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Thursday, July 03, 2008 DShere, Community Member, asks

Q: Living with a bipolar partner

Not sure how this site works, but I'd love to talk to anyone who has a partner with bipolar 2 or Cyclothymia.  It is ever so hard to love someone, yet have them hurt you.  More confusing is knowing they would never say so many hurtful things.  After 11 years, I know it is not him, and knowing he does not mean it, leaves me waiting for him to hit a depressive period, when he is able to see what he has said in a new light.  Which only makes him feel worse.  This is so frustrating, as I don't want him to be depressed, but also do feel the need to have him understand that calling me names, that he doesn't even know the definition of, is not helping either of us.  I am allowed to phone his doctor now, which I never want to do, but as he doesn't understand what he is saying, and seems to get very selfish for periods, I may have to if it gets really bad again.  He is very upset that our family doctor and his psychiatrist agree that I should be able to talk to his psychiatrist if I need to.  I find staying at friends helps, but I am trying to keep things at home stable, and worry that he may get depressed when I leave to sleep at a friends.  I have never left when he is really depressed, as he has attempted suicide years ago before ever seeing a doctor or therapist mind you, and he had just come out to his family as well. It is just knowing he is capable of it is scary, and he can get so down on himself and life sometimes.  When I leave, there are no certainties, which is life, and I do know that.  I wonder if anyone else struggles with taking care of yourself as you are supposed to do, as you need to be healthy etc.. and not being able to really take a break as you worry about your loved one.  I do get breaks when I know he is at work or with others, yet I still have to keep very busy with people and/or things or I sometimes slip back into thinking how to improve the life we have now, which is so full of stress, for both of us.  Waiting, and waiting for a treatment that works, is hard on me, I would love to talk to anyone who shares similar feelings and experiences.  

 

thanks for listening, hope others if not answer, at least get some help from what I hope are things, that may make them feel less alone.


David (DSmithhere@gmail.com)

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Answers (17)
Connie, Community Member
9/11/08 2:24am

It seems that your partner really wants to share the facts of his illness.  He asks you to call his doctors to help him during hard times.  Irritability is just about always a call for some help...talk or medicine.  Sometimes your going away could cause more bad feelings like guilt and helplessness.  A change afterr 11 years must be hard for you but change is life.  Stand by him and he'll get better with meds and the doctors and your love.

Reply
char, Community Member
7/ 3/08 3:26pm

HI   
     I know how you feel,My 22 yr old son is bipolar,and lives at home,I dont know what to do anymore,It is so hard to deal with.He has trouble at work and getting violent at home,it has turned our family apart,I know he doesnt mean the things he says or does,Im looking for a group home for him right now,I hate to do this,but he is going to get hurt himself or someone else.Just keep praying thats all I do.

                                                                         char

Reply
IMAMESS, Community Member
3/ 3/11 10:17pm

We are not drs.!!! If a person is violent to you they need immediate help. Not only to save your life but maybe theirs too. Someone has to stay sane in a relationship where Bipolar is conserned. Be well informed and take good care of yourself because no one else will. You will become a better and stronger person because of what you are going through, but not if your dead. You are an exceptional person for still hanging in there. There are a lot of people that cannot deal with this illness. You said that you are praying so be sure and pay attention because the answer to your prayer may not be what you want it to be. God may be trying to answer the prayer and send you help but you didn't notice. I've been there, I know!!! Find a good dr and listen to her or him.

Reply
penelope69, Community Member
7/10/08 11:03pm

Hi I'm new to this site and desperate to connect with others in this situation.  My husband of 20 years was 'finally' diagnosed with bipolar this spring after his ever-worsening behavior almost sent both of us over the edge.  He started to get more aggressive and at one point scared me and the kids so bad that i had to get family services involved.  I told him that he had to get a professional diagnosis and councelling otherwise he would have to move out.  

 

My children are ages 17, 13, and 9.  I think the type of manic you describe is the same that he has.  it is not as severe and he has been able to hold down a steady job and provide well for us.  However, living with him has been hellishly difficult;  I have always refered to him as Dr. Jeckle/Mr. Hyde.  He is amazingly talented musically and artistically, as am I, and we share a beautiful connection on many levels creatively, emotionally and philisophically.  But his horrible fluctuating moods, lashing out, anger and frusteration with the most benign things and self- hatred has threatened the very core of our relationship.

 

We are now working together with a councellor to try and make sense of things but I have reached a point where I feel I can no longer cope.  I struggle with wanting out, needing more, desiring stability, having my most basic and simplist needs met.  I feel lonely and know that i deserve better;  I also grew up with a Schitzophrenic brother who took his life so I have lived with mental illness and the fallout and stigma my whole life so it's hard not to feel bitter and completely overwhelmed.  

 

Still I try to think positively, live in the moment, give my spouse space and understanding and he has been working very hard on cognitive and medical therapy.  The worst is that as he gets better and moves on I have felt  such overpowering resentment ;  I feel like I'm being left behind in a wake of destruction.  Now my eldest child who is very angry and very disappointed with his dad, is exhibiting signs of the illness and is acting out.

 

I will be happy to correspond with you as I have been learning to manage my stress more and if anyone can lend a hand, any thoughts of inspiration, words of wisdom, understanding....please.

