Medical Questions > Mental Health > Bipolar Relationships Forum

My bipolar fiance has now broken our engagement twice...

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Up front, my (ex?) fiance is also my ex-wife. We were married about 18 years ago, before she was diagnosed bipolar. There were a lot of mistakes then, and we parted if not amicably, we believed it was best at the time. She was 22 and I was 32 when we divorced.

Flash forward to summer 2010. We had not seen each other for 17 years. We'd spoken by phone a couple of times, but not gotten together. She asked to be friends on Facebook and after a moment's hesitation I agreed. We live about 4 hours apart, and ended up getting together and over the course of the next six months, rediscovering ourselves as a couple. She made sure i knew she was diagnosed bipolar and took her meds as prescribed. She wanted me to understand, so she lent me a book titled "Loving Someone With Bipolar Disorder" which I have read through four times, and keep a journal as suggested. She also made sure I understood she was in AA and was a recovering alcoholic.

In November 2010 I gave her a ring and asked her to remarry me. She said yes. We continued to work (therapy and counseling and together) on the issues that had broken us up before and had great success. We were happy--I thought.

I was supposed to visit her for Valentines Day 2011 but the Friday before she called and informed me she couldn't marry me. It wasn't me, it was her issues and problems and she couldn't subject me to that. Unfortunately, she was out to breakfast with some friends and as she told me she couldn't marry me, they burst into laughter. We had, at one point, shared some of our fears. Mine was that we'd get to the door of the church and she and her guests would laugh as she declared she wouldn't marry me for anything and this was just revenge for her crappy life. Her call to break up with me was waaaay too close to my fear and I was devastated.

I worked very hard to just let it go, though we stayed in contact. In April she tearfully told me she was sorry and wanted me to take her back. Many of my friends advised against it, saying that since she was bipolar it was likely it would happen again. I asked her to p[romise me she would not hang me out to dry in that way again, but would instead talk to her therapist and to me so I could give her space if she needed it, but we could continue to move forward together with me supporting her. She agreed and I believe she meant it.

You know what's coming next, of course. In September, two days after my birthday and a week after she had visited for a wonderful dual birthday celebration (I'm 9/13, she's 8/27) we were chatting on FB and she informed me she couldn't marry me--again. Same reasons: she has to deal with her issues, it's not me it's her, etc. etc. I tried very hard to convince her to just take some time away but she got angry, unfriended me AND all our mutual friends on FB, sold the engagement ring, and would not talk to me for nearly a month.

She did refriend me last week and we have chatted informally and non committally. I found out that she has spent the last month having her meds reworked and is fighting a hypomanic relapse at this time. For that reason i have backed way off and am saying little to her other than to inquire how she is doing and remind her there are many who care about her.

But it comes down to the fact that she has done this to me twice in the last year (about six months apart). My life has been shredded twice. And I know that in another month or so she will be back, asking to renew the relationship.

I honestly do not know what to do. Moodiness I can deal with, hyperactivity I can deal with, I love her and would support her through thick and thin--but I just can't get past the notion that if she comes back and I take her back, I will have to do this all AGAIN in six months time. I'm not sure I'm strong enough to do that over and over for the next 40 years.

Any advice, thoughts, suggestions?
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First Helper HurtinginWestIL
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replied October 11th, 2011
Experienced User
Hi Nik. I wish I could tell you that she will get better and you will have a happy life together, but I would be lying to you. Sweet man, you need to move on. If you marry this woman she will ultimately tear your heart to shreds. You are 50. You don't want a relationship like this, trust me. I understand everything you wrote. Please listen to your head and not your heart. Even though it is difficult, break all ties with her and find a woman that will love you back. Life is too short.

PS - This disorder gets worse with age. The longer you hang on the worse you will be treated.
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replied October 11th, 2011
Hey pal, she will continue this behavior for as long as you are willing to put up with it. She'll replace you in a heart beat. My gal did the same crap. She was on meds, but it never got better. The very day I told her I wanted out, she hooked up with another man via Facebook. Who knows, she may have been playing me all along. It lasted just short of 2 years. It hurt like hell at first, but I'm so relieved to be out of it. There are other fish in the sea. Go cast a line!
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replied October 13th, 2011
Today she unfriended me on Facebook AGAIN. No explanation, won't answer my phone calls.

What else can I do but let it go? She wants me to be gone, so I am gone. It hurts, but I survived 17 years without her and I can do that again.
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replied October 14th, 2011
I am just diagnosed bipolar..what she has done has alot to do with her insecurities, to me she loves you too much to put you through her life of ups and downs..she is trying tom protect you..but as advised it may be best to let this one go.
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