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Love & Hate

Being in a relationship with a Bipolar is painful. Things get really bad and I leave and then he convinces me that if I come back that it'll be better.

(That hasn't been true yet)

I have to admit I miss him when I'm gone. Love is not supposed to be this hard. But this is HARD. He loves me one day and then he acts like he can't stand me the next.

I asked him last night if he knew how hard that was for me and he said, yes I do know because that's how I feel about myself. One day I love myself and my life and the next day I hate everything and wish I would just die.

That is sooooo sad. He does go to therapy and he is on meds but sometimes they don't help. I can't just leave him because I know it's a medical sickness and I truly love him with all my heart.

I wish I could take his pain away and make him happy but I can't. I just keep praying that something the doctors do will make his quality of life better which will in turn improve mine.

thecalm1 thecalm1 31-35, F 53 Responses Aug 21, 2008

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I think I may have it... And as well as my boyfriend. It is bad enough when one of us is down, but try two... What should I call it? A double rolercoaster?

I have been fighting a battle myself. My Fiance is diagnosed with schizoaffective bipolar disorder. I feel like everything I do is not enough. He's draining every inch of me and I feel like have have nothing left to give. He says horrible things to me. I'm becoming more and more depressed everyday. I'm to the point where i have lost faith and I pray to die everyday

I was once engaged to someone with bipolar type A, who also never took medication. After we were engaged a while, we both knew and mentioned a few times that one of us was going to kill the other. Being that he was twice my height and twice my size, I'd probably be the loser. For obvious reasons, we called off our engagement. I know that even though you love this man, things will only get worse. If you're already wanting to die, just imagine marriage to him. Please think about it before making a life decision.

My ex boyfriend never told me he had bipolar, etc...do you think he is? Because this cannot be normal. :(<br />
<br />
My story:<br />
I have my own awful nightmare that I just went through.<br />
I was reunited with a childhood friend after about 25 years. I thought that this could be a good match since we had a little family/friend history together.<br />
<br />
The first month, he was the most amazing person ever. He did move very fast, and that did worry me a bit. But I fell for him & thought he was the perfect guy for me. He was kind, caring, thoughtful, romantic...you name it- he was such a great package for me. I adored him, I loved him. <br />
<br />
Then by the second month, he started doing things to try to control me. He started putting me down, belittling me as a person. He got very upset with me because when he first introduced me to his friends...he was infuriated with me because he said that I didn't hold his hand...and "after he had told all of his friends how in love we were, and the fact that I didn't hold his hand in front of his friends...I made him look like an "a-hole". So he yelled at me & told me that he couldn't be with a girl like me. I was confused because I hadn't seen him act like this before. I told him I was sorry, but that didn't help. So he called up his friends to find out where they were. They were hanging out on the beach. So he looks at me and says: "Here's your chance to make it up to me." And I was still confused a bit & I said: "I don't understand, what do you mean? What am I supposed to do?" And he said: "You'll know what to do." So he drove me down to the beach & that was my test. I realized that I had to hold his hand in front of his friends or I would lose him as my boyfriend.<br />
<br />
So I did it, and he was happy for the mean time....<br />
As time went on, he became more angry at me. This man once loved me so much- he would tell people publicly how much he loved me, how amazing he thought I was, he told people he wanted to move near me, get a job near me & marry me.<br />
Then....things changed drastically, and this man turned into a man who hated me. He hated pretty much anything I did. It makes me so sad that someone could love me so much & then hate me so much. This is all very painful to me. <br />
I broke it off with him because I just couldn't be abused anymore. I'm only human, I'm not perfect, but I definitely do not deserve to be a door mat.<br />
When I broke up with him, he started calling & texting like crazy- telling me how much he loved me, how I owe it to us to call him back, how he claimed it was all his fault, how we should be together...that our love was one of the greatest loves of all time (yes, he said that too.) He even sent an email to my step-mom telling her how much he loved me. So the naive person I am, I fell it & I called him back. It was sad because the first few moments on the phone he just sat there in silence. He didn't seem at all happy that I called. Then he started yelling at me, telling me that no man would ever want to be with me, telling me how it was my fault again. <br />
So I cut all ties and told him to never contact me again. He would text me & act angry.....and I would just reply with: "don't ever contact me again." Then a few days passed & he texted me: "I'm so sorry...I love you."<br />
<br />
He wanted me to be quiet about all of this, he wanted me to be friends with him- to spare him the embaressment of the break-up. His cousin even sent me a message telling me that I should be quiet.<br />
Well, that made me very upset- because I will NOT be friends with someone who is abusive- it makes it look to other women like this is ok. It's NOT ok. I will not endorse his behavior whatsoever. And no one is going to tell me that he was not abusive to me. So here I sit with the angry feelings, with the sad feelings & I feel as if a sociopath has pulled a number on me.<br />
This is how I feel. So sad that I feel for someone who was once really kind...and then turned into a person who hated me....all within a couple of months.<br />
<br />
I hope that I heal quickly from this. It hurts so much the memory of it all. He finally went away when I posted his text to me for the public to see. That was the only way I could get him to go away. I didn't want to do that, but it was the only thing that worked. <br />
<br />
I really think for all of you out there who have to deal with a person who is not consistent in their behavior....I feel you owe it to yourself to leave the situation. Have respect for yourself, cut all ties & let no one abuse you in anyway.<br />
I've been soul searching now trying to figure out why I would be attracted to someone like this to begin with. Even though he was a total opposite person from the beginning....there must have been red flags from the get-go that I missed. So now it's time for me to look inside myself & figure out what made me attracted to this dysfunction. The good news, is that I broke it off fairly quickly.<br />
And now my heart is left in pieces. But I have to think positive & be grateful that I wasn't with him for a long period of time. I imagine that would have eroded my soul. <br />
<br />
Good luck out there. xoxo

^ Run for the hills, don't ruin your life.<br />
I recently was told my gf has bipolar and that she was scared to go off meds this August.<br />
Everything was good for a few months but now she's like an Alien from out of space. I don't know who she is anymore. 5 years down the drain for nothing. At least I got to learn about bipolar.<br />
She does weird things, says weird things, hurtful things, yet I'm the most understanding guy ever. I tell her that I love her and understand what she has and will be here for her when she's ok. Anyways, we couldn't even celebrate our 5th anniversary cuz she's so strange or what they call "Mania?"<br />
She wanted to move out last month, get our own place and start a new life. Now I get it, it wasn't really her but her bipolar doing that. I think it's over with over, I'm the one going insane from reading about bipolar online. Everyone has the same story, and the story is not a good healthy one, but a life of misery.<br />
<br />
I feel like the girl I fell in love is dead and I won't see her anymore, that's what I tell myself, in the end it helps me explain to myself what in the world happened in a span of 1 month.<br />
<br />
This girl like many say is a sweet caring person when on meds... Now is that the meds doing that or is that who she really is? I'm guessing a little both. <br />
In the beginning of the relationship wshe was distant in year 2, and I didn't know what was going on with her, but learning about this all makes sense now. When she was losing weight we had most of all our fights, but now I get it... She was off meds because she would gain weight while on them. I use to think maybe she was stressed out cuz she was losing weight but nope, it was the bipolar.<br />
<br />
I feel my story should be turned into a movie or a book, and I bet many people in here feel the same way. More people need to know about this mental sickness. We talk about curing cancer but we need to do something for this as it ruins more then 2 people's lives. Good luck to all, maybe me losing her now is the best thing that can happen for me. I do love her, but not how she is now. I must think of myself for once in my life.

