My bud, my love...One junk of a funk...

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wickedlycoolcomfort
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 68
   Posted 7/30/2007 2:18 PM (GMT -7)   
Greetings and Salutations to all..
I'm a newbie here thought I'd explain my background..for myself because it's totally theraputic and also to get any feedback as well as find people going through similar situations that might want a friend to chat it up with and find comfort in.
 
Below is a copy of what I have already posted as a response to Kiwi for his topic, "My wife is missing (temporarily I hope)".  Since this last post, I have some updated info on my siuation and will add to this post with it.
 
___________________________________________________
 
I came across this forum a while back.  Please know that what you are experiencing is not isolated and rare but something that I am finding to be quite a common display through the depressive state of mind.
 
Unfortunately, I must tell you that I am also going through a very similar situation as yours.  It is not as extreme as yours, but something that is sooo extremely frustrating and makes me very, very sad.  It pains me to go through it.
 
So let me give ya'll some background...
 
I am very much in love...fell in love with a someone that I have know for many years.  Somehow the universe brought us together and the romance began..with a bang!
 
Now, let me tell ya'll something, if you ever have the rare opportunity to makes romantic sparks fly with a good, close and long term friend, by God, take that opportunity with all your might and hold on for as long as you can, cuz it the best ride to take!  I have never felt such a bond with anyone else before; felt so connected and so comfortable and so strong!
 
Afew months back, I started noticing a bit of a change in our relationship; it was our communication that first raise a flag with me.  Ya' see, my boyfriend and I talk everyday..sometimes for hours and sometimes just for a few minutes, but every day.  We live in separate states and have a long distance relationship.  Too long of a story to bore ya'll with but we both started this thing up with the intention to finally be together for a life long ride.  Living in different states was a mere technicality and a wee bit of a challengfe, but worth it to get to where we both wanted to be in the end :-)
 
BUT...I digress..now where was I?  Oh yah...umm, well, shortly after we bagan our romance, I asked him about the meds he takes every day (I never knew before since we were just friends) and I tell'ya, it was like pulling teeth to get him to answer me on it.  He finally told me that it was to keep him straight; balance him out.  Ya' see, he has general depression and anxiety disorder.  He is one of 3 out of 5 children that sufferes from the illness.  His mother has it too.  He started noticing something wasn't "right" inside when he was in his **** years.  Like most, he self-medicated with a host of drugs, till later, he sought prescription medication, therapy and a psych doctor to do it the right way. 
 
Speeding back ahead to the present, we were doing absolutely awesome, then within a matter of a week by week time period, I noticed he was distancing himself from me.  I couldn't understand why since it was out of his character to do this.  To follow was indecisiveness (spelling?), prolonged delays in responses when we would talk.  He also started complaing of stomach problems and interrupted sleeping.  Then one day while on the phone, he told me that he scheduled an appointment to see his doctor about his meds; he believed he may be "burning out" the meds.  He told me this has happened to him before a few times and feels he now is starting to notice things happening to him.
 
Well, just as that happened, the tenant renting his house in the suburbs (he rents an apartment in the city), gave their notice to move out at the most inopportune time as he was not emotionally or financially prepared to deal with this situation.  To me, what seemed to be a logical and quick choice in how to deal with the house, to him, was tramatic and something he had a really hard time in deciding to do with it.
 
Just about at the time he was hit with the med burn out and trying to ready the house to put it up on the market or rent it, he came under some serious heat at his job.  So much so, that he didn't want to even discuss it.
 
Then on a Saturday, after a few days of not talking to me, he called me up.  I could tell right away he wasn't himself.  His tone of voice was very disconnected; as if everything he was saying to me was being read off a que card;no emotion at all.  He said that he thinks we should break it off.  We needed to do this to at least try and salvage the friendship we had because he could not be there for me as I need him to be.  He told me that he is now in a full blown depressive state, one of the worst that he has went through.  He went to his therapist, but still needed to go to his psych doctor for a change in his meds.  He told me before that the wayu he deals with this is by withdrawing from friends and family.  He finds a "place" that seems to help him get through this funk until it ends.  It's a place noone else goes, just him. 
 
