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I'm In Love With Someone Who Has PTSD And Is Bipolar

Discussion in 'Supporter Discussion' started by HoldingOnKate, Aug 17, 2006.

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  1. HoldingOnKate

    HoldingOnKate New Member

    Okay overall I am really hesitant about writing about this specially for the world to see , but not many ppl seem to understand what I am going through and dealing with so therefore I can't get imput from them. Lord do I need it.

    Its a really really really long story between me and him so if you want to know the in full detail story message me!

    We met through the internet he helped me with some REALLY REALLY hard times and will be forever greatful for that. He has told me that he loves me as I do I but he is constitantly off and on pushing me away pulling me in pushing me away pulling me in . This has been going on for about a year and a half. We are not a couple but we do act like it for most part which makes it really hard for me.

    I have researched PTSD quite a bit and no its common for them not to want to let people in and push away the people they love but I was wondering if anyone has experienced this or knows some coping stratgies or something that I could do. Or any 1 800 lines or something to talk to someone . He is one the best people on the face of the earth and I LOVE HIM DEARLY. I just don't know how much I can take. I will try to go into more detailed examples etc later. It is almost 12 am and I have to work in the morning. Anyone struggle with the ups and downs always and heart breaking everytime you are pushed away?
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  3. anthony

    anthony Silently Watching Founder

    Hi Kate,

    Welcome to the forum. I have removed your email address, as they are not required for posting. The forum has a private messaging system in place for private discussions already. Posting emails on the forum is only encourageing email harvesters and the like to begin scanning the forum, none of which I want.

    Kate, yes, we with PTSD can be a huge pain in the arse, so I give you merit for sticking it through to see the other side, if your lover decides to ever get help that is...
  4. Kims_Man

    Kims_Man Active Member

    Hi Kate,

    Welcome to the forum. I hope you have had a chance to read through some of the postings here, and can see that not only are there many of us going through the same things as you are, but are here to hear you out. If you want to get into the whole story, go for it. Some times it really helps getting it down on paper (or the screen) and lets you put things into perspective.

    My wife is a PTSD sufferer, and was just handed "bi-polar" as a possible additional diagnosis. So, I can very much relate to what you are going through. When we first met (through the internet, by the way) I had no idea of her past, or here bouts with PTSD. In fact, the very first outburst she had really blew me away. It was so violent, and totally opposite of her previous disposition. I was just sure it was her way of telling me to hit the road. But, afterwards, when she started apologizing for saying and doing what she had done, I accepted it, and we moved on. After several of these, and with them getting worse and worse, I was really wondering just what the heck I had gotten myself into. But I stuck with her, and have found some things that seem to help out. Now, I am in no way saying I have a grip on this PTSD thing, I only know what has helped with her and I.

    First, I finally found out how to listen to her, and understand what was driving her. I understand now that it is not me her outbursts caused by, although it is me they are directed at. I try not to take it personnal, and understand that she is in some way reliving terrible things that happened to her as a kid. If I can, I move in and grab aholdof her and hug her. The more she pushes away, the tighter I hold on. I don't know if you would be able to do that with your husband without injury, but it helps with Kim. Also, I learned to shut up and let her talk. I don't offer suggestions on how to fix things, I just give her the sympothy she is seeking, and a shoulder to cry on.

    Hope something I have said helps. We are all here for you, and are very interested in what you have to say. :thumbs-up

  5. butterfly40

    butterfly40 New Member

    Hi Kate,
    I am new to the forum as well and just posted something simular to your post. I have a very ggod relationship with someone who was diagnosed with PTSD from sexual abuse and he does the same thing and frankly he sometimes drives me :cuckoo: But I am trying to learn just as you how to deal with him. I am currently reading "Allies in Healing" to help get a better understanding of what I can do when he his having a "bad" day.
    I know this is no advice but its good to know that someone else out there is going thru the same thing. Let's stay in touch maybe we can get some answers to help us both out.
  6. kaytiej

    kaytiej New Member


    I'm also new to this discussion group, and also am experiencing similar things with my boyfriend. We're both learning, and I know that our peers on this site will be able to offer sage guidance.

    Hang in there! I'm also doing the same...

  7. Chantico

    Chantico Member

    My goodness. Ditto. In fact, I've just posted my first post in the 'how much to tell your partner' This guy, he is...he's amazing. He's so funny and intelligent. If ever I am upset he always seems to know exactly what to say to snap me out of it. We met at university last Autumn and we have basically been on and off for 9 months. When we finally got together at the beginning of the year it ended after 6 days. But we were still on/off (got back together over Easter after much stuff happening that shouldn't have, then broke up for the Summer - I pushed him into making a decision based on what he wanted in and of himself - I wouldn't accept his continued response of 'whatever you want to do'). If ever we argued, he would convince himself I hated him and thus so did everyone else and lock himself in his room and pretend not to be in. Neither of us would be able to sleep properly or even eat until we'd sorted things out between us.

