Bipolar Disorder is a THIEF!


I’m going to tell you something, and you may not have thought of it in this way before, but…


The first thing it does is that it robs your loved one of their identity – of their true self. They become this “bipolar self” – this person they weren’t before they were diagnosed with bipolar disorder.

Which is hard for you, because they aren’t the same person they are in an episode than they are when they aren’t in an episode, and that can be very, very hard to deal with. So you have to try to remember what they’re like when they’re not in an episode.

It’s not their fault. It’s the fault of the disorder. It’s a thief! It steals your loved one’s real self.

Bipolar disorder can steal your jobs – your loved one’s because they might lose their job either

because their boss might find out they have bipolar disorder, or they can’t keep doing their job because of the disorder and have to go on disability. Or your job because you have to quit it to become a full-time supporter.

Bipolar disorder can steal your financial security. If your loved one goes into a manic episode (and you haven’t taken charge of the checkbook and credit cards), they can go on a spending spree, spend all the money in the checking account, and/or max out your credit cards. You can go broke, lose your car, house, and even go into bankruptcy, in one manic episode.

But, again, I’m telling you: BIPOLAR DISORDER IS A THIEF!

It can steal your friends. Sometimes friends, like society, don’t understand the disorder (or mental illness in general), and they will turn away from you. It’s like they’re scared of your loved one all of a sudden – scared that they’re going to “catch” their bipolar disorder. It’s not even necessarily your loved one’s fault. It’s the fault of the disorder itself.

It can steal your social life. Not just what I just said, but also because your loved one may be

embarrassed in public, or just may be too depressed to go out. Again, it’s the disorder, not your loved one.

It can steal your family. Again, possibly because your loved one is too depressed to go out, but also it may be because they’ve driven away their family because of what they’ve done in episodes, too. And because of that, it can also steal your family gatherings, so that holidays are especially difficult and probably a very lonely time not only for your loved one, but for you as well. People with bipolar disorder are usually more depressed around the holidays.

It can steal your standing in church and/or in the community. Your loved one may have once thrived in the community and as a leader. Now they may be just a shadow of their old self. Now they may be afraid of what people think of them.

It can steal your intimacy. Not just sex (either because of the depression or the medication), but just the closeness you used to share.

It can steal your trust, because you don’t know what your loved one is doing during a manic

episode, or what the consequences are going to be.

It can steal your fun (when was the last time you had any), and your happiness and enjoyment of life, because of your loved one’s depression and the disorder itself.

It can steal your health – both your loved one’s and your own, because of stress and other health issues that are caused by bipolar disorder.


It can steal your time, when your loved one has to spend time in a treatment facility and/or hospital.

It can steal your self-esteem.

It can steal your security as well, as you wonder when the next episode will come?

It can steal your loved one’s fulfillment and satisfaction with life, as they struggle with no

sense of productivity.

It can steal your dreams…

It can steal your lives, as bipolar disorder takes over your whole lives, and everything begins to

revolve around the disorder. Everything I’ve just talked about.

But worst of all… Bipolar disorder can steal your loved one’s life. If your loved one stops taking their medication, they can kill themselves.

Now do you see why I say that… BIPOLAR DISORDER IS A THIEF!!!

Well, I have to go!

Your Friend,


  1. Thanks for the info, at fisrt I hated my gf for the way she is. She threw bombs at me for no reason. I had no idea she is BPD. Once I found she is BPD, I
    started to hate her for the things she said and did to me, but now I know that BPD is stealing her normal happy life away. I don’t feel the same any more, its not her fualt. Now I can relax a little more and try harder to understand her motives. Thanks again for putting out this very important information.


  2. This really spoke to me. All these losses have occurred in my family, except I am the one who loses the jobs, and maxes out the credit cards. My spouse is the one who has the outbursts of anger, drinking, infidelity. It’s like we share the disorder. I feel like I have no connection to family, friends, church, neighbors, or community. I want to attend church, but he always finds fault with whichever one I or we go to. Then I have to go alone, and that gets lonely.