Now..ya'll need to understand, this was the same man that told me only a few months before of how much he missed me and the only one thing he truly wanted, was for us to be together..in the same place, so we could have a normal relationship like everyone else.  HE also told me that new techniques/research and treatments for depression assures him that he will be okay for the rest of his life and he'll never have to worry about running out of medication; that as a life with me can be very normal so long as he takes careof himself properly with his therapy and meds. NOW, here is the same man telling me that he doesn't know how long this depressive episode will last, how long until the meds take their proper affect and how he'll react to them.  Now he didn't know if he could ever be capable of loving someone else and having a relationship. 
 
This man was scared.  BUT I told him that I wasn't going to walk away and wanting to break it off with me right then and there wasn't a good idea.  "When we are both balanced and in a good mental place, and we gave it all we could, then AND only then, will I accept a break up".  This is what my response was.  I told him that I would support him however he needed me to support him and that I would not pressure him to talk with me but just know that I will always be there for him through this episode.  He respnded with a,"Then I'll try like hell to reach out to you".  I got one call and two texts after that.  It's been two weeks since then.
 
Not only do I love this man for what he is to me now, but what we were before and what I know we can be in the future...one darn kick ass friendship that takes the insane balls of life together! 
 
So I am trying my darnest to do as much research as I can on the illness, participate in forums such as these, and join support groups that meet every week to talk about our experiences dealing/supporting loved ones with depression and anxiety. 
 
These things have kept me going; givinn me hope and faith that he'll come out of this.  It's just a matter of time really..at least, this seems to be my new mantra tongue
 
But let me tell ya'll somethin'..this is one hell of a challenge; not only do I not see him, but now I don't hear from him and I have no idea what he is thinking about or even if he still cares for me.  It is a ***** of a feeling..gets me in the gut big time and punches my heart like "Ali"!
 
But I keep trying to remember that, while others around me may not understand why I'm staying and standing strong for him, I do!.  And I truly hope, he can get through this and remember what we had and he doesn't decide to just give in and leave thinking, that's the best course of action.
 
So..you see, that's why I responding to this post.  He's not throwing verbal darts at me, but not hearing anything at all is killing me just the same.  And just him telling me he wants to break it off..while that may be the depression talking, it still hurts like mad when he said it.  I mean, heck, I AM only human...words hurt.  Not taking it personally has proven to be a challenge to!
 
And for those of you going through the same, if you're like me; having a relationship with that one person who makes your heart skip a beat and makes your jaw tired from laughing so much, and delightfully consumes the majority of your thoughts, well then..having that 95
% of my life with the rest being like this...hell, it's all worth it!
 
'course...having some incredible souls such as yourselves give my self-esteem a wee bit of a boost, and being able to share and get feedback, helps immensely to keep me going and keep my faith in our relationship. 
 
What's that saying, "keep on keepin' on"?  Yup..that's me..cuz no lyin', I'm tryin..thanks to all of you here, my support groups and my memories of my bud and best friend..my boyfriend yeah
 
 

wickedlycoolcomfort
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 68
   Posted 7/30/2007 2:44 PM (GMT -7)   
I finally hard from my boyfriend today.

He has been seeing his therpist on a weekly basis but has not changed his meds at all. Not only did he not change his meds, he isn't taking any at all. His psych doctor has reconsidered his diagnosis as manic depressive.

Currently my boyfriend is charting/journaling his moods with as much detail as possible in order to help find out what diagnosis the doctor can give him.

His house hasn't sold or rented and time is running out. His job has become worse and his stress level is pretty much at it's max right now.

He told me that he sleeps most of the time or just lays around the house. He didn't call me with this information, he emailed me. He said he's in a pretty wrecked state right now and this all he can do.

I replied letting him know that I am trying to be here for him as best as I can be and I'm going to support groups every week to better understand the illness and express/vent. I'm also doing as much research as possible on treatments and meds.

I also told him that I wasn't going anywhere and that I will see this through with him.

And, while I hope to hear from him, I don't expect it. I'll be checking in with him like I usually do (through email and text) just to remind him that I love him and here for him...just in case he forgets ;)

So, that is what I have as an update. I really hope he doesn't go too much longer without the meds. It's going to get worse if he does. So I am waiting patiently.

I'm flying out to see him in the next three weeks. I have no clue what to expect. I don't know how he'll be with me..what state of mind he'll be in. I don't plan on forcing him to talk with me, but just plan on being at his place doing my thing and available at any time if he wants to talk.

