Does Your Partner Have Bipolar Disorder?

This post was developed via a partnership with BetterHelp.

Are you with someone who tends to have rapid mood swings? Are beginning to wonder if they have bipolar disorder? There are many things to consider before you accuse someone of having a mental health disorder. 

First and foremost, one must learn more about the mental health disorder, common symptoms, and how to properly help the individual. Before approaching your partner, learn more about bipolar disorder and how you can help them. 

What is Bipolar Disorder?

According to the American Psychiatric Association

“Bipolar disorder is a brain disorder that causes changes in a person’s mood, energy, and ability to function. People with bipolar disorder experience intense emotional states that typically occur during distinct periods of days to weeks, called mood episodes.”

Someone who has bipolar disorder will experience one of two mood episodes. They will experience a manic episode or a depressive episode. Manic, also referred to as hypomanic, is when a person is absurdly happy or high strung and a depressive episode is an extreme melancholy time. 

What are the Signs and Symptoms?

The symptoms of bipolar disorder will vary based on the individual and the mood episode they are experiencing. For example, if someone is going through a manic episode, their symptoms are more likely to be excessively energetic, arrogant, and easily agitated. 

They may also find everyday activities and rules pointless. Such as sleeping, eating, driving the speed limit, and sticking to a budget. These individuals may even act in criminal ways. For instance, stealing things they can afford, making spontaneous plans, and acting carelessly. 

If your partner is experiencing a depressive episode, their actions may be completely different. They may find it difficult to function daily. With feelings of hopelessness, fatigue, low self-esteem, and even suicidal thoughts. 

This episode shows similar symptoms to depression. Your partner may avoid social situations and lose interest in all of their favorite things. When an individual switches from elation to depression regularly, it could be a sign that they have bipolar disorder. 

How to Find Them Help

Suggest Seeing a Mental Health Professional

Gingerly broach the subject with your partner instead of forcing them into therapy. When you lay out the facts about the mental health disorder, it can help them better understand and prepare. A mental health professional is the most reliable source for bipolar disorder. They can help your partner understand their symptoms and prescribe medication to alleviate those symptoms too! 

Give Them Your Support

Being diagnosed with a mental health disorder is often an overwhelming and confusing process. To help your partner, show them that you care about them. Give them your support, time, and listening ear. By showing your support, they are more likely to get the help they need. 

Educate Yourself

Before all else, you must learn all there is about bipolar disorder. To properly help them, you have to understand this mental health disorder and how it affects their life. When you begin to understand why they feel and act a certain way, you can better help them overcome their symptoms.