    Thing is, he kept doing things that would drive me away, no matter how many excuses I made for him. He's hurt me (emotionally, never physically) so many times, and recently it came to the point where i said 'no more, I just can't take it'. There was nothing more to give of me. I couldn't take another betrayal. thing is, everytime he ended up succeding in pushing me away, he would then panic and basically claw me back. The perfect example is when he spent about an hour detailing the suicide methods he's thought of and chickened out of using, then he was getting sleepy so, because I know he wont be able to sleep in the same bed as someone else because he feels unsafe, I asked him if he wanted me to go. He said that he was sorry but I couldnt sleep there. So i told him I was going to go back to my room, and then he panicked and was convinced that if i left the room then i was never coming back. So I spent two nights that week on his floor.

    We sorted out the most recent blow-out, but I'm too emotionally fragile right now to take anymore from him. But this year I've watched him grow from this broken shell of a boy to this beautiful young man - he has a lot of flaws, will have problems for a long time, but now I'm no longer surprised to find that he is taller than me, he's no longer appologising for everything, will stand up for himself - even doesn't freak out anymore when I beat him at grappling (he's stronger than me but I've done a bit of karate and ju-jitsu in my time) I'm teaching him how to fight. He's even picked me up a fair few times when I'VE been the one falling apart. If you couldn't tell, I'm completely in love with this guy. I have no idea where it's going or what the future holds, but whatever happens we'll face it as best friends, no matter what. I've told him he has to start thinking of what the consequenses to his actions are though. I keep getting him to reverse the situation - how would he feel if someone treated him the way he's treated me sometimes.

    He's not the only friend I have with PTSD. Another friend of mine dumped her boyfriend about 16 times in the first 6 months of them dating before he broke down and told he her loves her, and always will, but if she doesnt stop hurting him she has to leave because he cant take it anymore. 2 and a half years later and they're married!

    People who have had bad childhoods...they get a good thing, and they dont quite believe it's real because other good things have all turned out to be illusions. So they pick and they push and they try and find out where the illusion will break. And end up breaking a good thing. Making something real into an illusion, and hurting themselves more in the process.

    So, most of the people I am close to have similar pasts. I am in pretty much the same boat as you. And the thing I know I will do, the only thing I can do, is to hold on. Cling tighter, but also, you have to know what you will not put up with. I was taken for granted, and it was only when he realised that if he didnt take action soon he was going to lose me did he realise how much I meant to him (his words). I'm not giving up on him, but I know in the future he will test me again, and probably again and again. And it will be hard and difficult and painful, but I'm not abandoning him, I'm not being another person to hurt him. I refuse to. And it has got easier over time. He's in a better place now, and we just seem to be closer than ever.

    I don't know how I will cope if things don't work out, but I'm too deeply involved to have any other course to steer, so I have to hope for the best.

    I hope things work out for you too.
  8. ryair

    ryair Active Member

    Aye Curumba!!!!! What a scary thing it is to read all of your posts!!!! Been there, Done that, still amazing to realise there are so many of you out there doing the same thing!!!!
    I will always love my Tonka. And we finally have a system in place so it reduces the pressure on both of us. I hope with all my heart you all get to a point where there are more good times than bad.
    And believe this one thing, people who do not know PTSD intimately will never support your decision to stick by your partner. Seriously... We've gotta be a little bit nuts ourselves:loopy: !!!!
    Best of luck everyone, I look forward to getting to know you all!!!
  9. Kathy

    Kathy I'm a VIP

    It would indeed be lovely if all of you became active upon this forum, we definitely need more members. However if you check the dates, the original poster of this thread posted close to a year ago, and other than Chantico and yourself ryair, the remaining posts are all over 3 months old. I do hope though that perhaps with having this thread resurface, those people will come back to the forum once again.

    In any event, welcome Chantico, it is lovely to have you here!

    ETA: Oh and Chantico, I will comment more on your post tomorrow, just rather exhausted at the moment.
  10. ryair

    ryair Active Member

    Oh Yeah.... Checked the dates and you're right Kathy!!!! What can I say, My brain is mush.....:crazy: Hope you are taking it easy still!!!!Look after yourself!!!
  11. Chantico

    Chantico Member

    Thankyou for the welcome! And yes, I suppose we have to be a special kind of people to deal with what happens. Recently found out that there is such a thing called Vicarious trauma, or second-hand trauma, in which the primary carer ends up with a lot of the lesser symptoms themselves (depression, apathy) - I checked the symptoms and I had 14 out of 15 of them which was a little concerning, but it's passed.

    I lost friends due to my decision to stick with this guy. "How can you care that much?" "If he's as bad as you say, why do you do it?" Everytime I ended up in tears because of things he had done or said to me, or because of the latest 'episode' which had left me drained and so scared for him and so at-a-loss to be able to help him, my friends would just roll their eyes and act as if though I was causing it, or as if though it was my fault because I didn't just leave the room and lock the door, because I didn't tell him to go away and not bother me when he was coming to my room feeling suicidal and desperate to have someone to tell him things were going to be alright.