If any of you have any advice, I would really love to hear it.. If any of you have gone through this, I'd really like to hear your story.

I am open to anything at all...in hopes of being there for him and keeping my sanity as well!

Thanks to all..

Singer69
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 197
   Posted 7/30/2007 3:46 PM (GMT -7)   
Hey wicked,

Is there someone local to him that could check on him every once in a while for you? Maybe a friend or relative of his? I was just thinking that it would ease your mind a bit in between visits and maybe they could help him out since they are there as well.

Rick...
When I die, I want to go peacefully in my sleep like my grandpa, not screaming and yelling like the passengers in his car.


wickedlycoolcomfort
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 68
   Posted 7/30/2007 4:02 PM (GMT -7)   

Rick,

I have been fighting with myself inside debating whether to talk with his family about his episode right now or not.  You see, it took him 5 years after he was actually diagnosed, to let them know about it.  When his wife left him (after 17 years of being together), he never let anyone in after that; never wanted to find another support person.  His siblings are dealing/coping with their own illnessess as well as his mother.  So there are two thoughts that come to mind:

1.  Can his family be there for him on a continous basis; do they have the mental capacity to be strong for him when he needs it?

2.  Will my boyfriend feel betrayed and will I have overstepped my boudaries, should I try and involve his family or any friends?

Also, he only has two close friends and neither of them know anything about his disorder.  That is the way he wants it.  I cannot, at least, feel I can't betray his trust by telling them and asking to check on him.

If you have any other idea to see of someone can check on him...besides befriending the mailman and having him check on my boyfriend when he drops the mail off, I'm pretty much out of ideas in that respect.

Oh..and btw...he has two roommates, so he isn't totally alone. He has hs own room, nut at least there are two other bodies around the house on a regular basis and I think that's helpful.

I appreciate yor thoughts and interest...keep'em coming :-)

Honey Bee
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 114
   Posted 7/30/2007 5:27 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Wicked

Firstly, your bf is showing all the signs of suffering from Bipolar (or manic depression as it is also known). You are doing all of the right things in providing unpressurised support to him. I cannot imagine how hard it is for you not living in the same state and worrying about him in this way. My hubbie has suffered from BP since he was 13 and we have been together for 20 years and IMO I would not break his confidence ever and tell people without him knowing. It will only result in heartache and he will feel betrayed. Plus I am not sure that his family would be helpful if they suffer also, that is only my view but I have had a similar experience where my hubbies family also suffered from BP - his dad and 2 sisters and being around and involved in their lives and their own issues just made things worse. He sounds like he has considered all of these things plus decided not to tell his close friends for a reason and I think you need to respect this (sorry if this sounds tough).

Being new to this you need to be aware of how prejudice people can sometimes be, even close friends, plus he maybe feels that with his friends he doesn't want them to 'feel sorry' for him and maybe if they knew they wouldn't treat him they way they do now. This could be that they would show empathy and sympathy but maybe your bf just wants to keep things as they are. I am the opposite my hubbie has told people against my wishes and suffered as a result but I have tried to respect his reasons for doing that. IMO again you may also find that people who do not know/have not experienced mental illness of any kind will not understand anyway and may be a little frightened by what you are telling them so I would stay well away from that one.

The best thing you can do is continue to love and support him and also as you are doing find out everything you can about this disorder and also more importantly you need to come to terms with the fact that if you do (and I hope you do) end up with this man long term that these fluctuations in mood are part of your and his life. The meds can and will help but there is no magic cure and lots of experimentation by the doctors. Drugs will 'wear' off have side effects and even amongst this there is no guarantee that the highs and lows will disappear. In fact you (both) have to be eternally vigilant in order to manage the bp. We had a diagnosis 2 years ago and were elated when we thought we had finally found a reason for my hubbies behaviour and feelings and finally had a 'cure'. We thought we had been managing things well but 2 years on, even with educating ourselves we look back and realise that we have still made a mess of things to some degree. He has had maybe 4 highs and more long low periods in this time even with meds and a pysch to call on and is currently in his most depressive state ever so I cannot emphasise enough that this is a LIFELONG battle you will be fighting. If you read this forum you will see that this is the case with most people. It really is a very good place to get a feel for things and get excellent advice. I am only new to it in the past few weeks but have found it extremely useful.

