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Topic: Early in relationship, my partner is Bipolar

6 posts, 0 answered
  1. helenalicai
    helenalicai avatar
    1 posts
    13 May 2020

    Sometime around 6 months ago after two months of straight talking, I went on a first date with the most perfect man, someone who gets me on every level, wants most of the same things in life as me, but especially on major issues (we both don’t want babies), we could not stop talking to each other, and we’re still like this even months into our relationship. He proposed to me 2 months in and we were in a bubble of happiness. His friends and family love me and we all get along really well. My friends who have met him love him too. Now I know from the start he was medicated for anxiety and seeing a therapist - as I also have anxiety and depression and I’m medicated and have been through therapy, this was not a red flag for me as it gave us deeper understanding and love and support for one another. The issues in our relationship started when I woke up one night and he was crying because he had drunk bottles and bottles of high percentage alcohol. I thought this was weird because nothing in my mind had triggered it. He said he couldn’t sleep so he tried getting drunk to get to sleep.

    Fast forward about a week later, we’re at the local pub together and this girl starts flirting with him in front of me. The worst part is he starts flirting back. Not as in making a move on her but laughing at her jokes and being open to her advances, instead of rejecting them. After this I tell him to pack his things and get out, unwilling to listen to him, because knowing cheaters in my personal life, if they do it once they’ll do it again. He was devastated and cried and begged me to forgive him. I eventually gave in and things were great for months. Once or twice a month he would binge drink heavily which concerned me but not enough to consider leaving. A week ago, he cheats on me by trying to text other woman asking them for sex and lying that he’s not engaged. I find out, I’m devastated, and he doesn’t seem to care. 12 hours later he comes to, and is devastated and is like I don’t know why I did that I don’t like anyone else i think I’m broken. We saw a psychiatrist and he diagnosed him with mild bipolar, and changed his medication warning us that his moods could change while adjusting. A few days after this, my usually beautiful, warm and affectionate fiancé tells me to pack my shit and get out. He’s now living at his friends place and has told his friends he has no desire to get back with me. I’m devastated - we both believe we’re soulmates. Is there any hope for us?

  2. white knight
    Community Champion
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    white knight avatar
    8252 posts
    15 May 2020 in reply to helenalicai

    Hi, welcome

    I’ll take your post in stages if you don’t mind Helen.

    Firstly I’m bipolar 2,dysthymia and depression and I had anxiety that I conquered.

    Yes both having anxiety and/or depressed helps maintain a comforting relationship as you both have empathy.

    He got “drunk to help him sleep “ herein lies a big issue. Alcohol is not the direction people with any mental illness should go. Small amounts ok but enough to be “drunk” is a road to other problems because emotionally some of us are “crying drunks” especially bipolar. It doesn’t make for stability.

    ”texts other women asking for sex” - totally unacceptable and although bipolar is known for sexual energy beyond normal for some, we aren’t devoid of moral standing either so imo it is more a sign of immaturity. His lack of restraint is a problem for relationship counseling imo.

    So he’s left and displayed a total change of personality. He has told others he won’t return. Is this bipolar or immaturity? Imo based on my own life of both when younger (I’m 64yo) it’s likely both.

    The over reaction- indeed a need to escape from a situation (in this case painting himself into a corner with texting etc) rather than face it is common to bipolar (eg I’ve written a lot about my times of rejecting society) that such reactions change quickly. Don’t be surprised if he asks to return to you! This seesaw effect is a reflection of the bipolar moods that require medication (natural remedies won’t cut it) so the ups and downs is continuous until either he ages or his medication is ideal for him and that takes time to realise. Best meds will not eliminate the moods, just quell them which is often enough to be settled but! It does nothing to improve immaturity.

    I can’t shine much light on your plight. Under the circumstances being such a short relationship in terms of time you have the fact that a few years extra time would be harder to move on from. But that’s cold comfort.

    Your choice if he asks to return but counseling is a must as well as the alcohol consumption issue being addressed.

    reply anytime

    TonyWK

    Im dorry

    1 person found this helpful
  3. morticiaandgomez
    morticiaandgomez avatar
    2 posts
    28 August 2020 in reply to white knight

    Hi Tony

    Thanks for taking the time to read this and give some insight.

    You’re right, the fact that we were together for 6 months is nothing in the scheme of things. One of the past relationships I had lasted for nearly 5 years so I understand the complications that come with removing someone from your life, the shorter you’ve been involved - the easier it is to leave.

