I have been dating a man with bipolar, it took him 4 months to meet me for the second time, it was really good but he has withdrawn again. I think I may be triggering an episode and I’m not sure how to handle it, I really like him but at the moment it feels like he is allergic to me. I feel really sad about it don’t know what to do please help.
Dating somebody with Bipolar Disorder can be tricky. I know, for me, having Bipolar Disorder, I have done some of the same behaviors toward my husband that you are speaking of here. I think what is happening is he’s not sure about the relationship and maybe he’s cycling around with the different moods that go along with the disease.
Sometimes, the person that is ill needs space. They aren’t sure about themselves so sometimes they pull back. They don’t like the disease or what it does to them. And I know for me it’s because I feel bad that my husband has to put up with the illness and what it does to me and him, too. And let me reassure you that you are probably not triggering him.
I think a few things I have might be helpful for you.
*Give space if you can.
*Ask him how he feels.
*Ask if there’s anything you can do.
*Does he have family or friends that can help him?
*Do you have somebody you can talk to?
*Take things slowly with him.
*Ask him what’s wrong.
*Give him boundaries and ask him to help you understand him.
If after a while of being loving and giving him space and trying to understand him, you might want to think about moving on. I know that is painful to hear but you have to protect yourself, too. And you don’t want to get hurt continuously if he’s constantly pulling away.
If there’s anything I can do to help further please email me at shari (at) askabipolar (dot) com.