The fact that your bf is not totally alone in the house I think is some comfort even if they do not know about his condition, at least there is someone there to keep a casual eye on him.

Regarding your thoughts on visiting him, I feel a little split on this one, you don't say whether you have discussed this or whether you are just going to surprise him. Firstly, again in my own experience even though you are not in any way putting pressure on your bf and just want to be there to care and support him he may actually feel that your presence is putting pressure on. The disconnection and distancing is very familiar to me and my hubbie has said that even though I am not expecting him to be 'bubbly, cheery, wanting to go out and do things', just me being there makes him feel a little guilty sometimes that he cannot even get out of bed on some days. I know this may sound odd when you really don't have any expectations other than to look after him for a while but this is definately something he may feel with you been there, especially if you haven't lived together. The disconnection and unemotive response at the moment is just his way of trying to withdraw and protect himself from the world whilst he is feeling this way. It is not a reflection on you I don't think and I have experienced it many times and my hubbie has always 'come back to me' with the emotion as it where even if it has taken some time.

Also the problems with his house renting may seem small to you but these things tend to become overblown and massive which is why he is struggling to deal with it, although it may not seem a big deal to you. Things will be building up and whils the depression is there will be even harder to deal with.

These are my thoughts so far, you will need to be strong if you do go and stay with him and do your best not to take things personally (this is hard I know) if he isn't emotionally connected to you.

Hope this helps.

Honey Bee

PS: I notice you have posted this in the depression forum but you may get more info from the Bipolar one, some people read and comment in both and more but some don't. Just a thought. :-)

Post Edited (Honey Bee) : 7/30/2007 6:35:58 PM (GMT-6)


wickedlycoolcomfort
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 68
   Posted 7/30/2007 9:14 PM (GMT -7)   

Honey Bee..

I can't tell you how much I appreciate you taking time out to express your feelings and insight on our situatoin.  You have no idea how much I can relate to you. Thank, thank you, thank you!

As for my boyfriend, yes, since he was 13 as well, he has had this disorder.  He has been diagnosed with manic depressive disorder, with anxiety.  However, since two weeks ago, his psych doctor has decided to re-evaluate his diagnosis.  This is why he is charting his moods, etc.  Since he burned his meds out for the seventh time in the last 10years or so, I am assuming his doctor wants to make sure he gives him the right meds and that means testing all over again.  It's just so very painful and frustrating and requires an immnese amount of patience and faith that it will get better soon.

I know he is hurting so much right now and yes, it is very painful not to let me in, but I am getting strength from these forums as well as the bipolar/depression groups I attend weekly.  I have basically immersed myself into education on these various disorders as well as the treatments and medication with their known side effects.

As for the stigmas and prejudice views; I have already experienced many.  Unfortunately, one of my closest friends cannot seem to comprehend the illness fully and thinks I should just "dump the dude".  I also have another friend that feels the same and can't believe I'm willing to not only stick it out, but plan on getting myself ready to deal with this for a life time.

Fortunately, I have two other friends, one that is bipolar II or B(is that right?  I'm still learning) and the other with mild depression that experiences regular episodes.  They both have been extremely supportive and constantly remind me that I need to not take any of this personally. 

You see, I have known my boyfriend (as a friend) for many years.  I know his heart, I know who he truly is and we both not only have accepted the other in all our grand flawed glory, but would not want it any other way.  I simply cannot imagine another man that can give me such peace and comfort and straight from the gut laughter, and strong deep love.  I don't know if I can fully explain it in the english language, but it is a feeling that has not been duplicated with anyone else before.  And believe me, I've been in many relationships throughout my life time as well as married and divorced.  I thought it couldn't get any better.  Then my boyfriend and I started this romance, and the universe had a way of proving me wrong; it could be better, absolutely and incredibly better yeah

So when this came around, I did not hesitate for a second; I was going to stay with him through thick and thin.  This is the thin part but I know in time we'll see the light at the end of the tunnel..just a matter of time really..and I'll wait.

I'm due to fly out there in the next three weeks.  He is very aware of me coming out.  I appreciate what you said and I definitely think I will keep that in mind.  Maybe play it by ear the week that I'm due to leave.  Should it be extremely bad, I'll cancel the plans and stay here.  I have my support group meeting tomorrow and will talk to them about this to see if they have any advice.  It is a mix of both people suffering from bipolar disorder as well as friends and family that are close to them.

