Disclosing mental illness dating
This leads into the next point: Don’t assume you know what they are going through.The Internet can be both a valuable resource and a great detriment to knowledge acquisition.When Hope, 45, developed feelings for a local restaurateur in 2009, she knew she would have to talk to him about her diagnosis before things got serious.“I was excited about this blossoming relationship and enamored with this man,” recalls Hope, a freelance communications consultant in Denver, Colorado.We can all agree that dating, in general, isn’t easy, and when you add in another variable like mental illness it can make the scene even more daunting; but with communication, it is possible to dodge any pitfalls that may appear. By Jodi Helmer Hope dated several men after she was diagnosed with bipolar disorder II in 2004, but none of the relationships lasted long enough to make her mental health an issue.There will always be a give and take, but if someone is not being equitable, its time to say something. A partner who uses their mental illness as an excuse for constantly taking is not being fair to you. Yes, some disorders deal with different stages at times, but you know the overall tone of your relationship best.Choosing how to react in a constantly evolving situation is key to creating a strong foundation for a lasting relationship, and that includes speaking up for yourself and airing grievances when they occur.
Accept that what they need to survive and thrive may not be tolerable for you. Chances are they have been working through their mental illness since their diagnosis and have a system in place to lead a relatively normative life.
The only way to understand what your partner is experiencing is to ask them.
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