I’ve been thinking about something, and wanted to share my thoughts with you. It’s about what happens when you try to accomplish too much too fast. Think about it. When you try to accomplish too much too fast, you are just setting yourself up for failure, because you’ll never be able to do it. It can also get very discouraging for you. Also, if you don’t know how long something should take, you can start to think it’s taking too long.
For example, after an episode. It could take up to a year to fully “fix” the after effects of an episode. Like the financial ruin – you can’t fix a bankruptcy in just two weeks! But some people think you can just do it overnight! We don’t rush the stroke victim or even the cancer victim, why do we rush the victim of bipolar disorder? Thinking that they should be over an episode
after just a week or two is just plain unrealistic expectations. Would we have that same expectation if they were getting over a physical illness? Then why are we expecting it from a bipolar episode?
I have interviewed people who are success stories, and they talk about how long it took them sometimes to fully recover from some of their episodes, and some of them say it took a whole year, and some even longer! There are certain things in life that take a certain amount of time to happen. It’s just the way it has to be.
Think about things in nature. Like the butterfly – it starts off as a caterpillar…then it goes into a cocoon… and only after a certain period of time does it change (through the process of metamorphosis) into that beautiful butterfly! It just doesn’t happen overnight. And if you interrupt it at any point in the chain of events, the whole thing would be ruined! Some things just can’t be rushed. Other things just have to take place in a certain order. And still other things have to take place at a certain time.
Wanting your loved one who has bipolar disorder to get over their episode overnight is like wanting them to be that beautiful butterfly without going through the cocoon phase! Some things are just worth waiting for. You just have to be more patient sometimes. Part of being a good supporter is being patient and understanding. And this is one of those areas where that patience and understanding will be tried.
It helps to know the process. For one thing, your loved one didn’t get this way overnight, and they aren’t going to get better overnight, either. But they will be putting forth the effort to get
better, and they will need your love, patience, support, and understanding as they go through
the process of getting better. So understanding that it is a process might help you as well.
Your loved one won’t get better overnight, but the good news is that, working together with you
by their side, they can get better.
Well, I have to go!