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Loving Someone with Bipolar Disorder: Understanding and Helping Your Partner
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Loving Someone with Bipolar Disorder: Understanding and Helping Your Partner

3.73  ·  Rating Details  ·  312 Ratings  ·  40 Reviews
Loving Someone with Bipolar Disorder is a first of its kind book—written specifically for the partner of a person with bipolar disorder. If you have a loved one with bipolar, you know how disruptive and straining this disorder can be to your relationship. You may experience feelings of fear, loss, and anxiety as well as a constant uncertainly about your loved one’s ever-ch ...more
Paperback, 224 pages
Published February 1st 2004 by New Harbinger Publications (first published January 1st 2004)
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Phenomena by Susan TarrAutistic blessings and Bipolar me. by E.J. PlowsConditions by Christoph FischerWaiting for Paint to Dry by Lia MackMadness by Marya Hornbacher
Mental Health/Bipolar
29th out of 39 books — 52 voters
Autistic blessings and Bipolar me. by E.J. PlowsNight Falls Fast by Kay Redfield JamisonAn Unquiet Mind by Kay Redfield JamisonThe Bipolar Disorder Survival Guide by David J. MiklowitzWelcome to the Jungle by Hilary T. Smith
Bipolar Illness and Mental Health
28th out of 43 books — 33 voters


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Community Reviews

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Seth
Aug 17, 2007 Seth rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: beepers and anyone who is around them
Shelves: medical
This is the #1 book I tell people to read about BP. It's the only book I know of that isn't targetted specifically at person experiencing BP or a parent of someone experiencing BP.

If you experience BP, giving this book to someone who loves you wll do more than reading any book on handling BP yourself. Especially early after the diagnosis, outside observation and input from someone supportive who knows you well is the best start to treatment. This book gives them the tools they need.

It's a frank
...more
Mala Ashok
Aug 24, 2016 Mala Ashok rated it it was ok
A valuable book for a certain community. I would have to say though that it is too skewed in favour of depression as opposed to mania and hypomania. Thus the suggestions for caregivers as to how to manage their partners' illness is not always appropriate. Also, the point needs to be made repeatedly that there is no standard and every person who has Bipolar Disorder is different; thus behaviour of the caregiver should also be different.
Bob
Apr 30, 2012 Bob rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this in one night. The first time I've been able to focus long enough to read a book in one day since the last Tom Clancy novel.
Having recently been diagnosed with bipolar 2, I did find this book helpful in understanding quite a number of things that before now had gone unrecognized as symptoms of bipolar. Some aspects of my life could have been much simpler had I read this book 20 years ago!
Overall, I found the book helpful and might give it a higher rating once I've read a few more bo
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Lori
May 04, 2016 Lori rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A lifesaver

My husband was recently diagnosed with bipolar disorder and this is by far the best book for spouses/significant others that I have read. It's good to read a few books for the person with bipolar disorder (I highly recommend Welcome to the Jungle) but this book gets me. It has been an emotional experience reading this book as I recognized how many of the symptoms and behaviors my husband was showing and even the ones I was experiencing. I had to put it down a few times because it was
...more
Colin
Feb 27, 2016 Colin rated it really liked it
This book is mainly about strategies on how to deal with someone who is bipolar. The strategies seem straightforward for the most part and give the reader ideas on what to do and when to do it. Bipolar is an all encompassing disease that is still being defined today. The book seems to focus on the relationship a significant other would have with someone who is bipolar. The books also seems to focus on people who are diagnosed with Bipolar I Disorder (currently there are several types or disorder ...more
Jesse Zellmer
A good study on how to living with your partner and working around the illness instead of trying to fix it. It's as holistic as the treatment plan it suggests and refreshing to hear that I'm not the only person (as a caretaker) who goes through this stuff. I loved many of the sections that explained how to find what works for myself and my partner, most of which were at the beginning of the book. However as the book went on I expected it to keep going on finding things to try during the harder t ...more
Devon Trevarrow Flaherty
Jun 05, 2008 Devon Trevarrow Flaherty rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: those who love someone with bipolar
Recommended to Devon by: mother-in-law
Still reading, but it's great so far. The author requests that you move slow. Every paragraph is a new "aha!" moment, a new reason to cry (which we all know I need to do more). As far as therapy goes, this book, the Bible, my journal, and the soundtrack for "Once" are doing it for me right now.
Nancyp
Mar 09, 2014 Nancyp rated it really liked it
I thought this was one of the best books about bipolar and how a partner can help or work through triggers, stay well, and strategies. My husband read it as well, and we intend to do the exercises together.

