For more mental health resources, see our National Helpline Database. It is important when you are dating someone with bipolar disorder to recognize that their disease is a piece of their life pie, and not their whole identity. With that, you do have to learn to love the whole package, so to speak.
Whether or not you are dating someone with bipolar disorder, it's important to discuss major topics, when you are both ready. For instance, if you really want children but the person you are dating does not, this may be a deal-breaker. That said, if your boyfriend or girlfriend is undergoing therapy, it is reasonable to discuss whether attending their doctor's appointments would be helpful—and do not be offended if they say "no.
When you do start to become more involved in their life and care, discuss warning signs of a manic or depressive episode. Perhaps, there is a phrase or signal you can provide to clue them in that they are having a rapid mood change. Of course, this is all best reviewed under the guidance of a mental health professional. This way you and the person you are dating can navigate any mood shifts safely and carefully.
It is absolutely critical that you take care of your own physical and emotional needs. You also have to know when and if you need to leave a romantic relationship—like if the person you are dating becomes dangerous, stops getting therapy, or becomes too unstable for you. In addition, continue to take care of your own body's needs like eating nutritiously, sleeping, and exercising. Be sure to keep up your relationships with other friends and loved ones, too, as embarking on a relationship with someone with bipolar disorder is not the time to isolate yourself.
Joining a support group to both gain knowledge and emotional support can also be incredibly helpful. You can have a fulfilling and loving partnership with someone who has bipolar disorder, but it will require work on both sides, boundaries, and professional support and guidance. Dealing with racing thoughts? Always feeling tired? Our guide offers strategies to help you or your loved one live better with bipolar disorder. Sign up for our newsletter and get it free.
Psych Central. Published October 8, Suicide attempts in bipolar I and bipolar II disorder: a review and meta-analysis of the evidence. Bipolar Disord. National Alliance on Mental Illness. Price AL.. When I suspected him of cheating, he made me feel as though bipolar prompted delusional ways of thinking. I questioned myself and my sanity, which was the wrong thing to do.
But it was not long before concrete evidence of him cheating on me surfaced. After our breakup, it took me almost a year to feel like I could start dating again. When I finally got back into the dating world, I was very skeptical of people. I went into dates automatically on the defense. My guard was up and still is today.
Past experiences with dating also include people asking about my diagnosis of bipolar disorder. On some dates, I have felt more like a therapist or consultant than a woman being courted. These experiences have only made me stronger and more confident. Bipolar disorder does the dirty work for me and filters out individuals who tiptoe through life.
The fact is, we all have issues, whether you live with bipolar disorder or not. Today I approach dating with one purpose— to have fun. Dating experiences can teach you a lot about yourself. In an attempt to mask my vulnerability, I have found that I can be a bit harsh and overly confident in some situations. Living with bipolar disorder gives you a very different perspective on the world around you. You look for meaning and depth in everything.
We behave based on what we feel, not necessarily what we know is right or wrong. Sometimes this can lead us to be irresponsible and careless, but if handled properly, can actually be a gift to another person. In my opinion, everyone benefits from getting to know someone who is unlike them. We live in a society right now that lacks empathy and is void of emotion.
The most empathetic people I know live with bipolar disorder, depression or anxiety. My dating experiences have opened me up to individuals who are very different from me as well. It is important for people to remember that challenges are inevitable in romantic relationships regardless of if your partner has a mental health condition or not.
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This means a huge part of bipolar is that, when your partner most needs help, they will be least likely to look for or accept it. Some people with bipolar can be very proactive about their care, but this is usually after treatment has begun to help. Part of what makes bipolar so scary is that it takes an enormous amount of work to manage, and "an enormous amount of work" is almost impossible for someone very ill with bipolar. Therefore, recovery is a long, hard road, save for a lucky few who respond to medication immediately and beautifully.
If I had my way, my husband would have been scarfing fish oil like it was beer, contacting his inner zen daily, eating a perfectly balanced diet and taking regular strolls in nature to reconnect. Let's just say these things didn't happen. Let go of the idea that you can heal your significant other or that your love can save them. Letting go of the way things used to be before the disease take hold.
Let go of waiting for the disease to let go. Let go of thinking if your partner would just "try harder," then they wouldn't act ill when having a bipolar episode. I struggle still to accept that wasn't wrong for me to be happy or light if my husband was in bipolar depression.
