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Supporting possible bipolar partner

H

HeavyRain

Active member
Joined
Jul 27, 2021
Messages
26
Location
UK
Hi everyone, I'm new here.

I think my bf might have some form of bipolar, we have been together for over 4 years and we have experienced cycles of hypomania, isolation, explosive emotions where a lot of hurtful things are said followed by depression, guilt and embarrassment. This usually happens every 3 months. But the latest episode has just happened and we are in the aftermath, it was pretty bad and I feel very hurt, he often says the worst things to push me away but i usually put it down his mental health and try and move forward. This time though its just really got to me, I had an early miscarriage a few weeks ago and during his episode he told me I would be a terrible mother.

I told him he needs a proper diagnosis, he is on Sertraline for depression atm but I don't think its just that anymore. I spent the morning yesterday calling doctors to get him an appointment to see someone properly, I told him this when he got up but he said he didn't want to talk about it because it was making him sad and hed had a good time with his friends the night before and felt happy, almost blaming me for his sadness. But his friends dont have to deal with his episodes like i do.

I feel so sad and angry, im pretending nothing is wrong and acting the happy chill gf, when inside all I want to do is cry and i feel alone. I don't know what to do. He seems to put this distance between us, i almost feel like he thinks its my fault he feels this way.

Help.
 
A Fancy Carp

A Fancy Carp

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 21, 2021
Messages
167
Location
California
Sorry that you're going through that. Hmm...speaking as a bipolar person, when I'm in my right mind, I have no trouble recognizing that I have problems that need to be addressed. It sounds like your boyfriend really needs to see someone. If he thinks that he doesn't have a problem when he's not having an episode, then the issue isn't bipolar disorder, or at least, not just bipolar disorder.
 
I

imluc

Member
Joined
Feb 23, 2021
Messages
15
Location
UK
Hi, I don't have a great deal of experience in the diagnosis or treatment of bipolar however I am convinced my partner has Unstable Personality Disorder as it's now known here.

I just wanted to say I know it's so hard, but you can't blame yourself. The things I am accused of are done in such a clever way that I have to stop and say no, this didn't make sense. It's clear from my experience that my partner knows the most hurtful things to say at any one time.

She gas lights to incredible levels, I honestly have to have a narrative going on my head, no that's not me doing that it's so obviously her.

I wish you great strength, don't let your partner's condition cast shadow on your life and make you withdraw. You deserve to be happy. Your partner is, ultimately, responsible of their own happiness.

I am in a situation where suicide is regularly used as a threat. On some level I know it's only for control and to have something to escalate to if I do as my therapist suggest and have boundaries that are clear, but they are never respected.

My partner switches almost immediately from outbursts of vile anger, abusive words, threats to smiling, laughing wanting to hold my hand if we have a visitor, it she gets a works call.. It's incredible, I'm there licking my wounds and she is laughing with a friend.

We are the secret sufferers. I can't tell people what she is like because she is so convincing and people only ever see the side of her that's likeable, funny and gregarious. I would look like a mug if I said anything. That's part of it and it's important there is a narrative of control in my experience.

I'm at the start of my journey really though it's getting going on years I have found some strength recently.

It isn't your fault. This is an illness, same as any other. You didn't create this. You didn't do anything wrong. Are you perfect? No. Nobody is. But you have not done anything to deserve this irrational, hate filled outbursts. When my kids were growing up I used a book called the anger gremlin which personified anger was a gremlin and talked about an the things that feed it. I tend now to remind myself this is really just a gremlin inside my partner that takes over control, it's a disease, it's unmanageable.

I wish you happiness, I hope you continue to have strength, please stay connected and surround yourself with positive people and long term friends. Open up to ones you trust but remind them it's serious. You are not alone in your suffering.
 
A Fancy Carp

A Fancy Carp

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 21, 2021
Messages
167
Location
California
My partner switches almost immediately from outbursts of vile anger, abusive words, threats to smiling, laughing wanting to hold my hand if we have a visitor, it she gets a works call.
That's another thing. My bipolar mood swings take anywhere from days to weeks to happen and I have no control over it. Despite how I'm feeling, I am aware when an episode is happening and I can police my own behavior to some extent. If your boyfriend seems to flip back and forth quickly or seems to be able to turn it on and off at will, it's not bipolar disorder.
 
H

HeavyRain

Active member
Joined
Jul 27, 2021
Messages
26
Location
UK
Sorry that you're going through that. Hmm...speaking as a bipolar person, when I'm in my right mind, I have no trouble recognizing that I have problems that need to be addressed. It sounds like your boyfriend really needs to see someone. If he thinks that he doesn't have a problem when he's not having an episode, then the issue isn't bipolar disorder, or at least, not just bipolar disorder.
Hey, thank you for your post. My partner says that when he's in an episode and saying these things he knows he is doing it but can't stop it, then after once it ends he feels embarrassed and guilty and then goes low and depressed. In his last episode during his mania he drove to Wales and convinced himself he was going to live in my car there.... the episodes are short never more than a week or 2 and have these stages we have noticed.
 
H

HeavyRain

Active member
Joined
Jul 27, 2021
Messages
26
Location
UK
Hi, I don't have a great deal of experience in the diagnosis or treatment of bipolar however I am convinced my partner has Unstable Personality Disorder as it's now known here.

I just wanted to say I know it's so hard, but you can't blame yourself. The things I am accused of are done in such a clever way that I have to stop and say no, this didn't make sense. It's clear from my experience that my partner knows the most hurtful things to say at any one time.