Thank you for the word on breaking the trust issue.  I needed to hear that, and now I know that I just need to have faith and just rely that he is doing everything in his power to try and stay above water...and just ride this out.

There is a group called "NAMI", I think it's called National Alliance for Mental Illness.  Anyway, they have a chapter out in my area.  They offer a 12-week education course on depressive disorders.  Have you heard of it? They educate on the actual biological side of it, the treatments, detecting the early signs, medications and side effects associated with it, etc.  I start this course in September.   I figure I need to take advantage of all that is out there and available to me so that I support him the best that I can and also take care of myself while I'm at it.

I hope that I continue to hear from you as I feel I can learn a lot from your own experience.

Again, thank you so very much for your words of encouragement and opinions on the situation.

peace, love and dark chocolate..wickedly cool comfort.

 


Another Day
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 1055
   Posted 7/30/2007 9:53 PM (GMT -7)   

Wicked,

I read your posts with great interest.  I've never really dealt with anyone bi-polar personally, but I know it can so very difficult, for the patient and the loved ones.  One of my good friends, Cindy has a son Austin who is in his early 20's and he had been doing very well.  He has gotten in this rock band and he purposely went off his medication because he thought he could be more creative.  He was playing down in Florida and got manic down there.  We live in KY and she was just trying to get him back home safely.  He is back home, but is still manic even though he is back on his medication. 

It jumps out at me that you really, really love this guy.  You are doing all this research, your are going to support groups, coming on this forum.  I am really proud of you.  I hope when he gets his head straight again, he realizes what he has.  I wish you both the very best.

Take care!

Carla


Epilepsy, severe adult onset asthma, allergies, GERD, depression, hypothyroidism


Honey Bee
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 114
   Posted 7/31/2007 5:03 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi again wicked

I am happy to hear that my thoughts were of some help to you and glad that you posted more details. Obviously you know your bf very well so understand what you are getting yourself into. Your friends reactions are no surprise to me and you are very lucky that you have the support of the other friends who have experienced BP and depression. BP II is the less 'severe' of the two types, BP I (which is what my hubbie suffers from) means that he spends more time at the severe ends of each scale, depression and mania and for him he doesn't really spend much time 'in the middle' although neither is a breeze obviously :-)

You sound like a truly loving and devoted person which you will need to continue to be in the years to come if you remain together. Sorry, I don't mean to sound patronising but you will get from reading other peoples stories just how unbelievably difficult life can be for the both of you because of this awful illness. Like you I am currently in the depths of despair because of my hubbies depression and struggling to be strong to get him to carry on for another day. Even when you have had many good times it is hard to imagine them coming back when life is like this. However, I love him to bits and so won't be deserting him any time soon.

You are doing all of the right things in educating yourself, going to support groups etc. but in the end there is only so much you can do and that is to to love him and look after him where you can, you cannot fix things and make him well without lots of other things going well in his life. We have gradually over the years totally structured our life around the BP to try and minimise its effects, we moved countries to a warmer sunnier climate as the dark winters were very depressing for my hubbie. We distanced his family as they were way too much hassle and stress and we have our own business so that my hubbie can work and sleep the hours (and sometimes days on end in both directions) that he wants to, BUT still he has so much difficulty struggling with both ends of the scale.

The 12 week course sounds excellent and I would definately go for this if I could. I actually now live in Queensland, Australia and I have discovered that our mental health care is pretty poor, especially in our state. In the US from what I have read on these forums there are lots of excellent support groups, courses, therapists to help it would seem. Here, although my hubbie sees his psych once a month on average to prescribe his meds that is all he really gets. He has never been to a therapist and there are no support groups near to us that I can find anyway so I hope you do this and that it is helpful.