    The beginning of the year, the only person I had left to talk to was him, and I couldn't tell him how much he had hurt me (emotionally, never physically - on/off relationship since we met which complicated things) I couldn't tell him how scared I was, how I was worried I was doing the wrong thing, because he refused to even admit he blacked out. If ever I tried to gently broach the subject he would clam up or change the subject or leave.

    He would continue drinking, even though I had several times voiced the theory that alcohol often triggered an episode. I remember it once took me two hours to convince him to go back to his room when he was out drinking. people thought we were having a really tender hug, thought 'oh sweet'. We weren't hugging, I was physically holding his unconscious body on his stool. He would then wake up and go and get another drink or start dancing in response to my pleas to go to bed. He would snap at me everytime I broached the subject, and it took me shouting at him to make him listen and go to bed - I didnt want to shout because I've seen how he reacts to shouting going on around him, and he doesn't need that, but he refused to listen to my cajoling and it was only a matter of time before the flashbacks started or I wasn't able to disguise the fact that he was unconscious and people would gather round and try to help, call the stewards, the staff, maybe even the ambulance. I physically made him put his arm around me on the walk back because the ground was covered in ice and he kept pulling away, but then he would pass out and I was so scared he would hit his head and make it worse.

    Anyway, basically carried him back to his room, undressed him for bed, he passed out on the bed, then when he woke up I told him to start unbuttoning his jacket, and his face crumpled and he started to cry and told me he was sorry, he never meant to do this to me, that I should just leave, that he wouldn't think any less of me if I left and that all he did was hurt me. Sat with him through all the blackouts that ensued, and the next day appologised for shouting but told him I knew him better than he did at that moment in time, so please trust my judgement - if I say you've had enough to drink and need to go to bed, just listen to me. And he did. It took me another month or two to convince him to accept the fact that he had a problem, that he blacks out, and that drinking can trigger it. He tried to deny it until I told him that unless he accepted the truth they would only get worse (it was getting daily, with the confusion and fear from the blackouts seeping into daytime normality.) I asked him if he enjoyed it to which his answer was obviously a resounding no, so I told him that unless he enjoyed it, he had to be honest with himself and admit there was a problem.

    I made him read the symptoms of PTSD, which freaked him out and he was feeling heavily suicidal all the rest of that day, but when it came to evening and he had been drinking, he stopped of his own accord, just before I was about to ask him to, and said that he could tell that any more would 'make his head go bad'. I didn't want to tell him what to do - he is an adult, but in that case it was necessary as he would have just kept on ignoring the problem. But he's admitted it now, and has even read a couple of chapters from one of the self-help books which I got for him.

    I hate the holidays. Over Easter he rang me passing out on the phone, inconsolably sobbing, begging me to make the blackouts stop, begging me to come and get him, begging me to let him come and stay with me. Threatening suicide, and passing out when walking home. The only thing I could do was talk calmly but firmly to him, and hope he didnt pass out in traffic or face-down in a puddle or some well-meaning stranger call an ambulance - he is scared enough of me when he wakes up not knowing where he is or how old he is, I would hate to think how frightened he would be to see male paramedics standing over him. We even discussed what would happen if I had been a guy trying to help him, and it's pretty certain I would have got punched immediatly, but being female it doesnt matter how scared he is, he wont hit a female.

    Even just over a week ago he rang me frightened and angry at a new memory, and it being the holidays and us living at opposite ends of the country, I'm even more powerless to help him. At least if I'm physically there I can stop him from hitting his head, or hold his hand, or his head, or stop him from injuring himself when he's thrashing around. All I can do is talk soothingly down the phone and 'walk' him home.

    One of the strangest things I find, is that when he first started blacking out he didn't know my name, didn't recognise me when he woke up. Now, no matter how far he's regressed in his head, he will be able to tell me my name. I get him to tell me my name, I think it makes him feel less confused and scared - he may not know where he is but he knows he recognises me, and he's said before that even when he couldn't remember my name he felt safe with me. That has to mean something.

    Most of my friends keep asking me why I bother, why do I 'put myself through this', that I have to think about myself and put myself first, that I should just leave him and find some guy who wont compleltly drain me. They've even got angry at me for keeping on going back to him and putting myself on the line. All except one friend. She also has PTSD and it's due to her partner that she is in the amazing place in life she is now. She even told me (without having met the guy) that regardless of my feelings, if I start helping him get through this, I have to finish it. I can't leave at any point once I've commited.

    I'm glad someone agrees - she knows I wont give up on him - she's known me for too long, but it was so good to have someone who agreed with my decision to follow instinct and help him time after time again, even when he went through that stage of feeling so angry that he was so vulnerable in front of me so often, so emotionally dependant on me for a while, that he put some social distance between us by slagging me off to my other friends, which drove them further away from me, and I think one even drew the conclusion that I was making it up as 'he was fine when he talked to her, funny how he only blacks out around you'.

    Can only wait to find out what the future holds. He's in a good place now, but I'm so scared he'll go downhill over the summer.
  12. Jim

    Jim Well-Known Member

    A quick comment Chantico. There is a thread in this forum regarding secondary PTSD :


    If you haven't already, perhaps you would like to peruse it.

    All the best to you.

    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 21, 2015
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