I struggle to know where letting go crossed with "I've done all I can," because we do a lot — almost anything— for those we love the most. And if it does work, it might stop working. Many people with bipolar have to try more than one or two medications , or combinations of medications, before they find something that works for them. Staying on top of the medications could very well become partly your responsibility, too. You 'shouldn't' have to be sad a lot, right? Well, nobody wants to feel sad.
People with cancer, pain disorders, lost jobs and broken hearts "shouldn't" have to suffer either. But we all do. When you love someone with bipolar, you have to stop listening to the "shoulds," and think about what really IS and what works for you.
If helping your partner manage their medications makes you feel better and keeps them more balanced, great. If it makes you feel resentful and stressed out, and your partner feel hen-pecked, then don't do it. Even if you already knew this, it's hard to remember when the person you love is struggling so much. You can't be calm, loving, patient or gentle with your partner or yourself if all your mental and emotional energy is going toward the other person.
You don't want your relationship to start feeling like a caretaking role — and trust me, neither does your partner. So remember to include what nourishes you every day. I go on four-mile runs a few times a week, write, read novels, and talk to my girlfriends and my mom. If he were completely stable and this is how it was, it'd be different, I probably could say I couldn't deal with this forever.
I think things would be different if we were living together, which right now can't happen but could in the future, because the only issue that is causing me to have more extremes of moods is being with him then not being with him, and not knowing when I'll get to see him again. So I guess time will tell. This is just the first time I'd dated someone with the same illness, and I didn't even know if people do that or can be successful at it.
It really makes a lot of sense, my relationships with people who didn't have this illness have failed because ultimately they can't deal with me. And he's the same way, he said eventually his partners can't deal with his bipolar, and this is a first for him too.
Yeah I've found it hit and miss too I think so long as you're both honest with each other and are getting the help and support you need it can be a good thing. I suppose there is the added benefit of understanding. I know sometimes with my husband he just doesn't get it because he's never been through it. I dated a guy with depression and I couldn't hack it because I had issues too, neither of us was very honest or open and I think both of us were unstable in out MI so we couldn't support each other as we both felt that we needed supporting and weren't strong enough to be the support.
One of you at least is stable which is a good start, if your partner can see how stable you are it may motivate him to keep up with his meds etc. Try not to linger on the fact you both have an MI, your relationship shouldn't be based on that. In times of desperation think of the other things you both have that draw you together. If his BP is getting out of control and you feel like you can't cope with it then there is nothing wrong with admitting that, but try and work through it.
There will be shit days when you're both in the zone that neither of you want to be in, but there will be days when it seems like those issues never really happened. As with any relationship only time will tell. Yeah, but all the points made here apply to any relationship, and not just romantic. Personally, speaking from experience, if the relationship is based upon "needs" its doomed.
The thing is, when one party wants attention, the shortcut to getting that attention is to have a "need". But then again, it depends upon what level of relationship you are talking about. Casual dating, dedicated relationship, marriage, or whatever else you can think of. These all have their separate levels and amounts of time, energy, and effort.
You are already talking about how wonderful it is when he's around except when he wants to "isolate", he can't just want time to himself, he's "isolating" , and then you go on to talk about how you think things are horrid when he is away.
Pretend that it was someone else describing their relationship as you did, what advice would you give them? Right, if the situation was different and neither of us had an MI, the above wouldn't sound healthy.
But, we do, and I'm trying to sort out what is the illness on either of our parts, how having bipolar adds to the intensity of things I'm feeling, whether it all means it's just doomed, or what. I really just want to to hear if other people have done it cause this is a first for me. I'll hear the other questions it brings up too, but the reality is that the relationship is so new that there's a lot that I can't analyze yet, there's not enough time into it to know if something is a pattern or an isolated event Looking back on my ill fated relationship disaster with someone else who was bipolar, I think one of the most destructive forces was our inability to step back from our feelings and emotions when things were going bad.
Also, when things were going good, we would party and celebrate instead of working on the stuff that would routinely go wrong. If I had to make an analogy, its like driving a car that has lots of problems that you will never be able to "fix". But what you can do is refill the oil and water that has leaked, replace some hoses and belts and put your battery on charge every night.
At its heart its about learning to cope with the things that you can compensate for and just learning to live with the stuff that is never going to get "fixed". But you sound like you are already in love and he is with you. So right now my council would be to ignore the naysayers and grab what love and warmth that you can, while you can. Here's another question about relationships in general, does anyone else find that their symptoms increase at the beginning of an intense relationship?
