My wife is great. I really mean that she is great (This is by no means my bipolar out to sabotage my nation of maladies). She is not only a real, great wife to me, but she’s also an outstanding mother to both our kids.
I often try to imagine what my nation of maladies would be like without my wife. She likes to remind me about how unsystematic each and every component of my life would be without her. That’s what wives do (You must know that you earned her love). She doesn’t always say it as it is, but I can imagine what it must be like …
This possibly hints at ‘you are extremely unsystematic in every component of your life without me’. If there was one way in which I could get you to experience what things must be like inside my head – the most unremitting metaphor would be my disorderly wardrobe.
That is why, we men (with bipolar) have wives – the loving, caring and well thought-out ones to remind us who we are at times. Most of the time.
It’s no walk in the park for our spouses to be devoted to us. We are plagued with darkness for most of the day and then we have to reciprocate feelings of love and affection. It’s not fair – though we can’t help the way we feel. There are times when I am badgered with guilt after I cannot reciprocate her feelings to me. It’s ‘difficult’ to interchange feelings and it can have an impact on your marriage. Your spouse is not only married to you, but they are married to your bipolar as well.
The beginning wasn’t easy – let’s just say my wife had some deep thinking to do. She had to adapt (for better or worse) and see through the pins and needles of assorted emotions, frustration and manic depression that was completely shut in. At times your spouse can feels helpless too.
One of the best decisions I could’ve made, was to allow myself to be supported by my wife. It made no sense keeping things shut in and having her peer through a glass eye.
For the first few sessions I had with Dr. G, my wife would accompany me along to every visit. Great. At first it was a bit uncomfortable as conversing your feelings in front of your spouse can have dire consequences – like I was going to to blame her for it?
It was then that reality slapped me in the face. All along I thought that my thoughts and feelings were like some coded hard drive. She was given a chance to talk about what she’s seen and experienced with me over the years that we’ve been together (since our innocent days at high school); the oblique pattern of my ‘manic moments’ were picked up by her all along.
It makes one think, ‘why didn’t I let her in?’, as she knew all along how I was feeling and was dying to support me in any way that she could.
I took the time to listen to what she was saying and how it made her feel. Bipolar is twofold after all. It affects us just as much as it does on our spouses. If you’re feeling a bit today like you’re nailed to the wall – they feel it too.
Our spouses are not just there as a systemic backbone. It’s not all they’re good for. Sure we depend on them A LOT (especially those days when the bipolar gets a little bit too crappy), but they too have feelings. Think about it. When was the last time you ever asked them how they were feeling, when you were having a manic or depressive episode? Or about that time when they thought about doing something nice for you and it turned out to be a day filled with mania? Well I have not. I too am guilty of this crime. But it doesn’t have to be that way.
Communication has to be open, in order for your relationship and your mental health to be a successful one (even if it’s to remind you that you forgot to take your daily dose of meds). The reciprocation of ‘mutual feelings’ too are important (you might not have the ‘chance’ to say it all the time, but when you can, do it).
Remember: there’s no way we can make it through the nation of maladies without them (and of course, you too Dr. G).
That’s my mind mischief. A blog.