Bipolar partner ruining my quality of life

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cooler-j
New Member


Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 11/29/2008 6:43 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi, I am new to this site but this seems like the only site which offers any advice on this condition which is helpfull and free. I will tell you my story, before I start I will reiterate the type of person I am, I do not like to label people or point the finger as I have done in the past and have done allot of learning from the situation that will make me a better person, as far as I am concerned I take people as people race, colour, illness etc.
When I met my partner 8 years ago we seemed to be destined to be together, we made a fantastic couple, She already had 3 children aged 11 7 and 8 from a previous marrage of which I had no problem. 4 months into the relationship the whole dynamic changed and she became very unstable, I did not know what was going on and she was not diagnosed at this time. I did not know at this point which person I was coming home to and she would be extremely bad tempered and unpredictable, her children was in the middle of this and I ended up as a babysitter whilst she spent weeks sometimes months in bed. My life was like a whirlwind I didnt know if I was coming or going, She fell pregnant and gave birth to our daughter and I found out she was addicted to butane gas, anything from 15-30 cans a day which ate up our resources and it was a problem to feed the children and ourselves, there was suicide attempts and overall madness etc but no GP or psychiatrist knew what her problem was. I seeked advice both medically and also independant to no avail. There was no help available, If she had been an alcoholic, a drug addict etc... there was things in place, but no help for us.
She gave birth and the addiction was still there, I was a the end of my tether and eventually social services got involved and the kids went with their father.I moved away and got a home for me and my daughter and broke contact. She would ring up to 30 times a day but I did not return the calls as it was too painfull for me and I did not want my daughter to grow up in that kind of environment. We started talking after 6 months and she gave up the addiction for good and she moved in with me and my daughter and was clean of the butane addiction and has never returned.c c
When we moved she changed to a new GP at our new address and was reffered to a proffessor who then diagnosed her with rapid cycling BiPolar and post traumatic stress disorder as well as obsessive compulsive disorder. during the next 2 years she was referred to a mental health ward and recieved lots of sessions of ECT (around 30 plus) which was horrible for he and fo me but the first lot of treatment seemed to be effective for some time.
A bit of background, it came out at the time of diagnosis that she had been abused by her father from the age of 6 until she left home hence the post traumatic stress disorder and she suffered with regular panic attacks and anxiety.
Our sex life has been non existant for 7 years and this drives me mad as whatever I do for her it is not good enough, I have really tried to amke things work between us and have been at her beck and call for all of this time. She accuses me of giving her no support even though I have no free time and seem to spend all of my time doing tasks for her? she is extremely high maintainence to say the least. She can scream at me for hours in front of the children and never has a good word to say about me, usually many bad words and she swears and calls me things in front of the kids who have totally lost respect for me. Now we live in my flat for which I pay the rent and work sometimes 50 hours a week to pay for and she now wants me to leave and I do not feel comforatble in my own home and am living like a pauper as I am paying off her credit card and overdraught which the bank has kindly given her. I cannot sign the flat over to her, i cannot do anything I want in my own home and am constantly being verbally and physically attacked in my own home. If she was a man I could hit her back and maybe she would have second thoughts?, but I would never dream of hitting a woman. I have lost 3 jobs over her as she would fight and maim me on my way to work and would fall ill making me lose my job when I have worked my way up in the company. I have spoken to her doctor, her health workers etc...etc.... and they side with her and have offered to get her alternative accomodation which she refused, they offered me no help and told me to go to the police who again side with her. She has accused me of tampering with my daugher, abusing her sexually and also exposing myself to my daughter. Now this is a very dangerous situation as none of this is true, I dont know if it would never do and would never even dream of doing as it turns me sick. After reading other peoples posts on this subject I see this has happened to them also and now I feel at least human again, this is affecting my work (i am a team leader) my confidence and also my general quality of life as she will tell my daughter to take no notice of me when I disipline her.
I know this website is based in the US and I am a UK citizen, you seem to be so much more aware of this condition than they are over here, She has not been taking her anti psychotics for the last month and a half and has been very unpredicable and bad tempered and has missed her doctors appointments and has another appointment in feb next year.
This is driving me mad can you offer any advice on this as I am skint even though I earn 24k a year and cannot settle in my own home and have no social life period.

serafena
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 3715
   Posted 11/29/2008 10:05 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Cooler-j.

