Hello friends, My girlfriend has Bipolar and OCD. She takes her meds religiously, attends counseling, and for the most part has been quite stable (aside from the occasional episodes of mood swings).
Over the last few months, she seems to be getting less and less stable. She becomes easily overwhelmed by stress, easily takes personal offense to things said by friends, family, people at school, even when they seem rather harmless. Lately she feels personally attacked by the people around her. She has a very hard time being honest and assertive with people, she's afraid of the confrontation. I try to assure her that being honest and assertive is a very positive thing, that she shouldn't think of it as confrontation, that if she's constructive and honest with someone when they hurt her feelings, the problem gets solved and it never escalates to the level of drama she's so afraid of. Of course it's all easier said than done.
She comes from a dysfunctional family and still has a very hard time distancing herself from their drama. She's particularly close to her mom, who is a source of a lot of her anxiety. My girlfriend is having a hard time these days with her family, and thinks the answer to all of her problems is to move away from them. I feel that with her being so close to her mother, the distance wouldn't solve anything, they would still be very close over the phone, email, etc, and her mom's problems would be no less personal to her. Not to mention we're students, not particularly wealthy, moving is a big step!
I know very little about bipolar. I do my best to encourage my girlfriend to think positive when she's having a hard time. I try to get her out of the house and keep her active when she's depressed. I've attended counseling with her and encouraged her to attend a stress management group. I do my best to listen and be supportive. But truth be told I'm having a very hard time with it as well. She's becoming less active with counseling, less open to trying new things like stress management. I have a lot to learn about the disease and how to be supportive of the condition. I could use some education and encouragement.