He eventually signed the house over to his wife to protect her and his two young children.
Finally, he says, "She asked me to leave because she couldn't live with the illness anymore." When people get into a relationship, they're looking for stability, says Scott Haltzman, MD.
"That's because you want to pull them out of their shell and you don't know how to do it." Bipolar disorder can become an issue from the very start of a relationship.
When you first meet someone you like, it's natural to want to make a good impression.
"I've seen dozens of couples come through the door with their marriage in tatters." Bipolar disorder "puts a huge additional strain on a relationship, particularly when you don't have a diagnosis." Having a relationship when you live with bipolar disorder is difficult. It takes work on the part of both partners to make sure the marriage survives.
He's also medical director of NRI Community Services in Woonsocket, R. and author of The Secrets of Happily Married Men and The Secrets of Happily Married Women.
Depression can cause the person to withdraw completely from everything -- and everyone -- around him or her.
"If you're a partner with someone, it's very frustrating," Haltzman says.
At some point, though, you will need to let your partner know that you are bipolar.
"I don't think it's necessary to introduce your psychiatric problems on the first date," Haltzman says.
But when those episodes do occur they can wreak havoc on a relationship.