Wednesday, 29 June 2011

The other half of me

Blog starts here

As I'm sure you may have gathered by now, I have a partner. We have been together a [considerable] amount of time now.

It's been a steep learning curve for him, getting to understand my Bipolar Disorder and how it affects me. I wouldn't say that he was ignorant to it but I think he found it almost impossible to comprehend what it was and how it affected me. It made things difficult in the first instance as he'd often tell me if I didn't think about things then they wouldn't affect me. If only it were that simple hey?!

More recently, he has suffered a small bout of depression and awful as it may sound he now knows how I feel a little bit as he's been almost in the same boat.

I think it's hard for partners of Bipolar Sufferers as they must feel so totally alone. Just today in fact I have been speaking to the other half of one of my oldest and greatest friends who also suffers with Bipolar Disorder and he said that he feels like no one understands him. If anyone can sympathise with that it's me! I've spent my whole life with people having no comprehension of how I'm feeling.

I'd definitely recommend that the partners of anyone suffering with Bipolar Disorder take a look at the book I recommended in my Self Help blog, Living With the Black Dog. There are lots of crossovers between depression and Bipolar Disorder. After all, Bipolar Disorder was formerly known as manic depression.

It's hard to say why we are the way we are with our partners. I would guess it varies from person to person. I tend to push my partner away. The main reason for that is that I don't want him to feel even an ounce of the anguish that I feel every day. I shout at him and quite frankly treat him like sh*t from time to time. Luckily he now understands that when I'm angry at him, I'm not angry at him I'm simply projecting my anger onto him because he is the nearest to me. They say that we hurt the ones we love and it's true! 

I've always had trust issues when it comes to men and that stems from my childhood. Much as I adore my partner and would go to the ends of the earth for him it's still easier for me to push him away when I'm feeling so low. I trust him implicitly but I still have a defence mechanism that is activated when I'm feeling low and generally insecure about myself.

I often fear that my partner will leave me. The things that I love the most are always taken away from me. As a child, I loved school and learning and the bullies saw to it that the enjoyment was taken away. If my mother was to punish me as a child she would take away my books, my most prized possessions! When I went to college for the first time after leaving secondary school, I had to quit after the first year, it broke my heart as I loved the course. When I joined the British Army I got injured and was given a medical discharge and so on and so forth.

To that end, I've learnt not to invest too much emotion in things that could easily be taken away from me and that includes my partner. Outwardly, he knows that I love him and care about him infinitely but inside is the innate fear of losing him and therefore there is a steel wall around my heart.

I'm lucky in that the harder I push my partner, the firmer he stands. It really is like an unstoppable force meeting an immovable object!

Keep Smiling :(:

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