One thing you may not be aware of is that dealing with the Bipolar gets harder as you get older. I have been told this by more than one professional. Not many people I think are aware of this fact and i was surprised as well as I thought that the older and more mature/experienced in life you get the better and easier it is to deal with things. This is NOT the case with BP. Apparently it is something to do with the fact that the physiology in your brain changes and deteriorates over time and this combined with a BP persons life experiences and traumas, multiple depressions and manias and the problems these cause over time, mount up. This means that an individual finds it harder to cope over time as they are constantly going back over their problems and failures in life in their own mind. My hubbie has a photographic memory and when he is feeling low will recount every single problem, friendship gone bad, family hassle that he has had in life as a reason why he won't be able to do things any better in the future etc. I am only mentioning this as to warn you not to expect issues not to be there in the future, although I think that if you can find a good therapist in conjuction with the meds this can help significantly. We have never had this and I think it couid be one of the reasons why my hubbie cannot put things in the past behind him at all. This combined with the fact that we have no family support (my parents have consistently tried to split us up even though we have now been together for 20 years) and friendships have come and gone make it difficult for a person with this condition to be positive about the future.

Saying that my hubbie also suffers from Borderline Personality Disorder (many BP do have more than other personality factor in there as well) which compounds things terribly for him and isn't something you can treat with meds. Your bf sounds pretty good if he has got a couple of close friends still around him.

So what I would say is keep up the good work, go and see him but be prepared to leave if it all gets too much and keep on with the learning, although don't let it consume your whole life. Also try and encourage him to keep trying the meds even if he feels he is getting nowhere as hopefully he will find something else that will work even for a short period of time. You are obviously totally aware of your bf wonderful side so hang on in there. People only tend to mention the bad things associated with BP but there are also some wonderful elements of my hubbies personality that have caused us to do some great things in our lives (moving to Aus was one of them and without his 'high' and energy at the time we wouldn't have had the strength and courage to do it). You know your friend well from your post and so are fully aware of why you love him. If you are interested in my current situation have a look through the posts and the one titled 'No Hope' in the past couple of weeks is me.

Let us know how you get on.

Keep smiling

Honey Bee

stkitt
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 7/31/2007 4:46 PM (GMT -7)   

Hey Wicked,

You seem to know what your doing and you obviously love this man, how lucky you both are to have found each other. You also seem to know that Bipolar is very tough for the person to deal with.

I have a girlfriend who is bipolar and OCD.  She will call me long distance in a panic and beg me to help her as she hears voices telling her to hurt people.  She is in therapy and is on meds, but she also was taking  a narcotic for pain. (No longer taking narcotic). Narcotics can react negatively in some people on AD meds. As she was talking to me on the phone the voice, HE, was talking to her about me. I felt like I was in the middle of a bad movie but I hung in and promised to send her some things and to tell the voice to shut up.

My point is Bipolar can switch from high to low to high in a New York Minute. The good news with therapy and staying on their meds they can function very well.  Once he is better, do not let him go off meds because he thinks he does not need them anymore.

NAMI is very well known and they have chapters in every state.  I had the whole list at one time........it is on their web site if others are looking for a group.

I would encourage you to post to the Bipolar forum too.

I have a feeling You will also win the personal battles you are fighting in your life!
 (((((((((((((((HUGS)))))))))))))))

 


Respectfully
Kitt
Moderator Anxiety ~ Panic Disorders
*~* Not a mental health professional at all *~*
Dx: Anxiety/Panic, Depression 
******www.healingwell.com/donate******
_____________________________________________________
"If you doubt you can accomplish something, then you can’t accomplish it. You have to have confidence in your ability, and then be tough enough to follow through.” 
~Rosalyn Carter

 


wickedlycoolcomfort
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 68
   Posted 7/31/2007 5:05 PM (GMT -7)   
Kitt-
Thank ou so much for the welcome to HW :)

My boyfriend was diagnosed some time ago with manic depressive and general anxiety disorder. But as of later, his psych doctor has decided to re-evaluate the diagnosis. I do not know why but can only guess there may be some symptoms he is experiencing that could raise a flag that maybe another disorder is accompanying it which means he may have to take on a different/additional med. not totally sure but just guessing from the outside.

I have my support group meeting tonight and look forward to chatting it up with people face to face. I also was referred some great books that I'm picking up at the book store that I htink may help me in my continued education of these disorders: 'An Unquiet Mind: Memoir of Moods and Madness - Kay Redfield, as well as 'Loving Someone with Bipolar Disorder' - Julie Fast.

I plan on going on the Bipolar Disorder as well, ut found many more commonalities on this forum in the beginning of my search so this is where I've stayed.

I will keep in touch and let you know how things are progressing.

Peace, love and Chocolate..WCC

Honey Bee
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 114
   Posted 7/31/2007 6:09 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi again wicked,

I am not sure whether you noticed my second post above Kitts but hope there was some more info which might help you too.

