Need some help coping with "bipolar" wife - Page 3 - Talk About Marriage
Physical & Mental Health Issues Marriage and relationships are difficult by themselves, but coping with physical or mental health problems can make things even more difficult.

User Tag List

 19Likes
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Search this Thread
post #31 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-01-2015, 01:32 PM Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Wolf 359
Posts: 80
Re: Need some help coping with "bipolar" wife

Thank you so much for the information. I had considered BPD as well. However, as you state, it generally isn't dormant. In her case, we had a very, very long stretch (almost 12 years) of a normal relationship with no signs whatsoever of psychosis. I cannot rule it out completely, though. I am afraid of this possibility because there is NO effective medicinal treatment for personality disorders, and the best treatments are talk therapy.

She went through breast cancer, however, 15 years ago, and it was several years after the treatments, including two rounds of chemotherapy, that her psychosis flared up. I was initially worried that she had limbic encephalitis, which is an autoimmune syndrome caused by several cancers, including breast cancer. However, she's had absolutely no other evidence in the years since that the cancer has returned. Thank goodness.

I've had her see three psychiatrists in her time with this condition. The first one, when she was hospitalized ten years ago, diagnosed her with schizophrenia. The second one, her current P-doc she's been with for ten years now, diagnosed with with Bipolar with psychosis. The third one, whom she didn't like, concurred with the diagnosis of bipolar. I'll certainly be asking about BPD when the P-doc gets back to me, though!

Quote:
Originally Posted by honcho View Post
Can you talk to the doctor directly and get him to sign the disability paperwork? Even if she gets employed do you think it would last very long? My spouse went thru too many jobs to count and I heard much of the same, the supervisors hate her, its because she is a woman, they are jealous because she looked better than them, you name it.
I hadn't considered asking the P-doc directly. I thought there had to be some agreement with the patient in order to do this. I'll ask the P-doc. Thank you!

anonfrank is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #32 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-01-2015, 02:22 PM
Forum Supporter
 
Uptown's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 2,659
Re: Need some help coping with "bipolar" wife

Quote:
Originally Posted by anonfrank View Post
I had considered BPD as well. However, as you state, it generally isn't dormant. In her case, we had a very, very long stretch (almost 12 years) of a normal relationship with no signs whatsoever of psychosis.
Frank, the vast majority of BPDers rarely -- if ever -- experience psychosis. Most BPDers are high functioning people who may exhibit paranoia but not psychosis. I therefore mentioned BPD to you only because it might explain the paranoia -- and, more importantly, the anger -- you describe.

This almost certainly is NOT the case, however, if "things were perfect, and I do mean, perfect" for many years, as you say in your first post above. Hence, I am calling your attention to BPD only because it might be playing an important role IF you saw BPD warning signs, during that "perfect" period, that you have not told us about.

At issue, then, is whether you saw signs -- starting about 6 months or a year into your relationship -- of her having anger issues, irrational jealousy, lack of impulse control, or difficulty controlling her emotions. If so, it would be worth discussing this with your psych. If you're interested, Frank, I describe the differences I've seen between the typical behaviors of bipolar-1 sufferers (e.g., my foster son) and BPDers (e.g., my exW) at 12 Bipolar/BPD Differences. I also provide a more detailed list of red flags for BPD at 18 BPD Warning Signs.

Quote:
I'll certainly be asking about BPD when the P-doc gets back to me, though!
That is worth a try, Frank. Yet, if you really did see her exhibiting strong BPD warning signs during that early "perfect" period, I would recommend you see YOUR OWN psychologist for a visit or two to obtain a candid professional opinion.

As I discuss at Loath to Diagnose, there are many reasons why psychologists generally are very reluctant to tell a client (much less tell her H or her insurance company) she "has BPD" -- even when that is the obvious diagnosis. Moreover, that diagnosis usually is not obvious to a psych who is seeing her for only 50 minutes every week or two. Arriving at that diagnosis can be difficult because it may take the psychologist two years to see BPD traits that the spouse sees all week long.
Uptown is offline  
post #33 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-09-2015, 02:44 PM Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Wolf 359
Posts: 80
Re: Need some help coping with "bipolar" wife

Tomorrow is p-doc (rescheduled) day....