Welcome to HealingWell and to the bipolar board, we're very glad to have you.

I'm glad you've already had a look around and seen that you are not alone, that there are others who are in your position, and that you need to get some help. Dealing with an unmedicated, untreated manic person is very tricky and exhausting. She needs to be hospitalized, in all likelihood, but unless she is suicidal or homicidal, nothing you can say or do can make that happen. I don't know what the laws are in the UK, but here in the US, people can only be held for observation, against their will, for 72 hours.

Are you interested in getting out of the marriage? I ask because if you're thinking of divorce I'd suggest getting a lawyer immediately and getting yourself a new place to stay.

If you're going to stay on, though, you're going to have to make some hard ultimatums for her, which are likely to fail. Insist she see a psychiatrist immediately if she wants to you stay. Insist she stick to her medical regimen if she wants you to stay. Be prepared to leave if she says no.

Sorry I don't have nicer responses for you, but I hope this is helpful for you.
serafena
 
(By the way, I had to delete one of your posts because of Forum Rule #16 -- No duplicate posts.)


Serafena
Co-Moderator, Bipolar Forum
Bipolar II


cooler-j
New Member


Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 11/30/2008 4:24 PM (GMT -7)   
Many thanks for the reply it has really made my day, At this moment in time I am sleeping in my daughters bed for the 9th consecutive night due to "the way I treat her". My daughter is sleeping with her and will get no sleep due to her having the television blaring out all night in the room and I have been running around after her from when I got up until 10:30 and to be honest I feel tired but she looks at the end of her tether. She has decided to go back on the seraquel (it always had to be her idea) thank god so maybe a change is on the way?
Is it normal for her to push me away and not be intimate as I feel like there is something wrong with me? and it has massively affected my confidence and also the way I look to a degree.
I feel badly let down by the medical people and any establishments who are supposed to give their supposed help and do not think that hospitalisation would solve anything. Just as you think that you are getting somewhere its like she is waiting for an excuse to throw a spanner in the works and put us right back to square one as she has so many times before. I have explained to her how I feel and how she is not being fair but it is like banging your head against a brick wall. As for the marriage, we are not married thank god but she is living in a flat that is in my name and I cant swap the tennancy as it is a council property and I have been taken to court for rent arrears I could not afford due to her spending habits and cannot sign over the property. So I am either stuck with this or I move out and they evict her and her family and my daughter, so therefore I try to make this work.
There should be a law not letting banks give Bipolar people credit cards or overdraughts as I feel it is unfair on the partners that has to cover the debts

serafena
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 3715
   Posted 11/30/2008 8:10 PM (GMT -7)   
Cooler-j,

Hey, I need my credit card! I just also need superhuman self-control and a husband who helps keep me honest!

It is EXTREMELY common for her to not feel remotely sexual or even much affectionate with you. I know that's not the answer you want to hear, but maybe that will help you not feel like there's something wrong with you. You look as good to her now as you ever did, I'd bet. But she's not interested in sex at all right now, or romance. I've been there myself, and I imagine most of the bp's on this board have been. Many of the drugs for bipolar can kill libido, for one thing. But just as mania can make us hypersexual, depression can suck every last drop of affectionate feeling from our skin. My husband has been in exactly your place, asking me if it was him, and it really just wasn't -- it was the disorder.

You also have to know that with medical insurance and hospital costs running the way they are now, they really only hospitalize the suicidal or desperately ill now. Your girlfriend would have to be in real danger, so it doesn't surprise me they won't admit her, but you keep an eye on her, and if she starts talking of suicide, you call.

Finally, there's no law saying you have to pay her credit cards off. Cut them up. Cut her off. Tell her you won't pay any more than she's charged right now. Any more that she charges -- any new credit cards -- are her responsibility. And hold her to it. You can't rescue her from every stupid decision she makes or she'll never face the fact that she's sick and needs to get help.