I have read the Kay Redfield book and it is excellent, it is very honest and she really gives you a clear view of what it is to suffer from Bipolar Disorder. She is very well recognised in this area so I can recommend buying this book

Keep in touch and let us know how things progress.

Honey Bee

wickedlycoolcomfort
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 68
   Posted 8/3/2007 9:31 AM (GMT -7)   
Greetings again all :-)
 
Well...I'm reaching out to ya'll because I'm getting depressed myself.  I try hard to keep myself optimistic about my boyfriend in his depressive state and being patient till it soon subsides.  But it's been 3 weeks and I received 1 email from him letting me know how he was doing (we live in different states..have a long distance relationship).  I know he's at work M-F because I see him on the IM.  But I never bother him because I don't want to put pressure on him.  I continue to email him and text him letting him know I'm here and I love and miss him.   I guess I'm getting a bit depressed because my faith is being challenged.  Why is it he can work, talk to friends, but somehow can't talk to me?  No text messages, no emails, no calls..nothing?  I know he's in a bad place right; no meds, his DX being examined and changed from Pdoc.  I also know he has mounds of stress on him as well...but why can't he reach out and just call????
 
Have any of you felt this way toward your loved one?  You're able to carry on decently with aquaintences, freinds, co-workers, etc., but the one closest to you, your spouse/lover, you just can't seem to communicate with?
 
I'm flying out to be with him in the next few weeks and I'm startng to get a bit scared...scared that he's going to not want to see me and not want to have me anywhere around him.  Scared that he'll let the depression get the best of him and break it off with me and I won't be able to fight it.
 
Any support, advice is appreciated confused

Honey Bee
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 114
   Posted 8/3/2007 8:43 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi again wicked

Your feelings of depression are not expected as it is hard to keep optimistic when someone you love is distant both in terms of emotionally and KMs away. You do need to have an awful lot of patience and prepare yourself for potentially a long period of depression. Your bf may come out of it in a few weeks but could also be feeling this way for months and months and you need to think about how you are going to cope with this yourself.

My theory which I have experienced many times is that when your bf is depressed it is probably taking all of his energy (which will be extremely low in this state) just to keep things going around him. Work in itself will be a huge effort and he is also probably trying to 'keep up appearances' with his friends so as not to let on that anything is wrong. Unfortunately in this scenario partners and spouses seem to get the worst treatment and often get left out in the cold, even though they are the ones who are caring and looking out for that person. I think this is a compliment in some strange way as it means that the person you are with trusts you enough that they do not need to put on an act and try and be something they are not and also they don't have to hide their situation and feelings with you.

Also often when people are feeling very depressed they will just shut themselves away for long periods of time both physically and emotionally and only communicate where necessary with the outside world to try and protect themselves. Also my husband finds it very difficult to explain his feelings in this state so I would imagine that is why you might not have had much in terms of emails and phone calls. Everyone immediately physically around him will probably being taking all of his energy and as you are not there you are probably the 'easiest' one to not communicate with currently even though you care about him.

However, even if the above is the case you really need to try and get an honest handle on where you stand with him before making the trip. It will be hard on you to go all of that distance and then find that he is being a little indifferent to your presence. So I would see if you can talk to him honestly before you leave. Even if circumstances have changed for the worse (and I truly hope they haven't) then at least you will know where you stand and can minimise the emotionally impact for you. Bear in mind when talking to him that people who suffer from BP often have a bit of a love/hate thing going on. My hubbie used to really swing from me being the best thing that has happened to him to being one of the main problems in his life and it is hard to know which is the 'truth' sometimes. This is one of the more difficult things to cope with as for many many years I never really had a true picture of how my hubbie felt as both states of mind were equally convincing.

Anyway, keep posting and let us know how you get on.

Honey Bee

wickedlycoolcomfort
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 68
   Posted 8/4/2007 9:42 AM (GMT -7)   
Honey Bee,
Thank you so much for the detailed reply. I'm so glad I found this site because I find that it has played a major role in keeping me sane right now. I have found comfort in hearing back from all of you to let me know what it's like from people that have experienced it in their own lives.

