Hey guys. Quick update-
I see my doctor tommorrow, and will hopefully come home with a medication change or head to the hospital. I can't handle this depression any longer; I spent all day in bed today. Thankfully, my hubby made a great dinner and an awesome friend came by tonight, so that kept my spirits up, but I'm thinking about suicide often, and that scares me. I know I need to stay on top of my illness, and I know that my doctor wanted to try keeping me off anti-depressants, but the past month has proven that I can't do it. I will let you all know the outcome, wish me luck.
My hubby finished his blog yesterday, so I'm typing it up for him. He asked me to remind you all that essays (or writing) is not his strong suit, but he wanted to provide his view.
"So, the first thing I should do is introduce myself as Kim's husband, Chris. Kim has been telling me that many of you are asking how you can help a loved one suffering from Bipolar Disorder (or any mental illness really). Well, the first thing you should do to help is learn as much as you can about the disorder and how your loved one is affected. Early in our relationship, we found a book that I found very helpful, "Loving Someone with Bipolar Disorder" by Julie A Fast and John D. Preston. As someone living with a Bipolar person, my first role as a husband is to be the first line of defense. That means I had to find out Kim's triggers and know the early signs of a relapse. Any time I see the early signs in Kim I let her know what I see and we try to get her out of the situation that is stressing her out.
Having Bipolar disorder means Kim can't handle as much stress as many other people so whenever there is a lot of stress in her life she is most likely to have a relapse. Now, I know there is always going to be stress in life-my job is to keep a limit to it. Some ways I can help Kim in those stressful times is to just do as many little things as I can-like making plans for us to go out, doing extra things around the house and making sure I do not argue with her. There will be days when your loved one will get mad at you or yell at you and you may not understand why (or think they are totally overreacting); in that case, just be patient. Do not argue-just apologize or let them "get it out". They are just having a bad day. When they are ready you will be able to talk to them about what happened. Usually for Kim she was usually yelled at or got into an argument at work where she could not fully release her emotions. So she holds back and releases it on the first person (usually me).
Lastly, the most important thing I find is KEEPING AN OPEN LINE OF COMMUNICATION about the illness, the symptoms and the triggers. Every day when I come home I ask Kim, "How was your day?" or "How are you doing?" and make sure they get into their mental wellness of that day. Every case is different, and every Bipolar will have different triggers, different warning signs, and different ways to treat and deal with it. So, I hope you find this helpful with your relationships, and if any of you have questions, please leave them here and Kim will relay them to me. "
Isn't my hubby wonderful???! What do you all think about his advice?