Being in a relationship with mental illness

I'm Sorry I Don't Love Like Normal

Having multiple mental disorders is hard and it is harder when you are in a relationship.


I had told myself many times after my last relationship that I would not date anyone. It wasn't because I was bitter towards other men but it was because I was scared that my mental disorders would drive a person away. I remember asking myself every night if everything was really my fault and if I was really using my depression as a crutch as my ex had told me. I felt alone and even came near to resorting to suicide because I felt unloved and I felt as if no matter how many relationships I get into no man will ever value me.

Now a year later I'm with a different guy who is completely opposite of my last ex. Although I am thankful for him being in my life I feel guilty because my last relationship along with a series of events that happened in my life had caused me to shape how I view love.

One thing I am grateful for is the fact that my boyfriend I'm with now is very patient. Growing up I felt like I was never given a lot of patience and even within previous relationships I was never given that quality. I use to regret the way I felt and also the way I had acted because of my mental illnesses. On top of that if I ever expressed any concern I would be viewed as the bad guy just because I could not help but tell my ex the actual truth about how I feel.

I admit it is weird being with a man who actually listens to me and is always very supportive of most of my decisions and choices. I always ask myself every day what did I do to even deserve a person like my boyfriend. At the same time, I feel bad because I don't love the same as he does.

While my boyfriend tells me he loves me and expresses how he feels I tend to be more closed and reserved when it comes to my emotions. There will be times when I will say "I love you" but it is not as much as a normal couple would say it. Although my relationship is pretty new and my boyfriend is very patient, my biggest fear is that he would leave after we go through that stage in a relationship where I tend to act like a jerk when I am feeling angry at him.

Because of my unspecified personality disorder, I tend to express emotions that are very intense and I realize over the years that it is hard for me to be just "mad" at something. I either do not care or I get really angry and there is no in between. I am also a person who does not sugarcoat anything so if I do decide to express concerns about something I tend to do it in a way that most of my exes hate.

What I hope to get out of this relationship is learning how to love again and how to heal in a healthy way. If there is anything I want it is to be the best girlfriend my boyfriend ever had. Every day is always a challenge but I would never change anything about us.

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To The Person Who Feels Suicidal But Doesn't Want To Die

Suicidal thoughts are not black and white.

Everyone assumes that if you have suicidal thoughts that means you want to die.

From an outside perspective, suicidal thoughts are rarely looked into deeper than the surface level. Either you have suicidal thoughts and you want to die, or you don't have suicidal thoughts and you want to live. What most people don't understand is that people live in between those two statements, I for one am one of them.

I've had suicidal thoughts since I was a kid.

My first recollection of it was when I came home after school one day and got in trouble, and while I was just sitting in the dining room I kept thinking, “I wonder what it would be like to take a knife from the kitchen and just shove it into my stomach." I didn't want to die, or even hurt myself for that matter. But those thoughts haven't stopped since.

I've thought about going into the bathroom and taking every single pill I could find and just drifting to sleep and never waking back up, I've thought about hurting myself to take the pain away, just a few days ago on my way to work I thought about driving my car straight into a tree. But I didn't. Why? Because even though that urge was so strong, I didn't want to die. I still don't, I don't want my life to end.

I don't think I've ever told anyone about these feelings. I don't want others to worry because the first thing anyone thinks when you tell them you have thoughts about hurting or killing yourself is that you're absolutely going to do it and they begin to panic. Yes, I have suicidal thoughts, but I don't want to die.

It's a confusing feeling, it's a scary feeling.

When the depression takes over you feel like you aren't in control. It's like you're drowning.

Every bad memory, every single thing that hurt you, every bad thing you've ever done comes back and grabs you by the ankle and drags you back under the water just as you're about the reach the surface. It's suffocating and not being able to do anything about it.

The hardest part is you never know when these thoughts are going to come. Some days you're just so happy and can't believe how good your life is, and the very next day you could be alone in a dark room unable to see because of the tears welling up in your eyes and thinking you'd be better off dead.

You feel alone, you feel like a burden to everyone around you, you feel like the world would be better off without you. I wish it was something I could just turn off but I can't, no matter how hard I try.

These feelings come in waves.

It feels like you're swimming and the sun is shining and you're having a great time until a wave comes and sucks you under into the darkness of the water. No matter how hard you try to reach the surface again a new wave comes and hits you back under again, and again, and again.

And then it just stops.

But you never know when the next wave is going to come. You never know when you're going to be sucked back under.

I always wondered if I was the only one like this.

It didn't make any sense to me, how did I think about suicide so often but not want to die? But I was thinking about it in black and white, I thought I wasn't allowed to have those feelings since I wasn't going to act on them. But then I read articles much like this one and I realized I'm not the only one. Suicidal thoughts aren't black and white, and my feelings are valid.

To everyone who feels this way, you aren't alone.

I thought I was for the longest time, I thought I was the only one who felt this way and I didn't understand how I could feel this way. But please, I implore you to talk to someone, anyone, about the way you're feeling, whether it be a family member, significant other, a friend, a therapist.

My biggest mistake all these years was never telling anyone how I feel in fear that they would either brush me off because “who could be suicidal but not want to die?" or panic and try to commit me to a hospital or something. Writing this article has been the greatest feeling of relief I've felt in a long time, talking about it helps. I know it's scary to tell people how you're feeling, but you're not alone and you don't have to go through this alone.

Suicidal thoughts aren't black and white, your feelings are valid, and there are people here for you. You are not alone.

If you or someone you know is experiencing suicidal thoughts, call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline — 1-800-273-8255

Cover Image Credit: BengaliClicker

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