She gas lights to incredible levels, I honestly have to have a narrative going on my head, no that's not me doing that it's so obviously her.

I wish you great strength, don't let your partner's condition cast shadow on your life and make you withdraw. You deserve to be happy. Your partner is, ultimately, responsible of their own happiness.

I am in a situation where suicide is regularly used as a threat. On some level I know it's only for control and to have something to escalate to if I do as my therapist suggest and have boundaries that are clear, but they are never respected.

My partner switches almost immediately from outbursts of vile anger, abusive words, threats to smiling, laughing wanting to hold my hand if we have a visitor, it she gets a works call.. It's incredible, I'm there licking my wounds and she is laughing with a friend.

We are the secret sufferers. I can't tell people what she is like because she is so convincing and people only ever see the side of her that's likeable, funny and gregarious. I would look like a mug if I said anything. That's part of it and it's important there is a narrative of control in my experience.

I'm at the start of my journey really though it's getting going on years I have found some strength recently.

It isn't your fault. This is an illness, same as any other. You didn't create this. You didn't do anything wrong. Are you perfect? No. Nobody is. But you have not done anything to deserve this irrational, hate filled outbursts. When my kids were growing up I used a book called the anger gremlin which personified anger was a gremlin and talked about an the things that feed it. I tend now to remind myself this is really just a gremlin inside my partner that takes over control, it's a disease, it's unmanageable.

I wish you happiness, I hope you continue to have strength, please stay connected and surround yourself with positive people and long term friends. Open up to ones you trust but remind them it's serious. You are not alone in your suffering.
Hello, thank you for sharing, that sounds very difficult to deal with, and I wish you all the best and the strength to keep going.
It is difficult when other can't or don't see the side we see.
 
A Fancy Carp

A Fancy Carp

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 21, 2021
Messages
167
Location
California
Hey, thank you for your post. My partner says that when he's in an episode and saying these things he knows he is doing it but can't stop it, then after once it ends he feels embarrassed and guilty and then goes low and depressed. In his last episode during his mania he drove to Wales and convinced himself he was going to live in my car there.... the episodes are short never more than a week or 2 and have these stages we have noticed.
Hmm, it could be bipolar disorder. That sounds like bipolar nonsense. He really needs to see a professional. Unfortunately, I have no idea how to convince someone to get help who doesn't want to. Maybe someone else here does. That sounds super difficult and I wish that I could offer more support.
 
H

HeavyRain

Active member
Joined
Jul 27, 2021
Messages
26
Location
UK
Hmm, it could be bipolar disorder. That sounds like bipolar nonsense. He really needs to see a professional. Unfortunately, I have no idea how to convince someone to get help who doesn't want to. Maybe someone else here does. That sounds super difficult and I wish that I could offer more support.
He said he would think about it, so I guess the balls in his court. Do the right meds help?
 
A Fancy Carp

A Fancy Carp

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 21, 2021
Messages
167
Location
California
He said he would think about it, so I guess the balls in his court. Do the right meds help?
Definitely, but it might take a few tries to find the right medications, so don't be surprised if the first thing that he tries either doesn't work or has side effects that he can't tolerate. That being said, sometimes the side effects take a month or two to go away.
 
H

HeavyRain

Active member
Joined
Jul 27, 2021
Messages
26
Location
UK
Definitely, but it might take a few tries to find the right medications, so don't be surprised if the first thing that he tries either doesn't work or has side effects that he can't tolerate. That being said, sometimes the side effects take a month or two to go away.
Thank you, yeah when he first started the Sertraline antidepressant he had some side effects but they improved after a few months and the only one that stuck was the sweats bur we bought a desk fan.
I really hope he tries, I know it must be hard to take that step, but if there is a chance he could feel better, then it would be worth it.
 
A Fancy Carp

A Fancy Carp

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 21, 2021
Messages
167
Location
California
Thank you, yeah when he first started the Sertraline antidepressant he had some side effects but they improved after a few months and the only one that stuck was the sweats bur we bought a desk fan.
I really hope he tries, I know it must be hard to take that step, but if there is a chance he could feel better, then it would be worth it.
It totally is worth it. There's so much time that you waste being out of commission with bipolar disorder, and I take any improvement that I can get.
 
H

HeavyRain

Active member
Joined
Jul 27, 2021
Messages
26
Location
UK
It totally is worth it. There's so much time that you waste being out of commission with bipolar disorder, and I take any improvement that I can get.
Thank you so much for sharing, I really appreciate it. May I ask if you have experienced the pushing away a loved one, or saying things you didn't mean, before?
 
A Fancy Carp

A Fancy Carp

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 21, 2021
Messages
167
Location
California
Thank you so much for sharing, I really appreciate it. May I ask if you have experienced the pushing away a loved one, or saying things you didn't mean, before?
No, but my bipolar takes the form of intermittent depression. I've only had one manic episode. When I'm depressed, I just feel tired and worthless and I spend most of my time in bed.
 
H

HeavyRain

Active member
Joined
Jul 27, 2021
Messages
26
Location
UK
No, but my bipolar takes the form of intermittent depression. I've only had one manic episode. When I'm depressed, I just feel tired and worthless and I spend most of my time in bed.
My partner tends to throw himself into programming to combat the depression, he says it helps, but tends to get obsessed and burns himself out. He will programme all day and all night until he passes out.
 
A Fancy Carp

A Fancy Carp

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 21, 2021
Messages
167
Location
California
My partner tends to throw himself into programming to combat the depression, he says it helps, but tends to get obsessed and burns himself out. He will programme all day and all night until he passes out.
That sounds more like a manic thing to do.
 
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