Reading all these stories gives me so much hope. My boyfriend is bi-polar and talks about suicide, and what worries me the most is that one day I'm going to say the wrong thing and it'll start some sort of chain reaction in his head and I don't even want to think about what could happen. When he's down he calls himself all sorts of horrible things, and I tell him they're not true but I don't know if this is the right way to go about it, should I just leave him alone when he's like this? I haven't seen him in two months because he lives miles away and every time I talk about meeting up he says he's too scared. I love him to pieces, he is the sweetest kindest guy I've ever met and when he has good days everything's perfect. I'm thinking about just turning up at his one day when I know he's home but I don't know if it's a good idea. I'm so scared about doing something wrong and setting him off. If anyone can give me any advice at all I'll be so grateful, he needs help but refuses to get any and I'm all he's got.

I couldn't help but cry when I read all of yours posts here. It actually described my relationship with my bipolar bf. We met in a social networking site last year. He is in the US and I am here in the Philippines. He told me about the disorder during the first month of being in the relationship. I am a nurse so I have an idea how it is but I didnt know how it could affect me till I experience it now. Everything was just perfect. He had so much promises for the future.. Future plans of being together. I was happy that he visited me last month. For 3 weeks it was a lot of fun. It was the first time I have met him in person and we had chemistry. I told myself that I have found the one for me. It really meant so much to me for him to visit me here. He even talked to my dad about marrying me. He even met my dad in the US first before we met until July 18 he came back to the States everything changed so suddenly....<br />
I don't know what to think. I thought we had fun. I thought everything was real until he said he's sick and he's been sleeping most days (most of the time). I felt that he totally changed his mind about me, about us but he kept saying it's not. It's just that he's sick and too sleepy to think. He's so distant to me.I felt that I am so torn apart. My self-esteem is very low now. I am starting to doubt how he truly feel about me. It's like getting sleep is more important than spending time with me. He used to look forward to our chats before. Now, everytime we chat, i feel that he is ready to leave and say goodbye and for that, i feel like a door mat. I can't go on like this or I will just end up hurt. But I really love him so much. In fact, ever since he came back to the States it's like I always do all the efforts in the relationship and it's emotionally exhausting. I feel drained. Tomorrow is our first year Anniversary. I know I can't help expecting so much from him as I really don't feel special anymore. I don't know how long will I try to understand the situation. I don't have any clue if it's the disorder or me. Everything might changed after we met in person but I really thought we had fun together while he was here. Pls help me. I am sorry to hear about other there people who have experienced it. I just can't get over this depression. I am emotionally and deeply affected coz I feel it's me and not the disorder but ba<x>sed on the comments that you have here I feel that it is just the disorder... I just don't know how long it's going to be and when it's going to end because for no apparent reason, we won't talk like we used to. He's not so into me anymore and I don't know what to think. I am totally clueless. I thought meeting each other in person would make it more better in the future. He said, he had fun....but it tells me the other way around. Just awhile ago, I greeted him a Happy Anniversary and he just said, he love me and he will let me go coz he's really sleepy. For 22 days since he got back to the US, he didnt show any emotions...just blank...empty. I don't want to linger on it....but it is our First year Anniversary....I don't know how to handle this. I am totally crushed. He used to be so affectionate, smart, caring and sensitive to my needs. Now, I don't feel like I exist. It's like whether I am here or not, doesn't matter to him anymore. One time he said, he's going to wake up to chat.....but after 5 hours of waiting i finally decided to call him up and he was just sleeping. It's nice to know I am not alone in this. I really need all your comments about this. I am going to freak out on our First year anniversary. I feel so alone. But I love this guy so much that I couldn't let him go. I hope it's just the disorder and not about me. :(

One of my best friends is not diagnosed with BPD but I'm relatively certain he has it. I've known him for years, and I have admitted to him that I love him. His reply was just that he loves me too, sometimes. Other times he hates me. Sometimes he will text meobsessively, saying he loves me and acting like he would die if I left. Other times I try to talk to him and he flat-out ignores me. For the past two years, everyone has been saying that Jes is bipolar, but he ranges day-to-day whether or not he believes it himself. Towards me, it hurts so much because he tells me that he loves me by night, and ignores me throughout school days. I catch him watching me and I've noticed the times where he does want to talk to me, but he won't start a conversation. It seems like he's afraid of something, and that scares me. I don't know what is hurting him, I just know that it's hurting me too. He's all I think about and I would love to find a way to help him, but again, no one is completely sure whether or not he is bipolar. He has mood swings very, very frequently, and ranges from hating someone to being their best friend in hours, minutes. It only escalates with me, and I've flipped at him before, saying that he needed to prove he actually cared about me. He is usually a jokey, happy, sarcastic person, but when someone says something like that to him, especially me, he slips into something like depression. My best friend is trying to get me to stop talking to him, but i don't want to do that. She says he's just messing with my head, but I don't buy it. Even though it's not constant, I think he loves me, and I don't think it's his fault that he's hurting me. I haven't talked to him in over a week, though I've tried. The last thing he said to me was that he would prove to me he cared. Could he have bipolar disorder?

this literally brought tears in my eyes and i hope with all my heart that you get your happily-ever-after because i feel you both deserve it!

I'm in a relationship similar to that. Bipolarism is not a good thing, And Lucky for u and me as well, we cought onto the factor that it is Bipolarism, and not just attitude shifts or just being Rude for the heck of it cuzz theyre in pain. Dipression and Bipolorism goes hand in hand, But thats not were it ends for me, It's also a physical affected realm in my relationship, (or to call it so.) Not only are emotions always a float and unsettled and ready to shift at any given moment, but all physical bond has disappeared due to it. SO imagine being in a sexless and moody, moody, moody, relationship.

Its not easy living and loving someone with a mental disorder. My partner has not been diagnosed by a doctor but I know they may be bipolar and /or OCD. I hope things look up for you both as I know you will not turn your back on him. Keep loving and understanding... But remember you should come first....if he never heals and learns to live in a way that does not hurt you then you both may be better off separated.<br />
<br />
Krze

Citystreetz has the right idea. For the bipolar person It is necessary to do BOTH naturopathic treatment for the mental imbalance and to also work on the mind, it's reactions, your thought processes and software etc. It is also necessary to do your best to control the moods rather go all out in self indulgent ways. The general feel of the relationship is very similar to the usual love addict set up, with it's big highs and lows, just made worse by the illness. For you, Read some books and do some work on being a love addict. Perhaps try "love addiction" by Pia Melody. There is also a book by Melody Beatty. If you are honest with yourself, you have your own reasons for finding an energetic attraction to this person. If you work thru your issues the relationship and your partner will either improve or they will become irrelevant to you, and either way things will be better. Good luck

My ex was in a special unit having treatment he hung himself in his room on the 9th of may 2007

And to add, after reading all the comments I agree with those that say it's okay to leave, cuz it IS.<br />
<br />
You have the innate right to seek happiness for yourself, and if this man can't give it to you, there is nothing wrong with admitting you can't handle the situation.<br />
<br />
You didn't specify if he was currently seeking treatment or not, but from your post it sounds like he is not, which to me is a clincher, if he won't deal with his "issues" himself, how fair is it for you to sit down and accept them?<br />
<br />
I mean if he were just a jerk, didn't have bi-polar, I'm sure people wouldn't be telling you to stick it out. Yes this man has an illness, but if he's not taking the steps to help himself out then you can't just take it forever, it won't get better.<br />
<br />
Like I said before, give a timeline, tell him you want him to get help, make him promise to get help soon, if he goes and things get better then GREAT! Sure there will still be some bad times, but I bet it won't be as many as there are now. But if he flat out refuses, as MUCH as you love this man, you have to move on.