Heard from the school last week that dear spouse had been arriving significantly late with our child every day, and they were reaching out to me to see if I could help. Further, she was following the kid to his classroom when he's old enough to do it himself. I wasn't aware of this until the school contacted me. I think I'm going to have to take over the early morning school duty, cutting significant time at work to do so.

At home, she is so consumed with the possibility of abuse at the school that she is making him take down his pants so she can examine him....every day. There is no abuse and the only trauma is what she is doing to him.

I spoke with her mom over the weekend, asking whether she can come to the p-doc's appointment with us, and she is so intimidated by my wife that she doesn't want to go. I really need her backup so it's not just me presenting all this behavior to the p-doc.

Hopefully, the p-doc will have some ideas. I'm at wits' end. After hearing this news, I am ready to end or significantly change my business.

Any ideas on how I can help my mother-in-law express her concerns to the p-doc? Anyone else have to change jobs or alter their hours to deal with a spouse in my wife's shape? Looking for ideas or other suggestions.

I'm at a low point today, again wondering if I should just kick her out, take custody of son, and be done with it. Hopefully, I'll be more sunny (my usual disposition ) later today.
anonfrank is offline  
 
post #34 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-09-2015, 09:37 PM
Forum Supporter
 
Uptown's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 2,659
Re: Need some help coping with "bipolar" wife

Frank, please let us know what the P-doc says -- if anything -- about the chance of her having both BPD and bipolar-1. Best of luck tomorrow!
Uptown is offline  
post #35 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-10-2015, 01:12 AM
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 729
Re: Need some help coping with "bipolar" wife

Quote:
Originally Posted by anonfrank View Post
She gets enough talk therapy from the psychiatrist to know that the meds are helping little. That's about it. The psychiatrist had an emergency and had to cancel the last appointment this week. I have a message in now, awaiting a reply.

My plan is to ask directly, without an appointment, for different medication for her, perhaps going to a newer one like Latuda, and to initiate talk therapy with a psychologist. I've also considered asking for electroshock therapy.

I've also been asking around for a psychologist for me to start IC. I work 80-100 hours a week, in a very demanding field, but I need to do this to help myself. It's really hard to find a psychologist who isn't booked months in advance.
Is talk therapy the best treatment for bipolar? I know for my illness it is not helpful at all. I don't know a lot about bipolar though.
Pooh Bear is offline  
post #36 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-10-2015, 12:17 PM Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Wolf 359
Posts: 80
Re: Need some help coping with "bipolar" wife

The visit did not go well. The psychiatrist immediately recognized there was a problem and immediately offered a medication change. To the p-doc's credit, there was a lot of talk therapy today. However, upon hearing about the medication change (increasing what she's on would lead to tooth grinding, which harmed her teeth in the past), dear spouse immediately stated she would not be taking anything except what she was currently on. This led to a near shouting match between her and the p-doc (the p-doc did not raise their voice whatsoever and stood their ground), and at me for telling the p-doc what happened.

As she remained obstinate, I said something I should not have. I told her that if she wasn't going to take the medication or try to improve herself, that she would have to move out. I was sorry as soon as I said it, and it probably wasn't helpful, but that was truly how I felt at the time, and it represents ten years of frustration.

I will try to get her to take the new medication, and have called her mother to enlist her help in taking the new medication. I will do the best I can to help and support.

I hope I don't really have to move on, but I also hope she is not going to give up after all the support her whole family has tried to provide her. I see her approach as "quitting". Yes, I do realize that lack of insight is part of the illness, and it was on full display today.

I have a specific question for those following this. How can you get someone who is not willing to take medication to take it? The ultimatum was probably not a good idea but came out of my frustration. What have others of you done?
anonfrank is offline  
post #37 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-10-2015, 12:34 PM
Member
 
Anon Pink's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 10,224
Re: Need some help coping with "bipolar" wife

Frank, in order for anyone to be med compliant they have to buy into their own treatment plan. In order for them to buy into it, they have to recognize the truth of the choices before them

Take the meds, become balanced and healthier and live a happier more connected life.

Don't take the meds. ...... ...... Then what? A mentally unbalanced person will see nothing beyond not taking the meds because they do not own their mental illness.

This is where Rock bottom comes in.

