Spurned By Bipolar Fiancée But Want to Win Her Back

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Reader’s Question

I have a girlfriend who has Bipolar Disorder. We were only four months into our relationship when she said we should get married soon. We loved each other so much, and we felt we couldn’t afford to lose each other, so we committed to be married this June and made all the plans to get everything ready.

I knew all along about my girlfriend’s disorder and had done some research about it. But I didn’t anticipate things that were to come. When they happened, they just blew my mind away! Just one week after all the plans and preparations were made, she said we should move the wedding to December. Then an hour later, she moved it again to February 14. The next day she remembered a petty mistake I made two weeks earlier, namely mentioning the word ‘bipolar’ when I wrote her aunt an e-mail, and she went ballistic. Although she appeared to overlook it last week, she now suddenly cannot forgive it. Now, she’s cancelled the wedding and broke up with me, swearing to never take me back again. She claims she doesn’t understand but she doesn’t feel in love with me anymore. I’ve done everything I can to try to win her back but to no avail. She has said her decision is final and she really doesn’t love me anymore.

It’s hard to imagine this happened just because of one mistake on my part. So, my question is whether it is possible for her feelings to resurface and fall in love with me again in due time? And if so, how soon or how long? Or is it not possible at all? Thank you. Please enlighten me, because I’m truly confused.

Psychologist’s Reply

There are plenty of indications here that more is at work than merely Bipolar Disorder. Bipolar Disorder can exist with other conditions, including some personality disturbances, one of which is characterized by extreme emotional lability, initial over-valuation in relationships followed by unpredictable shifts in perspective, disenchantment, and irrational displays of anger. And whether your girlfriend’s mood disturbance is simply not well-regulated, or she actually suffers from other conditions, you are likely getting a glimpse now of the kind of roller coaster ride a long term relationship with her would necessarily involve. So, do some heavy thinking about this. Right now you appear to be thinking that it’s one small mistake you made that’s responsible for the confusing mess in which you find yourself. But the reality is that you’re likely dealing with something that is bigger than you, that you can’t control, and that is likely to be an issue for a long time.

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