It’s not BAD. Just different.
For one thing that I had learned in my experience of 25 years of living, it is very likely that we will at least go on a date with someone who is suffering or has suffered from mental health problems. As I remembered reading this stat which also showed, 1 in 10 people throughout the world will fall into this category in their lifetime and the more we pretend we don’t know someone in this group, the more we build on the stigma surrounding it.
Many people I have interacted with, think someone having a Mental Illness means they are unstable which is not true. Someone with mental illness, whether they’ve sought out formal treatment or knows exactly what their condition is, has developed ways of coping so that they can live as normal a life as possible.
Just a tip to share if someone you’re dating confides in you about dealing with a mental illness, listen to what they have to say without guessing that you know what they are dealing with and how this has altered their life. It is all about communication which is the most important factor in any relationship, but it’s definitely one of the keys to making things work when mental health problems play a role in your relationship. Your partner needs to know that you are okay talking about what they go through without judgment or assumption. It is about taking weekly check-ins with your partner giving both of you a chance to bring up feelings and issues that you might be having that could affect your relationship.
Another thing which you will battle on a regular basis is with the thought of fixing them, I understand watching someone you love suffering from anything it might be physical pain, mental distress or emotional turmoil is one of the most heartbreaking and difficult things you can do. It definitely causes tension, confusion, and anxiety when one party in a relationship is suffering from mental health issues.
But you have to remember is that while it is great to offer support to your partner when they’re going through a difficult time, finding the solutions that they need to live the happiest and healthiest life possible is up to them. All you can do is listen, cheer them up and help them cope, they need to discover which treatments work best for them, and needs to act accordingly on a daily basis.
You have to be understanding enough to accept that there are all sorts of different stages that people go through when dealing with mental health problems and that you can’t force your partner out of one stage and into the next. You just have to keep patience and accept them at whatever stage they are currently in with honesty and compassion. This doesn’t mean that you can’t suggest they make a change or get help, but you need to be prepared for the possibility that they might not follow your advice.
Another thing which we need to understand is that they have their own versions of being normal, for example, if you’re dating someone who suffers from social anxiety, it is not very likely that you will be spending your weekends out at crowded bars and loud parties. You have to adjust to make this relationship work call it as compromise or understanding totally depends on your satisfaction the way you taking it. And if you are having second thoughts about why only you have to make a sacrifice why can’t they? Remind yourself when you’re deciding whether or not this person is right for you, you need to approach it just like you would with any other potential relationship. We all have those things about us that are not going to change and that our perfect partner will either appreciate or will learn to live with and those who suffer from mental illness are no different. If you’re not someone who can deal with his everyday habits or schedule, he’s likely not the right person for you.
And yes lastly every standard relationship rules apply to your relationship. Don’t let someone make their mental health issues an excuse for always taking and never giving. Just because they are dealing with something, doesn’t give them the right to be a jerk. there should be a good balance of giving and take in your relationship. You should also track the treatment you are giving they give you back the attention you deserve.
In today’s world, we need to erase the stigma surrounding mental health and we need to realize that those suffering are the same as any other person. They are amazing people who are capable of great things. You never know who your perfect partner might so stay open to all of the possibilities!