How do you get someone to hit rock bottom? Sometimes you have to pick it up and slap them over the head with it.

Your ultimatum was only as good as your intention to follow through. If you intend to follow through, you should say it loud and clear, "don't follow your treatment plan and I will not continue to support you." Making empty threats, OTOH, will give your wife the ammunition she collects to convince herself everyone else is wrong and she is right.

I think you did the right thing, so long as you're willing to follow through.

"Some women are blessed with multi-orgasmic ability for a reason and I'm damn sure not going to waste a blessing" ~FrenchFry

"Vaginas are tricky creatures." ~Lucy999
Anon Pink is offline  
post #38 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-10-2015, 02:02 PM Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Wolf 359
Posts: 80
Re: Need some help coping with "bipolar" wife

Thanks. I am just frustrated.

I am hoping I haven't just flushed 20 years away because her mental illness doesn't allow for recognition there is a problem.

The p-doc contacted me later and asked what I thought about the possibility of involuntary hospitalization. I'm thinking about it. I hate trying to force her to do anything, but at this point I'm willing to do almost anything to make her better. If making an ultimatum will help, I am all for it.

Forgot to say, definitely not borderline disorder according to the p-doc. That's a small load off me.

Last edited by anonfrank; 02-10-2015 at 02:07 PM.
anonfrank is offline  
post #39 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-10-2015, 02:34 PM
Member
 
Anon Pink's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 10,224
Re: Need some help coping with "bipolar" wife

How long can they keep her for involuntary? Does the doc think she can be stabilized enough during this involuntary stay? Or intensively confront her enough to break through he wall of denial?

What have you got to lose if you agree and she doesn't come around? If she continues in denial and continues to fall apart, what will you do?

"Some women are blessed with multi-orgasmic ability for a reason and I'm damn sure not going to waste a blessing" ~FrenchFry

"Vaginas are tricky creatures." ~Lucy999
Anon Pink is offline  
post #40 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-10-2015, 04:08 PM
Banned
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Canada
Posts: 8,910
Re: Need some help coping with "bipolar" wife

I don't mean to heap misery on your pile... But I really think you're focusing on helping the wrong person. Your son is basically being physically and emotionally abused by your wife. Whole I get that you're doing what you can to protect him, you're working 80 to 100 hours a week, so she's alone with him the bulk of his waking non-school hours.

He deserves your protection. He's not getting it.

C

PBear is offline  
post #41 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-10-2015, 07:36 PM Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Wolf 359
Posts: 80
Need some help coping with "bipolar" wife

I have changed my schedule so that I can do some of my paperwork at home after hours rather than in the office. Generally, I am able to stop some of her more egregious behavior toward my son. I have started to delay my departure in the mornings so that I can see them off to school. He has a long school day, 8 am-3:30, so he's safe during those times. Dear spouse's mother is going to be with her and my son in the afternoons during the week and on the weekends I have to work--just worked that out today. Son is well adjusted for having a mom in her current shape.

I managed to get the first dose of the new medication into her tonight after some cajoling by both myself and her mother. Her mom let her know what is at stake (ie her family and lifestyle). One step at a time, tomorrow is a different day.

If she starts actively refusing, I will have her admitted to the hospital.
anonfrank is offline  
post #42 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-16-2015, 02:28 PM
Member
 
honcho's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 2,664
Re: Need some help coping with "bipolar" wife

Quote:
Originally Posted by anonfrank View Post
The visit did not go well. The psychiatrist immediately recognized there was a problem and immediately offered a medication change. To the p-doc's credit, there was a lot of talk therapy today. However, upon hearing about the medication change (increasing what she's on would lead to tooth grinding, which harmed her teeth in the past), dear spouse immediately stated she would not be taking anything except what she was currently on. This led to a near shouting match between her and the p-doc (the p-doc did not raise their voice whatsoever and stood their ground), and at me for telling the p-doc what happened.

As she remained obstinate, I said something I should not have. I told her that if she wasn't going to take the medication or try to improve herself, that she would have to move out. I was sorry as soon as I said it, and it probably wasn't helpful, but that was truly how I felt at the time, and it represents ten years of frustration.

I will try to get her to take the new medication, and have called her mother to enlist her help in taking the new medication. I will do the best I can to help and support.