 

 

    

Reply
reeny, Community Member
7/29/09 2:21am

hello, i am also new to this site ,my partner is in denial,so for me knowing that this behaviour is not normal stresses me so deeply,the arguements have worsened,i have  felt that she must be right in saying that it is me who has the problem,but i feel very strongly i am not the one,i am very easy going,layed back,she likes control,and if it doesnt go according to her way she becomes angry abusive,it is her way or the highway,u can go to bed happy and feeling very close and wake the next morning to a person who admits they are agro.with no visible reason for it??? constantly justifies her actions ,will not see my side,i also feel i deserve  better,it is obvious to all who come in contact that there is something not  right,and comments like she is a jekkle and hyde,becoming unreasonable and abusive over trivial episodes,help, i love this person and want the best for her,if only she would admit the problem,she has been diagnosed but will not accept it,has seen a pschiatrist,councellors etc,but doesnt like what she hears and then questions their professionalism,and ceases therapy.we are going to couple councelling soon,a truce between us ,and leaving the issues  to be dicussed when we go.I have taken time out for myself and staying with family in a different state for a couple of weeks,i need to renergise i would like to know strategys for coping to keep me sane

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michele80, Community Member
5/ 3/10 1:56pm

It's scary because this could be me speaking...I think I've spoken pretty much every word you've said here at one time or another...just not necessarily in the same order.  One of the greatest hurdles I face is that my partner self medicates, he binge drinks which exaccerbates the manic behavior to a complete extreme that becomes scary.  Although he is never physically abusive to me, he breaks things in the house when he gets fustrated (which is at the drop of a hat)...and if I say anything I'm the crazy one, and the anger is directed at me.  I use the jekle and hyde annalogy alot.

 

Sadly, the recurring theme I find in these letters is lack of solution.  I feel like the decisions we all are faced with is to stay or to leave.  In "normal" relationships it is said that you can't change the other person, you can only change yourself.  So add this disorder to the mix, a personality that is unyielding and has to be right, change seems highly unlikely. 

 

Unfortunately, confrontation is usually a deadend.  Discussions are met with anger and fustration as we have the same conversation over and over.  And of course similiar to you I have been told that I'm the one with the problem, over and over again.     

 

Yet somehow I can't find the strength to leave-how someone can show you so much love one moment and then just disappear.  The question I'm begining to ask myself these days is not why anymore...why he does it (I understand why), or how (how can we fix it- because only he can fix it by addressing there is a problem and getting help...)My question these days is when,  when will I find the strength and courage to leave, because if he doesn't change (which he has said flat out to me that he won't)  I can't continue to suffer...the question is how to give up your best friend and worst enemy... 

 

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nina, Community Member
5/26/10 4:17pm

I have never written on a site like this before. I have very recently split with my partner who i also believe is in denial of having bipolar disorder. The split occured after enduring three and a half years of thinking that i was going mad. Like you have said, going to sleep feeling like you were the happiest couple in the world, to waking up with someone who had just had the worst news possible. Constant blame for his aggressive behaviour, thinking that he is the most amazing person to walk the earth, then saying he is a monster.

A year and a half ago, I thought we had a breakthrough. After a nasty split where physical abuse raised it's head, he broke down and said he needed help. I took him to his GP who referred him to a psychiatrist and gave him antidepressants and sleeping tablets. I admired him for admitting to his faults, took him back and promised to support him. He didn't take the medication, and didn't keep his appointment as he said he felt better and didn't need it anymore. And so, we fell back into the same pattern. A week ago, i had cigarette ends thrown at me, had the most cruel things said to me, and got strangled until i passed out. He left the next morning. He has not apologised and thinks it is my fault.

I have to be strong this time. Although I feel deeply sorry that someone suffers these bouts of euphoria then deep sadness, I have done all I can to help. And have bordered losing my own sanity. If he can't realise he has a problem, he can't be helped. And my life has to be worth more than being treated this way.

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kimster, Community Member
8/16/11 4:54am

I am so glad you wrote this. My husband was diagnosed with chronic depression. Got him to the doctor, got medication for him and then and only then did he stabilize for a while. He then decided not to take the medication, not to see the doctor and blame. Two months ago on my birthday he beat me to the ground and I knew we were finished; I'm not prepared to accept that sort of treatment for me or the kids. He will not get help. He can't control his mood swings. He is frequently verbally aggressive and he is nasty to the children if they step out of line. But of course, he "loves me". Rubbish - get some help man. I don't want anybody to feel sympathy for me but want you to know that it's pointless to try to help if you don't have the cooperation of your partner. You cant rescue someone who doesn't want to be rescued. That is while I have changed my will to favor the kids, and why I am waiting for the appointment with the family lawyer to file for divorce. I have a meeting with his extended family on Sunday to discuss why I am filing for divorce but I am clear on this. Like you Nina I have done all I can to help him. Now I am looking after me and the kids and that will give me joy. Don't let bi-polar disorder suck you into to a drama triangle (victim-perpetrator-rescuer) with you partner. I made that mistake but it won't happen again.

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Harmonylc, Community Member
12/ 5/11 2:34pm

Harmonylc,

I live with someone that is in absolute denial of having a mental problem of any kind.  It runs in his family.  We have been together for 8 yrs.  It showed up at the beginning and shows up as depression more now.  I have begged, pleated and threatened that counseling is in order.  He refuses to except that there is a major problem here.  Violence, verbal abuse and condemnation is a major function when this happens.  It's always the same story or lack of.  It doesn't matter what i say...i say it wrong, express it wrong i am in the wrong period.  I just ignore him!  I am concerned because he still wants to keep having children and he verbally is abusive in front of my small child and justifies his actions at all times.  He can hold down a job, but there are times were he talks about leaving, suicide or i don't want to go to work.  It is very stressful for me and have contimplated leaving many many times over and over.  Peace for my children and my sanity

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Amy, Community Member
4/12/12 6:55am

Move on and stay strong. Get some help yourself if you need. No amount of love is worth being treated like this.

Think just how easy a normal relationship will be. 

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dessaraine, Community Member
5/17/12 10:17pm

but how hard it is to get out of this relationship.... :(

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no ones perfect, Community Member
1/12/11 11:09pm

hey hey...omg!!! this is exactly where i am at now....9.5yrs down the track..my partner diagnosed. We dont live together but when it gets close to him being here (3wks or so) the arguments and withdrawal and baiting start..he runs back to mummies...yes mummies she is always there and this is "my" place etc etc mum of course takes him back no questions asked..even when he is here she and he will ring each other several times a day she never rings him here on the land line its always his mobile!!  ( i take umbridge to that) But then "im to sensitive, not close to my parents or just plain hate them) mmmmmm   How do you break this cycle??? Up to me??? Im depleted. hes out at the moment but is wanting to come back and is sorry for what he has done AGAIN he "loves" me and will forever.

I would love to tell the whole 9year story but im just exhausted, I now have a shrink appointment, have left my job will be struggling to make ends meet...(he will pay) and he has for some bills but gee i pay for that for weeks even months later as he throws that up...but...they r just throw away lines..."iM to sensitive" bp"s forgive and forget...HA i dont???? we r talking 10yrs of lies abuse physical and emotional infidelity.....could add more....who is the "sick" one here????  Must be me!!!! hes happy being unhappy wotever happy is ..the only way to stop the cycle is to stop...they seem to out weather all...maybe cos he has his mother...(the father is there but i think he likes the break as when the prodicle son is around the two can bp all over the place together)

 

Nothing changes if nothing changes

 

God help me................

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Monica, Community Member
10/19/12 5:17pm

My heart breaks for you as I read this, because I am living in very similar circumstances. I ask the same questions, feel the same anguish. I am not married to my partner and could clearly leave the situation, but I do love the man he is when he is in "his right mind". I feel like leaving is admitting defeat and abandoning him. I have a very strong Christain faith and I have prayed and given this to God. Some days though, I feel like I am the one who needs the medication. I am in a constant state of conflict over making the 'right' decision for my own sanity. Today was one of them. I chose to vent and walk away..Did it solve anything? No..it was "Groundhog Day"...I know I have seen this moie before at least 100 times. I don't see the light at the end of this tunnel. So do I save myself or do I trudge on, knowing my road is paved with heartache?

 

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michele80, Community Member
11/24/12 2:16pm

I know it took awhile for me to reply, and I hope your circumstances are a bit better now.  For me the situation has improved tremendously, but it took hitting bottom to get there.  In April of this year my boyfriend was hospitalized.  He had a manic episode after having insomnia for several days and just completely lost touch with reality.  After that experience he has remained on the medication needed to stay balanced with this illness.  Had things continued down the road that they were, I don't think I would have stayed.  

 

Being the partner of someone with bi-polar disorder is a roller coaster, and even though you don't actually have the illness, you experience those extreme highs and lows with your partner in your own way.  I know that you said you have a strong faith, which is something that is good for you.  It is a way to find comfort and peace of mind for yourself.  I know that my boyfriend struggles taking the medication, there are a lot of negative side effects, but the behavior is night and day from before.  As I write this to you I know that, suggesting medication and/or something like this to your partner may prove beyond difficult.  In the past if I ever brought something like that up to my partner is resulted in hard feelings and long drawn out arguements. Like I said earlier it took hitting rock bottom to convince him otherwise.  But with that, I truly do believe that the meds do make all the difference.  The arguements have ceased for the most part and the constant high stress of our home has finally mellowed into a place of comfort.  In the end, I think him finally addressing this is what saved us.

 

I truly wish you the best, and hope that you are finding peace of mind whether it be within that relationship or not. 

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Monica, Community Member
10/19/12 5:17pm

My heart breaks for you as I read this, because I am living in very similar circumstances. I ask the same questions, feel the same anguish. I am not married to my partner and could clearly leave the situation, but I do love the man he is when he is in "his right mind". I feel like leaving is admitting defeat and abandoning him. I have a very strong Christain faith and I have prayed and given this to God. Some days though, I feel like I am the one who needs the medication. I am in a constant state of conflict over making the 'right' decision for my own sanity. Today was one of them. I chose to vent and walk away..Did it solve anything? No..it was "Groundhog Day"...I know I have seen this moie before at least 100 times. I don't see the light at the end of this tunnel. So do I save myself or do I trudge on, knowing my road is paved with heartache?

 

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michele80, Community Member
11/24/12 2:15pm

I know it took awhile for me to reply, and I hope your circumstances are a bit better now.  For me the situation has improved tremendously, but it took hitting bottom to get there.  In April of this year my boyfriend was hospitalized.  He had a manic episode after having insomnia for several days and just completely lost touch with reality.  After that experience he has remained on the medication needed to stay balanced with this illness.  Had things continued down the road that they were, I don't think I would have stayed.  

 

Being the partner of someone with bi-polar disorder is a roller coaster, and even though you don't actually have the illness, you experience those extreme highs and lows with your partner in your own way.  I know that you said you have a strong faith, which is something that is good for you.  It is a way to find comfort and peace of mind for yourself.  I know that my boyfriend struggles taking the medication, there are a lot of negative side effects, but the behavior is night and day from before.  As I write this to you I know that, suggesting medication and/or something like this to your partner may prove beyond difficult.  In the past if I ever brought something like that up to my partner is resulted in hard feelings and long drawn out arguements. Like I said earlier it took hitting rock bottom to convince him otherwise.  But with that, I truly do believe that the meds do make all the difference.  The arguements have ceased for the most part and the constant high stress of our home has finally mellowed into a place of comfort.  In the end, I think him finally addressing this is what saved us.

 

I truly wish you the best, and hope that you are finding peace of mind whether it be within that relationship or not. 

 

Reply
michele80, Community Member
11/24/12 2:15pm

I know it took awhile for me to reply, and I hope your circumstances are a bit better now.  For me the situation has improved tremendously, but it took hitting bottom to get there.  In April of this year my boyfriend was hospitalized.  He had a manic episode after having insomnia for several days and just completely lost touch with reality.  After that experience he has remained on the medication needed to stay balanced with this illness.  Had things continued down the road that they were, I don't think I would have stayed.  

