So….I am gonna come out, so to speak…maybe it’ll help my healing.
I have a mental disorder. Wow…just the words mental disorder are hard to get out. They carry so much weight….so much stigma….so much bullshit…so much unknown….so much fear.
A little under a year ago I was diagnosed as having bipolar disorder type 2 — which is the less severe of the two types of bipolar disorder. In the last year, I have struggled with accepting my diagnosis. At first I was in complete denial — I had honestly, for the first few months, completely convinced myself the doctor has told me that I suffered from an anxiety disorder. I was lying to myself because I didn’t want to accept that I have bipolar disorder….funny how the mind can do that.
So eventually, I accepted it, but that’s not even the hard part….accepting it is easy, once you have the facts and can look back on your life, get feedback from family, etc and match up the evidence against the crimes (past actions and feelings). Once I did that, it was immediately obvious. The next part of trying to figure out how to get treatment is where the work really begins.
I was okay with meds — I had been on meds off and on my whole life (nearly) for a misdiagnosis of ADHD, so meds weren’t anything big…I was good with them….*but* I wanted desperately for the meds to just fix me…
See….for years I had masked, or medicated, my symptoms with alcohol and drugs (shhhhh)…and I thought maybe just getting sober would help — HA!!!! Yeah, right?!? Not even close. My symptoms probably worsened after sobering up. And I know my wife (love you bean!) has paid a huge price mentally during my sobering up and the discovery (uncovering?, recovering?) of my bipolar symptoms.
So, now I am trying to get better — better another of those words that I have a hard time with….better than what? Anyway, that’s an idea for later exploration….I am now medicated — 🙂 — but the meds aren’t enough and I have to do what I had hoped I would never have to do. Pay someone to listen to me talk, smile and ask me about my mother….hahaha….no seriously.
Again, I had hoped that meds would be the magic bullet (don’t we wish that?) — that’d I’d need nothing else. Boy, am I wrong. I have had near psychotic breaks from meds. As they work out my dosages, I go up and down, up and down….never feeling centered. Always depressed for flying around like a maniac (see what I did there…?).
So, all of this started because of bouts of pure rage I would go through. So my last year has been this:
- Rage at my fiancé one night for no reason
- Call doctor
- Get diagnosed Bipolar
- Get meds
- Good for a while
- Get Married
- Rage at my wife one night for no reason
- Call doctor Increase meds
- Buy a house and move in
- Slip into a 3 month long depression
- Call doc
- Get another med added
- Good for a while
- Have a two despair event
- Call Doc
- (Yup, you guessed it) more meds.
- Have a slight breakdown due to med
- Rebound from breakdown
- Finally go to therapist
- Write this post
So, in the end, I had to accept that meds alone wouldn’t cut it and I (even though I had tried a few therapists in the past) I was really reluctant (scared) to go to a therapist. I mean who wants to face all the painful BS that’s in the past. It’s scary as hell — particularly some of the shit I have back there….phew….but it’s also exhilarating. The idea that I can get whole and happy again. I mean, isn’t what everyone really wants….to be happy? And I would love to be able to the man my wife deserves, and that I deserve to be.
Anyway, enough of my ramble — just needed to come out and be open and let some emotions out.
5 thoughts on “Struggles with Bipolar Disorder”
I am sure that was a tough post to write to a bunch of strangers as well as perhaps some fellow bloggers that you have formed a relationship with. Bearing your soul either here or to a therapist is not going to be a cure. One size does not fit all. As unique as you are so is your chemical imbalance. The drugs are trial and error and will take time. You sound as though you have some really great things on your side though. A wonderful wife and partner who is there for you and family and friends who are probably confused as to what they can do to help without causing more problems. Keep talking with them, your therapist and here on your blog. People will read it or not but most will empathise and be supportive even if they might feel they could say something wrong. There is no right or wrong. You have one life and whether the challenges you face are physical or mental you need to do all you can to give that life meaning and hope. Good luck and be assured that we are all 50 shades of ‘normal’ and in this together. best wishes Sally
Thanks Sally, that was a very nice response, and I will take your advice and keep up with my blog more than I have been….mostly it’s poetry, but I thought I’d get that out as like a shout out to the world…part of coming to really accept it.
Great – and I shall enjoy reading it. Take care.
I commend you for your honesty and your “coming out,” lol. I think most of us have a hard time with it at first. Now, I am a blogging fool. Hope you continue to blog and keep educating people.
I plan on it….:) Thanks for the encouragement.