I hope I don't really have to move on, but I also hope she is not going to give up after all the support her whole family has tried to provide her. I see her approach as "quitting". Yes, I do realize that lack of insight is part of the illness, and it was on full display today.

I have a specific question for those following this. How can you get someone who is not willing to take medication to take it? The ultimatum was probably not a good idea but came out of my frustration. What have others of you done?
Getting them to change or stay on a medication schedule is often extremely difficult. They all too often decide they are be "controlled". Her approach is quitting as you see it but to her its not because how she feels and acts currently is "her normal".

Again its not unusual at all for the ill person to have convinced themselves its everybody else and not themselves and it compounds the problems of medication changes, more intense therapy. Your ultimate whether a good idea or not at the time has to be on the table. You cant realistically live like this long term and your son cant be exposed to this contstantly.
honcho is online now  
post #43 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-16-2015, 09:33 PM
Member
 
scatty's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Southeast Massachusetts USA
Posts: 351
Re: Need some help coping with "bipolar" wife

I know I get paranoid when I am manic. I think everyone is against me and trying to control me.

Has pdoc offered her any atypical anti psychotics such as abilify, seroquel? These are newer and often better tolerated. I just got put on abilify and it has helped SOOO much, but I also accept I am ill and trust my hubby when he says I am acting irrational. I also go to support groups and online forums so I can relate to others and I often take their advice more seriously, since they have been there themselves.

This illness is so hard on my spouse. He doesn't know what to do or say and ends up getting really frustrated. It is a nasty, unforgiving disorder on the whole family, really. Paranoia can be treated, but one has to be open to it. Newer drugs are the way to go, in my experience anyway. Tell your wife you don't understand what she is going through, but that you will be there for here if she continues treatment, hospitalization, whatever. Try to refrain from saying things like "Don't act crazy" (not that you do.)

Long term relationship of 25 years.
Finally made it legal 10/3/14
Three children 23, 21 and 15.
scatty is offline  
post #44 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-28-2015, 03:12 AM Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Wolf 359
Posts: 80
Need some help coping with "bipolar" wife

Well, we got her to take the medication. She was scheduled for twice daily and while it worked, it made her so drowsy that she refused to take it during the day. The psychiatrist recommended taking both doses in the evening and wow are we seeing resistance to that. I'd like to take a week off but can't find enough coverage to do so.

Every time I speak to her psychiatrist, I am honest and tell her. Every time, I get chewed out. I have stopped listening to her about the issue, which makes her madder. I told her today that I was trying to help her and of course, she's in bat**** crazy mode so it flew over her head.

Just updating to say every day is a fight but we are trying. At least she is taking meds. We'll see if it works. If not, I plan to take a leave of absence from work to deal with the situation. Just have to line up work I can do on the short term from home so we are not without income.
anonfrank is offline  
post #45 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-28-2015, 03:16 AM Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Wolf 359
Posts: 80
Need some help coping with "bipolar" wife

Scatty, thanks for your comments as it's hard to get into my wife's head right now. My wife is highly paranoid right now and thinks I am against her. I'm hoping I don't have to put her in the hospital to resolve this, but if I can't get her to take the regimen, that's where she is headed. Your insight is helpful.
anonfrank is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on Talk About Marriage, you must first register. Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

Important! Your username will be visible to the public next to anything you post and could show up in search engines like Google. If you are concerned about anonymity, PLEASE choose a username that will not be recognizable to anyone you know.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in









Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Thread Tools Search this Thread
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Important Guidelines for "Coping with Infidelity" section. **Please Read This** Chris H. Coping with Infidelity 9 04-29-2017 12:53 PM
Remember when you were newlyweds and calling your new spouse "husband" or "wife"... Wildflower3 Going Through Divorce or Separation 11 06-11-2013 03:03 PM
Married to a "Bipolar" wife w/ 3 kids together At_Wits_End The Men's Clubhouse 3 09-19-2011 10:06 AM
** TAM "coping" demographics - Who we are*** Pit-of-my-stomach Coping with Infidelity 35 06-24-2011 08:56 AM
Not "coping" now, I have analyis paralysis. Pit-of-my-stomach Coping with Infidelity 214 03-21-2011 04:14 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome