Monday, July 29, 2013

An Inside View - Interview with my husband about having Bipolar Disorder

Over the course of this blog I've given you my perspective about having Bipolar Disorder. Today I wanted to show you how it affects the other half of me -- my husband. I gave him a list of interview questions and here are his answers. I hope they are helpful to you or your partner.

ME: Before we met, had you ever been close to someone with Bipolar before?

ME: What’s the most difficult part of my Bipolar for you?
HUBBY: Knowing you aren't happy.

ME: Can you describe a typical day for us, when I’m at my lowest?
HUBBY: There's not much to describe. A typical low day is pretty uneventful. Usually watch one of your favorite programs or talk and wait for it to pass...

ME: Can you describe a typical day for us, when I’m at my highest?

HUBBY: Like being in a tornado. Always something unexpected, rarely the same old thing. Even during a high point, there's an element of sadness or "something's missing". The frenzy is like a frantic search for the missing element. For me, it's usually  a feeling of panic or feeling out of control of events.

ME: Have you seen any improvement or change in my Bipolar depression over the 18 years we’ve known each other?

HUBBY: It's varying. I don't know that it's worse or better. It's hard to tell how much of difference is in you or in my perception and understanding of what is happening with you. To some degree it seems better, but a lot of that is because I understand it better. 

ME: Especially after the ECT treatments?

HUBBY: I don't think the bipolar has really changed, but I do see that you have more control over it now. Instead of a bad day meaning a guaranteed two or three bad days, you can bounce back a lot faster.

ME: What’s the biggest difference you see in me now compared to since the ECT treatments?

HUBBY: Covered that above.

ME: What are 3 feelings that you experience, related to my Bipolar?

HUBBY: Sadness that you have to go through it. Fear of it getting worse. Fear of doing something without thinking that makes it worse or harder for you to handle.

ME: How can I make it easier for you?

HUBBY: By not worrying about making it easier for me.

ME: What’s the best thing you can do to take care of yourself when I’m in a Bipolar episode?

HUBBY: Let me know if you figure that one out. lol

ME: I’ve often wondered in those low moments how you could possibly think you got a good deal in marrying me. What makes living with a spouse with Bipolar worth it for you?
HUBBY: Well, if you focus on the disease, then it's not worth it. But I didn't marry a disease, I married a person that has a disease. It's no different than any other disease. I get kidney stones, you have bipolar. If life were perfect it would be boring. It's hard to answer the question because your having bipolar not even relevant to me in that context. 

ME: One last question. How would you describe non-depressed Vicki?
HUBBY: A kind, caring, giving, goofy, extraverted book-worm. Contradicting, I know, but true.

I can't thank my husband enough for taking the time to answer these questions. I know they may have been difficult for him, but he did it anyway. And I love him for it. This is for all the couples living with Bipolar Disorder. Maybe you should ask each other similar questions?


  1. Your husband sounds so supportive. His love for you just pours out of those answers. :) I'm so glad you have each other. --Lisa

  2. Hubby is #1 on my support team. He's been through so much with me. The hospitalizations. The ECT treatments. The mania. He handles it all so well. He's always there for me.

  3. He seems to loving and supportive, a blessing to have understanding with him.

  4. That was beautiful! I think you are both lucky to have each other. I struggle with severe depression and it is never easy on anyone in this house when I'm at my lowest. Which just reminded me to take my antidepressant. Stopping by from SITS. Have a wonderful day!

  5. Very brave, both of you. My husband and son are bipolor. It has never been boring: )

  6. Thank you for your comments. NEM I hope you get your depression under control.

    Doreen, boring is not a word we use around here, either. Thank you for being there for your husband and son.

  7. Those answers are so sweet! I hope it was a good exercise for the both of you. It sounds like you two are a good match!

  8. Hi Rabia, thanks for commenting. yes, it was extremely helpful to me to get hubby's perspective. And, it helped him think through questions that we needed to talk about.


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