Bi Polar Disorder (BPD) (Part 6 of a 6 part series)
In my blog entries I have never had a six part series before, but this time because of the subject matter and the number of people that I have encountered with BPD, I felt there was a lot to be said about Bi Polar Disorder. In fact, there is a lot more that I could and might write about in the future; but because I want the content to my blog to be helpful to a wide range of people I will limit my comments about BPD to just 6 entries.
No blog about managing BPD would be complete unless the issue of how a couple can work as team to effectively handle BPD together was addressed.
Working as a Team:
The idea here is to see both members of the couple supporting each other. To work as a team couples need to sit down with each other and plan, strategize, and reconnect.
The first thing to do is to jointly identify triggers and patterns for the BPD behavior. The next thing to do is to think about what has already worked. This is different from sitting down by yourself, “sometimes two heads are better than one”. A is partners a good resource to helpidentify cues and early signs that episodes are about to occur or that they are going on.
It is not always possible to see ourselves objectively. Human beings tend to exaggerate or minimize the impact of their behavior. By that I mean, they either beat themselves up when they’ve done the wrong thing, or they rationalize whatever has happened is not that big a deal.
If some ones’ behavior is to withdraw or be come overly aggressive, it can be a problem, but it’s not necessarily the end of the world, nor should it be ignored. Here’s where your partner can be of tremendous help. They can put things into perspective and together the two of you can develop a plan to deal with the problems that a behavior generates. If it’s done right, your partner can help you to get a better understanding of your situation than you get on your own.
One more issue
It is important to note that if one partner has BPD the couple needs to become experts in communication and anger. Dealing with Bi Polar behavior is very challenging and couples will get frustrated with each other and will need to learn how to cope with those emotional bumps in the road. In future blogs and also on the site are articles on communication and anger.
Also you can go to the “book store” on the site and can order any one of several books on these subjects.