 

Being the partner of someone with bi-polar disorder is a roller coaster, and even though you don't actually have the illness, you experience those extreme highs and lows with your partner in your own way.  I know that you said you have a strong faith, which is something that is good for you.  It is a way to find comfort and peace of mind for yourself.  I know that my boyfriend struggles taking the medication, there are a lot of negative side effects, but the behavior is night and day from before.  As I write this to you I know that, suggesting medication and/or something like this to your partner may prove beyond difficult.  In the past if I ever brought something like that up to my partner is resulted in hard feelings and long drawn out arguements. Like I said earlier it took hitting rock bottom to convince him otherwise.  But with that, I truly do believe that the meds do make all the difference.  The arguements have ceased for the most part and the constant high stress of our home has finally mellowed into a place of comfort.  In the end, I think him finally addressing this is what saved us.

 

I truly wish you the best, and hope that you are finding peace of mind whether it be within that relationship or not. 

 

Reply
michele80, Community Member
5/ 3/10 1:56pm

It's scary because this could be me speaking...I think I've spoken pretty much every word you've said here at one time or another...just not necessarily in the same order.  One of the greatest hurdles I face is that my partner self medicates, he binge drinks which exaccerbates the manic behavior to a complete extreme that becomes scary.  Although he is never physically abusive to me, he breaks things in the house when he gets fustrated (which is at the drop of a hat)...and if I say anything I'm the crazy one, and the anger is directed at me.  I use the jekle and hyde annalogy alot.

 

Sadly, the recurring theme I find in these letters is lack of solution.  I feel like the decisions we all are faced with is to stay or to leave.  In "normal" relationships it is said that you can't change the other person, you can only change yourself.  So add this disorder to the mix, a personality that is unyielding and has to be right, change seems highly unlikely. 

 

Unfortunately, confrontation is usually a deadend.  Discussions are met with anger and fustration as we have the same conversation over and over.  And of course similiar to you I have been told that I'm the one with the problem, over and over again.     

 

Yet somehow I can't find the strength to leave-how someone can show you so much love one moment and then just disappear.  The question I'm begining to ask myself these days is not why anymore...why he does it (I understand why), or how (how can we fix it- because only he can fix it by addressing there is a problem and getting help...)My question these days is when,  when will I find the strength and courage to leave, because if he doesn't change (which he has said flat out to me that he won't)  I can't continue to suffer...the question is how to give up your best friend and worst enemy... 

 

Reply
Tori, Community Member
12/21/11 7:54am

I have been with my partner for 6 years but have only known about his illness for 2, he kept if from me.

It was always a rollercoaster ride of a relationship, one minute I seemed to be the best thing since sliced bread and hte next he was finishing with me, I always blamed myself, thought I wasn't good enough for him!!

Since knowing about his illness and only because he had come off his meds and had a really low episode life seems to be very confusing.

Part of me liked him more when he was low because he was so loving and needed me, i hated seeing him hurt but part of me misses that side of him.

Is that so wrong of me??

Now he is getting stronger and nit picks about silly little things that I haven't done and i try not to argue with him but sometimes I just blow, I feel very guilty afterwards but at the time I can't seem to stop myself, he just accuses me of feeling sorry for myself!!

I don't know what to do for the best.

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IMAMESS, Community Member
3/ 4/11 7:44pm

Hello, I'm going to tell you something that took me 20 years to learn. this is a fact that applies to your bipolar partner. When someone is in a manic episode, it does absoultly no good to argue with them. That is part of the illness! You cannot control anyone but you, and it takes 2 to argue. Don't argue or reason with this person. If you will just think back to past arguments you have never won a single argument and you never will! when we try to argue and reason with them it will escalate into you being verbally abused, everything is your fault, you have ruined their life, and your incompatance will bring the family to ruien. Sound familiar? My life has changed for the better 100 fold after applying this advice. My husband still hurts my feeling when he says dinner isn't fit to eat. But I don't argue. I just let him get up and fix his self a bowl of cereal! I might say that is rude. and then I drop it. I do the same as you when I have to go to the next state and stay with family. Most of the time it is for me. I need to be around sane people to get my bearings!!! Hang in there and give it a try and let me know how it works. I wish you the best

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JohnE50, Community Member
8/18/08 12:12pm

I am not an expert but my wife and I have been married for 19 years and she has had bipolar episodes about every 3-5 years.  I have tried different approaches to helping her yet not one has been fully effective.  My wife considers me the enemy and the one not to trust.  My suggestion is to try to keep stress down in both of your lives and just be there when an episode occurs.  I try not to committ her for care.  I usually pick her up from different places and just wait for her to bottom out and usually MHMR locally usually gets involved to get her the help.  Usually after about 2 -4 weeks she is herself and actually does not remember the recent episode.  I also make sure all forms of money and accounts are severed since in a manic stage she spends alot of money.  Just be there when your husbands recovers from an episode.  I am sure every non-bipolar person has different techniques and ways to cope..  

 

It is a hard life for both partners in a bipolar relationshipe, yet if you love your husband you will be there for him regaredless...

 

 

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mina2, Community Member
4/12/09 11:47pm

Hi, I know I am very late to this response and am hoping you still check back. It's nice, in a disturbingly comforting way, to hear that it's not me - that others experience and have experienced the same things as I. I have been living with and dating my boyfriend for almost 3 years. I love him to pieces. Unfortunately, that, to me, right or wrong, means that I stay through the stages of horrible anger and bitter words, because, as you said, "It's not him". I'm curious how you are now and if speaking with his psychiatrist has helped. I'm at my breaking point and wish that someone could give me direction. My Dr. Jekyl, Mr. Hyde is breaking me to pieces, and I just wish that something could cure it. Thank you....

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Sue, Community Member
4/15/09 5:55pm

Sue

Hi just read everything on here and sat here in my room in tears. Been married for 30 years. Always thought his mood changes was just him, his personality. He has been diagnosed biopolar and is on medication.  At the moment I feel so down, you would think after all these years I would be used to all these highs and lows.  But the older I get the more I feel I can't cope anymore.  I also feel alone and also feel like ending it with him, but I know I could not do it. When you feel wanted loved and needed and happy its great.  Then this person you don't know arrives with his superman complex he can do everything and anything he does not need anyone not even you. He loves attention, he sings and loves all the adulation, even flirted with a woman in front of me....Even on medication we have these episodes...Im at my witsend trying to find help for myself just to talk to someone is not easy at all...I have so much to say but find it hard to put it all down in words....I tell him I can't go through this again but I do I'm here picking up the pieces all the time....