  3. I agree with you. I’m a bipolar person, and I’m medicated NOW. I’m not American, I’m from Brazil, and I feel much more prejudice against mental ill person here than in my country. So I have some tips to bipolar as me:
    1) Have a purpose in your life – do a strength/weakness, realistic, and list all your characteristics. Ask help to your husband/wife, friends, father/pastor/minister, therapist, psychiatric. Work with your therapist on your weakness, and use your strength to do things that you can see results. For example, contribute to your kids’ school, in your church, tutor a foreigner in learn English. Do something. As we said in Brazil, empty head is a place to devil.
    2) Take control of your life – start doing excel spreadsheets with your weekly meals menu, put the accounting of your home in excel spreadsheets (I have a wonderful set that we developed back in 2001, I know how many tomatoes I purchased in every month), use TO DO’s list, daily, weekly and monthly. And be reasonable in divide the tasks between the days. Your home doesn’t need to be the Martha Stewart’s house.
    3) Think every day as unique – after 13 years (I have two teenager daughters, with 16 and 13), I got pregnant again, in the middle of the bipolar treatment, and I took lithium and zyprexa during it (of course, under my psychiatrist supervision). Theodora is perfect. And each day is unique, because she is learning one new thing every day. To us, bipolar, everyday is different because we learn how to deal with former behaviors. I used to be nasty with my other daughters. But now I know how to be kind and express love.
    4) To suporters: don’t be too harsh, but don’t be lenient with us – one of the mains things that “push” me to treatment was the huge discussions and arguments with my husband. Be rational to argue, don’t complain in issues too much “ethereal”. One of the most important event was when my daughters told their side of the story, in on of my hypermanic phase. I cried a lot, but it was necessary to understand the reality. That’s it: push us to reality.
    5) Never, NEVER, go out of the treatment – I took a long time to find a team that I trust, to treat me. My therapist is a very good friend, and my psychiatrist is a very graduate and important doctor, and he is always open to experimentate new strategies when I complain about side effects. You NEED to find people which you can trust. Ask for recommendation, look on internet, attend seminars. Move on! Only you can control your own disease.
    6) Study, study, study, about your disease – as more you study, more you can understand what is happening to you. Don’t be alienated about your own condition. Internet is a good source, your doctor too. Don’t be afraid.

    Well, all this stuff worked for me.


  4. I forgot to mention: this is only a way to try to control more our environment. I get out of this sometimes. But I feel much more comfortable and productive in this frame.

  5. ive been in an on again off again relationship with a 56 year old woman with bipolar every time I let her in my life things are good for a week or two then she starts sabotaging the relationship and looking for reasons that its not working when i see a problem rising and try to talk to her about it she responds by saying ” if and when im ready to talk about it it will be with my councilor or my shrink not you ” and rarely does she do that she is a highly intellegent woman and knows the mental heath system has been a regitered nurse for thirty years she’s attempted suicide several times since we met with lithium overdoses and once by shooting herself in the chest with a .38 revolver that left her with permanent musle and nerve damage to her left side which adds to her depression now and has left her very angry at the world in general currently we are sepperated at her insistance I have always tried to account much of what she does to her disease and cut her slack for it but when is enough enough if she is never willing to talk about it with me and alwaywants to come back no questions asked

  6. Bipolar has already stolen every dream I’ve ever had and it sucks! I do not have any hope for a sense of stability and peace.

  7. Most of your e-mails give me hope and provide tools for coping. This one ( while true l am sure) is depressing. It would have been nice to have some encouragement added as well.

  8. That sums up my life to a T and all the losses as a result. Text book very interesting and validating to read, thank u 🙂

  9. Yes it can steal. The woman I love since Dec. 26, 2010 has been having ups and downs pushing me away. She was off her meds, new doctor and trying to get help from the state of Florida. She finally got what she needed but she broke up with me for some irrational thought.I stayed trying to support her but she ignored me. Just last week I came to find out that she up and moved in with some other guy. Completely devistating me. I still to this day do not know what I did or did not do. She will not even talk to me. I am completely confused and broken hearted. Am I mad at her? No, everything says to be but I love her more then she knows and can not bring myself to hate her, be angry, or say anything real rotten to her. I love this woman with all my heart and wish she understood that I am here for her and will do anything for her. So yes it does steal. ANy advice? Should I just forget about her or wait and try contacting her from time to time. Ensureing her that I love her for all of her, the good and the bad. The ups and downs. In right mind or not.

