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Loving Someone with Bipolar Disorder Paperback – February 1, 2004


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 238 pages
  • Publisher: New Harbinger Publications; 1st edition (February 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1572243422
  • ISBN-13: 978-1572243422
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (96 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #186,758 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Julie Fast and John Preston have written a ground breaking book for couples who want to prevent manic depressive disorder from hijacking their relationship. Fast, a health writer diagnosed with bipolar illness and clinical psychologist Preston are ideal companions. Their innovative ideas will be welcomed by exhausted partners of "bipolar individuals"--whose illness can cause them to alternate between manic and depressed behavior. Once medication has been prescribed, the key is studying the specific ways your partner is effected. This allows couples to develop pro-active strategies for treating and stabilizing mood swings and symptoms, before they develop into full-blown crises. The techniques emphasize prevention, rather than putting out fires. These include understanding the difference between the person and the disease (know when "the bipolar disorder is talking") listing your partner's specific symptoms, identifying the triggers that lead to these symptoms and transforming the "bipolar conversation" The goal of all the tools is to pinpoint early warning signs of a manic or depressive episode and be prepared with a holistic treatment plan. Other segments of the book deal with the work (checkered resumes) and financial problems (spending sprees) created by this illness. The author's ideas are engaging, compassionate and realistic--an oasis of relief and hope. --Barbara Mackoff

Review

“I am truly impressed with this wonderful book. I will have it in my office and will recommend it to patients’ partners as a matter of course as they go through the journey with this illness.”
—Steven Juergens, MD

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Customer Reviews

I highly recommend this book for anyone affected by bipolar disorder.
Laura Mills
So many books help you understand what Bipolar Disorder is, but few give you great techniques for helping your loved one and having goals to make life better.
Jonathan Hesser
This was the first book I've read (and I've read several) that gave me some hope for my future.
Jacque Santana

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

147 of 153 people found the following review helpful By Sarah Luciani on April 4, 2005
Format: Paperback
I first off want to say that I am dissapointed in some of the reviews I have read regarding this book. The Woman who wrote this book never claimed to be the "Be all, Give all" answer to Bipolar disorder. Bipolar is a broad spectrum illness and while one may suffer from severe manic episodes, another may be depressed all the time. One may spend money wildly, another may have slight irritation. I am speaking from personal experience, as I, my mother and sister all have Bipolar disorder and none of our symptoms are the same. I read a review where one woman was upset about her husband taking away her credit cards because people with bipolar can have spending problems. That doesn't mean everyone with bipolar has spending problems!! If her husband took away her credit cards that sounds like a personal issue in their marriage, and if it is due to one book that he read and not due to characteristics of his wife, then that still sounds like a problem!!

What I enjoyed about this book is that it gave me a greater sense of understanding of my mother's erratic behavior, and illness. I have bipolar also, but very mildly so. My mother is extremely manic, and my family and I have spent years being mad about her erratic behavior, spending sprees etc. This book helps to bring you back to a loving place with someone that has this illness. It helps you see that much of the time it is the disease talking and not the person. I am learning to forgive my Mother and recognize her behaviors much better now due to this book. I am coming to a place where I see I can't save her,I can accept who she is, and be more loving about it. If you really care about someone with Bipolar and want to learn how to love them more, I suggest reading this book.
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80 of 82 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 6, 2004
Format: Paperback
My daughter has bipolar disorder. She was diagnosed at 31 and has struggled with her medications and life style management for years. Her parther bought this book and asked me to read it as well. What a difference this book has made for us! I have so much trouble knowing what mood swing my daughter is having. I can never remember what is what and I always seemed to do the wrong thing to help her. This book has finally given me the tools I need to learn what to do when I see the first signs that she's getting sick.
Julie Fast constantly reminds the reader that bipolar is an illness and there is often a pattern to the mood swings. I used to think my daughter was just out of control all of the time. She could never settle down and she was always trying something new to make her life better. I understand this more now. I understand pyschosis more as well as the anger she often has when she's sick. This book has helped us so much. I just never knew whether to leave her alone and let her mess up or to get involved and get her mad at me. Now I have tools and they work.
Suicide is my biggest worry, but we now have it out in the open. This helps me with my worry and guilt that I don't or can't do enough to help her.
This is a tough illness, but there is hope. Things are a lot less stressful for us now.
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80 of 82 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 16, 2004
Format: Paperback
After several years of living with a bipolar disorder person, and consulting every book, article, and medical journal I could find, as well as consulting with psychiatrists, psychologists, and support groups, I can truly say that Julie Fast and John Preston have done an outstanding job of creating the most comprehensive resource to date for friends and families of loved ones suffering with bipolar disorder. They have spelled out very frankly the subtelties that indicate a mood change is coming on and the chaos and horrors that can befall the vicitms of mania and depression. Their guidance gives the reader the necessary information to help, yet counsels a compassionate response. Objective, knowledgabe helpers can be a lifeline to their loved ones when they are ill.
I have never seen this much information and level of detail in one place before. It has taken me years to collect this volume of information, some of it at a a very dear cost -- here it is in one book. If you love someone with bipolar disorder, buy and read this book -- every person in my family is getting their own copy. Many thanks to Fast and Preston!
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35 of 35 people found the following review helpful By S. Perez on July 19, 2004
Format: Paperback
This book was a life saver for our relationship. It gave us a reality check on issues that we were facing and taught us how to deal with them hands on. Before reading this book, I thought that I could deal with Bi-polar in my partner. I had NO idea what that meant. This book was completely honest in the expectations. It was an eye-opener. It helped me realize that Bi-polar is treatable and helped me realize that I wasn't alone. It gives real examples of treatment plans. I highly recommend this book for anyone who has someone in their life with bi-polar (not just a partner) a friend, sibling, parent, child etc. Thank you Julie for taking the time to write this amazing book!
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30 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Brian Hunt on September 10, 2005
Format: Paperback
I found this book quite by accident while looking for something to read at Borders. I was diagnosed as bipolar about a year ago. But in the previous two yearsfore diagnosis, I wrecked my marriage, my finances, was suicidal, and almost bankrupted my company. With medication, good support around me, i am doing much better. Most bipolar people do not think anything is wrong, only that people around them are distressed. My advantage (disadvantage) is that my Dad also developed the disease at midlife and so I know i have the same thing, and that all things i do or say do not always make sense.

I honestly believe that having this book earlier in my condition and having a spouse who used the techniques described, would have saved my marriage and finances.
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