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Mental Illness

Subsonic Sound
Has anyone else had to deal with the effects of a mental illness on a relationship?

My current girlfriend has Bipolar Disorder. Now, a lot of mental illnesses get bandied round as labels the moment someone is even slightly different from 'normal', ADD, Dyslexia and Bipolar Disorder being some of the prime examples. But she really is.

Her shifts in mood are noticeable, but it's not caused any real problems. On the upswing, she's fantastic fun to be around, and on the downswing we get on really well, in a more sedate way. There are occasional moments when the swings are more severe, and her upswings are literally manic, the downswings severely depressed. But we've been able to handle them as they come. On very rare occasion, something more severe happens. She's had a seizure or two, usually when under heavy stress or something like that.

Just lately, she'd been acting very strange. Not been very talkative, avoiding me, acting as though there was something else on her mind, and that she didn't particularly want to be with me. Naturally, that scared me - I thought she was thinking of breaking up...

Today, she came to me in floods of tears, apologising over and over. Apparently her medication ran out, and she hadn't gotten hold of any more - she's back on it now, but the period without it had upset the chemical balance, and made her more vulnerable to the effects of her condition. She had been almost wanting to hurt me. Partly to hurt herself by driving me away, but largely for... well honestly, I don't know why. I'm not sure she does.

I'm just glad she's gotten over that patch, and I've got the girl I love back, instead of that darker side of her...

Has anyone else had to deal with this kind of thing before?
Yes, I have. Not in such paticulars as you have, but much the same.

It took me a while to learn to adapt. I had to pull alot of personal emotion out of skin range of the relationship. I thickened my skin, for both the sake of my well-being and hers. Because in these sorts of situations even one person emotional is more then enough. If I went wildly drunk with emotion, be-it anger or sadness, she would'nt of had any support.

I was able to reflect such mood swings and emotional outburts very easilly when I taught myself this. It gave me better perspective and ability to help. I had to be the "rock" to her emotional waves, or my island would of crumbled into the sea.
Subsonic Sound
I do try to match to her moods - it's actually surprisingly easy. When she's hyper, she's very funny and cheerful, and that cheers me up no end, and before I know it I'm pretty hyper too. And we bounce off each other and the walls for a while. When she's down, I try my best to be as reasonable and calm as possible, reassuring. Emotionally I'm usually quite stable, so it's not been too hard to keep my own problems in check. Besides, in comparison they usually look pretty meagre anyway.

The one time I have been in a really terrible mood myself, she was magnificent. Eager to repay me, I think. Calmed me down and cheered me up no end...
I got married in 1988. From day 1, I realised that she suffers from mood swings----high one moment and low the next. I accepted this and requested her to be nice to my parents and relations even if they might be in the wrong. But she continued her mood swings and often revolted against my father and mother.Ultimately, we were ``thrown out of the house'' by my father in 1992 after my mother's death. I supported my wife completely as she was in the right.
Then we shifted to Chandigarh. She got transferred to Chandigarh also.However, the intensity of the mood swings increased and she was often involved in ``quarrels with her bosses and superiors.'' Ultimately, she resigned her job in 1997 and is a housewife now.
My wife became very sick during this period and the doctors have diagnosed her as suffering from Celiac Disease or wheat allergy. Now her swings have worsened and my daughter and I are the worst sufferers as the ``attack'' is mostly on us during the ``low depressive'' periods.I feel very helpless when she starts cursing God for even the smallest problems and difficulties. She is also ``hyper'' about cleanliness and finances.
My daughter and I have to hide financial and other matters from her as she starts quarrelling and even turns violent.
The doctor told me in private that she suffers from mental illness. Now she wants my daughter and I to do most of the household chores at the cost of my job and her studies. Since she does not want us to go out and ``socialise'', our friend circle has dwindled.
Sometimes my daughter and I want freedom from this repression and mental torture unleashed on our psyche by my wife...
Hello! I think this is a really interesting situation that you've wanted to share with us. Smile Cool The 'relationship with someone who literally have psychological problems is actually my 'friendship' with my...yes, X-best friend. Sad

I know some of you might think that a GF-BF relationship is more of something that can make the "normal" person feel sad, but it also happens with normal friendships.

She was my best friend, and we did a lot of things together. At first I thought we were just teenagers going wild sometimes and "acting crazy" but she really had an issue that later, a psychiatrist confirmed it was serious. Sad

She's not my best friend anymore - in fact, she's not even my friend. It was not my decision, but hers. She said that I'm bad influence on her (???I don't even know how) and that she needs to hang out with people who make her a better person (i.e. fly with the eagles). This made me sad and also angry so I'm respecting her desion and I also believe it's for the best. Arrow
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