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Old 07-19-2005, 06:10 AM   #1
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Question did you tell your family about your bipolar

I'm wondering how many of us have told our families about our struggles with bipolar. If you did, at what point did you tell, and how much information did you give? What was their reaction? And looking back, are you glad you did?

And if you didn't tell, what is your support network outside of family? I have one good friend I've told about all this (because she's experienced something similar), and it is so nice to have someone to discuss things with.

I'm struggling with this myself. My spouse is clued in to everything, but beyond that, no one knows. One side of my family has a very Tom Cruiseish view of psychiatry and psychotherapy , and the other side, while believing in psychiatry, is not supportive of the decision to take most medications. So the thought of telling either side of the family is not appealing at all.

However, it can get awfully lonely here on this path by myself.

--Catie

 
Old 07-19-2005, 10:09 AM   #2
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Re: did you tell your family about your bipolar

A very tough one. I think you need to be sure in your mind that you can cope if their reaction is a negative one. Hopefully they would be supportive, learn more about it and try to understand, but if they don't, would you be able to handle it.

One way to 'try' them out is to tell one of them about your friend's experiences - not in detail, and I don't mean giving them her name, but just saying a bit about what she's been through (if you're able to get it into a conversation) - perhaps with the person you think most likely to respond well? You might be able to guage from their comments about her problems how they'd respond to you. My folks all say they understand but won't do anything to help - I find that hard to deal with (I guess because I think if they genuinely understood how hard it is they'd help willingly).

It's a toughie. Cherish your friend and your spouse. Maybe ask a few questions to see how the land lies - then if you think you can cope if the response is poor, try having a chat. They might suprise you, but I think in a situation like this if you go in thinking the worst then things can only get better? I thought my lot would all be wonderful about it and I was very disappointed!

 
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