How do you get a Bipolar Spouse diagnosed?

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glennncaz
New Member


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 2/3/2009 7:32 PM (GMT -7)   
I have been married close to 25 years. During the 25 years, I have noticed that my wife goes through mood swings. Sometimes she is very happy and makes a lot of unobtainable goals. And sometimes she goes through periods where she is very angry. It is usually triggered by the same event. Her target of the anger has changed over the years. Most recently it is myself or our kids are the target. Before that it was here bosses or her coworker. She was never been diagnosed for bipolar. Once she was diagnosed for depression and treated for it.

She seems to be the happiest when she goes on a spending spree. But now we are in bankruptcy. She would receive credit cards in the mail and then max them help. Last summer she starting going into chat rooms, and shortly after she had an affair, that was very painful for me. I love my wife and sometimes she is wonderful. But when she has a mood swing for the worst, she seems to hate me. She talks about suicide. We went to marriage counseling, but my wife got the counselor to mostly talk about disciplining our kids. I try to explain to the counselor about the mood swings, but she did not seem to understand what I was going through. She said it is causeed my a woman's monthly cycles. My wife is post menopause. The councelor dismissed any talk of bipolar disorder. But I feel that is the central issue. My wife gets angry when I mention that she maybe bipolar.

I am very patient with her, I do not want a divorce. But, at times, it can be hell to live with her.

My question is how do you get your spouse to get checked out for bipolar disorder? I need some help, things are bad.

Thanks for any help,
Glenn

serafena
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 3715
   Posted 2/3/2009 8:33 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi glenncaz,

Welcome to HealingWell and to the bipolar board. I hope we can be of some help to you or at least give you a place to vent your frustrations. You'll find there are many other folks her who have gone through just what you're going through now. This board is about half and half bipolar sufferers and bipolar spouses/partners.

For your situation, you're in a bit of a fix, because what needs to happen is she needs to be seen by a psychiatrist for a thorough evaluation. But she's got to agree to that. You can't exactly trick her into something like that. You can only do that if she agrees to it. I feel the best way is to not bring up the words "bipolar disorder" but to explain that you are concerned about her moods, her sadness, her anger, the way she's taking it out on you and the kids, and ask her gently and kindly to see a psychiatrist. Explain that you are willing to go with her if she wants. That you only think she could use the same medical treatment she got before for depression and that she would feel better if she took care of herself and that you only want to help. Do everything you can not to sound accusatory or make her feel guilty. Try and keep it a simple discussion about going to the doctors to get a problem fixed, just as if she had a sinus infection or a sprained ankle -- she just ought to go.

Be prepared to make the appointment and go to the appointment with her, if that makes her feel better. It may take several weeks to get in. I also highly recommend counseling, although the one you wrote of sounds like the worst kind -- flighty and not a good listener. Most are better than that.

Good luck and keep writing, let us know how things are going.
serafena
Serafena
Co-Moderator, Bipolar Forum
Bipolar II


Rocketman
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 156
   Posted 2/3/2009 10:02 PM (GMT -7)   

Hey glenn;

welcome aboard. I hope you find this forum as helpful as a lot of us other spoues have. It sounds like you got hooked u with a pretty crummy counselor. I asked my wife's counselor one time about her "monthlys" & the mood swings being worse & maybe the birth control contributing to that & she (the counselor) told us that it shouldn't have much effect on her mood swings & that my wife needed to learn more control over herself & shouldn't use that as an excuse to unleash on people. I have to say that she has a great counselor. She doesn't cut my wife any slack & really pushes the accountability part of things. She is also great at seeing thru some of the B.S. that my wife tries to bring in sometimes. Hopefully you can find someone good too, but how you will get there I couldn't tell you. My wife started with hers thru her G.P.. SHe was being treated for all of the stuff that your wife is & finally the G.P. recommended she start seeing someone. Maybe that is the route you could take.

