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I have just joined this site as I'm in a new relationship with someone with a diagnosed cyclothymic bipolar guy who is medicated with lithium. I'm sorry if this is too long but this is all very bizarre to me!
We have been dating for over two months now, he has been sweet, attentive, affectionate and manic which I haven't had a problem with. He's funny and silly which is great because I'm more of a reserved personality and he brings me out of my shell.
From about a month in he was desperate to tell me he loved me but I held him back because it was too soon. Two months in and I have fallen for him hard, two weeks ago he actually told me he loved me properly and last week I told him I loved him too, things turned more passionate and intense.
However, the week after this particular weekend he went quiet on me. I hadn't heard from him for two days so debated about calling him. I called him and we had a good conversation. I said to him that I hadn't heard from him and he said "I was thinking the same thing just now". He asked me if I wanted to meet him for coffee on Thursday which we've done in the past, before I go to my evening classes. For some reason, my gut feeling was that he wasn't going to turn up. I'm glad I didn't wait for him because I text him half an hour after we were supposed to meet and an hour after I got a reply saying that he was doing some gardening and completely forgot. He also apologised. I went off on one basically saying that this spoke volumes and how he hasn't bothered to talk to me even though previously he had been bombarding me with texts/calls every single day since we met. He told me to chill, that there was no agenda, he is very absent minded about these things and that with previous gf's texts became more and more infrequent when they weren't in each other's company as the relationship went on so it's not an issue of him going off me.
Anyway, I gave him a bit of grief that night about it. I asked if he was still bothered to see me. He told me of course and to stop acting like that. I went to see him on Friday and spent till this morning (Monday) with him.
Friday was great, mucking around and sleeping together like we always do. Saturday night he spent pretty much all of the day video gaming. I needed to do some work on an essay so I didn't mind this. We did it again in the late afternoon to which he went back to his gaming without even asking me if I would mind. I went downstairs and did some more work and later in the evening he came down. That night, I was feeling so frustrated that I denied him that night.
The next morning (Sunday), we got up late, I had a shower, went downstairs to do some washing up and sat down in the living room. He came down and he asked when I was thinking of leaving and I said "Why? Do you want me to leave?". His reply was "Yes, I do." He went upstairs and came back down again. And I asked him why he wanted me to go when usually he's asking me to spend an extra night with him. His response was that he wasn't feeling it anymore and didn't want to be with me. He said I was too serious and didn't like the fact I was studying psychotherapy and he fears I'm psychoanalysing him. I told him that I'm not too serious, he has only seen one side of me. I've met his friends and family but he hasn't seen me around my friends and my family and we're always over at his house, we don't go out so there's no way for him to see another side of me. I can be a fun person to be around plus he makes me silly and I'm silly with him. I also mentioned that I was planning on asking him to come with me to my friends party the following weekend as a way of seeing this other happy, fun side. As for the psychotherapy, I said to him that the therapy I was doing was couple therapy and I don't learn about mental disorders. In fact, I know hardly anything about bipolar and that this is a new experience for me too. He also said that he pretends to be this fun, upbeat person to distract away from the fact that sometimes he wants to kill himself.
I said to him I just don't understand how he can go from really liking someone to never wanting to see them again. I said to him, but you enjoy sleeping with me too? To which he laughed. I said so you don't enjoy it? And he said no. I know this is a lie because he's obsessed with me going down on him and he said I'm the best at it out of all the gf's he's ever had. We've had marathons, he's said in the past that he loves that I'm a goer, can keep up with him and he loves how the time just flies when he sleeps with me with me which implies he doesn't find it boring. The only thing I think he's had a problem with was me denying him on Saturday night and the fact that he feels he's doing all the work because I'm not comfortable with going on top. He then said, I'm a bad person, I'm not a catch, look at me, I don't even know why you want to be with me? I told him that I loved him and cared for him and that there doesn't need to be a reason for why I feel that way about him. He said to me that you can't force someone to be with them. I said yes but he's also taking away my choice. Surely it's my choice, my decision whether to love this "bad person" and that it's up to me to decide whether he's a bad catch. He then mentioned something about going on a break etc. I told him that I don't need a man but I want to be with him. He switched on the TV at this point and started laughing at something on it. Casually he said, but I know it wouldn't be the last time I would here from you, I didn't understand what he meant by this.
I sat in silence for a bit with my arms folded and a broody pout holding back the tears with him still laughing at the TV. He then, got up, came to sit next to me and said "give me a hug". I did that shy thing of saying no and eventually hugged him. The same thing happened when he said "give me a kiss". And then eventually he said, do you want to have sx? We slept together and after that he was all affectionate. He started asking me about the party next weekend and plans for Valentine's day etc. We had a marathon later that evening where he was all affectionate again. I know he has a high libido and I love this about him, it's his way of communicating. This morning (Monday) he was ok, usually he's a little bit grumpy when he wakes up, he was fairly jovial but I could sense that he wanted me to leave, sort of ushering me out saying he didn't want me to be late for work etc. I'm assuming he just wanted to play more video games! He did say "see you later" which sort of curbed my paranoia to him turning round and saying "I never what to see you again".
Anyway, my question is, does this sound fairly familiar to those of you in a relationship with someone of bipolar? I spoke to my work colleague this morning who's partner is also bipolar and she pretty much said that this was typical, of being pushed away and then held tightly, pushed away and then held tightly again. I could tell in this mood he was purposely saying hurtful things and when he returned to what I know as normal (i.e. manic), he was being really sweet and affectionate again. Last week, when I told him I loved him. A few times he asked me, do you really? Why though? etc. I'm quite an aloof type person and feel quite guarded when it comes to my feelings, I'm affectionate but have problems with lovey exclamations.
All I can think of is he doesn't believe I love him a) because of my aloofness and b) because he doesn't think anyone could love him because he's this "bad person" Also the fact that, I may have been a bit too negative with him the past week i.e. overreacting and making him feel sh*t for forgetting to meet me as well as moaning a few times about him playing video games all day (when he's already feeling sh*t). He was trying to reject me in that moment despite all the wonderful moments we've had together. I'm guessing he felt that my negativity may mean me thinking about breaking up with him so decided to test me by pushing me away. It was better for him to reject me than for me to reject him.
I don't understand how he could do a 180 so rapidly going from not wanting to ever seen me again to thinking about what we'll be doing next weekend.
I want to communicate to him that I have never met or been with anyone with bipolar. I have little knowledge about it. I want to learn not because I find him a case study but because I love and care for him. I don't care if he's a "bad person" or a "loser" because I've seen enough good things to know not to take the "nastiness" to heart. We all have flaws and his disorder may mean he has more than the average person but I don't fall for people so easily and I have with him and want to make this work. I expect him to push me away at times, I can accept that he'll want space but I can't handle him saying that he'll never want to see me again when he thinks that's what's best for me. He said something quite vague and unclear after our discussion on Sunday, "Let's see how much resolve you have". I didn't know what he was referring to and didn't ask but I think he's referring to my being with him as before he's mentioned that "being with me is not easy". I certainly know it's a rollercoaster!
Also, how do you think I should take it from here? Should I attempt to meet him for a quick coffee on Thursday to see how he's doing? Or wait to meet on the weekend? I think it might be best to meet him on neutral gorund after this heavy weekend.
How do I communicate to him how I feel about him?
How do I handle a next mood?
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