  10. Not only is Bipolar a thief, but you are a thief also. I ordered from you a month ago and still havent recieved my order. Your “customer service” has told me so many lies they wont even answer my emails anymore. You might have good intentions but your business practices are unethical. I was happy when I first started receiving your newsletter. I decided to order a couple of your free items (for which I paid over 20.00 shipping)as a start to see how you did business. Well that will be my last order and I hope any others who might be thinking of ordering from you will think twice. Anyone out there who is also thinking about ordering from you should check out the complaints with the New Jersey BBB. I just added another to the list.

  11. So well written, so well said. A thief will take it all. Without your consent, without you knowing it.
    And the part about people getting away from you by
    fear of the word “bipolar” itself is as accurate as it
    is unfortunate. Honesty makes you wonder. Is it right
    if it makes you loose family members, your job and/or
    finances…. many times homelessness is only 2 steps
    away. Where has all the love gone or has there ever
    been any? Pray for survival, help is not always standing right there. Never give up hope and faith.
    There is always light at the end of the tunnel, just
    remember to keep your eyes open. Do not look down there
    but look up instead and your heart will guide you through. Somehow, someway, some day, something or
    someone will come your way. Ask for help, be grateful
    for life and take the next best step. A new life awaits. Stick around Dave, we all need you.

  12. Sadly, everything you say is true. So many broken dreams and broken hearts, because Bipolar does steal so many things…. I think that time is one of the hardest ones to accept, as when a young woman in her thirties is diagnosed, and is not able to carry on with life plans of carrying on with her career, getting married, having children. It’s very hard to accept, along with the money problems, the insecurity, and all the things you speak about. Indeed it IS a thief. It is very painful to see life changed so dramatically. Whoever said that life was fair?
    Thank you, David, for saying what so many of us feel. You really understand. Not enough others do. It’s good to “chat” with you.

  13. My 37 yr old daughter was diagnosed w/bipolar and also BPD some years ago. Now her 13 yr old daughter is in a behavior hospital (court ordered) and my daughter is seeing a psychologist. He decided on first visit that my daughter is only AD/HD and told her to stop all medications that were actually helping. He talked her doctor into just giving her Concerta. She is avoiding time w/her (3rd) husband rather than working on her almost 2 yr marriage while her child is in treatment (2mos.) She’s been on disability abt. 8 yrs. She is spending her time w/bipolar lady friend who is almost 60. She gets along w/1 person at a time & has no other friends. Her daughter is doing online school depending on her mom to help her when not in the hospital. I’m worried about my granddaughter. She as running away a lot because of her Mom and DSS got involved which brought on the court order. I wrote about episodes to both her counselor and her doctor, and they did nothing but tell her and offer for her to read my letter. Any suggestions? Thanks

  14. Very Well Said and Truly it is not only a Thief but if we can use some Harsher and Better Word that also will be correct.At times you feel instead of Bipolar if your Loved one Would have Had Cancer atleast one could have Garnered some Sympathy of the Near And Dear Ones .Bipolar makes the Best Friend into an Enemy you find no Support from any Quarter except insult/Venegance and Hatered from the Near And Dear Ones

  15. You are correct. Bipolar disorder is a thief. I have been on medication for it since July 2004. Fortunately, I have learned to live with it. Thank you.

  16. Wow I feel I could have written this if I could focus long enough to gather my thoughts and or write about them. I always said I should write a book about bipolar to help future generations understand it better. I feel you can’t beat an insider’s view and wish I had somebody explain to me in simple non clinical words what it was that I am experiencing. you put it perfectly I pretty much experienced all of those losses to bipolar since my diagnosis over a decade ago.

  17. good morning,
    my husband has bipoler i have ms he is vwery protect9ive 0f me, as i am of him, last night he was in his c ar crying at wo0rmk he wasnt working the olther night hecalled said hed did not knpw who he was or ware he was our son in ;aw found him in a parking lot crying , i was at home unab;leto walk but felt serure in the fact that our son nlaw was looing 4 him, that is another thing our daughter is maried to a marine shje has a 4yeatr5old, very trying top see her in fear of him to get killled he got retierd i told them that they had 2 go as it was to much for mike so they let moved in with his dad. my house is 20 k past due, i am geting a lawsuit settlement i pray it will be enough 2 fix thisa i9s tjer any help $$ ?”

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