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Bipolar Fiance... Need a Way to Help Him Calm Down

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My fiance was diagnosed as bipolar a couple of months ago. My father is bipolar too, so it's nothing new really to me, just being on a different angle with it.

Anyway, since he's been on the right meds, he's only had a couple of episodes.
His episodes always involve him hitting himself or harming himself (today he knocked himself out by hitting his head into a wall). The entire time, I was doing what his therapist said to do, try giving him a hug.
Lately it seems when I try to do that, he thinks i'm trying to corner him, and starts hyperventilating saying he needs to leave......


Does anyone have a suggestion of how to calm him down? Or should I just let his episode tire him out?
I don't want to get to phsyically close to him, because he is in the middle of hitting himself sometimes, and I never want to be in the crossfire of him fighting with himself. (per his therapist's advice...)

is there maybe something I could say to him that would help?
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replied January 19th, 2006
My husband is bi-polar and used to behave exactly the same way.
Learning what it is thats causing such stress, beforehand helps, if possible.

Overload on stress can cause a bi polar swing, and medication isnt going to to cure it, but it'll reduce the severity.

My recommendation would be to help him relax the best you can... If you can see beforehand something is triggering his stress, intercept it with calm words, help remove him from the situation, by meditation, tea, soothing music, anything he enjoys that'll get him calm asap.

Trust me, touching him while he's in a manic episode will only make matters worse.
Good luck.
I know it's tough.. I've been though this for 5 years, and i'm just now learning what to do and what not to do.... Hope this helps.
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replied January 20th, 2006
Experienced User
Isn't that his job--figuring out a way to calm himself down? He's not an infant, he needs to learn an appropriate way to self-soothe.

He also needs to learn to recognize his physical reactions to stress and when he is building up a good head of poor-me/f*ck you!
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replied December 31st, 2013
You don't have to act like that! She is just trying to be freaking helpful to someone she cares about!! And ya know what.. When you're having a bipolar episode you don't care how mad you are most of the time and you're not freaking worried about how to calm down! So you don't have to be a freaking rude person when someone asks a dang question that they want a real answer to not for someone to get on here and be an ass like you are!!
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replied January 20th, 2006
I agree with you, that the person should be able to recognize when they are starting to stress out and calm down before they start reacting, however sometimes they just can't.

Depending on how well the medication is working and how long they've been in therapy, sure I can see they'd be able to recognize immediately when things start to go down again, but if they were just recently diagnosed, i'm sorry to say there's a long road ahead of recovery and patience.

It takes a lot of support to get through this, that's i'm assuming why you're here, trying to get some help.
You can take it or leave it. And good luck in the future.
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replied January 24th, 2006
Learning Stress Triggers
I am bi polar...Sometimes you don't know what the stress triggers are..I have abuse issues as a child and something..A smell, a day...Whatever might start to trigger me..I just go into my room and try not to interact with anyone..I don't want to hurt anyones feelings but if they are constantly on you asking whats wrong...Did I do something....Or just plain old manipulations or disrespect thats all I need to trigger..Yes don't touch or push us into a corner where we can't breathe...I am hiding because I love too much not to...I hate this mental disease but the mental disease is not me...Just like cancer.... You didn't want to grow up and have it...It's there...
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replied January 24th, 2006
Thank you quaya....
That really puts things into perspective.
I'm not bi-polar that I know of but my husband is, and all I have is the information he tells me and stuff like that.
For my husband, he eventually came to me and told me everything traumatic that happened in his past and he never told anyone before, and he is for the most able to cope with it now, as he has been in some pretty intense therapy, and stuff, but he still has to live with the pain. It's not his fault.
It's not anyone's fault, they have to live with being bi-polar,and it's not anyone's fault what happens while growing up, no matter how old you are, and what sorts of things happened. And I really repect what you said, that really hit the nail on the head about how he feels too..
I also agree with you when you said you don't know what particuarly triggers this... He has a hard time too sometimes, sometimes it's not easy to calm him down, it's completely random, and it's a little more difficult, but it works out eventually.
Sometimes, i'll ask him what's wrong and he doesn't know, and he tells me he doesnt know how I can help him. It's that simple, it just depends.
I think it's just super unfair to get mad at him for not being able to (control himself) at times, or recognize when he's getting too stressed out, it happens so fast sometimes and without warning.

Thank you again, quaya
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replied January 24th, 2006
Extremely eHealthy
Hi there! Just a quick thought as I know and understand what being bi-polar is. I went to a couple of .E.M.D.R. Sessions, they work a lot on problems in the past such as abuse, something that happened in the war, certain people with phobias and it has really helped alot of people, why couln't it help someone that is bi-polar, just a thought and something that can be researched or talked to the Dr. About, I totally felt such a release.

The very best to you all!
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replied January 24th, 2006
My husband really should join this forum I speak a lot for him. He has been doing the e.M.D.R sessions, for his circumstances adn it has turned him around almost completely, well his p.T.S.D has greatly imrpoved, he no longer has flashbacks, nightmares, blackouts, or bouts or anger that destroy walls or doors or anything in his path.
He has a lot easier time now since the e.M.D.R.
Now i'm not sure how it's helped his bi-polar, or if that is something that can even be worked out like that, as it is heredetary, and whatnot. Very interesting.
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