One thing that frustrates family members about my Bipolar Disorder is when they ask me “How can I help you?” And my response is generally, “I dunno.” I found a good article on HelpGuide.org about some things our loved ones can do. HelpGuide covers many topics about Bipolar Disorder, Depression, Anxiety. Great site for Mental Illness sufferers. Here’s an excerpt:
Here are some ways you can help a person with bipolar disorder:
Learn about bipolar disorder. Educate yourself about bipolar disorder. Learn everything you can about the symptoms and treatment options. The more you know about bipolar disorder, the better equipped you’ll be to help your loved one and keep things in perspective.
Encourage the person to get help. The sooner bipolar disorder is treated, the better the prognosis, so urge your friend or family member to seek professional help right away. Don’t wait to see if the person will get better without treatment.
Be understanding. Let your friend or family member know that you’re there if he or she needs a sympathetic ear, encouragement, or assistance with treatment. Remind the person that you care and that you’ll do whatever you can to help.
Be patient. Getting better takes time, even when a person is committed to treatment. Don’t expect a quick recovery or a permanent cure. Be patient with the pace of recovery and prepare for setbacks and challenges. Managing bipolar disorder is a lifelong process.