I was never in a relationship with a person who was bipolar, but I used to be good friends with a woman who is bipolar.<br />
<br />
It'd be great for a while, we would talk and laugh and have fun, then the next day she'd just TURN on me, tell me things like I just lucked in when I found my husband, that what made me so special that I had a husband and she didn't, and she'd basically insult me, then the next day act like nothing happened. I tried to be understanding, but the fact she never even said "hey I'm sorry for what I said" really bothered me.<br />
<br />
After the third blow up she had on me in a few months, I decided that I couldn't be friends with her anymore, specially when she insisted on calling me every name in the book one day and then act like nothing happened the next day.<br />
<br />
I decided that I couldn't deal with it, and I still hear about her time to time, I wish her the best, but I couldn't do it anymore because even though I know she's sick, a part of me wondered how she really felt about me.<br />
<br />
In your case, I think if he says things will get better, tell him actions speak louder than words and that he should get help, set up a timeline for yourself, if in 6 months he hasn't gotten help (or if he flat out refuses to get help) then move on.<br />
<br />
Yes it's gonna hurt, but you can't help those who won't help themselves, and in the end it'll just drag you down and make you miserable. And yes, you love him, but love isn't enough.

i can relate to this my ex had a multiple personallity disorder sometimes i was so afraid and with good reason but most of the time he was the most beautiful person i miss him so badly despite having a good man he commited suiside may last year

wish everything works out for the better for u

My husband has Bipolar and I can not express to you how unberably sad it makes me. He was always a great person, happy, positive, thoughtful and considerate a great provider and wonderful lover...now let's fastforward to the present he can't work, he makes me feel overwhelmed with his negative attitude, we can't hardly have a conversation without me feeling like I have got to get out of here...etc you get the point ...but to me it is all worth it just to see him feel like himself for one day just one day ....that is all I look forward to ...<br />
just writting this reminded me of how much I love him..<br />
thanks...

I'm am a late diagnosed bi-polar. I've spent the <br />
majority of my life wondering what made me so different from most other people. Knowing that my outlook <br />
on life and emotional reaction, to events that ranged<br />
from inocuous to life-changing, was not the "norm" left<br />
me with a life spent in alienation and depression. The<br />
difficulty in being out of the ordianry is very painful and<br />
debilitating. After being diagnosed I was actually relieved to be able to put a name to and a viable reason<br />
for the way my life was. I've been seeing a psychiatrist<br />
and taking medication for 12 years now. Most of my life<br />
experiences now are within acceptable boundries.<br />
My illnes still rears its ugly head from time to time and<br />
I do everything possible to rein in my emotions and<br />
over- reactions to situations. There are times however<br />
that the best of intentions just don't work. The illness<br />
can bypass the medication and then all hell breaks<br />
loose. My husband of 35 years, who passed away in<br />
2005, was always supportive and never made me feel<br />
like a "freak of nature." There were many times when I<br />
know life was nearly impossible for him, however he was<br />
able to love me unconditionally through his deep faith<br />
and commitment to our relationship. My 3 children are <br />
also very supportive and understanding, not that they<br />
aren't sometimes fed up with dealing with my issues, their love is a constant and they're always there when<br />
I can't seem to move another step forward. My extended<br />
family, not so much, they refuse to become informed on<br />
just what this disease is and how it affects everyday <br />
life situations. We have a very tenuous relationship and there are many times when we just don't see each other for months or even years at a time. <br />
A sad and lonely way to live.<br />
Please forgive me for going on and on. It's just such<br />
a relief to be able to speak freely without the fear<br />
of condemnation or reprecussions. Thank you all.<br />
Taking Life As It Comes :o)

I wish that I knew the answer to help you. I know how u feel caring for a bipolar guy. Though I will never get the chance to experience the mood swings that most of you guys who had and still are with bipolar people because mine eventually killed himself.... :(

I feel like i'm in the same situation...One second he's the happiest guy alive, the next second all he wants to do is hit something...(he never does)..It's so hard to look at someone you love and see how the smallest things can altar how they feel so much and there's nothing they can do to control it. I wish there was something that could help...Hang in there and know that you aren't the only one dealing with this kind of illness..I try to just ignore it and know that whatever he says when he's in his bad moods he doesn't mean...It took me a long time to understand that when he IS in a bad mood it's not my fault. I hope you understand that too.. Loving him more then he loves himself is probably the best thing for him...<br />
All the best..

LEAVE........plain simple and honest and caring. I have been with my bipolar hubby 29 years and my life has been so freakin eventful I am going to write a book about it. I wish I never would have married him, tho ofcourse i love my kids more than life itself! He huurts them and me over and over, medicated, in therapy. I pray for peace. YES, I would say --keep it simple, save yourself and future kids--Leave.

As much as I hate to flog a dead parrot: Invisible Driving - available from Amazon.com A memoir of Manic Depression. The nation's leading expert on Bipolar Disorder, Dr. E. Fuller Torrey, described it as "one of the best books of its kind." It's the first book to take readers inside the experience of a manic episode while providing a thoughtful context for understanding it.

Been there - done that. It's hard believe me I know. It took losing a car, our home and him getting arrested that I finally got a divorce. The main difference is that my ex refused to admit he had a problem. For us it was the best thing to do. For you - talk to his doctor if he won't and let him know that the meds aren't always working. If need be - leave him. I was almost sucidal and it took several years of counciling and depression medication for me to get back on track because I hated to leave him. Only when he's been stable for a looooong period of time should you even consider taking him back.

This gives me a new outlook and not a great one. I am only 27 and suffer from bi-polar/ depression. I came off my meds a little while ago so that my husband and I could try for a child. I was doing so well and after talking to my doctors it made sense to come off the meds. However I didn't do so good and I am back on them. I get so down thinking that this is how the rest of my life will be, no child, no light at the end of the darkness. Reading this really didn't help. My husband tells me he is there for me, tells me he is fine with my sickness and will stand by me, support my decisions. However what if he is just doing this as to not make me feel worst, what if he thinks about leaving me but is afraid of how it will effect me?

I can sortuf understad i dated some one who had repid mood swings and also that person cut themselfs. I was afraid to leave them. We dated for four months on an on and off relastionship and fanaly they ended it. I'm still woired about that person but I can't do anything about it since we don't talk. But i hope every thing works out for you.

