You know Michele, who works for me. Well, she has a husband (who also has bipolar disorder) who likes to fool her sometimes as a joke. Well…One time he moved the phone from its usual place to the other end table in the living room. And every time it would ring…He would crack up, because Michele would keep going to the old end table to pick it up! LOL Then she would get all confused until she remembered that he moved it…And by then the answering machine picked it up…And she would be all frustrated…And her husband was just sitting there cracking up!
Well…He thought it was funny, but Michele didn’t. Do you know why? Because she was fine with the phone where it used to be. But that’s not the real reason. The real reason is that she doesn’t like change. Most people don’t. We get used to the way things are, and we don’t like it when they change. Like when your loved one is first diagnosed with bipolar disorder and they go to a therapist, and the therapist tells them that they have to change their lifestyle.
They really resist this (at first). Because most people don’t like change. Do you? Or would you be like Michele? Resisting change all the way? Maybe you can understand your loved one better by relating to them then. Like I was saying…Their therapist has probably told them that they need to make changes in their lifestyle in order to manage their bipolar disorder, and this is probably very difficult for them, because they’re resistant to change.
As they go along, it will get easier for them, but at first, change will be very hard for them. It will be frustrating for them. It may even add to their mood swings. It may even make them angry at times (because of the stress). So it would help if you understood what they’re going through. Just imagine if you had to change. Think about just one habit that you have. Now think about being asked to stop it. How hard would that be? Especially because you, too, are most likely as resistant to change as your loved one is.
One common thing that is probably going on with both you and your loved one is this: They were probably told that they had to change their diet. Well…That means that you probably have to change your diet as well. Especially if they’re the one that does the cooking! There are other changes that are happening as well to try to manage your loved one’s bipolar disorder, and the more understanding you are of them, the better things will be for both of you.
Well, I have to go!