Submitted March 6, 2015

Husband with Bipolar, I’m opening my eyes…

We’ve been married for 17 years, together for over 20. We have a six year old in Kindergarten.

I went searching for answers to problems only I saw. There were many answers on the Internet, then kept delving. I journaled about patterns of behavior in our relationship. Asking better questions, the Internet and even my own brain started providing better answers.

Listening to Dr. Laura provided focus.

I didn’t let my hubby distract me. Because he is always distractable. And then I quit letting him hide, emotionally and reality wise. I’ve begun to let things be uncomfortable when we speak because I want to walk through the fire and be on the other side with him.

I want my bipolar husband to have catharsis.

I brought family and close friends into the situation, because I was being emotionally bullied.

—he was talking so fast
—the look of desperation

One 20 year friend said I had to be gentler and not emasculate my husband. But, I was fighting to not be bullied.

It is odd, how his behavior becomes more destructive and almost planting a flag, “Yeah, I did [this bad behavior]. What are you going to do about it.”

He held a successful career for 15 years and was well adjusted. Our daughter’s birth changed something in my bipolar husband.
—I was caught. I was stuck.

He started behaving badly.
Making poorer, easier decisions…
My life, onion layer by onion layer, became something unrecognizable to me. It doesn’t represent what I stand for…

Anxiety, right….
That doesn’t surprise you.

So many lose-lose situations.
And I’m the only one with the problem. If I’d just shut up, there would be no issues.

Mr. GoodGuy, say what you want to hear, do what he pleases…
“What are you going to do about it…”

And he sees my strength rising, our daughter is six now, I could break away… He saddles us with enough debt to ensure I can’t go anywhere…. Then decimates my credit.

You can love someone, but love yourself more.
You can walk away from being the caretaker/enabler.
You can be the woman you want your daughter to be.

And, you can be kind when you say goodbye.
39 and ready to turn a corner.

Love isn’t a life sentence for unhappiness.