Q: I have been with a man for four years now. All four years i was abused by this person physically and mentally. I have bi polar disorder but have never had a struggle or problem with depression. About 3 weeks ago I started getting anxiety attacks at work for no reason. we were not fighting or nothing. I had to leave work. I ended up moving back home because i thought i was going to die. I was in the ER however before i went home and my boyfriend would not come up there to see me because he said it was all in my head. My question is, will this depression get better? I am currently on lamictal, however it seems like its not helping im only on 25mg when i should be on a higher dose I believe. I feel irritable, annoyed, worthless, I dread the day going on in fear I will be depressed. One minute i am fine the next minute i am not. Is this common to feel this way ? so close together ? I feel so empty without him in my life , we have a child together , but all we do is fight . After being abused for sooo long i feel like it has changed who I am and that i wont ever be the same? Is this true? I am currently going to psycho therapy but have only gone to one appointment but have more scheduled! Please help. im so scared that i will never get better. Thank you so much.
A: You have two different issues that you are dealing with that are most likely affecting each other. One is the mental health issue in terms of Bipolar Disorder and now a possible anxiety Disorder. The other is being involved in an abusive relationship. Bipolar Disorder can take on many forms and change overtime. I would suggest doing some research on the disorder and talk to you therapist about your questions. There is a type of Bipolar called rapid cycling in which you can swing back and forth from depression to mania to irritability, etc. The anxiety attack may have come on or been triggered by your abusive experiences. If you have been abused for four years and have a small child to worry about, maybe it is time to leave. Again, I strongly suggest you talk openly and honestly with your therapist about your relationship and what is best for you and your child. You may also want to go to the library or bookstore and look into some support groups in your area. I wish you luck and hope things get better soon.
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 19 Jun 2007
Counts, H. (2007). Bipolar disorder , depression, unhealthy abusive relationship.. Psych Central. Retrieved on March 8, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2007/06/19/bipolar-disorder-depression-unhealthy-abusive-relationship/