Best of luck,
serafena
Serafena
Co-Moderator, Bipolar Forum
Bipolar II


cooler-j
New Member


Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 1/2/2009 3:08 AM (GMT -7)   
thanks for the reply things have settled down a bit now, docs have swapped her meds from seraqul to another tablet but she will not take the dosage that he has told her but at least we are getting somewhere. However now she is not sleeping and has circles under her eyes and is very bad tempered in th morning (no surprise due to the lack of sleep). there is still no sex and this has been the way for the last 7 years and drivs me mad, she says things like "I nevr tak her out" and "I never buy her things" etc... the truth is that she spends every penny I have leaving me with nothing and most months I struggle to get enough money to go to work, sounds like a bit of a moan on my behalf but it helps to get it out and tells you the real picture. I get the feling that no matter however much I do for her or give to her it is never enough and this makes me very frustrated and I never make any headway, again this is probably a recurring topic but makes it no easier. I wonder if her putting me in this position makes it easier for her to refuse me and this is the way she likes it but her refusal of me is making me more bitter by the day I thought I would be numb to her refusal but I am not and it hurts just as much now possibly evn more as I bend over backwards for her every single day for large parts of the day.

Rocketman
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 156
   Posted 1/2/2009 8:40 AM (GMT -7)   

Hey Cooler

Wow yet another post that I could have wrote myself. It's amazing how similar things can be with so many different people. I know how hard it can be, I've walked in your shoes several times. With the credit cards, you have to be very careful, I made my wife cut hers up one time after I got a personal loan from the bank to pay them off & have just one lower interest payment. That worked great until Christmas rolled around then she started shopping on line where the web sites still had her CC info still stored, so then she maxed them all out again. As far as living together, not sure how the laws are in UK but here, If they are not on the lease or deed or whatever, then they are a guest & have to leave when you tell them to. I know that isn't what you want to do & would feel understandably guinlty about it, but she may leave you with no options. As for the sexual part, from what I have read here, it doesn't sound ucommon either. I know I have went through EXACTLY what you are going through. I don't know how many times I have heard thing like "come on let's just get this **** over with so I can go to sleep", & things like that. Or afterwords have tohear about how musch she hates doing that & the only reason she does is so I won't cheat. But then she wonders why I don't try to initiate things with her as much. I t has not been uncommon for us to go 2 weeks or more without doing it. There is always an excuse, one after another. I always try to let the things she says roll off of me, but a small part of you can't help but take it to heart & it can wreck havok on your ego.

Sorry such a long reply, I hope it was a little helpful anyway.

Rocket   


"The struggles make you stronger, and the changes make you wise, and happiness has it's own way of taking it's sweet time.
Gary Allan- From "Life Ain't Always Beutiful"


4support
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 76
   Posted 1/2/2009 10:44 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Cooler,

Well, for one, know that you are not alone. A great comfort to me has been knowing that, and also talking with all the insightful and caring BP sufferers on this site who are so straightforward and honest about this illness which can be so devastating. I have learned so much from them, as well as all the partners who love their BP spouses/partners madly and loyally stand by their sides through all the ups and downs.

I am married to a BP II / ADHD husband and have been for 13 yrs. We have 2 young children so I do most definetely understand how the chaos flying around you can be heightened or feel even worse when you are worried about the children in the house and what they are seeing and learning.

I'm not sure that I can give the best advice, as I myself am struggling coping with my husband and questioning what the right thing to do is, but I do know that without properly balanced medications and treatment, it will be much harder and will more than likely not improve but get worse. You did say that she has started on a med, so that's a good beginning. Bide your time for a while and see if that helps. If there's anything I've learned, it's that you really must have a good psychiatrist treating her, and preferably also a counselor who can help her learn to manage the disorder. I know this is many times not easily done. My husband has been thru 6 or 7 psychiatrists and several counselors and still has his ups/downs.

My honest opinion is that the only way things will improve is if she takes this illness seriously and commits to sticking to a treatment plan, and stays on her medications.

You have been thru an awful lot. I can understand all too well. The decision on how much you can tolerate or handle is a personal one, but I know many of the partners of untreated bipolars struggle with the question of whether or not to leave. Sometimes it just becomes unbearable, no matter how much you love them.

Keep writing, it helps to support eachother and give eachother strength. There are a lot of us out there.