Dear Calm1...<br />
<br />
Hope my story and words help you… When you meet someone new, give it six weeks before you decide if it can be serious. Most people reveal their dark side within six weeks….My observation is gaining an interest in someone… can interrupt a perfectly normal life routine…<br />
<br />
It started out on a cold day in January 2006. I moved from Mays Landing, NJ. My agency had closed and my position was transferred to Picatinny, NJ. I owned a home in the Pocono’s, so moving was not to big of a deal. I had just come out of a 7 year relationship, and was feeling somewhat relived that I was free again. I joined a dating service called Match.com. At the time… it seemed like a lot of fun. Initially, there were lots of local ladies that were looking for a guy to date. Some even advertised looking for a long term relationship. Others just wanted to have fun. My pervious relationships were with ladies that were emotionally stable, very attractive, slender build, divorced, college graduates, no kids or the kids were out of the house, and these gals had jobs that were of consequence. This lady had neither a job of consequence, nor a higher education and had kids living at home...The first of many red flags … I think that whenever a relationship comes to an unhappy end, people sit back and analyze the situation wondering, “where did I wrong?” However, if you truly look back for warning signs you’ll quickly discover the only thing that you did wrong was not listen to them.<br />
<br />
I found this one profile… Her name was Dawna. I wrote this young lady several letters, over a 6 month period. I was very open, truthful and honest. Later to discover this was a big mistake…In my writings, I explained what I was all about. What I was looking for in a relationship…She and I had an instant connection. I found myself head over heels in love with someone who was even more in love with herself. My relationship, with Dawna, over the next 19 months…was intense, often stormy and unstable…I admit that the first 8 months were the best…After that…It was down hill…Dawna had and has great difficulties with expressing her feelings… She had difficulties in maintaining intimate, and / or a close connection with me. She was always a bit distance…This was very upsetting to me. As I have never experienced someone that had these types of problem verbalizing. The only good thing was…sexually, she was always there, but emotionally…she was out to lunch.<br />
<br />
Dawna was an expert at manipulating others. This was something she was very proud of. Often she would comment on just how she was able to move the pieces around… to produce her desired out come. On the other hand…She had and has difficulty with trusting anyone. I may have added to this as fear. One of our first disagreements was about me re-posting my match profile, several times, over the course of 11 months. I take fully responsibility for doing this. In my defense, this was done out of boredom, more than to look for another date. I was just window shopping. I know that is a lame excuse, but it is the truth. I believed that I could get away with minor transgressions, as long as the immediate consequences were not terribly serious. I know now that trust...can easily be destroyed by such minor transgressions. <br />
<br />
<br />
<br />
<br />
I think it was in early October of 2006, on our way to her son’s high school football game. When I first noticed that she was emotionally unstable. Frequently she shifted to an empty, lonely and digressional state mind. A thousand yard stare, if you will… Often there was unpredictable and impulsive behavior mostly promiscuity related. <br />
<br />
Example, while out with a group of friends, Dawna gave a perfect stranger a lap dance, on the dance floor, right in front of me, her sister, her sisters boyfriend and another couple. I freaked out!! When questioned, she just blew it off as nothing. Only thing was I never forgot it…Another trait she excelled at. Dawna even forgot my birthday…We had been together for nine months…She even admitting knowing it was my birthday…it was just not important enough…WTF?<br />
<br />
Another example was during her son’s high school football games. On more than one occasion, several guys would come up to her, while I was standing right next to her. She would always engage in conversation. She wouldn’t introduce me or even acknowledge that I was even there…How rude is that? Her excuse was she didn’t remember their name….Right! I now know that the reason she did not introduce them to me was due to the fact that she had slept with them. An even more astonishing event was during her son’s Jr. Prom picture taking session. We had gone over to his date’s parent’s house, taking pictures etc… and once again… Dawna did not even introduce me to her sons date parents. I introduced myself. This cause a big blow up, as she told me that I was stealing her son’s thunder…Can you believe that? These events proved to me that she was socially inept, because no one is that rude. Won’t you agree? <br />
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Dawna often displayed inappropriate and intense anger, rage, temper tantrums, resentment, feelings of deprivation, and a loss of control over angry feelings. Usually this would occur as a result of some minor verbal infraction, usually an off the wall comment. It won’t matter if it was funny or not… I was never really sure why such little thing provoked this behavior…At least once a month; she displayed a deep-seated feeling that she was flawed, defective, damaged or bad in some way. She would make comments as like, I’m really a bad girl… Jay…I’m a very mean person…things alone those lines…I laughed at first time she said this…Never gave it much thought…I really should have...She was telling the truth, for once in her life… She had a tendency to go to extremes in thinking, feelings or behavior…and not take responsibility for any of her actions…Never once was anything her fault…Go figure? <br />
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In June 2007, I remember she was under extreme stress. Her mother sold her house, and she was to move into Dawna’s house…For the next three weeks…I thought she lost complete contact with reality…Was on edge all the time… One would think that this would be a happy time. Dawna displayed behavior that any sane person would consider “over the top.” This bad behavior was in the form of verbal abuse…and was solely directed at me. This honestly and truly was un-warranted action. She would just go off into a rage…Guys…It took months of bending my mind around the idea that what I loved was not her, but my version of her. <br />
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Actually, I believe…most of us do this to one degree or another. We find someone we think is “perfect” for us because of certain things that we think we see in them. This is not generally a bad thing. The problem is that sometimes our image of what we want is very far from the truth of the person we are projecting all this on. Most of us can sort that out… as we go along and begin to see who the person really is and not just our projections. Dawna can’t do that. She only sees what fulfills her own wish…You are an ob<x>ject for her to use as she sees fit…Nothing more…. <br />
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Dawna is a very attractive, 125 pounds, blonde hair, and green eyes…athletic build, intelligent and savvy. Now a 44 year old lady… whom had been married once before and engaged at least once before …Or so she said…Two children; a girl who is now 14 and a boy who is 17…When I met Dawna, I was very excited. She was very available, and quite lovely. At first, I thought she was very opened minded, intelligent, and sensitive, and quite sensual. She was to good to be true…It was easily to be drawn into her illusion of herself. She seemed to be what I wanted and what I had been looking for. We had lots of play things in common. She seemed to be perfect in ever way…Thinking back way to perfect…<br />
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I felt like I was the luckiest guy on the planet. There was nothing I would not have done for this lady. Well almost… God help the next guy…If you’re on this web site, you are trying to understand your situation…I’m posting this article for your benefit, and to make a lasting record for the world to see …Take heed…These types of ladies are emotion vampires. They will suck you dry! <br />
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One of the things I learned about her was it’s all about “the look.” She has nothing inside to offer…a vast empty shell…Just the look is all she has…and you know just how visual us guys are…lol…I bought her the pretties’ boobs you ever saw…lol…and paid for and designed the tattoo on her lower back…She calls them freedom wings…Really they are exactly like my airborne wings tattoo, with a red heart in the center…I spent thousands of dollars on clothes, household items, vacations, as well as picking up the tab during our weekend dates. Looking back…I got her ready for the next guy…and improved her chances of winning her game, as well as vastly improving the look…Don’t get me wrong, I did this on my own free will. I just wish I knew what I was dealing with earlier. Basically, she used me for all she could get. I even question weather she ever really loved me…I think she loved what I was doing for her…She was in love with a life style…not me.<br />
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Dawna has had many years of practicing the illusion that I had fallen prey to believing. She talked the talk of being someone emotionally aware, and spiritually attuned. Later… to find out that I was so wrong….again I tell you, she was nothing more than a shell…and illusion if you will…<br />
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Here’s where I made my biggest mistake…and this is the biggest bit of information I can share…I opened my heart before I had enough information. I committed my love to her before I had spent enough time with her to gather the right information… as to whether she was really a good potential life partner. In my defense, I was taken in by a master at the craft of seducing guys. She knew that she needed me to commit my heart quickly. She can’t keep up the false face for a really long period of time. It’s to hard and very draining for her…She needs to be free to behave in accordance with her true nature. Guys…she is the master at this….This is her biggest part of the play. Beware!<br />
