How to cope with fears for ex's mental health and his suicidality?
July 18, 2013 9:47 AM Subscribe
Last week I asked this question
. I am still no-contact with him on the advice of literally everyone I know, but I am obsessed with worry that he will kill himself (or already has) and guilt for leaving him in this state.
posted by Rainflower to human relations (51 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
My ex: male, late 30s, diagnosed bipolar-schizoaffective and treatment-resistant. He has been suicidal ever since we met. But it's not the typical kind of suicidal in which a person feels bad about themselves and is emotional. It's a cold, calculating plan to kill himself before the age of 40 or so because he doesn't want to get old "and be hooked up to tubes."
I had many reasons for leaving him. There was the psychological abuse I last posted about, but there was also the fact that he said he would stay with me for a couple of years and then kill himself anyway.
He says he hates most humans, considers himself a superior being stuck on this planet, and can't wait to leave this place (through physical death).
I am torturing myself with guilt because I left the day before he was supposed to see a psychiatrist. He had already seen a GP and gotten a prescription for Seroquel because he'd been having a manic episode in which he was up all night and having uncontrollable anger. But the Seroquel made things worse in a way and I was at the point where I didn't know if anything would help him because he really didn't seem to want help.
The Seroquel helped him sleep but he continually carped about resenting having to take meds. He was also angry with me because I take vitamins, supplements, and ADD medication and he kept telling me what a waste those were.
With the Seroquel, a lot of the bizarre beliefs he had seemed to fade, but the anger he had toward people--especially me--escalated, and every day he yelled at me or cut me down for something. He was on a relatively low dose.
He complained continually about his upcoming appointment, having to jump through hoops to satisfy doctors who were not as smart as he was. When I asked him if he was planning to ask the doctor for a prescription for Lamictal and he snarled that he wasn't going to ask for anything. I also asked him why he didn't try to work on his anger and he said it was because he didn't care enough about whether he was hurting people to try.
I was trying to white-knuckle it through to the appointment, but the problem was that I didn't trust him to take the medication as prescribed or to work on his problems because he was so resistant. To make matters worse, our lease was going to be up in a month, and he wanted me to sell my car and go with him to a conference, and then drive around the country looking for a place for us to settle. Whenever I expressed wanting to have more of a plan than that, he would snarl at me to shut up and accept the fact that he was in charge of the relationship because of his higher intelligence and my questioning him meant I didn't trust him.
He also told me not to worry about not having a car, because if he decided to dump me he would make sure it was somewhere that had public transportation and he would give me enough cash to live on for a month while I looked for a job.
I wanted to believe that if he got on Lamictal that his abusiveness would stop. But Seroquel hadn't helped that. In fact, it seemed like once his psychosis was more controlled his hatred was set free.
Also, he had been on Lamictal before, and had taken a lower dose than prescribed, and gotten off it. He used medication to get through things, not as maintenance. I was afraid that he'd just get a prescription for Lamictal and take it "as needed" and not make the long-term changes that would make our relationship better.
I was also told repeatedly that he was textbook abusive and it is a separate issue from mental health. I want to believe that. (It's true that even at his best he was condescending and critical).
I'm still consumed by guilt and have not heard anything of him or from him. I stopped seeing him on Gmail a couple weeks ago, around the time his lease ended, and I don't know what that means.
One of the worst things about this is that I am now phobic about checking Facebook or Gmail because I'm afraid I'm going to find out he killed himself. How do I overcome that?
I have a feeling that if he hasn't killed himself, I might still be able to help him...somehow. I don't know how. How should I be thinking and feeling about this?
And yes, I'm in therapy. I just started EMDR.