To My Husband: What I Hope You’ll Never Forget About My Mental Illness

Dear husband who supports me,

I know I’m difficult, and I know sometimes life itself becomes difficult. But I also know I am trying to get better. I’m so sorry I still fall apart when I’m really trying to succeed. As we continue to grow together as husband and wife, and you and I both come to terms with what it means for me to have a mental illness, there are a few things I want to make sure you know so you never forget we are in this fight together.

1. No matter how bad it gets, I will never stop fighting.

I know times get hard, but I’m always trying to grow. I will never stop fighting to be well. Through my ups and downs and all my mistakes, I will continue to try to be the best me I can be, and that means I will continue to fight to live with this illness.

2. No matter what happens, I am with you till the end.

Through the years you have shown me you love me unconditionally. I don’t know what I did to deserve the love of a man so devoted to me, but I feel blessed to have found you. I will never stop loving you, and I’m thankful for all you do for me. You have found it in your heart to forgive all my foolishness time after time, and you are a true hero in my eyes. Thank you for standing by me as we approach this next phase in life. I know I can never be the “perfect” wife, but I also know I am with you till the end. Nothing will take me away from you. I will not let this illness ruin my love for you. With you, by my side, I know I will have the best days of my life.

3. I am doing my best.

I know it doesn’t always seem like I’m trying hard, but please know I’m doing my best. Each day I fight a battle that goes unseen by many eyes. It’s a battle only others who fight it can understand. I know you say you will never understand it, but know how grateful I am that you make an effort to console me as I fight it each and every day. I have a hard time somedays just getting out of bed, but when you call me, or text me that you love me, it gives me a reason to make sure I continue to be the best I can be. I may never have a spotless home, and I may never have a “real” job again, but knowing you are coming home to me gives me a little hope that fills my heart. It helps me feel positive about my life. Mental illness won’t win because we are fighting it head on together. I promise to continue to do my best at fighting.

Most people look at us from the outside and see a “normal” family. We try hard to keep that up. You and I both know that the unfortunate thing about mental illness is that in actuality, we are a normal family. Most people will, at some point in their life, either themselves experience a mental illness, or know a loved one who will experience it. As awful as it is, I know I’m lucky to have you standing beside me as I fight to have the best life we can for us and our boys. I know with you by my side, I will never be alone. This journey is far from over; in fact, it’s just beginning. Thank you for being by my side and loving me, mental illness and all.

The Mighty is asking its readers the following: Write a thank you letter to someone you realize you don’t thank enough. If you’d like to participate, please send a blog post to [email protected] Please include a photo for the piece, a photo of yourself and 1-2 sentence bio. Check out our Submit a Story page for more about our submission guidelines.

Find this story helpful? Share it with someone you care about.

Related to Bipolar Disorder

There's No 'What to Expect When Your Kid Goes to the Psych Unit'

I’m thoroughly convinced there should be a handbook. No one prepared me for this. A month after her 10th birthday, my daughter was admitted to the psychiatric hospital.  My Bipolar Princess, as she calls herself, is my third child. When I had my first daughter, I read every pregnancy and parenting book I could get [...]

When My Son Thought No One Would Hire Him Because He Has Bipolar Disorder

My 18-year-old son, Cody, has bipolar disorder. For the past two years, he’s been living in a residential treatment center. As a result of intensive inpatient treatment, Cody is thriving now, but as he’s regaining his health and nearing his high school graduation, we’re dealing with some hard truths and some tough conversations. The other night in a phone conversation, [...]

What My Dad Taught Me About Love in the Midst of My Mom’s Mental Illness

My mom’s mental illness diagnosis taught me an important lesson: Everyone deals with grief differently. Back in 2009, when my family first got the diagnosis “bipolar disorder” for my mom’s illness, I didn’t understand this truth. I was 18 at the time and for me, my mom had always been my mom, nothing short of [...]

35 Things People With Bipolar Disorder Want Their Friends to Know

For the 5.7 million American adults who live with bipolar disorder, support from family and friends can be crucial. But sometimes through all the ups and downs, miscommunications and misunderstandings can occur on both ends — it can be hard to know what to do or what to say when a friend with bipolar disorder isn’t [...]