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hoping4thebest
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 12/3/2005 2:07 PM (GMT -7)   
Well I am 19 and I would like some advice. Possibly do's and don'ts. My girlfriend (who is 18) was diagnosed in late August of this year with Bipolar. Since then, she has made 3 trips to a psychiatric facility and is leaving in the morning to go back for a fourth trip. This does not include the amount of times she has gone to this hospital to see her doctor and/or counselor. Over a month ago, she absolutely flipped out on me and punched me in the face several times and yelled some of the worst things I have ever heard said to anyone let alone me. However for the past 3 weeks, things have been better. While she has been depressed at times, she seemed to be slowly rebuilding as did our relationship. But then last night her mother called me and informed that she had tried to commit suicide by taking over 50 pills of differents sorts. I am just sitting here typing this in complete shock. This is my first love, and the girl I want to marry, but I honestly am tired of being hopeful that things will get better. It is just getting too much. So that's my story, if you have advice, love, and/or criticism for me, please fire away...

Ellie 1
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 1291
   Posted 12/3/2005 8:50 PM (GMT -7)   
Welcome Hoping4thebest,
I commend you for standing by your girlfriend through all the trials shes going through.  This illness doesn't just wreck the lives of those of us suffering with the disorder.  It often takes those we love spiraling down with us.  Getting better is frequently a long hard road.  It may be worth your wait in the end but you should be aware that it could be a VERY long road.  You're quite young and noone will think any less of you should you decide on a different path.  In the end you must decide what's right for you.
Good luck and God Bless
Ellie

Putter
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 204
   Posted 12/3/2005 10:01 PM (GMT -7)   
H4TB,
 
You have made a very admirable guesture in simply reaching out for knowledge. I have so much respect for someone such as yourself who is willing to make the effort, regardless of the outcome. Ellie is so right when she said that BP wreaks havoc on all the lives it touches, not just the people who live with the diagnosis. Everyone of the members of this forum has their own story and it usually accompanies a long list of heartaches inflicted upon loved ones.
 
The best advice I could give would be to educate yourself so you can make choices based in fact and reality, rather than assumptions. More than half the battle is educating yourself and your girlfriend on what it takes to help her get and stay well. You need to take care of yourself and respect your own limitations. There's actually lots of info on the internet and several books about 'loving people with BP'.
 
My thoughts are with you and I wish you peace in wherever the path may lead,
Putter
 

hoping4thebest
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 12/4/2005 9:17 AM (GMT -7)   
I know you mentioned the name of this book, but what internet links do you have for me and are other books other than the one you mentioned? Anything you can think of, please let me know...

Putter
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 204
   Posted 12/4/2005 12:34 PM (GMT -7)   
H4TB,

Here are a few links to try. I'll just paste the main link so you can navigate from there. Generally, there's lots of decent info available but beware that a few sites appear to be very informative, but they're actually promoting some sort of treatment (usually available for a price over the internet) so sometimes the info can be biased.

Too, I believe that both of the links listed below have listings of 'support groups' for patients and families in local cities. Even if you're not into actually 'joining', the support groups can often put you in touch with resources in your local community or recommend good doctors in the area - just phone or write.
 
 
 
Some good books,

An Unquiet Mind, by Kay Refield Jamieson - basically the bible of BP. The author is both a BP patient and Dr. in the field of treatment.

Psycology Today - Taming Bipolar Disorder, Lori Oliwenstien - pretty good general reference. Relatively in depth information without being too heavy on the technical.
 
Depression Fallout: The Impact of Depression on Couples and What You Can Do to Preserve the Bond, Anne Sheffield. Might help with some of the more specific things that you're wondering.
 
I was able to get most of these books at my local library (and I live in an itty bitty town) so you won't be stuck buying them if you're looking to do some reading.
 
You might want to start a new thread on the main BP forum board asking for recommended reading  and using that in your thread title. So many of the people who participate have lots of excellent info and resources you might want to consider. Shannon2, aka nrs2b, Shannon, aka psychnurse, and DanaRX have all sort of excellent information and links to more techincal info on studies and clinical research for medication and treatment.
 
Good luck in the search,
Putter

SnowyLynne
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 1539
   Posted Yesterday 9:07 AM (GMT -7)   
Is your GF taking her medication as she's supposed to? Or maybe different meds would be better.
SnowyLynne


domaincat
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 59
   Posted Yesterday 10:57 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi, that is a real sad story and you both are so young and she's way too young to be suffering so much.

A friend of mine had attempted a few times at overdosing and luckily her family had found her, although they couldn't awake her so had to call for emergency help. I know she had said she did that for attention, so it may be an attention seeking behavior.

