Step 3 Developing a Mania Prevention Contract

Now let's put together everything discussed so far in this chapter into a written contract for relapse prevention. The following exercise asks you to summarize what you have concluded about your prodromal phase, the steps you and your significant others can take to prevent relapse, and emergency procedures involving your doctors. Consult with your family members, spouse, doctor, and other trusted persons to make sure that everyone understands what he or she is being asked to do.

When filling out this contract, try to include as many options as possible. Some of the options will probably seem more comfortable to you than others, but it's better to write them down even if you don't end up using them. Encourage your significant others to be open about what they do and don't feel comfortable doing when you're cycling into mania. Write into the contract only those responsibilities you and they are willing to accept. Alternatively, list all of your possible options and rank each one from top to bottom as to how preferable it is. Ask everyone to sign the contract.

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