I am bipolar and this is one of the most helpful books I've read.
Maria
Aug 05, 2014 Maria rated it it was amazing
This book was a game changer for how my partner and I viewed the illness. Not only did it give us many tactics to use in overcoming the hardships of bipolar disorder, it gave us hope that there can be a life together beyond it.
Stephanie
Realistic, helpful to a point

I liked all of the journaling questions to get a clearer picture of the disorder, how it affects each of us and needs. I was hoping for more suggestions and tools in particular for spouses. It was heavy for me to read since my spouse is not willing to work on his bipolar right now and hasn't for a long time due to his illness. I appreciated the reality checks, and the way the author could relate to the feelings of both the spouse and the loves one v suffering with bi
...more
Mrs.Chris Wilson
May 22, 2016 Mrs.Chris Wilson rated it liked it
Shelves: counseling-books
An okay book. It has some helpful suggestions for couples but it also promises a lot more suggestions that it never delivers on. There were also some suggestions, that as a counselor, I could never recommend to a client. An okay book for information, but do not use it as your only source of information. Reach out to professionals and read more on the topic from other authors.

This was the first edition, I didn't read the second edition which has been released now. The first edition is riddled wit
...more
Dawn Wells
Sep 21, 2013 Dawn Wells rated it really liked it
Really good read to understand a spouse with bipolar.
Cat
I really struggled with this book. On the one hand, there were many helpful suggestions, such as creating symptom lists for various moods and mood episodes, which included thoughts, emotions, behaviors, etc. In that way, it was really pragmatic and encouraged united the person with bipolar disorder and their partner against the illness, rather than get bogged down in counterproductive and damaging behaviors and ways of relating to one another. The text assumed the reader really had zero experien ...more
Michael Wolf
Jul 23, 2011 Michael Wolf rated it really liked it
I've been implementing many of the ideas from this book as I've seen fit to use with a dear friend of mine that has BD II, and it's in the revelation of the truths when we talk about the skills and systems of approaching the disorder talked about in this book that mark for me the book's usefulness, and perhaps now for her, as through my relating of the book's ideas and content she now wants to read it and participate in the systematic approach of better dealing with the effects of bipolar disord ...more
Carisa Crosbie
Jul 07, 2015 Carisa Crosbie rated it it was amazing
I have read ALL of the books on Bipolar and this is by far the best resource for not only supporting your loved one suffering from the illness, but teaches you skills to prepare yourself for episodes or even prevent them from happening in the first place. It is validating and encouraging. I highly recommend this book for any therapist to share with their clients or for anyone experiencing the heartache of this illness.
BeerDiablo
Sep 06, 2007 BeerDiablo rated it liked it
Shelves: improvement
This is the first book I've read on the subject and being that, I found it to be beneficial. The authors cover the major topics and give you a framework to help manage a relationship with a person that has the illness but don’t go into medication, other than specifying to make sure that they’re being taken.

Most of the examples are for Bipolar I, which is more extreme and require more work/caretaking on the partner that isn’t ill.

It still gives a good foundation for dealing with a Bipolar II par
...more
Karl T
Oct 01, 2015 Karl T rated it really liked it
Shelves: own-to-read
Although I would like to have a manual exclusively of my partner. Each person with this disease has different levels within it by multiple factors. the book gives excellent tips on how to handle the situation, that we are not alone, that we should improve and that our thoughts are not all bad or anomalous.
Barbara Atlas
Feb 20, 2013 Barbara Atlas rated it really liked it
I don't know the credentials of this author nor whether there's any science behind her claims; I listened because it showed up on the list of available audio books at the Arlington Public Library. I would have enjoyed reading it more that listening to it on my iPhone, because the reader spoke sooooooo slowly, and I came to detest how she said "bipolar disorder."