Others do not know what they are doing and do not realize how sick they are, they may be hallucinating or delusional or think people are out to get them, they may be full of guilt or fearful of the disease. In any case, it may be some of that.  She could be having voices, and sometimes Schizophrenic voices tell people to hurt others or hurt themselves. 
 
Sometimes the medications themselves tend to have a side effect of suicide risk.  See what she is on and see if those medications perhaps could be causing any of that.  She'll need to be watched like for 24 hrs a day now probably and that can be real hard, but that may depend on laws in your area.  She may have to go back to the hospital for another stay, and that can be hard on everyone and especially hard on her.  Gosh I feel real bad for both of you!

Two grandparents of mine many long years ago in the 1940's suicided and died, and I never met them. I don't know why, but I think they probably weren't thinking or didn't know what they were doing and were depressed a long time and at that time there wasn't a whole lot to do.

Bipolar is awfully hard to put up with both for the family as well as for the patient that has it. The constant mood swings and the change of being normal to feeling wierd and acting bizarre and people talking about you, and being unsure what is happening is freaky at times. Meds may not be working or may need to be changed and that all causes troubles.

There may have been unpleasant memories at those hospitals she went to, I know that was hard for me as well and I still remember that time many years later!
Have you heard of NAMI, a real good support group for mentally ill and also for family and friends to understand the mental health illnesses better.  It's good they usually have movies and speakers and at least a social/support group to talk to others struggling with similar issues. 
 
She'll need your and her family's continued love and support and know that you are there for her.  It's hard enough for her with what she is going through now. 
There's lots of help online, search for that. There's lots of books at the library and other books to buy on mental illness.

There's also healthier diets and nutrition and Vitamins (B's mostly) and Minerals and Omega 3's and Fish Oils may help as well. See other topics...

Post Edited (domaincat) : 12/5/2005 11:07:27 AM (GMT-7)


hoping4thebest
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 5
   Posted Yesterday 1:45 PM (GMT -7)   
Well she was taking her medication as prescribed as far as I know. I would almost bet my life that she has been faithful to this. One of her doctor's believes that one of the meds she was on called "Wellbutrin" might be the cause of this behavior. But she confided in me that she feels fat (she's maybe 125 or 130 at the most eyes ) and that had something to do with it. She also made the comment that the meds she has been placed on (I guess some of the side effects for most meds is weight gain) have caused this, and that if they increase the meds that are doing this she will, "Do it again and this time will not wake up..." I'm just at a loss for words and thoughts. So hard to want to help someone that doesn't want to help themselves apparently. I'm just praying hard this stay in the hospital will allow her to realize she can learn to deal with this instead of hate herself for having it. I more than willing to be there for her forever, but she has got to do her part. And apparently just taking meds is not enough...

Ellie 1
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 1291
   Posted Yesterday 1:52 PM (GMT -7)   
Praying for you too, H4tb. Some meds can cause side effects, often varying from person to person. Alot of meds for BP can also cause weight gain.
You are correct in the fact that she must want to help herself, but that may take time and the correct meds to achieve. I hope she is able to get this under control quickly for both your sakes. Hang in there
Ellie

Putter
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 204
   Posted Yesterday 2:19 PM (GMT -7)   

It certainly sounds like your girlfriend is really in the thick of it. While its no picnic, its important that she's getting medical attention right now so she can at least get the worst thoughts out of her head and start to focus on getting well.

Please take care of yourself and know that you're in my thoughts,

Putter

 


hoping4thebest
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 5
   Posted Today 4:37 PM (GMT -7)   
Well I was recommended this sight by someone who is married to a man with bipolar.  It has really been amazing some of the people in my life that have surfaced such as this individual.  As hard as all this truly is, I really am doing pretty well.  I have stayed active in my prayer life and talked with others, and both of have helped alot.  I just hope she can recover, because she really has got alot going for a her and great life to look foward to.  Sadly, she can't see this at the moment.  I think my biggest fear as that she will never see this before she takes her own life.  Would be such a tragedy, but I'll hope for the best.  Thanks for your support and answers...

hoping4thebest
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 12/13/2005 1:48 PM (GMT -7)   
Just wanted to let you guys know that my girlfriend will be getting out of the hospital tomorrow, and she seems to be doing a lot better. They switched her meds around again, so I am just crossing my fingers that some things can finally come into place for her (and us).

Ellie 1
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 1291
   Posted 12/13/2005 2:15 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks for keeping us posted. So very glad things are looking up for you both. Sometimes it just takes a little trial and error with the meds before you can get the right "cocktail". It's rare to find something that is optimally effective on the first or even second try. It can often be a long drawn out process. Looks like you may have hit the jackpot this time.
Good luck and God Bless
Ellie
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