Whatever your religious affiliation, December is the time to celebrate your holidays.  However, it is also a time that brings you more responsibility for your loved one with bipolar disorder, so that they don't go into an episode.

 

Here are some suggestions for a great bipolar holiday:

 

1.      Don't let your loved one get overwhelmed

Although this is generally a happy time for people

with bipolar disorder, they can easily become

overwhelmed by all the holiday activity.  Try to

watch your loved one for signs that they are

feeling overwhelmed.

 

2.      Don't do too much

Keep the decorating, gatherings, and other

holiday festivities to a minimum, so that you

don't do too much.  This, too, can cause your

loved one to feel overwhelmed.

 

3.      Include your loved one

By including your loved one in holiday plans,

they will feel more a part of them.  They want

to be included.  As long as you keep things

simple, your loved one should not have

problems with their bipolar disorder  over this. 

 

4.      Hold down some of the excitement

For some people with bipolar disorder, all the

holiday gatherings and the excitement they

bring with them can get them too excited,

and cause them to go into a manic episode.

Be sure to watch for signs of this in your loved

one.

 

5.      Have an agreement for holiday gatherings

Your loved one may become nervous or anxious

over having to go to holiday gatherings.  Make

sure you keep these to a minimum, and have an

agreement with your loved one that they can

somehow let you know if they need to leave early.

 

6.      Keep the stress to a minimum

Stress, even good stress, can be dangerous for

your loved one.  Stress is one of the biggest

triggers to a bipolar episode.  Try to keep the

stress to a minimum, while still enjoying the

holidays.

 

7.      Talk to your loved one

Make sure that your loved one has a say in all

holiday activities.  Only they know how they

feel, and you are not a mindreader – so make

sure they talk to you about how they are feeling

so that you can take this into consideration.

 

If you follow these suggestions, there is no reason why you shouldn't be able to enjoy a happy holiday season with your loved one, in spite of their bipolar disorder.