6 WAYS TO LIVE WITH YOUR MENTAL ILLNESS AND YOUR PARTNER

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COMMUNITACTION

Talk to your partner. Don’t be embarrassed to vocalize how you feel or what you need in order to feel better. Chances are, if you don’t communicate you’re going to get mentally exhausted and end up taking it out on your partner. While will get your partner upset because they don’t understand why your mad or why you are lashing out on them. 

It’s okay for you to be upset about nothing, because that’s how mental health works most times. But remember to vocalize that it’s literally nothing but you need some extra support from them. 

I myself have had a rocky history for not communicating to my partner. I would shut him out, ignore, give him dirty looks, make little nasty comments, and he would be so confused as to why I was acting this way towards him. If I had just told him what was bothering me specifically I wouldn’t have made myself mad with toxic thoughts of things I wasn’t saying.

Talk in a quiet and safe place, sit down and just talk. Try using “I” sentences, don’t talk over each other, and always remember to try walking in each others shoes. 

KNOW YOUR TRIGGERS

Over the last few years I have come to realize some of my triggers when it comes to my anxiety relating to my partner.

When I am anxious I sometimes over exaggerate things in my head which usually makes me feel like I’m not being payed attention to so I get very self defensive and lash out.

Get to know your triggers. Write out what happens right before you start to feel the demons creep up on you. Vocalize them to your partner so they can become more aware of how you feel and what to do about it if those situations happens. 

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THERAPY 

Having a third party observe and give advice on your relationship could help shed a light on who you are as a couple. Talking to each other can be hard if you don’t know where to start or how to get to the root of the problem. Letting another person into your mind sets can also give you a new application towards your partner and help you get out of any ruts you may be experiencing. There is no shame in letting someone help council you and your partner, even if there are no imitate problems. 

If you cant afford a therapist try asking a trusted friend or family member to talk through your issues. They know you but are not in your relationship enough to give bias advice. 

RESEARCH TOGETHER 

One of the biggest things I have ever asked of Spencer is to research my mental illness. It’s not fun to live with someone and them not having a clue about what if feels like to be you. He had no idea about my mood changes, anxiety attacks or anything about the mediations I was taking. It’s a big thing to learn about but it will help your partner feel more comfortable and confident around you when you start to feel yourself slipping into the darkness. 

DON’T GO TO BED ANGRY

I have made this mistake more than once, not my finest moments. Spencer and I would have a blow out in the evening and I would shut down so when bed time came nothing was resolved. These nights consisted me burning with anger, not actually sleeping and coming up with horrible scenarios in my head. 

Give yourself some time to cool down but swallow your pride and make sure you are able to communicate with your partner before things get worse. Try talking about it to a friend to let off some steam or to get their opinion before heading back in. 

Spencer and I always go to bed with a kiss and an “I love you”. I never want to feel the way I have in the past again. It affects too much of your mental well being and takes a toll on your relationship.

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BE AFFECTIONATE

Kiss, hold hands, play with their hair, hug, cuddle, play footsies…

Don’t let the passion and connection between the two of you fade. Sometimes when your in a relationship for a long time those things can be missed by accident, or don’t feel as new anymore. But maintaining that affectionate physical contact will help flourish your ever growing relationship. It will help both of you feel loved and cared for even on the toughest days. 

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