 

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Amy, Community Member
4/12/12 7:07am

Unless your prepared to live with this treatment you cant really expect anything else.

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Esmestar, Community Member
1/18/13 5:04pm
I can completely sympathise with you although I have only had a year of ups and downs. The situation I am in is heart breaking. My partner has ended our relationship again and he seems completely irrational in his behaviour. This is the third time in a year and I have no idea if I'm going to hear off him again. We were living together, but I've been forced to move out (last week). He says he still loves me and wants to be friends and will be in touch in a fortnight to discuss being friends!! He has started online dating 4days after kicking me out in a rage in the middle of the night! Over the years have similar things happened to you, and if so does he come back after ending your relationship? Reply
rachael, Community Member
8/18/09 4:13pm

I too am in a relationship with a bipolar partner who is verbally and emotionally abusive. He is on various medication but i doubt it is working.He disagrees and won;t return to his Dr. He is void of emotion, mean and hurtful for hours a day, then loving affectionate and kind the other few hours. He makes me believe i have the problem and my heart is just breaking.  He lies continually and i don't think he can be trusted. Part of me knows i need to get out but i love him too much to want to live without him. I used to be comfortable and confident now i have little self esteem left and cry everyday. He won't listen to reason and he dismisses my feelings continually. I just don't know what to do anymore. Strangely enough, i am now in therapy and he is not...can anyone give me some encouraging words. My life is empty and most of the time i feel alone whether he is with me or not.

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Joy Walsh, Community Member
2/23/10 2:11am

Rachel I do  not understand why you can see and say all these things yet stay in a relationship that is bringing you undone. 

I have just left a relationship with a 55yr male who is bipolar. I am 54. I moved interstate to live with him being naive of bipolar. my life has been in turmoil for the 4yrs we have been together. He is a very high profile radio personality in a state of Australia.  He gave up drinking alcohol cold turkey. His behaviour has not changed. He lies to me. He is flirtatious with other women, he texts other women asking for dates ....given he lives with the one he loves so much. I had a women phone me saying he was texting her, telling me to get out i dont deserve this treatment.

At the same time this man pays my bills, loves our labradors to bits, pays for his daughters bills, i believe its guilt. its like i will pay your life if you put up with my behaviour.  It has driven me insane, i applied logic to this man. He is unreasonable, berates me, and loves me. answer that one. why are so many people allowing themselves to stay in relationships that are bringing them undone.

 

I know feel in control of my life, as simple as it is. i am not hiding from the world anymore because i was so exhausted with the crap and lies and turmoil this man gave me. Sure i loved him, adored him, wanted to help him but he does not want help. He has an ego large as life. He could control himself at work with his family buy not me. causes so much anger and frustration and disillusion.

 

I ask why would anyone want to live like this. He is now living alone doing fine. He leaned on me for everything, i did everything. He drained me beyond belief.

Sure I loved him, he is kind caring and generous but that did not make up for the bad behaviour I tolerated.  He would not seek extra help to help himself other than pick up a script.  He is making choices so did I.

 

Good luck.

 

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Sunshine Girl, Community Member
4/ 5/10 12:54pm

Yay Joy! Your story is refreshing for the sense of personal empowerment you have achieved. While I believe some people can stay with bipolar partners and find happiness, I also agree that for others the right decision is to summon up the courage to leave.

 

I have been with my partner for 13 years. Three of his family members have been diagnosed with bipolar but it didn't occur to me that he might suffer from it as well, until a few years ago when he started becoming progressively worse. Now with a baby in the situation and a marriage proposal on the table, I am at a crossroads and feel its time to decide if this is where I really want to be. 

 

I am not looking for advice from anyone (other than a psychologist, lol) but your story struck a nerve because it's so familiar, and I wanted to thank you for sharing it! Blessings!

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suzzee, Community Member
1/ 1/12 3:52am

How do I really know the horrible things he says to me about our relationship or my appearance are because of the disease or because they may be true? Im dying inside I want to stay but its really hard and cant leave as its financillay impossible - any advice would be great

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IMAMESS, Community Member
3/ 5/11 10:09pm

You are not alone!!! You may not be able to write it down but believe me there are lots of people that feel just like you. Take care of yourself because if you don't no one will know how as well as you do. Seek out people that will listen like us! we have expereinced it all. Your partner wants you to keep it secret and don't do any thing to hurt him. But they can deal out the abuse on you 24/7 and your supose to take it with a smile! Sometimes you have to leave no matter what anyone says. It is up to you for only you know how much you can take. 20 years I've had to deal with it. and now i'm very sick. I'm trying to take better care of my self now. I have changed and he has not. That is just the way it is living with a bipolar person, and he is also the love of my life.

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skidanamarie, Community Member
11/10/09 11:16am

Hi David,

 

I do understand!  I have been with my husband for 9 years now and he was just diagnosed as bipolar.  I have been dealing with his anger episodes and depression and a whole sort of other emotional problems for years.  I am beat down.  He has not started meds yet but I am praying for  miracle.  I can't live like this anymore.  I would love to chat with you as I need some support also.