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You see, I asked this lady to marry me. Dawna accepted and I publicly announced to my circle of friends my intentions. Another interesting comment made by Dawna’s daughter, was “Oh…you gave my mother a ring? Oh my God…You won’t be around here much longer…and she laughed at me…Looking back, this young lady had seen this once or twice before. Out of the mouth of babe’s…This was her way of warning me that things were about to change…Back to the story…Once I had committed to her… she knew it would be difficult for me to back out. My observation is that human beings have a hard time changing our idea of what we think of someone… once we have committed publicly to our view. To have to say we were wrong about someone means admitting that we used poor judgment. None of us wants to admit to that! So, even though I pretty quickly got a lot of information about her,( that indicated,) she was a poor life partner choice… I could not easily say so without losing face. Fortunately for me, I had good advisors, close at hand, who could see through what was happening. These folks helped me regain my boundaries, and my life back again. <br />
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During a vacation trip to the Caribbean, a cruise, Dawna showed off her true colors. This happened in front of 16 of my friends. Every single one of them saw what she was all about. I had purchased a voucher for her to attend a wine tasting seminar. The voucher was only ten dollars. I bought it for her because wine was one of her favorite beverages. I returned to the cabin, and showed it to her, thinking that she would be elated that I was thoughtful enough to have done so. To my surprise, Dawna got violently upset, claiming that she did not want to go the wine tasting seminar. She wanted to go the gym. I told her to do whatever she wanted to do. No problem here…after all this was her vacation also…At that point she ran out of the cabin, and didn’t return until dinner time. I was all dressed and waiting for her to return, the cruise had a structured dinner time. I waited for her to get showered and dressed. I was pretty upset that she had disappeared for all that time. This is the lady that is supposed to be engaged to me, and she out doing what? Anyway, I made the off handed comment of “how much longer” are you going to be? She told me to go to dinner without her. I was already mad and hurt, so I did just that. I left her in the cabin. She never showed up for dinner. In fact, the next time I saw her it was 1:00 in the morning. I questioned her as to where have you been? Her reply was “not with you”…At that point I lost it. I told her that when we dock, I will buy her a plane ticket to fly home. This cruise for her was over….<br />
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Her next statement was even more astonishing. She wanted to compromise with me…She did not want to get off the ship…She wanted me to do my thing… and she would do her thing...Can you imagine thinking that, let alone someone saying that?…Of course, at that point I asked her for the ring back….She did not want to give it back to me. She hid it … I had to call the security office, before she finally gave it back to me…After several hours of conversation, she convinced me that she was sorry, and that wouldn’t happen again…I wasn’t totally buying that, and did not give her the ring back, until the next day. I could tell she was very uncomfortable, attend meals, because all the folks sitting at our table knew more than I did at that time… <br />
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Now this is un-believable…One of my friends took pictures of her having drinks with a man, walking the ship and quite possible had sex with him, before returning to our cabin. I was not aware of any of this until the cruise was over. This all happened within the first two days of the cruise… when in fact she was engaged to me…Part of her abnormal behavior that continues to this day. Another example… I arrived at her house after taking an early evening night class…I had not eaten dinner yet…I knew she had eaten dinner out with her son. They had been shopping for summer clothes. I walked into her house and asked her to grab her shoes and bag and come out with me. Told her if she didn’t want to eat something , she could have a drink…we could chat…or whatever…She went off like a rocket…Telling me how inconsiderate I was…Trying to keep the piece, I went out by myself, grabbed some fast food, and returned to her house…she was still so up set, that I even suggested that we go out…She asked me to go home…basically throwing me out…This was the beginning of the end…I had done nothing to provoke this…A normal lady would have most likely asked me if she could make me something to eat…Not Dawna…She was all about her…Weeks later I asked her about this…She was unable to recall all the details…and basically just blew it off as a bad day… Afterwards she unable to say what the blow-up was even about…. That isn't normal. When you have an argument with a normal person, afterwards you can say what it was about…. Not Dawna! Not ever! <br />
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How do you know if you’re dating someone like Dawna?<br />
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I can tell you this; it’s difficult to determine if a person is this whacked out very quickly. They initially are very intent on your perceiving them with the same allure that they perceive themselves. She will not want to show her true colors until she has a commitment. She tends to stay in the pursuit mode, which means she wants you to see her as wonderful as she sees herself and will go to great lengths to prove it. That can be difficult for a romanticist to resist. Also...to Dawna...it’s all about the chase…<br />
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Here are some hints that you may be dating a Dawna…Here are your red flags:<br />
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1. She spends the better part of most conversations talking about herself.<br />
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2. She was more concerned with what you think of her than how you feel.<br />
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3. She cannot and will avoid at all costs…explaining past relationship difficulties without blaming the other person or circumstances, and can’t describe her part in the problems.<br />
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4. She always responded to my complaints by telling me that she loved me, and how attractive I was.<br />
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5. When she got upset with me… she was upset because I didn’t consider her feelings, but always dismiss my feelings entirely.<br />
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6. She had a pattern of behaving in thoughtless ways in regard to my needs (forgetting what I asked her to do, not asking you if I want a drink when they get up for one, not offering to repay me if you have paid for something for them)<br />
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7. Sometimes…Responding to my feelings by becoming loving, affectionate and sexual with me to calm me down and divert attention from my feelings. Watch out for this one. She should get “Best Actress” for this one…<br />
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8. Her behavior indicates that her wishes should take precedence over anything anyone else wants. She will never back down, but escalate her attempts to get you to do what she wants, in spite of your feelings.<br />
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The above are just a few of my observation over a 19 month period. I have more examples that I could share to support all of these. These are just the ones that come to mind and in my opinion, are the biggest indicators. <br />
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If you figure out that you are dating a “Dawna” the best thing you can do for yourself is to break up with her, before you get to emotionally involved. I waited until she broke up with me…I had taken the bait, hook line and sinker…Wrong move…Now; I know your heart will tell you all the great things about her that you adore. But… being in a relationship with this type of person is an extremely painful and lonely experience. Try to remember, to her, you don’t really exist. If you love a person like this, the best gift you can give them, and yourself, is to break up with them. Suggest that they get some professional help…I asked her to go. Her reply was she would be only if it was for me…<br />
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Trust me here…She has a hard time understand why someone like me…would break up with someone as wonderful as her…<br />
She never understood what the true problem was. Admitting that she had /did anything wrong, let alone having a problem…was admission of be inferior …and wasn’t ever gone happen. Not once did she ever apology for anything that she did wrong …Not once! <br />
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No one bears any responsibility whatsoever to Dawna’s predicament. For her, others hardly exist - so enmeshed she is in herself and in the resulting misery of this self-preoccupation. Others are hangers on which she hangs the clothes of wrath, of rage, of suppressed and mutating aggression and, finally, of ill disguised violence. Question for you…How should the persons nearest and dearest to her cope with his eccentric vagaries?<br />
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The guy answer is by abandoning her or by threatening to abandon her. The threat to abandon need not be explicit or conditional ("If you don't do or if you do something - I will desert you"). It is sufficient to confront her, to insist, to shout back. Dawna is tamed by the very same weapons that she employs to subjugate others. The specter of being abandoned looms large over everything else. Every discordant note assumes the monstrous proportions of solitude, abandonment, and the resulting confrontation with her Self. Dawna is a person who was irreparably traumatized by the behavior of the most important adults in his life: her parents. By being capricious, arbitrary, sadistically judgmental - she molded her into an adult, who fervently and obsessively tries to recreate the trauma. <br />
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Thus, on the one hand, Dawna feels that her liberation depends upon re-living these experiences. On the other hand, she is terrified by this prospect. My hope is that Dawna, now realizes that she is doomed to go through the same harrowing experience, again and again. My observation is that Dawna distances herself from the scene of her own pending emotional catastrophe. She does this by using her aggression to alienate, to humiliate and in general, to be emotionally absent. I witness this time and time…This behavior brings about the very consequences that Dawna so derides. This way, at least, Dawna can tell himself (and others) that she was the one who controlled the events, that it was truly fully her choice. Of course, governed by her internal demons, Dawna has no choice to talk about.<br />