Honestly, I am afraid to talk with him before I go out to see him. I think he will tell me not to come out and this will be from the same place as when he wanted to break it off with me; the depressive state. A friend of mine who is bipolar 1 gave me her opinion on the situation as well. She said that I should go out there and experience what it is like being with him while he is still in his depressive state. She said that I need to really get a sense of what it woul be like to live with him while he is going through an episode. That way, I can really think about whether this is something I can live with if I'm going to marry him. If I am always away when he goes into an episode, then I will not truly experience him in the most crucial times that one should when making a decision to be with someone permanently. I have thought about saying the same to my bf as well; telling him that is one reason I want to still contnue with my plan to come out there.

I find it odd that the one you are the closest to will also be the one you push away the most. I guess I would automatically assume in a state such as this, you would end up becoming more dependent on your spouse rather than the opposite. Again..I'm a newbie and still learning about all of this. While I think about him constantly and think about our future together, I look at myself and all that I'm doing to understand him and I know that I'm not going anywhere. It's like I continue to prove to myself through what I do how much I really do love this man.

I also think with the continued research they are doing on these illnesses and also that fact that they are just now starting to really make society and the public aware of these disorders, it will, I hope, flush out the still very strong stigma it holds and simultaneously push the progression of research to find better treatments to use in order to prevent the the disorders even more than what they can do now with doctors, therapists and meds.

Do you think telling my bf about seeing him in this kind of light, staying with him for a few days is something I need in order to feel one way or the other about our future together? Or is this somehtign I should just keep to myself?

Tanks so much Honey Bee, I truly appreciate all your effort in sharing your knowledge and experience with me.

The best...WCC

Honey Bee
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 114
   Posted 8/5/2007 6:00 PM (GMT -7)   
Wicked

I also found it odd that when you are the closest you are often the one that gets pushed away. This is not always the case I know for everyone, but in my own experience has more often been the situation until fairly recently (a couple of years ago out of 20 years). I think I was under the naive opinion that when my hubbie felt depressed that I was always the one who would always be there and swoop in and be his saviour. In reality I have always been there through some terrible times but in the end there is only so much you can do as a support person and it is incredibly painful and frustrating to see someone you love so much suffer with this illness, hour by hour of every day and really not be able to help them other than being there.

When you feel very depressed really I have found that there is not much now I can say or do to make my hubbie feel better it just sounds so hollow sometimes. It is not that the person doesn't appreciate you being there for him but the fact they just feel so bad that nothing really helps sometimes. I actually suffer from anxiety and panic attacks myself and have several bad episodes coupled with depression so I have a little insight into how you feel in this state but even then I find it very difficult to cope sometimes. I think you need to be quite a tough cookie to live with someone suffering from BP and not let it 'seep' into every area of your own life, I certainly haven't managed to achieve this at all and used to go to work many times and spend the whole day worrying constantly about him sometimes. You sound like you are very lucky to have a couple of good friends who understand and will support you.

I think you friend has made an interesting suggestion in that you really do need to 'live' with him for a while and experience what it is like to have this life for the both of you in terms of a partner role and not just a friend (not putting your friendship down in anyway) as it is entirely different. I think you feel more 'responsible' for the situation when you are entwined with someone romantically, but maybe this is just me as I can be super sensitive. So it would be a good idea to go and stay at this time IF you feel that you can be prepared for and cope with the current situation. It isn't an honest view of things if you only ever see him when things are better. You do need to get a sense of things but I wouldn't say anything to him about this if it were me, as I think it would only make him feel that he is being analysed and that you are putting more pressure on him.

You are right that they are continually finding out more about BP but are still such a long way from really understanding how things work. I (along with many others I am sure) have experienced many prejudices still because of mental illness. Have a look at the 'Attitudes' thread in the BP forum for a few experiences. I would be wary of underestimating people's views on this disorder, we have had a lot of negative experiences and I actually lost my business a couple of years ago because my distributor found out about my hubbies BP and lost confidence in our ability to run things which was extremely disappointing as we had known this person for over 10 years! He had no reason to doubt us other than know that my hubbie had been diagnosed with BP, was taking meds and had to see a psych. It is good to be positive but still be aware that not everyone is as enlightened as the people on this forum for example and sees the good things as well as the bad.

Anyway, hope this helps and also hope you are feeling slightly better and let us know what you decide.

Honey Bee

Post Edited (Honey Bee) : 8/5/2007 7:02:55 PM (GMT-6)

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