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Tips for dating someone with bipolar

When someone has a mental illness, it isn’t their fault, but that doesn’t mean their behavior is okay.

I searched obsessively for ways to help him recognize his moods and ways to reassure him about medications and their side effects, but nothing I said convinced him in the slightest.

You can go in with good intentions to help your partner when he’s struggling, if he doesn’t choose to get treatment and help himself, there’s usually nothing you can do about it.

I ignorantly assumed bipolar disorder meant you never got out of bed or got anything done, and that’s not the case at all. For those few days or weeks, he couldn’t be pried away from his desk for anything non-essential without becoming super irritable.

Quickly, I learned to identify these episodes and steer clear of him.

It was a change I didn’t expect, but I learned how to roll with it.

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Sometimes the best support you can offer is just being there.By the end of our relationship, I’d learned to ask him if there was anything I could do for him. For a while, I was offended because I felt like as his partner, I should be able to fix things.

I asked if he had finished his coursework and he simply said it could wait and wrapped his arm around my shoulder.Here are just a few of the lessons I carry with me: You can’t make someone happy.Whenever my ex was in a depressive state, I would try to make him happy by offering to watch his favorite movie, go to his favorite restaurant, or give him a back rub.However, I eventually realized that it’s not my responsibility to shoulder all of that alone — there were doctors, therapists, family and friends he could lean on for help, too.Eventually things just got too hard and I knew I couldn’t stay.Suffering from mental illness isn’t an excuse for bad behavior.