Despite all that, it was an interesting book that affirmed what I knew and taught me much more. Someone who has been correctly diagnose
...more
Carie L
Jul 19, 2014 Carie L rated it liked it
kind of repetitive. it seems to promise answers and never actually gets to them. it does explain some things i wouldn't have otherwise realized, though.
Connie DeFazio
May 07, 2016 Connie DeFazio rated it really liked it
Shelves: own
A well written book. Sometimes the assignments are overwhelming in their scope.
Mariya
Jun 07, 2014 Mariya rated it really liked it
Very consise and readable, with healthy balance of optimism and realistic assessment.
Jose
Oct 25, 2015 Jose rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting reading for people who have bi-polar in their circle of friends
Erin
Sep 16, 2015 Erin rated it liked it
Very helpful. Breaks it down.
Erica
Apr 24, 2015 Erica rated it it was amazing
This author was recommended to me by a friend who has a family history of the illness. It is outstanding - a wonderful resource for anyone in a relationship with someone who is bi-polar (as well as the individual him/herself), and gives anyone interested a very good idea of how bi-polar manifests itself. It's aimed at a couple managing the illness by recognizing the verbal/non-verbal cues that can spiral downward into depression or mania, and nipping the symptoms in the bud. I plan to read her o ...more
J Campbell
Oct 12, 2012 J Campbell rated it liked it
When my spouse was first diagnosed with BiPolar Disorder, I didn't know where to turn. This book helped me through some very dark hours, and clarified some of my feelings. So much so that I was able to remain married in the tough times and now life is much better with proper medication, therapy and support groups.
I do wish this book had a Biblical context to it. I've actually written a book with a Biblical reference for those living and loving a spouse with BiPolar Disorder.
Stevie
Jul 10, 2013 Stevie rated it it was amazing
We haven't had a chance to sit down and walk through the exercises as a couple yet, but this book has already given me some successfull coping strategies, and has given me the hope that our relationship will be able to weather the stormy seas of this illness better in the future. Definitely recommend the book for anyone who is daring to take on the challenge of marrying someone with bipolar disorder.
Leabelle
Oct 20, 2012 Leabelle rated it really liked it
The author has bipolar disorder as did her partner of many years. The author's approach: while a good start, medication alone will not keep you healthy, you need to take other measures to prevent the escalation of symptoms in either direction. It certainly increased my understanding of how one might live with the condition stay as healthy as possible.
julia
Feb 01, 2008 julia rated it liked it
Recommends it for: people who love people who have Bi-polar disorder
this book was very helpful, espeically in understanding how a bi-polar thinks (or rather doesn't).if your partner is a diagnosed BP and you're both willing to work the techniques in the book, I bet you'll have quite a bit of success coping. But I have enough work to do, thank you very much, my superiority complex keeps me quite busy.
Liz Mallett
Mar 23, 2013 Liz Mallett rated it it was amazing
An absolute must for anyone who has a person with bipolar disorder- or any mental health issue- in their lives. Very practical. Filled with real life applications. Not a bunch of psycho-babble. It's a fabulous "tool" to add to your arsenal in battling this illness.
Amy
Apr 03, 2010 Amy rated it really liked it
This is the first book I've ever read on the subject and it gave me so many insights. I highly recommend this book for anyone looking to understand BP disorder or who has someone close to them that suffers from this illness.
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Julie A. Fast is a critically acclaimed six-time author, radio host, national speaker, and sought after expert in the field of mental health management. Since starting her website www.BipolarHappens.com where she offers a treatment plan and advice for those affected by bipolar disorder, Julie has written three traditionally published books on the topic of mood disorders:

Loving Someone with Bipola
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“It turns out that up to 35 percent of people with bipolar disorder also have ADHD.” 0 likes
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