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Dawna, in my opinion, is a binary human being: the carrot is the stick in her case. If she gets too close to someone emotionally, she fears ultimate and inevitable abandonment. She, thus, distances herself, acts cruelly and brings about the very abandonment that she feared in the first place. In this paradox lies the key to coping with her: If she has a rage attack - rage back. This will provoke in her fears of being abandoned and the resulting calm will be so total that it might seem unbelievable. Trust me on this one…Dawna is known for these tectonic shifts in mood and in behavior patterns. <br />
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Although these mood swings did not occur until about 8 months into the relationship (after I had committed). Then they occurred almost monthly…Her true self starting to come out.<br />
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One way I learned to handle all this, was to mirror Dawna’s actions and repeat her words. If she threatens - threaten back and credibly try to use the same language and content. If she leaves the house - leave it as well, disappear on her. If she is suspicious - act suspicious. Be critical, denigrating, humiliating, and go down to her level - because that is where she permanently is. Faced with her mirror image - Dawna will always recoil.<br />
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I tried to never forget, Dawna does all these things to foster and encourage abandonment. At first, this was really difficult to understand. I was never use to this type of behavior. What she was doing was trying to test the water… if you will…She really doesn’t want you to go or break up with her…If you over react to this situation, Dawna will see the imminent, impending abandonment, which is the inevitable result of her actions and words. This sight will so terrify her - that it will induce an incredible alteration of her behavior. She will instantly succumb and try to make amends, moving from one (cold and bitter, cynical and misanthropic, cruel and sadistic) pole to another (warm, even loving, the sort of fuzzy, engulfing emotion that we feel on a particularly good or successful day).<br />
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Of course, if you have just had it…The other way is to abandon her and go about reconstructing your life. Very few people deserve the kind of investment that is an absolute prerequisite to living with or dating Dawna. To cope with Dawna is a full time, energy and emotion-draining job, which reduced me to insecure nervous wreck. Who deserves such a sacrifice? No one, to my mind! <br />
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The glamour and trickery wear thin… Underneath Dawna is a monster lurking which sucks, and irreversibly influences the lives of those around it to the worse. A life lesson I learned is that, I cannot and should not assume responsibility for other people and their lives. I went down hard with this issue…Dawna is incorrigibly and notoriously difficult to deal with let alone change. Trying to change her is the wrong strategy. The two viable strategies are either accepting her as she is or avoiding her altogether. If one accepts Dawna as she is - one should cater to her needs. Her needs are part of what she is. In my opinion, Dawna is an emotional invalid. She needs constant adulation. She cannot help it. In the begin of the relationship, she will even tell you so…So, if one chooses to accept her - it is a package deal, all her needs included.<br />
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In short, whenever you see a backwards reaction to something, believe your eyes and ears. Accept this behavior's perplexity and know what you know — that there is something seriously wrong with Dawna. And I would never forget about it tomorrow when she's Dr. Jekyll again…I don’t think any sane person would…But…I was always expected to…How strange is that?<br />
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At one point… I entrusted myself to Dawna…this was fraught with danger...she is not trustworthy! Her life is colored by deceit and deception. One cannot rely upon the validity of what she says nor can one trust her word. If she succeeds in deceiving her victim she has a sense of triumph because the victim has been tricked. This deception is subtle and not easily identified at times... <br />
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I know that I have been taken advantage of. I’ve learned that part of her deception is a communication style that is called 'word salad': the order of words in sentences is mixed up, and meanings are slightly altered. Man…she was so good at this! <br />
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I’ve spend much time trying to make sense of this style of communication in order to understand the meaning. It is a thankless and hopeless task...I suggest that anyone read this …not even try…Dawna is a master of her craft…She will confuse you, lie to you or use whatever it takes to fool you into believing her. It is always amazing how one person can affect your life so dramatically simply by ceasing to be a part of it. If you think about it logically, breakups shouldn't even be painful at all. I was a functional person before I even knew Dawna existed… So why should I be turned into an emotional puddle when she left? When Dawna was a stranger…I didn't care if my phone rang or worry if I wasn’t going to see her on a Saturday night. Question…? Why does it matter now? <br />
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I really don’t think there is a real answer. Just like love has been called an incurable disease, the devastation of losing someone may simply be just an emotional enigma. I’ve learned … that I can know for sure is time is your enemy… as well as your friend… and that keeping busy is your only real comfort…<br />
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Recovery...<br />
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The beginning of my recovery process is when I became conscious of the fact that I have been abused by Dawna… and come to the realization that I did not deserve to be abused. <br />
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The next step is to let go of my compulsive endeavors to 'cure' or try to fix her… and give up hope that my “X” partner will be miraculously changed into the loving, empathic and caring person that I want her to be. I was trying to bring about this dream for a long… long time, and it is not easy to come to the point of letting it go. Trust me here!! Take my advice… if what you have been doing hasn't achieved your goal… you need to stop doing it... To me…that is logical and sensible. You can’t make a house wife out of a *****…Ya just can’t!<br />
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Here’s where I am today…. 'Letting go' I have to be prepared for the experience of grieving. Ideally, for the sake of my future mental health it is important that I face my feelings of loss. I think that many people avoid this and retreat from the pain into various defensive positions such as anger and rage which often results in living life in a grievance, compulsive activity, self-destructiveness and substance addiction, or depression. <br />
I’ve learned it is imperative that I talk about my hurt and share the feelings I have about it so that my reality is confirmed... My friends and a trained professional have helped me a lot…. There I have found other people who have had similar experiences and they will not only have some sense of how I was feeling and an idea of the depth of my pain but they will affirm the reality of my own situation.<br />
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I hope to be at a point of a new beginning, a new phase of my life. I have felted depleted. Empty from months of endeavoring to provide Dawna with the energy that she has needed…stolen from me, in order to function in her everyday life. The goal is… for me to have a healthy love of my true self by claiming the life force within me and regaining my passion for living. 'I know ... I will need to go through a process of deciding what I believe about almost everything, and deciding on a set of values that I own, not those that have been thrust by Dawna and her abnormal way of thinking.<br />
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Cultivate friendships with people who are emotionally healthy was always pretty easy for me when I lived in southern New Jersey. My goal is to do that again here in Northeast Pa. I’ve since learned that the test of whether a friendship is enriching for me is determined by how I felt after I spent time with that person. I know now…If I feel drained and exhausted I have my answer!! I need to run…and do it fast…<br />
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A little advise… If you’re sucker, by Dawna, into getting too close and then she rips your guts out, it isn't because of anything you did or anything about you she didn’t like: it's just because you were there and vulnerable….Dawna can smell the blood…So beware!!<br />
To the outside world…Dawna wears a mask, happy and charming. You will be so stunned and confused in daily interaction with Dawna…I’m a pretty savvy guy…and I was fooled completely by her…<br />
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I was kept off balance, emotionally speaking… Dawna displayed her false self in the beginning, (charming phase to gain my trust) now starts what I now call the D&D phase (devalue and discard). In the beginning, Dawna will say small devaluing comments and eventually build up to cruel and heartless manipulations. Dawna is absolutely the world's best manipulators, liars, and fabricators of truth…Bar none! She is so convincing because I think she believe her own lies. I often viewed it as this poor soul just needs to see more empathy… since she manipulated me from the start with claims that she has been helpful to others in past and she was the victim in the end…that was not the truth at all… <br />
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After an episode of devaluing, she would quickly reel into reverse….She manipulate me to feel sorry for her…She turn on charm and sucked me right back in to regain her trust…The word "sorry" does not exist in her vocabulary because empathy does not exist in Dawna’s world… She has no remorse, because people are merely ob<x>jects to use, devalue and discard. Eventually she feels bored and create more drama, the emotional roller coaster ride starts all over again….<br />
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This happened to me over and over again…Anyway…the above is provided as a life experience. My intent here is to visual type out my thoughts and provide you the reader a tale of what happened to me…and the path I took to regain my freedom…

