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How can I, bipolar but stable, prevent wife from slipping away

2 points for context. I love my wife. More than anything I can imagine, and far more than my own health or happiness.2ndly. I am bipolar; I am a model patient in that I take my mood stablisers religiously, and my prn benzos only when utterly needed (and the docs are happy with my performance on both). I don't get violent or aggressive towards her, but horribly depressed at times, to the point of minor self-harm (but with no suggestion of suicide). Her major annoyance is when hypomanic I'll want to talk into the night, when she wants to go to sleep at 8:30 to be up early for her engineer job (I'm a lawyer, but currently doing a PhD largely from home when not lecturing). I am far from perfect, and sometimes I an amazed and just how much she puts up with for me. But my concerns are not to do with her being a good partner, but rather a good romantic lover, and that is what I fear is dying.

I have made some preliminary efforts: I try to ensure we have a 'date night' every weekend, as I have few opportunities to socialise this end of a PhD. But on numerous occasions now she's made plans to go out to much bigger events with her friends the night before. Just recently she told me she was planning on seeing with her friends the exact movie that I wanted to take to see that week. Otherwise, she'll go out late with her friends, so that when we go out the next night, she can't wait to go home so she can go to sleep (and I mean sleep, given the difficulty in fitting anything else into that timeframe) by 8:30.

Communication is becoming a bigger problem. I am often still working until 6pm, which isn't unreasonable, and at that point we start cooking.clearning together for dinner. After that I go to training for 1.5hrs (as part of my bipolar treatment) while she goes to her mothers or friends' houses. I am usually back from training and ready to finally spend some quality time together by 9. I do sometimes work late, but that's more a reaction to the fact that she's then asleep and makes it very very clear that she doesn't wish to be woken. So upon her arriving I bombard her with questions about her day at work, what she's doing, how are friends are....and on a well-communicative night I 'may' reach just one interesting point for conversation before she says 'Craig, I really need to get some sleep, sorry but please be quiet.'


The sex is decent when we have it, but needless to say it has become few and far between. At this point in a non-marriage relationship I would have simply assimed that my partner was seeing someone else, and would end the relationship immediately. Here isn't so simple: I dealy love my wife, more than I thought possible to love another being - there was no 'settling for 2nd' there. And I don't think she'd cheat - I'm athest and she's religious, but she have remarkable similar attitudes towards infedilty and that being the end, and I don't think she is the type that could callously lie around that. I'm more worried that she might just spend more and more time speaking to and hanging out with her work crew (as is good and healthy) and almost nothing (some days, literally nothing) in the way of meaningful conversation to me. Please help, you have no idea how much sorrow I feel even just putting these words to paper and realising they are true.
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replied January 26th, 2010
Experienced User
i have bipolar and can relate to wanting my S.O. to stay up late and talk or I may talk thru a TV show that he's watching w/ hypomania. I have episodes of mania where caring on a meaningful conversation is next to impossible. He assures me that he loves and supports me but can he put up w/ the BP(what I mentioned is just the tip of the iceburg w/ full blown mania) indefinately? I love him with all my heart. I can relate. Feel free to pm me.
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