It was dumb, I'll admit. But I had to try. I was looking for courage and compassion.
Down through the years since my divorce (1990), I have joined several dating sites...and let them lapse. Strange thing is these sites will continue to send me emails and flirts from men to entice me to join back up. Considering my situation, these men are usually not suitable for me. Well, yesterday, in a moment of boredom, loneliness, and secret optimism, I joined back up to one of these sites. I not only did a search and indicated interest in half a dozen men, I updated my profile. Here's the trick...I added that I was bipolar.
I don't know what I was thinking. Maybe I was hoping for the benefit of the doubt. I mean, the people I know don't shun me. I'm not dangerous. And I apologize when I have too many problems to complain about. I don't drool...not since we lowered my lithium. And I have sincere compassion for those who do. I just wanted to be accepted as I am and not have to worry about when to tell. Lay it out up front. Well, I got what I was asking for...
One of the men I expressed interest in not only blocked me, he sent a message thanking me for my email but he "politely declined from further communication." It was the first time I have ever received that kind of response.
Now, maybe I am jumping to conclusions. Maybe he doesn't like blondes or didn't like what I said about NASCAR. But my reaction was swift...I shut the browser window, shut the laptop, and put it away. I felt blank and cold. It was a while before I felt the sadness and isolation. Perhaps I'll eventually feel anger. Not now, though. I just feel numb.
I have run across other bipolar blogs that deal with relationships...perhaps I need to read them. Maybe there's a "Dating for the Mentally Ill" web site. (Is that a little anger showing up?) It takes love to live with a person with bipolar disorder...love, patience, acceptance, kindness, perseverance, faith, hope... You can't expect that from a stranger. They don't show up with love and commitment. Faith takes time.
So what am I wanting to say here? For those of us not in a 'significant other' relationship, perhaps we are enough. We have to dig deeper or wider for compassion and hope. I have friends who love me...children...pets. That can be enough. I will watch the sunrise, write, paint, take my meds, set goals, try to make my own little world a better place.