I don't know your situation fully, but on my blog, http://ClinicallyClueless.blogspot.com I wrote an article that might help you understand it more. I've also hopfully includes a 30 second PSA (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x18nVw2slfA). What I have found is that people who want to stay in relationships with someone who is bipolar often require therapy themselves to understand and learn ways of coping with their behavior. You might consider it or if he is open maybe you could see his psychiatrist with him. Anyway, I hope I am able to post these, if not please try to go to my site. I hope you find them helpful.<br />
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My therapist and I get into some really odd topics. But, I guess after 21 years or so, we probably have a pretty odd relationship. He is the odd one. Anyway, a while back we were talking about the weather and how it was changing 30 degress in two days 40 degress in a week. It was driving me crazy and to be even crazier, my therapist started talking about the weather being manic-depressive (okay we are old) as it was characterized by extreme highs to lows. (I know my thinking is a bit odd...don't all of you think of weather in terms of mental illness?) <br />
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I was frustrated, I had fall, spring and summer clothing all over the place in my bedroom and day to day or week to week, I did not know what I was going to wear. Also, I could feel it in my sinus, my body's temperature was really weird and basically, I think, it affected my emotions. Well, if you had manic-depression, which is now called bipolar disorder, this is sort of what it would be like on a day to day or weekly basis depending on the exact diagnosis, not knowing how you are going to be day to day. I don't mean to minimize the severity of bipolar disorder by comparing it to weather. It is just how this article started.<br />
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For those not on medications or with rapid cycling bipolar disease. Imagine having so much energy that you don't need sleep because you are not tired, everything seems like it is racing, you feel like you can't keep up with the billions of different thoughts in your head, you can't focus, you speak constantly, you feel like you are just bouncing off walls, your behavior is impulsive and think you can do anything. Then, without any warning signs, you crash hard. Everything seems dark, cloudy, sad and heavy. You don't want to do anything including getting out of bed or eat. You feel like you are in a black hole with no end and that you will never feel better. You probably have suicidal thoughts. Then, without warning, you have super duper energy again, but this time everything seems to irritate you, and you are filled with rage. Imagine, living like this and never knowing which way you will feel. Also, there is very little "normal" feeling in between. For those not on medications and for most who do not cycle rapidly, this is maybe a week or so between "moods."<br />
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This is the way it is for many people with bipolar disorder and their family, friends and coworkers. The manic phase is also when people do outragous things because they think they can. I know someone who went to work early and began painting a huge mural on the wall at work. Many go on shopping, gambling, alcohol, drug, or sex binges. It tears familys apart and they lose friends and can't keep a job and have major financial problems.<br />
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Most people's symptoms are noticed and begin to interfere in their lives during late adolescenes and early adulthood. Although, in hindsight, most people can see signs in their childhood. With proper treatment, people with bipolar disorder can be treated for this illness and can lead full productive lives. <br />
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Medication compliance is one of the most difficult issues and is necessary to stablize the chemical imbalance that occurs in the brain to cause such symptoms. Especially, during the manic phase because many do not want to stop from being on such a high. Medication is also tricky because what works for one person may not work for another. Also, what works for a while may stop working and then they have try new drugs or dosages. It can be very frustrating for everyone. Also, medication does not take away all of the symptoms it usually reduces them enough for someone to learn how to cope with their illness. Remember, their illness is not an excuse for their behavior and some can be responsible for it and others cannot. If you are living with someone or know someone with this illness, you can still set boundaries. It is never okay for someone to abuse you physically, verbally, emotionally, etc.<br />
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You will become frustrated and wonder why they make the same "bad" decisions over and over again? Why haven't they learned by this time? Why can't they see the senselessness of their behavior? They seem to get it together and then bottom out. Those without this illness and I will never be able to fully understand what their world is like. It isn't like a broken leg or open wound where you can see where it hurts. Their brain is very different than yours or mine. <br />
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Even though you cannot see their wound, they do show you. You just have to listen to what they say and do carefully. An excerpt from Bipolar Disorder Today states, "However hear their pain, listen for red flags always of any danger signals were you may need added assistance...Anytime a loved one does not seem in touch with reality (seeing, hearing, sensing, and thinking things that are not true), or seems at risk for suicide, homicide or any high risk behavior, you need to call 911 or their counselor or doctor. Explain what you are experiencing and your concerns." <br />
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SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS THAT MAY ACCOMPANY SUICIDAL FEELING: <br />
· talking about feeling suicidal or wanting to die<br />
· feeling hopeless, that nothing will ever change or get better<br />
· feeling helpless, that nothing one does makes a difference<br />
· feeling like a burden to family and friends<br />
· abusing alcohol or drugs<br />
· putting affairs in order (e.g., organizing finances or giving away possessions to prepare for one's death)<br />
· writing a suicide note<br />
· putting oneself in harm's way, or in situation where there is a danger of being killed.<br />
The most important way to assist a person with bipolar disorder is to treat them with respect and care and to become a part of the treatment team if the person will allow you to do so. Then, you can speak with the psychiatrist and find out the best way to support the person because it is individualized. In the meantime, you can educate yourself. Websites will be provided at the end. Do not become codependent or enabling with your loved one. Remember that you do not have control over someone else. (Hmmm...need to do post on codependency)<br />
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The following is taken from the National Institute on Mental Health:<br />
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Signs and symptoms of mania (or a manic episode) include:<br />
· Increased energy, activity, and restlessness <br />
· Excessively “high,” overly good, euphoric mood<br />
· Extreme irritability <br />
· Racing thoughts and talking very fast, jumping from one idea to another <br />
· Distractibility, can’t concentrate well <br />
· Little sleep needed<br />
· Unrealistic beliefs in one’s abilities and powers <br />
· Poor judgment <br />
· Spending sprees <br />
· A lasting period of behavior that is different from usual <br />
· Increased sexual drive <br />
· Abuse of drugs, particularly cocaine, alcohol, and sleeping medications <br />
· Provocative, intrusive, or aggressive behavior <br />
· Denial that anything is wrong<br />
A manic episode is diagnosed if elevated mood occurs with three or more of the other symptoms most of the day, nearly everyday, for one week or more. If mood is irritable, four or more additional symptoms must be present.<br />
Signs and symptoms of depression (or a depressive episode) include:<br />
· Lasting sad, anxious, or empty mood<br />
· Feelings of hopelessness or pessimism<br />
· Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, or helplessness<br />
· Loss of interest or pleasure in activities once enjoyed, including sex<br />
· Decreased energy, a feeling of fatigue or of being “slowed down”<br />
· Difficulty concentrating, remembering, making decisions<br />
· Restlessness or irritability <br />
· Sleeping too much, or can’t sleep<br />
· Change in appetite and/or unintended weight loss or gain <br />
· Chronic pain or other persistent bodily symptoms that are not caused by physical illness or injury <br />
· Thoughts of death or suicide, or suicide attemptsA depressive episode is diagnosed if five or more of these symptoms last most of the day, nearly every day, for a period of 2 weeks or longer. <br />
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I often wonder about the genius (or creative talent) of the world and the fantastic artwork created by those with mental illness. If there were medications during their time, would we have had Beethoven's 9th Symphony, Van Gogh's Starry Night or The Scream by artist Edvard Munch. Both had bipolar disorders. Just something I ponder from time to time. I am definitely not saying that medication should not be used. On the contrary, I believe that medication can save lives, assist them with leading full lives, and can stablize symptoms. For bipolar disorder, it is essential.<br />
Many famous people have been diagnosed with bipolar disorder. These are only those who have been confirmed as having this illness: Adam Ant, Ludwig van Beethoven, Lord Byron, **** Cavett, Kurt Cobain, Samuel Tayleor Coleridge, Ray Davies, Charles Dickens, Richard Dreyfuss, Patty Duke, Carrie Fisher, William Faulkner, Stephen Foster, Macy Gray, Alexander Hamilton, Linda Hamilton, Mariette Hartley, Ernest Hemingway, Abbie Hoffman, Margot Kidder, Kristy McNichol, Edvard Munch, Issac Newton, Florence Nightengale, Sinead O' Conner, Ozzy Osbourne, Jane Pauley, Edgar Allen Poe, Charlie Pride, Axl Rose, Nina Simone, Britney Spears, Robert Louis Stevenson, Mark Twain, Jean-Claude Van Damme, Vincent Van Gogh, Kurt Vonnegut, Brian Wilson and Virginia Woolf.<br />
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Remember if you or anyone else recognizes any of these symptoms talk to your doctor and seek professional medical treatment and psychotherapy. If someone seems to be in immediate danger, call 911.<br />
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My hope is that this was informative and gives people a new perspective on bipolar disorder and mental illness in general. All information in this post was from personal/professional experiences, http://www.mental-health-today.com/, http://www.nimh.nih.gov/, http://www.bipolar.com/. You can go to any of these sites for more information or assistance. Also, you can educate yourself further from the book, the Bipolar Disorders Survival Guide by David J. Miklowitz, Ph.D. (All this because we had some major weather swings...you never know where my inspiration to write will come from...this one is a bit strange, I have to admit.<br />
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(Disclaimer: Although I have worked with mentally ill persons for twenty years, I do not have a Master's Degree or a license. This is not meant to be a substitute for mental health care or treatment. Please obtain professional assistance from the above resources, if needed. And call 911 if you or someone is in immediate danger.)

