Bipolar Supporter? You Can Feel Better if You Do This


How are you today?

I hope you’re having a great day.

Today I want to talk about something you can do to make yourself feel better.

And that is self-esteem.

Self-esteem is how you view yourself.

How you value yourself.

How you believe you come across to others.

If you have poor self-esteem, you will not feel very good about yourself.

But if you have good self-esteem, you WILL feel good about yourself.

Good self-esteem will help you cope and deal better not only with your loved one’s bipolar disorder, but with your life in general.

For example, at a job:

A person with low self-esteem will probably not get promoted, because they will not be very assertive…

May not think they have good ideas…

May be somewhat shy…

May not think they’re good enough, etc.

While someone with good self-esteem will be just the opposite.

They will be the one who gets promotions at work, because:

6. They are self-confident

7. They believe they have good ideas

8. They will get along well with others

9. They will be outgoing

10. They will believe in themselves

Among other things, you need to have good self-esteem to be a good supporter for a loved one with bipolar disorder, like I teach in my courses/systems:







If you don’t have good self-esteem, negative things will happen.

You will not be a positive person.

You will not be optimistic about your loved one’s recovery from bipolar disorder.

You will not be the best supporter you can be.

You will not have a good social life.

You may struggle with family relations.

You may even become depressed, and then you won’t be able to help your loved one or your family.

See, a lot depends on how you see yourself.

It’s very important that you have a good self-image.

A good self-image promotes good self-esteem.

There are several ways to improve your self-esteem.

Here are some suggestions:

11. Do things you are good at doing.

12. Do things that make you feel good.

13. Have some good friends.

14. Maintain good family relations.

15. Take up a hobby that interests you.

16. Help other people.

17. Try to be as positive a person as you

can be.

18. Take things one day (one problem)

at a time.

19. Don’t dwell on the past or mistakes

you’ve made.

20. Be optimistic about the future.

If you have poor self-esteem, using some of these suggestions will help you improve it.

The better your self-esteem is, the better you will be in your role as a


Do you have any suggestions on how to improve your self-esteem?

What are they?

  1. Dave,
    This was a great thing to read first thing this morning this is what i needed to start the day off.It has been a ruff 2 week my daughter has to go to a alturntive school due to her mood swings with her bipolar. This is a very hard time for me to choose which one to go to and what to look for when i go. I only want the best for her she is only 9 and this is a hard time to judge of what is needed to be done.

  2. I think when guilt and resentment build up it breaks down ones self esteem. Also the constant second guessing that we do as supporters – “is he going manic or am I over reacting?” “should I check whether he has taken his meds or should I just trust him?” etc etc also breaks down self esteem. Supporters need their own support system to keep them going, and to have empathy and understanding. Knowing that we are not alone in this builds our self esteem I think. It makes me realize that I am not going crazy! I have an online chat support group for supporters to be in touch and give and get empathy and understanding.

  3. How do you stop dwelling on the past and mistakes you have made; if you are just realizing how wrong they were and you feel that everyone that it effected , that you have to see everyday, knows this about you and does judge you?

  4. I would have to agree with you on this. For years, I had good self-esteem and believed in myself while my husband was an undiagnosed bipolar. It was tough but I did not take alot personally and loved myself enough to be a supporter for him. After the birth of my third child I got post-partuum depression really bad and have not be 100% since than (he will be 3 in December). My relationship with my husband is the worst it has ever been and we are on the verge of separation and/or divorce. My self-esteem was destroyed by the depression, I was suicidial, and I became really needy and my health is terrible. What I realized was that I was the rock because I was stable before and when I couldn’t do it it made things horrible for both of us, my attitude played a huge influence on the delicateness of bipolar. When I was healthy and loved myself I had a very good spiritual relationship and felt like my life had meaning and I believed in myself which automatically brings optimism and positive energy, I was very patient and loved to be alive and I genuinely wanted to share that. Depression clouds that and it is like being in a black hole. I am currently trying to get back what I lost due to depression, I only hope that my marriage isn’t completely destroyed and unfixable due to this. I am thankful to at least know what it feels like from both sides so I am that much more determined to get it back and grateful to what it feels like to has self-esteem and self-love. You can’t give what you don’t have but if you don’t have it you can change that and it can play a huge influence on the bipolar you support.

  5. Speaking as a pessono with bipolar, the issues of self-esteem and self-image are VERY important. I lost ALL self-esteem after each of my “nervous breakdowns” for manic episodes. The first one was the hardest. I had been highly successful in high school, college, and my “dream” job. Suddenly, I was labeled “mentally ill,” and had to take meds. I lost everything…my apartment, my fiance, m job, everything. I felt lower than low, and it took several months (more than a year), for ANY self-esteem to even bud.

    I spent the period between breakdowns (l year), highly hypomanic, so that when my self-esteem came back, it was not a “natural” “high.” I broke down again, and was hospitalized. This took nearly a year to get over, and get my self-IMAGE back. Someone with bipolar finds that they’re not the person they once were; our personalitiies change, and sometimes it’s due to the medications.

    It’s a HARD struggle getting back ANY good feelings about yourself after an episode, manic OR depressive. We do things we regret and feel badly about, that we can’t atone for. We lose the love of some friends; our families even treat us differently. Yes, it IS diffcult to regain self-esteem…but not impossible. I’m stable now, for the last 32 years, and though I’m not like I was before my bipolar, I’m doing pretty good for myself.

    BIG HUGS to all bipilar survivors and those who love us. May God bless you real good. I pray for my country.

  6. For all supporters who have a hellish time trying to make sense of this awful condition, I suggest seeing a favourite friend for a drink or meal whenever you can.It is tempting to become a recluse through the feeling of mental exhaustion and sadness when we are watching our loved ones suffer.
    However I have pushed myself this last year to make arrangements and it has helped enormously just to have a kind friend.
    It is very important to try and raise your self esteem which takes a massive battering when members of ones family suffer (I have three grown up children that have bipolar).
    It has taken me a very long time to accept I can not cure them only try to understand.
    Much love to you all supporters and sufferers alike. Thaks as ever Dave.

  7. I’m new to this course. I enjoyed reading everyone’s responses because my first thought was that it is my BiPolar loved one that broke my spirit and my self esteem, so how do I get that back while still in the relationship? I have always been one of the most optimistic people I know and so full of life. I have always lived life to the fullest because I was given a short life expectancy at 28 and overcame it. I am turning 40 and really living life to the fullest. However, my husband ( my bipolar loved one) and I have been through a lot in the last 2 years by losing our business, our home, etc. I have tried to be supportive of my husband and help him through this, but his episodes are so bad he has completely broken me and I have lost my self esteem and gone onto depression. I had given up on our relationship. I’m torn because I just don’t know how to get my self esteem back when I’m emotionally beaten down daily. It’s a tough battle, but reading about it is empowering. Maybe there is hope for us. I just have to get him to get help. Thanks for sharing.

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