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Asking for Help Because of Bipolar

September 10, 2015 Natasha Tracy

I have found that I have to ask for help because of bipolar. It’s not really an option not to. It’s really a requirement. And right now, it’s even more so. My father died about a week-and-a-half ago and that makes me less high-functioning than usual. And I have to ask for help, no matter how much I really don’t want to. I have to ask for help because of bipolar.

I Don’t Want to Ask for Help Because of Bipolar

I, like many people, don’t like to ask for help because of bipolar or anything else. I don’t want to admit that I need it and I don’t want to put my issues on other people. I don’t want to put extra things on other people’s plates because I’m the one who’s sick. Plus, there’s always the concern that a person may decide that I’m just too much effort and walk away from me because I ask for help (a common concern and experience for many with bipolar).

I Have to Ask for Help Because of Bipolar

But here’s the thing, there are some things that are so stressful for me, I just can’t do them right now. Odd things are stressful for me. I’m trying to deal with a customer service issue with a company, and that’s stressing me out to no end so I asked my friend to handle it. Honestly, it’s a small thing that shouldn’t take much time but when I think of it, it freaks me out. She, of course, doesn’t feel this way. It’s pretty simple for her. So she agreed to handle it and I’m so grateful. It’s one thing off my plate that I absolutely hated being there.

I'm the first one to admit that asking for help because of bipolar is hard, but you have to ask for help because of bipolar in order to continue functioning.And her taking care of this one thing for me reduces my anxiety a little and makes everything else just a tiny bit easier. I don’t think she knows how much it means to me but it’s been so helpful.

Not only has she done that, but since my father’s death, she has spent a little extra time with me and even made dinner for me one night. (Yes, she’s a gem.)

You Have to Ask for Help Because of Bipolar

I truly believe that we all need to ask for help when dealing with something as devastating as a mental illness. No, you can’t expect that your loved ones are going to take care of everything in your life, but you can ask them, very nicely, to help out with the little things. Maybe it’s driving you to psychiatric appointments, maybe it’s talking with you on the phone for a few minutes every day or maybe it’s bringing you a nutritious meal every once in awhile (How To Help Someone With A Mental Illness).

We all have to remember that’s it’s okay to lean on people and that they do have the ability to say, “No” (Boundaries for Helping a Friend). If my friend had of said “no” to my request, I would have been okay with it, but she didn’t. She could have, though. And I need to trust that she would if that was her feeling. I need to ask to get my needs met and need to trust that she will protect hers. I need to be able to ask for help because of the symptoms of bipolar no matter how hard it is and no matter how much I really don’t want to.

See Also

Are You Afraid To Ask For Mental Health Help?

You can find Natasha Tracy on Facebook or Google+, @Natasha_Tracy on Twitter or at Bipolar Burble, her blog.

APA Reference
Tracy, N. (2015, September 10). Asking for Help Because of Bipolar, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2019, July 18 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/breakingbipolar/2015/09/asking-for-help-because-bipolar



Author: Natasha Tracy

Natasha Tracy is a renowned speaker, award-winning advocate and author of Lost Marbles: Insights into My Life with Depression & Bipolar.

Find Natasha Tracy on her blog, Bipolar BurbleTwitter, Instagram and Facebook.

NJ
says:
September, 15 2015 at 5:44 pm
Just a little note to say that I think it's a good idea for people to accept help for these 'little things'. When you are having a tough time, your friends want to do something to help you to lighten the load. If we offer to drive you somewhere, bring you a meal, pick up groceries, or take care of an errand for you, let us. Not only will it lighten your load but we will feel good too because we were able to help.
Kathleen Slattery
says:
September, 15 2015 at 2:01 pm
My deepest condolences over the passing of your father Natasha. I just lost my best friend in the world to Metastastic Breast Cancer three weeks ago, and from past experiences know that death can be a major-league trigger. For that reason I have decided to resume therapy sessions. I don't always need them, but at times such as this, they prove to be invaluable. You are extremely brave to be able to maintain a "stiff-upper-lip", and put pen to paper, in the light of your loss.
Diane Mintz
says:
September, 11 2015 at 11:16 am
Natasha, I'm very sorry for your loss.
I think most people would gladly offer help in times of grief. Do you think it is harder those of us with mental illness to ask for help, because we sometimes could use help at times that make no sense to people?

I don't ask for help with silly things. It's easier for me to just do it myself. But when I need to keep my mental health in balance I do reach out.

I wish we all knew how to ask for help. Maybe there will be a college course someday.
Tom Berkas
says:
September, 11 2015 at 5:29 am
I am one of those guys who'll spend hours driving around rather than stopping somewhere to ask for directions. So it shouldn't probably surprise anyone that getting to the point of asking for help for my depression took more years than I care to even count at this point. And then, much to my surprise, unlike asking for directions, this was not just a one-time thing! Or even a couple month thing. In fact it meant asking for help weekly from my therapist. And then also from my psychiatrist as well (the bipolar diagnosis took another five years to happen). And they, like you, Natasha, indicated I would need to be asking for help from others. While I'm still not very good at this, I have gotten better, with recent asking being in the area of vocational rehabilitation services and exploreing the possibility of requesting accommodations at work. So thanks, Natasha, for the words of wisdom!

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