God Bless,

4support

serafena
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 3715
   Posted 1/2/2009 11:02 AM (GMT -7)   
I want to throw into the mix the fact that the medication we take decreases our libidos significantly. I know that's a bummer, but it sucks for us too.

serafena
Serafena
Co-Moderator, Bipolar Forum
Bipolar II


cooler-j
New Member


Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 1/4/2009 2:46 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks for the replies and as normal we are back to square one, I slept in my daughters bed again because I hurt my back patting up some light fittings that she bought on special offer. This really seems to be a trigger for her as when something is on special offer she goes hog wild and buys loads of the things. She then decides to de clutter send me out of the house to the shops for things she has forget in the shopping, then blow up because I wasnt there to help her do the jobs around the house that she seems to do 24-7. Because of this I have just spent my christmas holidays not spending time with my daughter and family, but instead housework, going the shops, decorating, not going out to my friends, being bored into a coma with the tedium, and having very little rest before I go back to work in a very target driven environment drained and everyone else is fired up and ready to go. Now as normal I am not in the correct frame of mind and don't know who I will come home to, the nice wife or the anxious, and angry wife? After reading some of the threads on this site I now realise that things will not change for the better and I am just going around in circles like most of the people on this site.
As for the sex I mean NO SEXUAL CONTACT in 7 years, now I want you to consider how this would make you feel if this was for 1 year and think what impact this would have on your life?
She seems to have noticed that I am really not impressed by her behaviour last night and this is going to continue until she gets a glimpse of me blaming myself then will turn the whole thing around as my fault as usual. I feel I am not getting any younger and feel I need to get a hold of my life and live the life I deserve and this will only mean one thing, She believes she will cope better without me when I know she will find it a million times harder because even though she says I do nothing, I never get much peace from her with her unending demands and tasks.
I have seen the people who have gone to councilers who will help me with Bi Polar but the feedback seems to be negative and my skin is only so thick as to deflect all of the hurtfull comments from her. I dont think that is for me, no one really seems to understand the disease and if it takes years to make a bit better and can fall down again in minutes? Ive seen this first hand and it has had an effect on me to the level of I feel that I have lost my personality and makes you numb and really cold.
This is not the person I remember but the person I have become because of the effects of the BP sufferer on me?
I am meant to be going to her GP on the 6th (tuesday) to have a follow up visit but she has done nothing he suggested and is now going to tell him that the reason she is like this is she is everyones skivvy?
he asks everyone to do that much that no one will sit in the room with her as she is constantly tasking everyone.
I have read on some posts that the illness can make you tired and looking after kids and housework will make her fatigue easily? but she should not inflict this on everyone else and flip if they do not comply with her.
New years eve night she wanted to watch shindlers list then half way through decided to move the furniture around (with my help)
This situation is driving me mad

serafena
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 3715
   Posted 1/4/2009 8:01 PM (GMT -7)   
Cooler-j,

Sooner or later you have to start asking yourself the hard questions about what you can live with. If she refuses to take responsibility for her illness and is non-compliant with her treatment, she can't expect you to wait around forever being mistreated. No one deserves to live the way you are living. The bp is not going to stop without the meds. The only thing you can control at this point is yourself. What are you going to do?

serafena
Serafena
Co-Moderator, Bipolar Forum
Bipolar II


ONE & ONLY
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 1/5/2009 9:38 AM (GMT -7)   
WOW I'M SORRY TO HEAR THAT YOU NEED COUNSELING YOURSELF IT'S NOT EASY TO LIVE WITH A SPOUSE THAT'S BIPOLAR AS I READ YOUR STORY I FEEL BAD FOR MY HUSBAND BECAUSE AT ONE POINT I COULD INDENTIFY THE PART WHERE I WON'T HAVE THE DESIRE TO BE INTIMATE WITH MY PARTNER THANK GOD THAT IT JUST STARTING TO AFFECT MY RELATIONSHIP BUT I'M GOING TO MAKE SURE I TAKE CARE OF IT BECAUSE I CAN'T SEE MY HUSBAND SUFFERING BECAUSE OF MY BIPOLAR BUT I RECOMEND YOU GO TO COUNSELING BECAUSE YOU ARE UNDER A LOT OF STRESS

serafena
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 3715
   Posted 1/5/2009 10:07 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi One and Only,

Welcome to HealingWell and to the bipolar board.

Why not start a new thread and tell us a little bit about yourself. It's always nice to learn about the newbies. :-)

Also, if you could please not write in all caps, it would be appreciated. It denotes yelling. I don't think you're trying to yell.

