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Girlfriend with Bipolar starting to distance herself... What do I do?


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I’ve been with this girl for a year and a half, and most of it has been wonderful. We don’t live together, but we spend a lot of time with each other, usually several hours a day. But she has a minor form of bipolar disorder that causes her to have fits of depression, and rarely mania. We occasionally have problems with her mood swings, especially around “that time of the month” but we have always managed to overcome them, and my love for her has only grown with time, and so far her problems seem very minor compared to the good memories I have made with her.

Her bipolar has not bothered me much so far, since I have extensive psychological training, but still, she sometimes does things that hurt me. Psych knowlage or not, I'm not made of stone.

In the last two weeks, she seems to have hit her Mania phase. However, this time is different. She has ceased showing all affection toward me, flirts openly with other guys, hangs out with friends until 5 in the morning, and doesn’t invite me or even bother to tell me about her activities. I worry about what she is doing, but she now seems to think I’m a bother, and does not even contact me anymore. All this has occurred in a very short time.

I love her, and can forgive her if this is just part of her disorder. I hope to god that she will eventually return to me. But at the same time, I have to wonder if she is serious. Is she actually leaving me? Should I even try to win her back? What can I even do?

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Having extensive psychological training, you probably know that these kinds of things are typical and to be expected if you're going to have a relationship with a person suffering from bipolar disorder. I imagine it would be painfully difficult to live with the highs and lows, but it seems you'd be up for it as long as she comes back.

Best wishes making a very hard and very personal decision.

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Has she been diagnosed by an expert with BPD and, if so, what treatment was prescribed and is she following it?


Sadly, she is not going through any treatment, but she has a long family history of Bipolar, and her mother has confided in me that she does have the condition known as Cyclothymia, a milder form of bipolar.

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as a sufferer of similar to your girlfriend i did exactly the same. ending in my boyfriend cheating. try to support her all you can she will come around it just takes time. she may not realise that she is doing it and is maybe seeking attention from you. i did but it backfired, dont let it happen all the best kx

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Bi-polar Disorder = 1% met lifetime prevalence criteria for bipolar 1, 1.1% for bipolar II, and 2.4% for subthreshold symptoms

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Bi-polar disorder is probably the most over-diagnosed disorder in the DSM-IV-TR, particularly by laymen but even by doctors. Very often simple bad behaviour is ascribed to it especially by people wishing to excuse their own choices.


Even if she does have it - she should be following some sort of treatment plan.


Additionally, the fact that someone who has this disorder, especially a mild form of it, does not excuse their behaviour anyway. The fact that she may be mildly depressed or have PMS or some other issue does not give her a free pass to treat other people badly.


In your place I would move on.

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