Thanks,  Dana

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IMGOING, Community Member
1/31/10 5:35am

Hi I have just worked out that my partner of only one and half years is bi-polar and I have had enough already- so all you men and woman out there who have done ten years of even three i take my hat of tto you. My partner and his nasty selfish moments have taken there toll on me and the up times are few and far between - he just shuts of from me wont even talk about it. So Im going this aint for me so before I get in to deep I am legging it who wants that crap he wont get help he thinks its ok to reject me and then when hes up and not depressed im expected just to act like all the nastiness had not even happened. I cant do that I need love too- people with this disorder wont change they get nastier and meaner and the highs are not even worth it anymore - ladies and men get out even if you love them and go and find someone that can love you right =cause these people are not normal and nobody needs that in their life - leave them to it - if they commit suicide so be it harsh as that sounds - they have no respect for life and the people that love them they are selfish and will never change. I loved the man I met but within a year he has managed to totally destroy that he did that !!!!! he wont get help that is his decision as a adult so as adults we make choices and thats his choice my choice is to find some-one that will touch me me hug me and love me every human being deserves that. He is so selfish when hes having some bpolar  moment he wont touch me or have sex with me for sometimes over a month-this is  not for me so I have to go I cannot live with this total emptiness anymore that may sound un supportive but hey you only live once why waste your love on some-one who cant love in return- leave them to it - they usally have deviant sexual ways so im sure he will manage somehow- they have these strange ways I believe because it is the only way the can feel. I feel rejected hurt angry and used by my man because he refuses to do anything to change or even talk about his disorder.  GOODLUCK to you all you are going to need all the luck in the world - Living with man has made me feel like commiting suicide and I am worth more than that dying for him is not worth it - Im at wits end and because you cant do anything about it you hold all that rejection and  anger in you - sometimes the share frustration of it just makes ME feel crazy - I can never relax he just gets picky about everything and it does my head in - NOT for me GET AWAY from these people and live a life everyone on this site you are missing out on precious years that you could actually have a normal life - hugs and kisses and bless you all on this site you are braver than me Im outa my relationship - some other person can try and good luck to them

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Joy Walsh, Community Member
4/ 5/10 6:28pm

dear imgoing.

i have read and re read your comments so many times and its the only thing that keeps me going.  i totally and utterley relate to every thing you have said. i met my man fell so in love he was generous with money ( i was single mum (childs now older) little money, he paid for everything treated me like a queen. he lived interstate and after a year i moved from my home of 20yrs and my 3 sons to be with the man i finally found love with. thats when it started, such unusual behaviour weird things happening ... one day he left his ph at home and i found sexual suggestive msgesfrom a woman he met thru his job. he is ahigh profile broadcaster.  he had all the excuses in the world, it was her fault she chased him etc. it destroyed me. i left confused and crazy came back to my home and family could never settle we still contacted one another and he still supported me financailly at times.i moved jobs i was irrational i was confused i cried didnt know what the hell to do. after a year i went back, saying i will be different help him support him be more loving all that stuff, it happened again. he introduced me to a lady who could of been a friend to me as i was lonely, but i found text to her on his ph whilst we were on a whitsunday tropical island holiday...saying he missed her and wanted to catch up with her. i hid the fact i knew. 2 months later she phd me to say she was concerned about the texts she was getting from him. here we again.  all denial, nothing happening, he admitted he was wrong and nothing init, so why.  ff..... do it then. a weird way of showing devoted love.

in between this was the beratings, the tellings off the nastiness and then wake up the next day and all is meant to be wonderful and he wondered why i wouldnt talk to him, then acuse me of being wrong.  i was going crazy.

 

for the second time i packed up our 2 labradors whom we adored and slept with and walked with and came back to my house. i now have limited income and lonely am 55 and starting my life again with the commitment of 2 labs so i cannot do too much socially as i work full time and love them to bits.   i wonder how i will ever find anyone again.

 

i wonder how you are doing. how old are you. maybe hyou are young enough to get out and move.

you email was so good to read. i too felt i was going crazy. how can one love a man so much and need him when he his illness has done so much damage to me.

he has a radio job so he controls all for that. he is wonderful to his daughter never rude or nasty to her. why was it me.

 

please reply if you can.

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Amy, Community Member
4/12/12 6:34am

When they're high, your high, when they're depressed, your depressed. When it starts to become destructive, no amount of LOVE is worth recking your health, job or life for.

 

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bookjane51, Community Member
1/11/13 9:02am

parnter in deial he has bipolar yet found papwework in my bin stating he has been diagnosed with bi polar disorder he was prescribed orlazapine 2 years ago but stopped taking them. hes the most caring kind ma who wold do anythig for me and my family he wraps me in cotton wool. then out of the blue he becomes quiet uhappy feels depressed then insulted me constantly intimidates shouts etc he always ends up leaving then says he doesnt want to live without me.crying one minute on the phone then the next call will be volatile and threatning. then couple of days later hel ring and act like  hes done nothing wrong and say he was sorry and felt down. i have key back and feel lonely but safe from volatile outbursts. the stupid thing is my life feels empty and quiet without him. been in relationship 7 years on and off always breaking up due to his extreme mood shift he doesnt have contact with his mum dad 2 sisters and doesnt have access to his 6 year old none of this according to him is has fault.feel like i need time off work to deal with the emotional rollercoster ive been on. after days weeks or even months he will contact me when he is so down and ask to see me and offer me the world i always listen as ime the only true person in his life like an anchor to him and i always thought i could help him. i now feel i have to break away from this as its taking my energy. i dont feel like there is anyone that understands what its like until i read statements on this site. next step?

 

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Serenit, Community Member
2/ 9/11 12:24am

