I found out about 5 to 6 months ago I suffer from bipolar disorder and psychosis. I have never experienced such a hard and complicated disease before. My psychosis experience has changed my life completely and has really put a damper on my relationship with my boyfriend, Brook. When I am having episodes I hear another girl in the house. She sometimes speaks really loud and I can make out the whole conversation and sometimes she whispers. I hear a variety of different things from normal conversation to sexual conversation and hearing a couple have sex.
My boyfriend has really taken charge of the situation. At first it was really hard for him and it still is some days. He did not know how to handle me when I was in the middle of an episode and standing there blaming him of cheating. These 5 steps can help in so many ways.
1. Know when the episode is happening. Know what it looks like and sounds like.
Every person who has an episode handles it differently and looks different and acts differently than the next person. My episodes stick out like a sore thumb. I have all different kinds. Sometimes I have very calm ones where I hear the girl talking, but I keep on doing whatever it is I was doing. I have my episodes where I cry and blame my boyfriend of cheating on me. I also have episodes where I pack a bag to leave and tell my boyfriend I'm done because he is a lying piece of shit. I even have episodes where I search the whole house looking for this girl and say I can't find her because there are hidden trap doors in the house.
My eyes usually get really big and I start looking around from wherever I am sitting or standing. I start questioning everything. Why is this laying here? Why did you do the laundry? How come you didn't come inside until now? I sometimes get really quiet to and I bite my nails a lot.
2. Talk to the person having the episode.
Don't ever judge the situation. Just sit and listen and talk to the person having the episode. When I first started having these episodes my boyfriend would sit there and look me right in the eyes and tell me I am crazy because of the things I was telling him. I would just become more upset and freak out more.
He learned to speak to me in a calm tone and just tell me everything will be okay. He lets me know that what I am thinking is not true, but it is okay because I can't help what I am thinking and hearing at the time. The best thing to do is be calm and not judge because yelling or telling someone they are crazy just makes the situation worse.
3. Never argue with a delusion.
I have sat on the bed and looked Brook right in the face and say I saw a hand go down your pants. I know there is someone in the bed. Yes! I think someone is in the bed not all the time, but definitely sometimes. Brook never really knows what to do in this situation because he knows it is not true, but at the same time he does not want to throw my issues in my face.
If someone is having a delusion never tell them they are crazy and they are just seeing shit or hearing shit. The person having the episode believes it is really happening that is how real it feels. Just talk the person out of it. Never say you're stupid how can someone be under the bed right now?
4. Pay attention to emotions.
Certain things really set my episodes off. Someone might say something that does not sound right to me or it might have sounded like they said something they really did not say. One thing that sets me off is when someone points. I always think they are pointing to let this girl know where I am at or where she should go so I can't see her.
I ask for a lot of hugs and kisses during these times. I want to be held and cuddled because that shows me I am loved and not useless. Mostly during my episodes I feel insecure and ugly and useless because well in my mind the love of my life is cheating on me.
5. Always be open minded.
One thing Brook and I have both learned is to be open minded and ask questions. When I start having episodes Brook will ask me what set it off. He asks me questions and asks me if I want to search the house and he will search With me. Always remember to not judge the person, but help shape them.
People who suffer from psychotic episodes are not crazy or scary. They are just normal people. No one can help when or where these episodes take place or why they take place it is just how it is. If your partner is struggling with helping and not knowing what to do the can always ask a doctor or look up ideas on what to do online.
Thank you Brook for dealing with me and talking me through everyday. I love you for that so much.