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Buachaill, Lawyer
Category: Republic of Ireland Law
Satisfied Customers: 10589
Experience:  Barrister 17 years experience
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My boyfriend of three years has just been diagnosed with bipolar

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My boyfriend of three years has just been diagnosed with bipolar disorder - he is currently in the depression stage. Recently he has been saying mean things about his family and friends. He then told me that he isn't in love with me anymore, however this came out of nowhere and he said himself that it came from nowhere. I have agreed to give him the space he wants and not make contact for 4-5 weeks so he can come to terms with the illness. I am wondering if this feeling may be part of the bipolar episode. He has also cancelled a visit to his father and his family as he doesn't want to see them.
1. This is definitely an aspect of the bipolar condition. Essentially, when persons suffering from bipolar disorder go into the depressive stage, the darkness of what they are suffering causes them to loose touch with reality and makes them unable to bear what is around them. YOur boyfriend views everything, including your relationship together, from the black perspective of the lack of happiness and the bleakness which his bipolar condition is causing him. Additionally, persons in the depressive phase of manic depression/bipolar disorder are unable to deal with the world around them and this is manifested in your boyfriend's manner of not wishing to meet any of his family or friends,a s well as you at this time.
2. You should seek that your boyfriend gets treatment for his condition and takes any medication prescribed. If your boyfriend is feeling this bad at this point in time, it additionally would suggest that his current medication is not sufficiently strong to deal with the depressive part of his illness and that he needs it reviewed by a professional psychiatrist to see if things can be made better. Nowadays, the current generation of anti-psychotic drugs handle the symptoms of bipolar disorder much better and your boyfriend should not be having such an adverse reaction to the depressive phase as he is currently having, as he is essentially withdrawing from both you and from the rest of his friends and family. So further treatment from a psychiatrist is required.
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Customer: replied 4 years ago.
As he is just recently diagnosed, he has only started medication and therapy. He is only on medication one week.
Do you think I am right to let him work through this on his own now and just wait to be there and come up with a plan for when he feels better - he is taking his medication and seeing a therapist. He says that he can't be with me now as he doesn't feel love for me right now. Also, does the medication take a few weeks or a few months to kick in? Thanks
3. It takes 4-5 weeks before the medication has an effect in reducing the symptoms. It will take a full 8-9 weeks for a proper insight to come to your boyfriend about his condition and how it has been affecting his thinking. People who are in the throes of a bipolar episode have their thinking altered detrimentally and they have to get better before they realise that thoughts they have been having, such as your boyfriend stating that he doesn't love you, have been caused by their illness and not by their true feelings. So you will have to be patient with him, very patient, and realise that it will be some time before his true feelings for you emerge once again.
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