I’m a woman with bipolar disorder. Four years ago, during a manic episode, a male patient in the psychiatric ward (addiction and depression) moved on me while I was vulnerable.
When I got discharged, I was in love with him.
Meantime, he was patching things up with his ex-wife with whom he shares two young children. He also has two teenage daughters.
I’m 39, and only have a dog I love dearly.
I told my spouse of 14 years that I loved this other man.
After awhile, heartbroken, he moved out. I spent two years in counselling.
Now I’m in the psychiatric ward again.
The man - my now common-law spouse of four years - stole almost $3000 out of my bank account while I was in hospital.
My psychiatrist is taking away my rights to manage my own money.
I care about this man, but he’s drained me financially, turned me into an alcoholic, and I’ve never met any of his four kids.
I want to find new love, but don't want to lose touch with him or see him kill himself. What do I do?
Heal yourself to the best of your ability, with the consistent help of your psychiatrist, and any medications he’s prescribed that help you deal with your bipolar disorder.
Discuss who should manage your money and make sure it’s someone you trust, e.g. a lawyer you’ve known, a money manager in an established financial firm, or a loving family member, etc.
You owe nothing to someone who “stole” from you and helped you become an alcoholic.
Contact with him is potentially destructive to you. End it, and continue with counselling to help you move on.
Recently, my friend, “A,” had various text conversations with a guy that I had a huge crush on, in order to set us up together.
I’d asked her about him, and she’d said that she didn't like him, and that I definitely had a chance with him.
A week later, I learned from another friend that she decided that she liked him and tried to get with him.
Now, A and my crush are dating.
She told all my friends - but not me - about this.
Is it wrong of me to be really upset with her?
I talked to the guy and he said that I shouldn't be mad at her and he felt bad for messing up our friendship.
But he didn't indicate feeling bad about hurting my feelings.
A said she was sorry (but she'd already accepted his invitation to be his girlfriend.)
It’s really awkward because I see them both daily at school and hanging out on weekends.
Also, another friend has a thing going with one of this guy’s friends, so I'm a 5th wheel now.
I feel like this whole situation is a major violation of the dating/friend code.
I'm not really sure what I should do.
Do nothing, other than learn from it. Some people pay no attention to any “code,” and go after whomever they choose.
“A” was actually using you from the start, to build a text relationship with the guy.
The lesson? If you have a crush that has possibilities, go for it on your own.
Start a conversation yourself. Even if the guy doesn’t feel the same way, you can become good friends.
Start some new weekend activity and find other friends to hang with… you’re only an extra if you choose to stay that way.
FEEDBACK Regarding the writer whose parents are returning to Europe to live (April 21):
Reader – “I feel for him (her). I was born in Europe and came here with my parents when young.
“I was still living at home, but finished school when my parents decided to return to their home country.
“I had to scramble to find a job to support myself and spent two years on my own until I met my husband.
“My parents were very protective and hadn’t tried to integrate me within this society.
“I had no support system when they left. Other family members were in Europe.
“Depending on the writer’s age, it may be best to return to Europe while trying to maintain contact with friends here.
“As an adult, it’ll be possible to decide whether to return.
“But if the decision is to stay here, a solid support system is essential.”
Tip of the day:
Managing bipolar disorder requires consistent professional help and self-protection.