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Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC
Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5401
Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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My bipolar boyfriend broke up with me 3 days ago and says he

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My bipolar boyfriend broke up with me 3 days ago and says he we should be friends. He broke up out of the blue just because a bottle of wine I had left in the freezer to chill had leaked a bit. We had been planning a long weekend away next week.
The day after the breakup I wrote to him to ask if he still wanted to go away. He replied that he was happy to hear from me and didn't want to part angry. I said I couldn't go away if he only wanted to go as "friends", but then I changed my mind because it's his birthday next week.
I really love him but I now feel that I'm making a terrible mistake in going on this trip. We have now purchased the tickets which are non-refundable. He says we'll go on the trip and then take a break, but to me that's still a breakup. I'm beginning to feel depressed and anxious at once.
This is the first time he has really broken up with me, although several times during our 1 1/2 relationship he has said 'this is no longer possibld' referring to our relationship and sounding like he's breaking up but never go through with it.
Will the trip calm him down and perhaps change his mind about the breakup or make it worse? He wants to have dinner this Friday to clarify things, but I'm not even sure I have the strength to go (and hear that he confirms the breakup?).
What should be done? Is there any hope that he just was acting impulsively and doesn't really want to break up? I've been in tears at work everyday this week..please help...thank you.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC replied 2 years ago.

Hi, I'd like to help you with your question.

 

You mention that your boyfriend has Bipolar disorder at the beginning of your question. Bipolar disorder can have a huge effect on your relationship. Bipolar causes mood swings from depression to mania and can cause irritability, beyond the normal that you and I might experience.

 

Is your boyfriend in treatment? He should be taking medications and at least have tried therapy to help him cope with his symptoms. Getting upset and breaking up your relationship over a broken wine bottle seems like an extreme reaction and may be attributed to his disorder.

 

Because of your boyfriend's diagnosis, you have an extra strain on your relationship. He may not react like you would to a problem. He may show extreme emotions instead. And if he experiences mania, he may make impulsive decisions without considering your feelings.

 

Your boyfriend constantly keeps you on edge in the relationship by telling you that "this is no longer possible" and now by saying he wants to break up but only when he thinks it should happen. It's no wonder you are feeling anxious and tearful. It is very hard to live with not knowing what he wants to do from one minute to the next.

 

You need some control in the situation. Right now, your boyfriend has all the control. You may want to decide ahead of time before Friday's dinner what you want to do. Are you ok staying in an unstable relationship because it is unlikely that without help or insight that he will stop breaking up with you. Or do you feel it might be better to break it off now and do it on your terms? Deciding what future your relationship has and the effect on you can help you decide. And even though you have a trip planned, it may be worth giving up the tickets and other expensive if you feel you will spend the trip on pins and needles waiting to see what he does with your relationship. The reason for the trip is so the two of you can have fun, but if you feel you will only be upset and unable to relax, then you are wasting the money anyway. By making a decision now before your trip, you will feel more in control And if you do end the relationship, you will at least have done it on your terms. This will help you recover faster and move on easier.

 

I hope this has helped you,
Kate

Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5401
Experience: Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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