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Having a mental breakdown

Shieldmaiden's picture

I think I am having a mental breakdown. Dh has bipolar,  has not been himself lately and he won't talk to me about it.  What he will do is seize on a small comment or thing that I said and twist it, pouting and sniping at me until I cry or get angry Then he wants an apology. When I apologize, he says he doesn't believe I am sincere and that I am being manipulative. I can't even figure out why we are fighting in the first place. It feels like he is emotionally detached and just wanting me to suffer. This can go on for hours on the weekends.

When I am very upset, I sometimes hurt myself in a small way to release the pain I feel. Right now I am locked in the bathroom, trying not to want to do that. I haven't done that since I was a teenager, dealing with my psychotic mother. 

I am worried about him, but also worried about him being able to manipulate me into feeling this awful. When he is taking his meds he is not like this. I think I should try to get him to see a doctor or therapist. What do you think?  Any advice on dealing with mental health issues would be appreciated. 


notsurehowtodeal's picture

Hon, don't let his mental health issues cause yours to flare up. No man is worth that. Please don't hurt yourself. What would make you feel better right now, tonight? Would leaving help? Could you go to a friend's house or check into a hotel? Is there anyone "in real life" you could call?

You are right to be worried about his ability to do this to you. Do you have your own therapist? I would start there - get some help for yourself first.

Bi-polar is tough, because the even though the "highs" can be destructive, they can also feel good. It is common for someone who is bi-polar to stop their meds when they feel ok, or even when they are high - because they don't think the need them. If your DH treats you well when he is medicated, and treates you poorly when he is not, then it sounds like he should stay on his medication. How long has he been off of it? Does he have a doctor? Is he receptive to medication?

What I find a little strange is that purposely being mean to other people is not really a classical sign of being bi-polar. Is your sense that he is in a depressive or manic phase right now? In any case, being bi-polar is no excuse to be purposely mean to someone else.

In any case, right now you need to worry about yourself first. Please take care the next few days.

Shieldmaiden's picture

Thanks. I emailed my therapist to see if she can see me. He never goes off his meds, but sometimes if he doesn't eat well or sleep well, it can cause them to not work well. 

notsurehowtodeal's picture

Hard and personal experience tells me that sometimes meds need to be adjusted. One of the unfair aspects of mental health is sometimes meds just quit working and have to be changed. If he behavior continues to be abnormal, it is time for him to see his doctor.

Personal experience also tells me that it is easy to use a mental issue as a justification for being a jerk. He can control how he interacts with you, and he shouldn't be trying to make you feel bad just because he isn't feeling well.

JRI's picture

I don't know anything about mental issues but I just like you from your posts.  Please don't hurt yourself and take good care of your precious self.  You are smart, insightful and funny.  Hang in there, Shieldmaiden.

Shieldmaiden's picture

After this week from hell, I really needed to hear your kind words. I am doing my best to steer us through this. 

Mamabearof3's picture

Don't apologize next time. Don't play into it at all. Just say I see your mental health issues are flaring up and I don't have the capability to help you with this. I'll ttyl and leave or do something else. 

Rags's picture

Never before in my life have I suffered from notable anxiety or depression.  Until very recently.

My #2 at work is openly "on the spectrum".  I strongly suspect that he is bipolar.  Historically he and I collaborate very well.  In the last couple of months he has become extremely verbally aggressive and insubordinate.  With me, with others on the team.  It is impacting me significantly.  I finally had to shut him down last week.  I am on vacation  this week.  There are now several HR complaints from recently resigned former team members.  

When I get back next week I will have to start the formal disciplinary process.

When he is stable he is exceptionally good at his job at least the tactical/metrics performance stuff.  He can no longer be allowed to lead people.

At this point, I can't allow his crap to interfere in  my team or my personal life.  It has been a very long time since I have had a job impact me emotionally.

Take care of you.  I can't imagine having to deal with this crap in my personal life.

Shieldmaiden's picture

Sorry, Rags. That sounds awful. I have a coworker that has recently confided in me that she hears voices, and thinks her ex put a chip in her head. She is very distracting and some days it's hard to tune out her constant chatter about her conspiracy theories. She says she refuses medication and doesn't trust her therapist. 

My former boss has decided to start harassing me in group chats and revoking my access to things I need to do my job. I had to call a meeting with my current boss to get my access reinstated, and threatened to sue if my former boss doesn't back off. Current boss supports me, so at least I have him to help me. Yes, it's been a bad week! Hang in there!



dragonfly878's picture

To my very core I believe there's a difference between mental health and just being an asshole. Perhaps the bipolar has removed his filter a bit and made him more impulsive but either way you don't deserve to be anyones doormat. Lay down the hammer and tell him he can leave and when he's ready to come back and act like an adult you'll consider giving him an audience.

CLove's picture

Im so sorry you are dealing with all this. It seems like it hits all at once when it hits.

I would recommend that you document everything. Record the jerk as he is abusing you. Journalise. That helps me release. Do you have the ability to join a gym and work out the feelings? Please dont hurt yourself and please tell him to leave when he is abusing you.