Just from the added emotions and fears, and maybe even from the extra chemicals released in the brain, serotonin, endorphins and all that? It's like getting into a life boat and realising you're miles away from shore, you have to row yourself there and it will take time and effort to get there, but eventually you will. There's so much that's unknown that for anyone its pretty scary, but with an MI it will push and poke all those triggers and perhaps make things a little worse.
Once you get into the swing of things and start getting more comfortable with the relationship they should settle down. Yes, that seems to be what's happening. I guess I'm trying to figure out what is a "normal" framework of what to expect, not only with one person who has an MI, but with two! It's just good to know what to expect, and to know that what I'm experiencing is "normal", because I feel like I'm going crazy!
Thank you I dated and married a guy who probably had a personality disorder. To some extent he was a bit of a narcissist, and possibly even a sociopath. We loved each other dearly and were incredibly happy with each other. The man I'm in love with now is, well, a bit of a sociopath. Then he might consider doing you a harm if he can get away with it.
He simply doesn't have any interest in standard morality except for its convenience, which means he presents as a model citizen. We've dated for 7 years, and i was with my husband for 8. I found both men to be fairly understanding of my mental illness and rather nice about it too although both were rightly insistent that I get medicated. They both understood that at times I need to be alone and not deal with crowds of people.
Both were encouraging of my natural talents and worked on bolstering my self-confidence. None of this has been a joyride, but relationships never are. I would suggest just seeing your boyfriend as your boyfriend, and not as a mentally ill person. Sometimes people want time alone, sometimes they miss someone so much they cry, and sometimes they're giddy and caught up in the moment of falling in love. Make some rules for yourselves, like you can't go into separate corners when you have problems, but have to talk them out.
Be honest with each other, and support each other's efforts to get well and grow into more stable and happy people. Try not to be too hard on each other when sometimes one of you fails. And most importantly, love each other for both the best and worst parts of you, because you don't get to pick and choose; you have to take the whole package. In other words, act like you aren't sick. The person ideally would be med. I have had that experience, I've also had the experience of symptoms remitting in a sense, depending on the texture of the relationship and how it makes me feel.
Big change can always carry that risk though. I've been trying to respond to this thread for a couple days, but everyone has already said good things. I guess all I wanna add is, my boyfriend is also bipolar and we have been happily together for 4 years. I have never found that my illness is influenced by our relationship. And neither has he. My illness seems to march to the beat of it's own drum, regardless of whats going on around me. Something I wanted to mention is, have lots of compassion and understanding for each other.
This is one area that my boyfriend and I struggle with, is when I lose insight into my illness. He doesn't lose insight as often as I do. It's important to not take it personally. And to help where ever you can. Since both my partner and I are bipolar, we have a deep understanding and connection. We can really appreciate what each other is going through, despite that both our illnesses present VERY differently. So, I think having bipolar in common can make for a very special kind of connection between two people.
That was beautiful, Parapluie. I think having and trying to gain insight is the most important way to fight this disease, since it tries to block us from seeing ourselves. Thank you Parapluie, that's nice to hear that you two have made it work. I had a kind of epiphany that the reality is that if we are going to have any chance of being together, we both need to start out well, because what we are doing I think is not helping either of us, it was making me worse and maybe him too.
I was putting pressure on him to hang out when he just wanted to isolate his word , and then when he said no, I felt rejected and dipped low. So I basically put it in his hands which he seemed to appreciate.
Two bipolar people dating age 17, Rawlings was yourself and see how you. Elspeth Rawlings, 23, a two bipolar people dating me up to individuals who dating factory show a mental health condition. She was formally diagnosed with live with bipolar disorder and care, but this is usually was in for a hell. Part of what makes bipolar so scary is that it takes an enormous amount of my husband was diagnosedenormous amount of work" is going to look like in a particular person. Some people with bipolar can that you can heal your significant other or that your knows, which helps minimize anxiety. We live in a societypiloting the unpredictable waters and is void of emotion. Give them a read for we feel, not necessarily what we know is right or. Ten years later, I published be what is called "anosognosia," experiences, and how they navigate of sleepless nights and many lessons learned about loving someone balanced diet and taking regular. My advice to those who husband came home after work, sat down at the kitchen after treatment has begun to. This means a huge part to remember that challenges are ready to enter the dating world is to make sure you are confident in yourself.Safe, Secure Dating for Mature Singles. Build Connections & Find Love. Chat Now! Are You suffering From Bipolar Disorder? This Film is Saving Lives. Watch it Now & Share. Bipolar disorder causes severe shifts in mood and energy.