Welcome to HW Your situation sounds SO much like mine and my bf's. I am bipolar, type II. My bf and I have lived together just over a year now, and we've been together for almost 2. We both want to spend our lives together. My bf is supportive in so many ways. I am waiting to go back to school to get a better career so we can have a secure future. He has been and will continue to support us finacially while I go to school. He wants me to not worry; he wants to make me happy; he wants it all for us. The only time I feel he gets frustrated or upset, is when I'm depressed. Those are especially hard times. And sometimes he can get through it with me, but a lot of the times, it's stressful for us and our relationship.
I know how your wife is feeling, obviously. I have to commend you on so many things that you are doing right. You're reaching out and asking for help. It sounds like you are very educated about the illness...that is the biggest thing. You know about the illness, the different states, the meds, her meds. You're recognizing that this is out of her control (not blaming her). You realize that the state she is in, really will pass. It might come back again someday, but this episode will pass at some point. You even know generally how long this state she is in can last. I am so amazed at all you know! And I'm so glad b/c you'll help her that much more b/c of all you know. You really are being supportive, and I know that it can be so frustrating for you as well. Not only that, but it's painful for you to see your wife in pain.
I find so few people (even bp's) actually know about the antidpressant thing...causing mania. It's not that there are those ad's that would be better than others for bp...it really is the whole antidepressant thing. They all have the risk of having that mania affect. So if you're going to mention it to her doc, normally when ad's are used in bp treatment, it is in combination with something else, like a mood stabilizer or other bp meds. The doc might be willing to combine an antidepressant with another med for her.
It's so great that she doesn't drink, b/c it will cause depression for sure...It doesn't help with mania either. Good for her, really. She sounds very strong.
I get angry when I'm depressed. Irritable too. It's happened already today, b/c I'm crashing. As long as my bf keeps trying to comfort me and is calm with me (not frustrated) I can feel a bit better. Other things that help me...sometimes if I write in my journal about my symtpoms, what's stressing me out, if I get it out in my journal, sometimes it can bring some relief. Other times, I call my one girlfriend to see if I can come over for a tea...Talking with her about my symtpoms/things that are getting to me...helps. This forum is a tremendous help, and actually resuced me from a deep deep depression a few weeks ago. Everyone is very very supportive here.
Anyway, I hope that this passes for your wife much sooner than later. Post again, let us know how you're doing.
I hope your wife is feeling better today. I just wanted to reply to the whole "zombie" feeling with the meds. It's the worst feeling. I don't take meds for my bp anymore (for now) and that was one of the reasons why. That zombie state was too much for me. I couldn't even get up off the couch, I was so fatigued and weak. Every movement took a ton of effort. It just made me even more depressed b/c I couldn't "do" anything. The depression by itself can bring on these symptoms, I didn't need a medication making that worse.
It's so frustrating with the antidepressants being such a risk b/c it seems the other bp meds just don't help with the depression. I wish I could go back on antidepressants. Anyway, keep posting, we're all here to help each other.
Glad to hear things went well at the doc's yesterday. I've been off of work since January. I had to stop work b/c of my bipolar, and I have been busy applying to go back to school and getting it all paid for by the government. I find out if I am approved tomorrow...eek!
So I've been home alone all these months, and yes, sometimes it made things a bit worse with the depression. Definitely. Some days/weeks I was okay. But all in all, I know I could not go on disability and not work. It would feed this illness, and make it even harder to fight. If your wife needs a major break to stay home, ajust to these meds, maybe a temporary medical leave would help? The first few months after I left my job, were spent resting and just taking care of myself. It was needed. But it is also needed now for me to get out of this house.
I think your support and reassurance is a good thing. I would keep supporting her that way. This is not going to be an easy fix; but you can be encouraging and realistic. Sleep is needed, but not too much...I would talk to her doc about that.