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Bipolar affecting on-and-off again relationship

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Old 02-10-2006, 10:37 PM   #1
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bbyko HB User
Bipolar affecting on-and-off again relationship

Hello everyone. I am a 43 year old divorced man with Bipolar II type disorder who has been dating a divorced 37 year old woman on-and-off for the past year. She has an autistic 17 year old son and a 14 year old learning disabled daughter. The day before Thanksgiving, she called off our relationship because she said she couldn't handle my "mood swings". Then right after the New Year, we reunited. However, things have changed - and in an inconsistant way. I bought her the book "Loving Someone with Bipolar Disorder" to understand my condition better. But one day she says she knows she wants me to eventually live with her; the next day, she says she loves me but, right now, is not IN LOVE with me because she is in the process of "rediscovering me". Therefore, we kiss and cuddle...but she is holding off on resuming our sexual relationship. I do love her very much, but the inconsistancy is affecting my mood and depression.

My question is this - what is a reasonable time period to allow in order to see if she truly does accept my condition and loves me for who I am, or when should I just accept that the passion is gone, she does not accept my condition, and it's best for both of us to move on ? I know every individual situation is different but I would like to get some advice and insight. Thanks.

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Old 02-11-2006, 06:23 AM   #2
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Ruth6:11 HB UserRuth6:11 HB User
Re: Bipolar affecting on-and-off again relationship

My opinion is that accepting the disorder and being able handle the disorder are two different things.
Your partner has ALOT on her plate with her kids.
She may understand Bipolar Disorder but be right up to her stress level already with the autism, learning diabilities & probably her own personal/work life.

From a woman's standpoint I think what she may be trying to tell you without hurting your feelings is that she's fine with dates, movies, dinners, - but not so sure about a commitment of taking the risk of tipping herself over stress wise - dealing with a disorder that take alot to deal with.

I married someone who knew nothing about Bipolar (I'm Type I and well stabilized).
But - he has no children and skin of Teflon. My moods just roll off his back. The man HAS no stress!!!
Your partner has ALOT of issues to deal with already. It's not you so much, it's adding one more stressful thing to her life when she is already feeling over her head from time to time.

I don't know what the answer is for you (if I'm even right here) but I would tell you that if you find yourself really emotionally attached to her I would practice stretching that attachment out with a little distance for now.
She'll be more relaxed at least.
Personally having to try to watch my moods (when I actually have no control over them) would be too stressful for ME, and I would really think about moving on and finding someone who is more compatible for me...

Old 02-11-2006, 07:00 AM   #3
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barbaric_yawp HB User
Re: Bipolar affecting on-and-off again relationship

Maybe, and this is just a thought, your meds may have lost effectivneness. have you spoken to a doc to help you get stabalized?

Old 02-14-2006, 12:40 PM   #4
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bipolarjon HB User
Re: Bipolar affecting on-and-off again relationship

1. She broke up with you. Did you chase her in Jan.? if yes maybe she is being nice to you. If ya'll were intimate before and will cuddle now that seems odd. In my 20's I dated a girl and we were intimate then we werenít intimate again, but she would go out with me and even stayed the night once, let me kiss her and even take off her top but said no. She had issues (a separation) and that was the last I saw of her. It was hard because we did have a lot in common. Do you have kids? If so dr. _aura would say pour all of your time and energy into them. Good luck.

Old 02-14-2006, 02:59 PM   #5
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barbaric_yawp HB User
Re: Bipolar affecting on-and-off again relationship

Originally Posted by bipolarjon
.... Do you have kids? If so dr. _aura would say pour all of your time and energy into them. ....
BPjon: YES! good point, I agree 100%


Old 02-15-2006, 03:36 AM   #6
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LOWnly~Me! HB User
Wink Re: Bipolar affecting on-and-off again relationship

Hello There,
Your post almost made me cry. The lack of understanding that we face on a daily basis is enough full stop. But to then have it in the midst of what should in a "fair/Normal" relationship is heartbraking. My personal view point on this is slighlty different from the others, due to my outlook on sex. It is so hyped up, it is spoken of more than anything, far too much energy is wasted, both mentally and emotionally. Just because she does not want intercourse does not mean that she does not want you. To me, after reading the bit where she says she is rediscovering you, that means in total. So the man she thought you were, the all the soul, the heart the head is being re examined by her. She would feel a cheat to herself to jump into bed with you and have sex, whether it be wild chandalier swinging or passionate sensual. She does not know you like she thought therefore is biding her time, for her to let you kiss and cuddle i would say is far far better than to be accepted sexually. For me it would have to be someone special in my arms, thoughts, soul etc. I think you are privaliged to have found someone who treats both herself and you with ultimate respect. Aside from the sex, are there any other issues? BP is a ****, a big dark cloud that hovers constantly above our heads, but you have an advantage here. She has two children both with difficulties mentally, I fully understand and appreciate that alone is most difficult for her but there are many sides and view points just on one situation. She will know that you will be in full support, understanding and able to offer an helpful insight into the two most important people in her life. That alone will draw her closer to you, as she will niot have the fear of a different partner with no previous experience with mental health issues. You have alot to offer, dont see yourself as a hinderance, a problem....... You are one of gods people, a person with true feelings, emotions and love to offer. You should try to put a positive perspective on it and add a little humour. If you can laugh at yourslef well your half way there.
Sorry if ive gone on, all the best, kind regards

noni x

Old 02-23-2006, 11:15 PM   #7
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bbyko HB User
Re: Bipolar affecting on-and-off again relationship

Hi folks...thank you for your helpful replies. Just an update here: the relationship is still confusing. The other day we were talking about eventually living together; now today, she says she needs to understand more about my bipolar disorder before that could happen and she also has concerns about the fact that I am an only child in my family taking care of an elderly 78 year-old mother who had a brain aneurysm a few years back. She also says she sees me as a needy person, like her daughter, who needs people around him whereas she likes to get away for days at a time and be by herself. It's true that I can come across as needy, but that's because I have probably spent TOO MUCH time by myself and have had long stretches of loneliness, whereas she has always seemed to have friends she can rely on.

I have told her that it is confusing and frustrating for me to experience her have these seemingly contradictory, one-day-close the next-day-distant feelings for me. She says she will probably be that way for a while because she is rediscovering me and also trying to recover romantic feelings for me again (we had three break-ups last year and kept getting back together). She is also getting away this weekend by driving to St. Louis by herself, her favorite city, and taking the book I gave her, 'Loving Someone with Bipolar Disorder', along. She also said, like an earlier post-er suggested, that she needs to also get away from taking care of her learning disabled daughter and autistic son. They are staying for the weekend with her parents.

With my bipolar mood swings and loneliness, I am wondering to myself how long I can experience this for and be patient. Would it be wise for me to set a goal date, so to speak, in my mind that if she has not truly figured out how she feels about me, then I move on ? Any suggestions ?

By the way, one post-er wanted to know if I have kids myself. Yes, I am 43, divorced, and I do have a nine year-old daughter who is exceptionally bright for her age.

Old 02-24-2006, 05:35 AM   #8
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mudhound HB User
Re: Bipolar affecting on-and-off again relationship

Mud here, its a roller coster ride for sure. I just want to scream right now. My wife is BP and we have some ups and a load of downs. I wonder why I stay with her? I do love her. But, it is hard!!!! there is no time period of being sure you or her can accept this illness. I think i have it whooped and then it (BP) put a whooping on me.
Gosh. What a illness.
God Bless


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