Best of luck to you,

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"


shebsy
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 125
   Posted 2/4/2009 3:44 AM (GMT -7)   
I went through four psychiatrists and two counsellors before I finally got diagnosed with bipolar disorder. I was given medication for all kinds of disorders - schizophrenia, psychotic disorder, delusional disorder, etc. There are some bad doctors and counsellors out there and some of them are quite renowned. You need to have patience as you sift through the chaff and keep trying till you find a doctor and a counsellor that works for you. Till then try explaining to your wife that a doctor might be able to help her with her mood swings more than a psychiatrist. You need to make your wife realize that she has mood swings and if she has bipolar, the same situation might trigger different responses based on her mood. Socializing with the same people makes me ecstatic when I am hypomanic and irritable when I am depressed. During hypomania, I eat the same food that I reject during depression. You will be able to find many such instances in her life.

glennncaz
New Member


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 2/8/2009 3:36 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks to all of you for your support and information. Serafena thanks for your advice. I have been doing the right thing. I haven't used the "b" word. She uses it, but not me. I always say "mood swings".

The last time she had a mood swing, I gently told her that she was having a mood switn. She told me that she was tired of hearing the "...ing mood swings" . She said they were not mood swings, and if they are mood swings, then I should have her committed. She is in denial. She did admit she was depressed. She said it is our kids that is making her depressed.

We do have a son the is flunking classes in high school, and a 8 year old that doesn't mind. The 8 year old gets angry and slam doors and kick walls when things don't go his way. He takes after his mom. They both react the same way. Both of our sons are adopted.

She blames me for not fixing the problem, she thinks that I should beat them or something. She thinks that I don't care, because I have not been able to get my son to make good grades in school, and I don't get our 8 year old to mind.

I told her that she should get help and maybe there is some medicine to help her.

She replied hat she would rather kill herself than to take drugs for her problem.

Sometimes, I am afraid to push her to much, that she may kill herself. Deep down. I think I would have to threatening to divorce here to get her to get help.

After her affair, I gave her the option of counseling or a divorce. She agreed to the counseling, reluctantly. She did not mind it, once she realized that she could control the counselor. We only talked about how to fix the problems with our kids. I know if we fix the problem with the kids, she always finds something else to be angry about.

Anyway, she does now admit that she has a problem, but is not willing to take medicine for it. She took Prozack at one time. She did not like it, because she gained weight and lost her sex drive. I bet there is lots of choices for medication that is available that don't have those side effects.

If you have any advice on how I may persuade here to seek help let me know. She doesn't seem to want to listen to me. She believes that she will be fine, once the entire world gets their act together.

Thanks,
Glenn

glennncaz
New Member


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 5/12/2009 7:10 PM (GMT -7)   
I decided to post an update. A lot has happened over the last few months. I found out my wife was sending text to another man. They would text all day long until midnight. I did see some of the messages and they were sexual. They did meet a couple of times. But, I scared him off, I sent him text to stay way from by wife, and it worked. She was upset with me for breaking it up. But she finally came around and decided to get counseling. I found a better counselor than the first time that we went.. This counselor recommended that she see a physciatrist. She went to see him yesterday.

He diagnosed her has bipolar as I expected. He said it was mild bipolar. a level 1. But, to me it seems more that mild at times. She was also ADD. She seemed to be put at ease since it explains her behavior. She is doing better. She has been having problems at work. Her coworkers and her boss said that there were getting tired of her mood swings.
So, my wife stopped by to tell her boss that she was getting help and she was diagnosed as bipolar. She is starting her medicine immediatley. Today, she came to work and fould out that she was fired. Now, she is in a depression. She finally went to seek help and she looses her job.

Is this common? Do a lot of bipolar people get fired because of their moodiness? Is this legal?

I appreciate this forum. I am new here and learning.

Thanks,
glenncaz

serafena
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 3715
   Posted 5/13/2009 10:03 AM (GMT -7)   
Unfortunately, yes. It's not uncommon. If she's not performing up to standards, if she's being insubordinate and difficult to work with, then yes, it's legal. But if she told them she's bipolar and THEN he fired her, you may want to check into that. However, lots of states have no-fault laws now and employers don't need a reason to fire employees.

I'm very sorry for your wife though. That's very frustrating and disappointing. When she comes out of her funk, maybe she'll see that she can get another job and start with a clean slate and on medication, so she won't have the mood swings thwarting her. But it's going to take a few weeks for the meds to kick in. Hopefully the depression won't last long.

Hang in there, glenncaz.

serafena
Serafena
Co-Moderator, Bipolar Forum
Bipolar II

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