    I agree with the drug and alcohol binging I think it’s really terrible for those of us struggling with mental health issues. It doesn’t help, just makes it worse.

    I don’t know anything about bipolar so to see the man I loved who was at one point seemingly very devoted to me, to try and cheat was totally unfathomable.

    I thought it would be linked to the bipolar because I couldn’t make any real logic out of it.

    you can sometimes anticipate cheating - a growing distance between a couple, lack of intimacy, frequent bickering and full blown arguments- but we weren’t like that. life together was for the most part relaxing, easy, and enjoyable.

    i think it’s important you acknowledged that bipolar isn’t an excuse for cheating - which it’s not.

    you’re also not the only person who said he’ll come back to me.

    Many people including friends of mine who have dated those who have bipolar have said this too. But one thing that a friend said that stood out to me is is that “he probably won’t remember what he did, the cheating and everything, because when they do horrible things and hurt others, it’s like they have two people living inside themselves, and this other side takes over, and they have no control” is this true?

    so my question is now:

    I love this man so so so much, but I am not willing to sacrifice my self worth to be with him. If he comes back to me:

    - is this just some temporary emotion of his, reaching out, and in 6 months he’ll deliberately hurt me, sabotage us and leave again

    - can he be trusted to change for the better

    - does counselling really do all that much, and if so, what specific kind of counselling should I look at for him, and for us as a couple

    - do those with bipolar really “blackout”, or is it just an excuse and they do remember what they did - they just want a ‘get out of jail free card’

    - is it possible to have a healthy, loving, committed and stable relationship with someone who has bipolar

    - what kind of expectations should I have, & what compromises may I have to look at making around living with his ups and downs as part of a relationship

    Appreciate your insight

  4. white knight
    Community Champion
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    white knight avatar
    8252 posts
    29 August 2020 in reply to morticiaandgomez

    Thanks for replying

    ill try to answer as someone with bipolar, my basic knowledge and personal opinion. I’m no professional

    re: ““he probably won’t remember what he did, the cheating and everything, because when they do horrible things and hurt others, it’s like they have two people living inside themselves, and this other side takes over, and they have no control” is this true?

    - no way. Lots of wives tales out there

    - will he hurt you again? Imo likely, the same rules apply ,leopards don’t change their spots

    - can he be trusted to change for the better. ... and live on hope?

    - appropriate counsel or? Ask yourGP

    - the ups and downs can’t be prevented only reduced through medication. I have a stable marriage but the last 3 long term relationships were disasters. The first two we didn’t know So was bipolar though

    If it was me in your shoes I’d move on, not because he is bipolar however, but for his straying tendencies.

    I hope that helps

    TonyWK

  5. quirkywords
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    quirkywords avatar
    8010 posts
    29 August 2020 in reply to morticiaandgomez

    Morticia

    Like Tony I have bipolar and have had it for 40 years,

    it is hard to answer question generally I can only answer them personally.

    I remember every terrible thing I did some 30 years ago. Of course everyone is different.

    i think looking at a website like black dog is more helpful than talking to friends about bipolar.

    I think being honest and talking to the person with bipolar is best done when the person is not up or down.
    i admit I have had 3 relationships in last nearly 40 years. I think having a partner who is understanding and helpful as well as being strong and flexible.

  6. ecomama
    Valued Contributor
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    ecomama avatar
    2172 posts
    30 August 2020 in reply to morticiaandgomez

    Hi Morticia

    I know there was a "shared connection" for you both because of MHIs but removing this and just looking at behaviour, would you stay with a man who does these things WITHOUT having MHIs?

    This is what you'll have to put up with for the rest of your life if you stay with him, regardless of MHIs which just complicates things.

    As TonyWK said.. "leopards...spots".

    I am so surprised you said a firm yes to his marriage proposal after 2 months!

    2 YEARS is what's suggested by research and Courses on relationships, esp those informing us of seeing red flags of abuse.

    You have several there already...
    * alcohol abuse
    * almost immediate marriage proposal
    * cheating "tendencies". I say all out cheater mentality - he only stopped because you caught him
    * untreated MHIs... does he have regular psychologist / psychiatrist appts... of not then he's not dealing IMHO. (Before long and if he wants to get better for himself then he would need both or either).

    But none of this is your responsibility. It's his.

    TonyWK noted 'immaturity'... I would say you've probably noticed how irresponsible he is.

    I would run for the hills on this one FOR SURE.

    EM

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