they have support from family and friends makes accepting their condition easier.

If possible, perhaps also for your friend to have some psychotherapy.

Give your friend a list of phone numbers to call in an emergency.
You can list close friends, The Support groups listed above on this page. Anxiety &  Depression support group. Their are bipolar support groups, also see peer group forums.

Do research on bipolar. You can also call the Depression &  Anxiety Group and they will send you information leaflets and material they have.

The more informed you are, the better equipped you will be to understand your friend''s condition. Does your friend have family? They should also be informed on how to cope.

You sound like a very caring and concerned friend and your bipolar friend is lucky to have you as their friend.

All the best!

Reply to Tracey

Have your say

Thanks for commenting! Your comment will appear on the site shortly.
Thanks for commenting! Your comment will appear on the site shortly.
advertisement