Dating someone mental illness

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6 Tips for Dating Someone with a Mental Illness

Then, when things are starting to get serious, he tells you more about his family and family history. What do you do? Does this change how you feel about him?

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Dating is complicated enough already, but throw mental illness into the mix, and harmful assumptions can escalate quickly. Misrepresentations in cultural media remain dangerously misleading about what mental illness really looks like. Bring to mind all the associations that you have with that mental illness. Listen to their experiences without making assumptions. Remember that mental illness can show up in many different ways for different people.

6 Tips for Dating Someone with a Mental Illness

Remember too that vulnerability is a two-way street. You have been on a few dates, and the chemistry is there. It's exciting, and it's going so well. And then one night you have a deep conversation and you learn that you're dating someone with a mental illness. As someone who has been on the other side of these conversations a lot of times, I can vouch for the type of reactions that are less than helpful when you discover you're dating someone with a mental illness.

First, do not call your new potential partner "crazy.

The Top 5 Realities of Dating Someone With a Mental Illness

Most people who, like me, struggle with bipolar disorder do not manifest the way characters do on TV. Similarly, the news media is quick to brand mental illness as "crazy," especially when it comes to those very few who commit crimes.

Studies have shown that those with mental illness are seven times more likely to have violence committed against them than to ever harm another person [ How Does Mental Illness Affect Criminal Behavior? Second, do not simply nod and move on. This is an invitation to start a conversation about dating someone with a mental illness.

Ask to hear the person's story. Don't be accusatory, but make sure you learn what you need to in order to make an informed decision about whether or not this is the right relationship for you. Dating someone with a mental illness adds an extra dynamic to a relationship, as any health issue would.

Here are a few things to keep in mind when interacting with your partner. Sometimes, mental illness can be even harder on you, the partner, than it is on us. Trust me, we feel terrible about those times, but harping on it only increases our guilt and the associated depression.

17 Things You Should Know About Dating A Girl With Mental Illness

So while it is important to bring up issues that you might have, it is necessary to do so in a way that is part of the solution rather than increasing the problem. Practice compassion with your partner. Living with a mental illness is hard, and some days are harder still. Understand that on those days, not everything will be likely to be achieved by your partner. Instead, try speaking positively about what your partner did accomplish.