Bipolar Supporter? Deal or No Deal


How’s it going? I hope you’re doing ok.

Have you ever seen this TV show called Deal or No Deal? Each time, the contestant has to choose whether to open a suitcase or not, that will have a dollar value in it. The idea, of course, is to choose correctly and win the game.

So how does this relate to bipolar disorder?  I’ll explain. If your loved one has bipolar disorder, they are sometimes going to act in ways that you don’t like.  Especially when they go into episodes. And really especially if they need to go to the hospital, and are refusing to go.

When my mom was like that and she needed to go to the hospital, I had to make a deal with her for her to go.  It’s ok to make deals with your loved one. In fact, it can be very effective.

In my courses/systems, I go over strategies to helping your loved one, including hospitalization.




Some people say that it’s playing dirty to make a deal with your loved one to do certain things.  I don’t think it is.  Especially if it works. Some loved ones are more receptive than others. But why not try this with your loved one? It could be the answer you’ve been looking for.

Other supporters say that making a deal with your loved one is like making a deal with your child – like you promise them candy if they behave in the store. They claim that you’re treating your loved one like a child. But I don’t agree with that. I think this idea works.

Say your loved one has to go to the doctor today, and they are refusing to go. You could make a deal with them. Tell them that if you go to the appointment together, that afterwards, you can go out for lunch, or something like that.

It’s not childish – it involves cooperation.

And, in this case, getting a person to agree to cooperate with something they don’t like or want to do.  You can use this idea with other things as well. What if they are not wanting (or forgetting) to take their medication? Well, if you’re on medication as well, this is easy. You just make a deal that the two of you will take your medications at the same time.

Even if you’re not on medication, you can still make a deal with them to take their medication. It’s not only important, but it’s crucial to their stability.

What if your loved one isn’t sleeping right?  Make a deal that you will go to sleep with them, or offer to give them a backrub or some other enticement to go to bed. (Although this might get old, so you’ll have to think of something else.)

I know it may be hard for you to treat your loved one this way (making deals), and you may not like doing it. But I can tell you from experience that it IS effective! Why don’t you try this idea and let me know how it goes – I love success stories!

  1. I am Bipolar and tell you the truth, I find it more relaxing an interesting in being on computer, than doing anything else. My relationships are messed up cause I feel I need to do everything for my children and see to it they have nothing to worry about when I am gone.
    Thank You,
    Denise K Zimmerman

  2. I just want to let you know what kind of an impact you are making. My husband has been recieving your emails for a while, and things are getting easier for us. I am the bipolar one, he’s the support. We don’t have insurance because we are broke, I don’t use the “p” word because we are rich in so many other ways. Anyway, since he started getting your emails, it has been easier for him to deal with me. I just want to ask if there is any other “free” resources out there for him, or both of us. I am working on getting meds, and have been finding alternate methods of self treatment. Diet, sleep, trigger contol, excersize. Without the help of an expert, I don’t know what to do beyond this. Of course this makes our battle with this illness a little harder, but I want to be better. Of course I still have my bad days, a lot of them actually.
    Look, I just wanted to let you know that the information that you are giving my husband(rebel_lh)is really helpful overall, he is better at dealing with me, and we are working together to fight this instead of against eachother. He will never be able to understand what is going on in my head, but he is able to understand that this is real now, and things are so much better.
    Just one question though, what part of being bipolar requires frequent trips to the hospital(deal, or no deal)? The last time I went to the hospital for help I was put on a M1 hold, the cops were called to make sure I didn’t leave, I was screened for suicidal tendencies, the let go without any medication at all. I don’t see where the hospital helps, can you fill me in on that one please?

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