Research Request

Research Title:

Two Sides of the Same Coin: Male experience of living with a Spouse or Partner with Bipolar and possible indications for psychotherapy

About the study:
Loving a partner with Bipolar can be a paradox and a lonely place. Where do you go for help? This qualitative project involves conducting six semi structured interviews with males who have lived or are living with a partner with bipolar. These interviews will gain a deeper understanding of the lived experience of these men and what supports systems they utilised or what supports are missing. Interviews will also be conducted with mental health professionals in the field to ascertain what supports are in fact available or what they also deem as required. The interview data findings will be analysed using Grounded Theory to remain close to the data and also attempt to create a substantive theory on the subject.

The research will examine:

  • The lived experience of loving a partner with bipolar
  • How you coped – or did not cope
  • The effect on you as a person
  • Supports – are they adequate?


This research is being conducted by Breda Dooley, (MA in Applied Psychology, UCC) who is currently completing a Masters in Counselling and Psychotherapy at the Irish College of Humanities and Social Science, Limerick. The study has received Ethical Approval and will be conducted under the supervision of Dr James Kinnane. If you are interested in volunteering to participate in this study please contact Breda Dooley directly by email:

More details

Six male volunteers required for a once off 45 minute interview which will be recorded under an assumed name (voice recording only). Breda Dooley will travel to the volunteer location to conduct the interview or alternatively interviews can be conducted via Skype. Volunteers must be over 18 and living at present in Ireland.

Note: Aware is not carrying out, or paying for this research. Aware supports approved research projects by posting information to our website and online channels. Aware’s Clinical Director has reviewed this research proposal and identified it as ethical and appropriate to support in this way.



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