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What I Want My Future Husband to Understand About My Mental Illness

The most helpful emails in health
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Dear Future Husband,

I wonder if we’ve met yet. Maybe you’re already a friend and I’ve told you about my struggles. Or perhaps we’ve yet to meet and I’ll have to figure out how to tell you I have anxiety, bipolar II disorder and sometimes struggle with suicidal thoughts.

I bet when you thought about the woman you might one day marry, you didn’t imagine she might struggle with mental illness. It was certainly never in the plan I had for my own life. You’re already amazing in my book, even though I’m still not sure who you are. Make no mistake, my mental illnesses will complicate the life we make together. You can’t fix me; not even I can do that. But you can walk beside me and help me fight my demons. There will be times when I need you to help pull me out of despair and times when I need you to help me stay rooted in life. You can remind me of all the many reasons I have to stay in this life. You can remind me that there’s more to me than my mental illnesses.

There will be times when I’m in tears and can’t tell you why. Maybe there’s a reason, maybe there’s not. Please don’t get mad at me if I can’t tell you why. There might be times when I can’t seem to tell you what I need. Please remember that a hug, a reminder that you love me and a reminder that I’m not alone in my fight will always work. I wish I could tell you my brushes with suicidal thoughts were over. But reality is they may not be. Even though I’m sure I will love the life we will build together, they might still dog my steps. They tend to happen out of nowhere, when it feels like the bottom has suddenly fallen out of my
life. And to this point, that doesn’t always take much. Remind me I have reasons to stay. Remind me life won’t always hurt so much.

I know it will sometimes feel like there are so many things to remind me of. But remember this too. I promise to be there for you through thick and thin, through the good times and the bad times. And I promise to love you with everything I have.

Your Future Wife

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Thinkstock photo via Digital Vision.

Originally published: May 24, 2017
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