I have had Cyclothymia my whole life, but was only just diagnosed about 6 years ago. I started looking for something organic to take to treat it right away. I initially started using a product called Serenity, an organic lithium orotate. Eventually I switched to cheaper generic organic lithium orotate products. Fortunately for me, taking 3 little tablets (360 mg) per day was sufficient to control my mood swings after a few months of building up in my system. I've never had any side effects from taking the organic lithium orotate. Considering that Cyclothymia contributed to 3 ruined marriages and a few job losses, to live without the episodes was like being reborn. The only times I've had an episode is when I've been under extremely stressful circumstances. I can't even describe the relief I have experienced from being free of mood swings. I did increase my dose by 1 pill/day this year because I felt I needed it to maintain my emotional balance after my father died and I've been having a rough relationship. Ironically, I think my current boyfriend is suffering from a mood swing disorder. It took awhile for me to put it together, but I finally got it. And when I did it dawned on me, "Whoa, so this is what I was like when I was having episodes? No wonder my relationships all failed." Cyclothymia may not have been entirely to blame, but its effect was definitely felt. I have to admit that I don't believe my relationship with my current boyfriend can last. He's not going to change, and if anything, his behavior will worsen, escalate. And he doesn't seem to believe he has a problem. I didn't know I had a problem, but when it was pointed out to me that there was a pattern of behavior in my life that was consistent with mood swing disorder, I knew I wanted to find a way to STOP it! My boyfriend was married for many years, and then his wife threw him out. Now I know why. He was in relationship with a woman for 10 years before he and I started dating. He broke up with her because she was drinking so heavily. After dating him for almost 2.5 years, I thought to myself I can understand why. He can be so sweet, warm and charming, but those times are so few and far between. No amount of telling him I do not want to walk around on eggshells worried about what will set him off, I do not want a relationship full of drama, and I refuse to be abused (it hurts him to think I think he's abusive, but if the shoe fits!), has made an impact. He sucked me in, swept me off my feet with romance, and then never followed through on a thing. To me, that feels like he was just lying about liking the things I like to do, lying about what we would do together. Once he figured he had me tied up and committed, then he was free to be himself in all his self-absorbed glory. OK, that's a bit mean. But, really, I've said to him on more than one occasion that it would be nice if he could tear his eyes off the TV to at least say hi to me when I walk in the door! And never mind PDA's, there's no private displays of affection either, unless it's leading to "making love." Oh yeah, he so nobly told me when we first started dating that he can't just "have sex." Nope, he can only be physical with a woman if he's "making love." Great, semantics. Too bad there's next to no real intimacy involved. Gotta give him credit for crazy-making too. *SIGH* Yes, women, and men, bipolars can be very, very charming. And they can get very, very insensitive and even mean, depending on how they act out manically or depressively. I remembered, and sometimes didn't remember, "slicing and dicing" with my tongue, verbally fileting whichever hapless person ticked me off. Because when you are in that mood everything is out of proportion to whatever really happened. It totally alters your reality. But, if you are a decent person with a good heart, once you come out of it you feel MORTIFIED. I don't like to think about how often I groveled for forgiveness over something I said or did during an episode. But the important thing is I was sorry and I apologized. Not so this boyfriend of mine. He can turn like a cobra, ruin a nice night in a heartbeat, and he's actually gotten out of bed - for NO REASON - to sleep in another room, all without ever uttering a single, "I'm sorry." Since he's unable or unwilling to make any effort to get help, to change, I cannot stay. It's too hard on me, too hard on my heart and my soul to be with him. What's crazy is I know he'll act devastated when I break it off with him. Like he never saw it coming. Let me tell you who are dating people who are hurting you, whether they are manic/depressive or not, there is NO reason to stay. People can get help if they want to. I did. I have already toughed out enough stuff in my life. I can't tough out what he's going through when I'm his emotional punching bag. I have the ability to move on and start over. I hope that anyone else who is being abused can find the strength to do the same.

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mark mcritchie, Community Member
2/19/11 8:16am

hi i read your letter and i feel exactly the same, we get on really well most of the time but at the back of my mind im just waiting for things to turn,its got to be the most frustrating illness going about when you feel everything is going great then all of a sudden BANG, i dont even know what i done or said was wrong, we have been together 9 years and finally getting married this year i dont really have anyone to turn to as my own family are ignorant to the whole thing, ive stayed at my brothers house and folks house when things go wrong but since ive spoken to the cpn and counsellers ive learnt a hell of alot about how her mind works,as hard as this is i know i can do anything and everything i can to help and understand,[well try anyway] ive now finally decided to go it oalone and now no longer speak to my family,not very nice i know but we have enough pressure on us that we both feel we need people that love us so we can now move forward as a team,

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angela, Community Member
3/ 2/11 11:30am

Hi yes i have a husband who has bipola and it isnt easy. Expecially when he tells you every couple of months that he hates you  and doesnt like anything about you . This happens every couple of months .Other wise he is a very caring person. I dont think i can take it any more and told him to pack his bags and go do what he wants what ever that is.When ever im happy he pulls the rug from under neath and hurts so much .Iv tried but cant take it any more . Have lost friend because of it .dont have any reall answers.

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dan2864, Community Member
5/10/11 2:38pm

I have been datng a woman for 2 years who is bipolar. i knew from the beginning that she had the disorder but i never truely understood what it meant.  at the beginning everything was great. we were happy, but occasionaly there would be little things that would come up always turning into big things, but every time the situation would settle down.
 
she has been on and off her medications (i know she would disagree), but when on her meds everything is good. we have our disagreements but we are able to work through them or seperate ourselves until the situation settles down. Off her meds arguments seem to last days. 
 
Now she is 14 weeks pregnant with twins and can not be on her meds. ever since the she stopped the medication arguments have become more and more frequent and long lasting.  most recently we spent easter apart during that time she sent me messages saying she missed me and wished i was there and i too.  when she got home that evening she was irritated with me seeming to blame me for her not having fun on easter.
 
we went to bed happy. first message i got from her on monday was happy as well, but that soon took a turn for the worse.  she saw the hair gel on the bathroom counter and asked why i would need it since i wear a hat most the time, even christmas.  that started the week of hell.
 
imagine nearly a full week of constant arguing. on occasions i told her to take things up with our couples counselor.  i i asked her why she is mad and how the hair gel would spark her taking things out from weeks even months in the past.  this continued through thursday.  everything i did was intentionaly to cause fights with her or her son.  she was constantly calling me a psycho, or a sociopath because nothing was ever my fault.  on friday we had our biggest fight of the week. her accusing me of arguing with her for the purpose of losing the babies.  me defending myself and trying to plead with her telling her that she isn't acting normal and she has even been treating her son differently.  telling her that was met with even more rage. 