I dated someone with bipolar...and it is extremely hard. Its so hard to leave because you deeply care about the person, but you also get hurt over and over again. Its good that he goes to therapy and takes meds, and i know that you love him, but you also need to be ok. Remember that.....

Calm, i can totally relate. I am married to a bipolar man who drinks and smokes, of course to eleviate the pain he feels. But my husband also takes it too a dangerous violent level once he does get intoxicated. One day he is the most loving sweet guy. the next day or the next minute he can see something on tv or someone can say the wrong thing to him and i am his worst enemy. i am every horrible name, he hates me. i make him sick, he has even hit me in these moment. this can be a very dangerous disease. i know this first hand. no matter how many tears i shed or how i try to make the moment better. i can not stop him from feeling the way he feels at that moment. i have tried everything to make him feel that i am there. the beggining of our relationship was all about me proving how much i love him and how much he can trust me. i changed my whole life around to show him. cut off friends. stopped going out, everything to make him feel confident. but on his bad days he still says i put everyone before him and i am not there for him. i realize now it is the desease talking and not him. but i understand the hurt. i understand the fustration. i understand the pain. all i can say is that you have to be real with yourself. realize that this is him if you can handle the fact that he will have some days like this and you can handle that on these days you will not be able to argue back if you want him to feel better you have to just be that ear and comfort until he feels better, stay. But if you cant i say go. it seems like you are willing and i feel like he is trying because he is atleast on meds. my husband doesnt take anything he has a hard time even admitting he has a real problem - he says he just gets angry at times. Sorry i am rambling - point being if you do want to stay, know its not you and just keep talking and listening and being there. there will be some rough days, but not all will be rough if you do some things like citystreets said. he gave great advice. when a bipolar person feels good everyone around them feels good. try to make him feel good as much as possible. stay active, and busy always talk about goals and positive things and i am sure you will have much more good days than bad.

I have a few friends with bipolar. Normally I am against medication for any illness, however bipolar is not a normal illness as it is due to a chemical imbalance.<br />
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Once that balance is found, there is no reason why these people can't live normal lives. That does time though, and requires the patient to be honest and take the meds as prescribed in order that the balance can be found.<br />
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It is a rocky road. I haven't lived with a bipolar, however have sat with one through several episodes.<br />
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I take my hat off to anyone prepared to help them on their path to recovery.