Sarah and her husband, Sean, each wrote a blog post about their marriage for our Couples Series. Read Sean's blog here.
I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder at the age of twenty-two after six months of marriage to my husband, Sean. We weren’t surprised. We actually took the news quite well. It was just such a relief to know why I was having so many mood swings.
I was under a lot of stress at the time. We were testing out living in a new area and it just wasn’t working out. My sleep cycle was off and my emotions and stress levels were so high. This made me have the worst mood swings of my life. We agreed to go to therapy and learned about my bipolar disorder by the second meeting. I checked myself into the hospital soon after and we then moved in with my parents so I could heal.
The first two years of the healing process was hard, but Sean stood by me. I’ve never been so grateful in all my life. There were days that I would sit in bed and cry because I felt so crummy, but Sean held me tight and told me that what I was going through was just part of the healing.
I went to therapy and tried different medications. Although we were getting along much better, we went to marriage counseling to stay on the right track. Over the years I had to adjust my medications to figure out what worked and what didn’t, but Sean was there for me.
We recently celebrated our seventh wedding anniversary. Sean has seen me at my absolute lowest point in my life and now he’s seeing me and my best. I thank God for such a supportive, kind, and gentle man. I owe him a lot of gratitude and I cannot express how much I love him and admire his strength. In a lot of ways, I look up to my husband.
Mental illness can drive people apart, but it can also bring them closer together. What helped is that Sean has a mental illness as well, so he wasn’t ever going to pass judgement on me. I’m very thankful for that. Rest be assured, I’ve been supportive of him, as well.
We’ve been through some rocky times that have definitely tested the strength of our marriage, but we really do love each other. Sometimes it helps to somewhat understand what the other person is going through, which is the case with us.
So, to everyone out there, you can find your special someone. He or she is out there. Don’t settle and don’t hide who you are. You deserve the best, illness or no illness!
Read Sean's accompanying blog here.