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Bipolar and suicide advice


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It's taken a long time for my best friend to even begin to accept that I'm not mentally perfect. He was brought up with the idea that mental illness does not exist, or to at least not really accept it. When we were discussing it for the first time, I brought up suicide, and he said, "That doesn't solve anything." That's not what you say to someone who's suicidal, even though I wasn't at the time. I know about [link=http://www.metanoia.org/suicide/"'>http://www.metanoia.org/suicide/" target="_blank]http://www.metanoia.org/suicide/[/link] and plan on showing it to him, but there's no guarantee he'll read it. So how can I talk to him about suicide? How can I help him to be more accepting of bipolar and more understanding?

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Whew!

Tall order here, hard to get any support when people deny it.

- The Metanoia page is where I refer members to.

I'll look for some other help pages for getting family & friends to accept MI and BP.

I strongly encourage you to buy the Bipolar Disorder Survival Guide. It is truly outstanding. I left my copy lying around the house and caught my dad reading it. Even though he had been dealing with my mom's depression for 40 years, I think it changed his understanding of BP.

back later with refs.

a.m.

p.s. Have you considered taking him to a session with your Pdoc? Sometimes people will accept words from a professional that they don't hear from family.

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I think the best thing to do is to try to be as impersonal as you can about it and ask lots of questions. Of course it's hard to have an abstract conversation about suicide with your Dad when you feel suicidal. Maybe you could pick another time and have a chat with him solely to find out what he thinks. Maybe he has had an experience of suicide that you don't know about, or seen a movie featuring it that has coloured his view, maybe his has personal beliefs about it, all these things could lead to that comment of 'it doesn't solve anything.' This will begin to make him feel heard and then he might be more receptive to hearing your side of things. I found the bipolar survival guide a great educational book that really helped. Having my parents involved in pdoc appointments and tdoc assessments really helped them get an idea of what I was going through too.

It's also worth finding a support person or heline that truly is understanding, because you do need it from somewhere, even if your Dad can't provide you with it right now.

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i've had some success starting with the emotional side of things, by saying that there are rational thoughts and emotional feelings, and that suicide stems from feelings and is something people rationalize. maybe you feel like shit and rationalize that killing yourself would solve the problem of feeling like shit. that tends to help me get my point across. there are people who are just so logic oriented that they lose sight of what it means to feel. or maybe they've had such strong feelings in the past that they've pushed it all away. you can't psychoanalyze him, but you can share how you feel.

best of luck. and please, read my posts on how i feel about my dad and what he did. there is no way on this planet i could put anyone, not even someone i dislike, through what i've been through dealing with my dad. these feelings, rationalizing suicide, have put me in the nut house 4 times in the two years after his suicide. my dad was really what i had in this world, and i am looking inward and outward for a deeper meaning. when you love someone like that and they are gone, the whole fabric of your life is torn into bloody strands and you are left with a hole where that person was. now i need to become Whole in my own right. it takes time to heal, but i'll never be Melinda again.

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Have you considered taking him to a session with your Pdoc? Sometimes people will accept words from a professional that they don't hear from family.

Unfortunately, we live far apart. It's difficult to get him to understand all of this when we only see each other a couple times a year. He's seen very little of how bipolar affects me, and then, to him, I'm just moody. It's almost as if he doesn't believe that anything is mentally wrong with me. It's a great idea to leave the Bipolar Survival Guide lying around his house. Tis a wonderful book.

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