Thanks,
serafena
Serafena
Co-Moderator, Bipolar Forum
Bipolar II


cooler-j
New Member


Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 1/5/2009 2:28 PM (GMT -7)   
I am going to the docs with her tomorrow if she likes it or not, its time to be strong and take control of this situation. She always complains that I never take control, do you know what I am not going to lt this beat us. I think the problem with sex is down to her childhood and it must be beating her up, I dont want to mention this any further as I will not break her confidence on this and it is private to herself.
She wants to see a relationship counciller but what will they know of BiPolar and she would hate to be labeled and he would not even know she has it, I dont think one would know how to deal with our relationship and just open an even bigger can of worms. In her emotional state she cannot deal with any of her past as this will send her deeper into the void of deprssion and she could become ill, this has happened in the past.
She needs me nd this time I am more ready for her than ever before. its funny as even though she is sometimes very, very ,very difficult to live with when the chips are down I always feel love for her and want to help her.

serafena
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 3715
   Posted 1/5/2009 6:30 PM (GMT -7)   
Cooler-j,

I admire your steadfast desire to stick by her. But her excuses for not wanting to see a therapist are the very things that are holding her back from getting better. She needs to tell the therapist that she is bipolar. It's a diagnosis, not a label. The longer she thinks like that, the longer she plays into the stigma. She has an illness, the same way people get diabetes or psoriasis -- it's treatable and it's nothing to be ashamed of. Knowing she is bipolar and discussing your relationship is exactly what needs to happen.

The same is true of dealing with her past. Counselors who are well trained (ask around -- ask doctors, they'll refer you to the best) know how to gently go forward with dealing with the past and the present at the same time. Yes, it can lead to more depression, but if she's being actively treated by a psych who's seeing her weekly and knows what's going on, she'll be okay. She just needs a ton of support to work through all the issues she's got bottled up inside her. Be active in her treatment, be a part of her wellness team, and she'll know she can depend on you.

But something has to change. You can't keep living in the way you have been living. I think going to the doc's with her is a good first step. Help her manage her drugs.

serafena
Serafena
Co-Moderator, Bipolar Forum
Bipolar II


pandalover
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 1/5/2009 10:24 PM (GMT -7)   
Cooler-J
I just wanted to share with you what I have learned about being Bipolar. My husband has always tried to fix everything for me. I became so dependant on him I failed to live life the way I should have been. Something woke me up and I realized I have to be accountable for myself. Love yes I need. An inableler I don't. The spouses that have to deal with bipolar in the ones they love need to understand that we need to have people around us that will answer tough question and require us to ask the tough questions. The more our spouses take over the less we will do. This is no way for either to live. If a BP person can recognize that they must stay on their meds, get regular deep sleep and live life asking the tough questions and accepting the answers. Then they are on the right road. It is never easy for either side. And as I told my husband I recently went through h--- and back. And I never want to go there again. I too had the past abuse to deal with and an old relationship to deal with. And of course my husband dealt with it also. But on the right rode we are now. So you see there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Meds, counciling and support to a degree is my advice.
pandalover

cooler-j
New Member


Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 4/1/2009 2:28 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks, this has meant allot to me you are the best

concernspouse
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 11
   Posted 10/29/2009 9:05 PM (GMT -7)   
The theme that strikes me most in your post is your BIG, WARM and GIVING HEART. The fact that you stayed with your wife through an experience much worse than the concentration camp speaks volumes about you as a person. I would say un-reservedly: DO NOT THROW YOUR LIFE AWAY FOR HER! You deserve a match - someone that could take responsibility, like yourself, and are able to love even to the extent of long suffering, like yourself. Get your bipolar wife situated- doctors, meds, housing etc.., get out, heal and move on... May you be blessed!

serafena
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 3715
   Posted 10/29/2009 9:30 PM (GMT -7)   
concernspouse,

This thread is a year old. Take a look at the date at the top, and you can pretty much guess that unless the person has a lot of posts, they probably aren't around anymore.

Also, I have to say, as a Jew, that comparing life with a bipolar person (which I also am) to life in the concentration camps is rather insensitive. Remember this is a board populated in the majority by those living with the disorder. Your concerns are welcome here, but remember who your audience is.

Thanks,
serafena
Serafena
Co-Moderator, Bipolar Forum
Bipolar II

"Bipolar disorder can be a great teacher. It's a challenge, but it can set you up to be able to do almost anything else in your life." - CARRIE FISHER

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