 

i left for a bit friday and came back to a note saying that she was at the ER having contractions and that if i showed up i would be escortd out by armed guard.  she blamed my constant arguing with her for causing the extremely early contractions.  she never came home that night.  the next day there was another note saying the membrane between the babies broke and they are at severe risk and thank you for showing concern. i tried every means available to contact her friday and sayurday to find out if she was ok.

 

Now she is stying in a home for battered women. she filed a protective order against me again saying that i was purposely causing stress in her life for the purpose of a misscarrage. today is the trial.

 

i love her, the babies she's carrying, and her son more than i could ever put in to words.  i feel horrible.  i wish i would have read these furums before all this happened.  now she has left and i don't know if we will ever be together again, the babies are in danger.  now i know what i need to do to make things right in our household.  i know how to react to the arguments, but i fear it is too late

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julian, Community Member
6/26/11 4:56pm

I am going through the same issues with my wife, this has gone on the past 5 years, we have been married for 11. Last week after a period of home leave she attempted suicide for the fourth time. I feel trapped unable to have a life , balancing work with duty of care forever traveling to hospital appointments. For the first time this week i feel i have had enough and have decided our partnership cant continue. I have made the decision to move away and that she must recover on her own with the community team , i just cant do this anymore and need to find happiness. I feel forever miserable and also upset that my wife who has had 30 years as a senior nurse should end up like this, someone who had confidence in abundance, but now no longer able to make a decision on ability to leave her room. Am i being selfish or real. I just want to be happy its such a mess

 

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julian, Community Member
6/26/11 4:56pm

I am going through the same issues with my wife, this has gone on the past 5 years, we have been married for 11. Last week after a period of home leave she attempted suicide for the fourth time. I feel trapped unable to have a life , balancing work with duty of care forever traveling to hospital appointments. For the first time this week i feel i have had enough and have decided our partnership cant continue. I have made the decision to move away and that she must recover on her own with the community team , i just cant do this anymore and need to find happiness. I feel forever miserable and also upset that my wife who has had 30 years as a senior nurse should end up like this, someone who had confidence in abundance, but now no longer able to make a decision on ability to leave her room. Am i being selfish or real. I just want to be happy its such a mess

 

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solar, Community Member
4/11/12 6:39pm

I have been with my partner for nearly 5 years now and knew he had bi polar 2 before we got together.

We are both in our 40's and have our own spaces, I find this helps alot although we have grown closer and spend alot of time together even though I work fulltime my partner is unable to as yet his medication hasn,t been able to stabilise him enough to help him feel able to commit and not let people down.

He leads a difficult life the best he can . It is true that life goes up and down and being affectionate and giving is not always easy for him to do. That is how he is and I have accepted this as there is no way forward if you cant do this , life would not be do-able together.

When he is able he tries hard to give what he can , this in turn I know drains his resources and he often gives even though it may prove to be detrimental to his mental health.

I guess if you start a relationhip with someone with bi polar then you need to know what your in for .I would not tolerate violence , fortunately this does not happen in our relationship , he is usually feeling angry with me when his mood is changing so I tell him I cannot be around him at this time and leave him alone in his space .

All strategies i have developed to sustain our relationship have been made by me I have had to learn as I have gone along  and have slowly been able to discuss more and more with my partner and vice versa .

We used to have the odd argument but the cause would be when my needs were prominent for me and was unable to make me feel better , this would make me feel very frustrated and unloved  but this is now hapening less and we are both becoming more considerate of each other and not giving each other a difficult time.

I guess you either love your partner enough to be a strength through the difficult times and remain consistent for them and remember it is the illness and the possible inappropriate medication contributing to the difficult times alongside the every stressors of life.

I have support from friends but I do not like to burden them with my anxieties but I know they are there if I need them,  my family try and understand but find it difficult. My partners family help the best they can .

 

I am sorry that so many people have encountered so many difficulties , I feel lucky to have my partner in my life , it is not a dreamy relationship it is very real and very difficult , but for me it means a tremendous amount and I would not want to be without him ,bi polar and all .

 

 

Your right you do have to look after yourself and it is an effort sometimes to do this but you must . I dont do much just a manicure or a hair cut or buy something new . This sustains me , others it may not .

 

I love my partner to bits and will do all I can to keep him safe and healthy. I do have grown up children as well even though it sounds like I may just focus upon him I dont and have to stretch myself around everyone , but I manage .

I try hard to look beyond the illness all he tiime and stay focused upon my partner and not allow his illness to push me away.

 

I hope there are others out there who have similar experiences , please do tell.

 

 

 

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ella, Community Member
12/18/12 3:19am

i live with a bipolar partner he is very controlling i am not aloud to have friends

he is very mean and usaually chases everyone away yes i am very lonly and isolated one day i am walking on 8 feet of ice the next day iam walking on 1 inch of ice calls me names theaten to put me on the street to live want pay bills we have moved over 20 times in 11 years gets me fired from every job i get if he lets me work

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Hopeless, Community Member
12/21/12 2:00am

I am at the point of totaly emotional breakdown...I have been with my person for 5 years now and I would have to say I am not sure any more on who is sick him or myself...There is still that strong part of me that trys to understand he is sick but honestly the biggest part of me wants to run...When the doctor told me it would be a very hard road and to consider staying with him i told the doc how do you leave someone you love...I was so sure I could do this I was so sure i was good for him wow everything I was sure about is no longer there...Now I have nothing but resentment and anger and depression...I have 3 children who i take care of myself in every aspect...You could say 4 him included...I support our family I take care of all the needs i give all of me and more...I make sure he takes his meds i baby his feelings i sacrafice anything that would make me happy for him and in return i get degraded i get the blame for anything that happens bad in his life...He takes up most of my time when I am home wich is very seldom because i work a lot...I realize I have nothing els to give and there is nothing that will make this man happy...I am very angry at myself because i don't know why I can't walk away from him and then i realize it is because I love him so much...Then I ask myself how can I love someone so much that has drained every ounce of life from my being...I was a very happy positive person now i am a mess...

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By DShere, Community Member— Last Modified: 08/12/13, First Published: 07/03/08