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How Do I Communicate My Support Needs to My Partner?

When you’re coping with a mental health diagnosis, relationships can be more difficult. That doesn’t mean they aren’t worth pursuing. It simply means that you need strong communication with your partner. This blog will help you identify and communicate your support needs to your partner.

Learn About Your Mental Health

Before you can explain your condition to your partner, you need to understand it first. Initially, look at the causes of your diagnosis. What exacerbates your symptoms? Try to identify as many of your triggers as possible. After that, ask yourself what role your support system plays. How do social dynamics influence your mental health? If certain coping tools help during the peak of your episodes, make a note of those. Similarly, make a record of self-destructive behaviors that indicate you need help.

Once you know these facts, you can better identify your needs. Help your partner understand the different aspects of your mental health disorder. Point them to resources that they can read or watch. Afterward, allow them to ask you questions specific to your circumstances.

Let Them See You When Vulnerable

Though you may feel uncomfortable with it at first, you should let your partner see you in your difficult moments. Try not to hide the ugly or dysfunctional sides of your mental health condition. Let them see you when you are crying your eyes out or having an anxiety attack.

Later, if you feel safe allowing them into your safe space, consider letting your partner sit in on a few of your therapy sessions. Subsequently, sit down and listen to your partner. Let them express their thoughts and emotions. Then, share how you felt about the therapy. This will build reciprocal honesty.

Sit Down and Talk

Your partner isn’t inside your head. Accordingly, they can’t read your mind. You can’t expect them to just know what you need. Once you’ve figured out your support needs, you should communicate directly with them. Sit down in a neutral environment. Next, share your daily, occasional, and emergency needs. Explain why they’re necessary. Create a crisis safety plan together. Most importantly, understand that they will need time and reminders to adjust.

As a mentally ill individual, you need to share your support needs with your partner. Open, honest communication creates the foundation of a healthy relationship. This is especially true in relationships where one or more parties cope with a mental health diagnosis. This article guided you through the basic process of identifying and sharing information about your mental health needs. At The Guest House, we can provide you with individual or group counseling. In these settings, you’ll learn coping tools that you and your partner can integrate into your day-to-day lives. When you’re ready, call us at (855) 483-7800.