Re: Not on meds??
I know what you mean about playing with fire. I didn't find a med combo that suited me - the side effects from everything I took were dreadful and the episodes still didn't stop completely, which is why I decided to take a chance on this. I almost went back on meds during my last mania - took Olanzapine for about two days but felt even worse so stopped again. Fortunately shook the mania off about a week later - I don't know how much longer I could have coped with it for.
I've found St John's Wort very useful for bouts of depression. The only problem I've had with it is that it does sometimes catapult me into mania, which is what happened last time.
I don't know if you've come across Optimum Nutrition for the Mind by Patrick Holford - it's a very good book about diet and supplements and full of useful information.
I have so far found it easier to be off meds that on them - that's just my personal experience to date and doesn't mean I'd advise or suggest anyone else did the same. Like I said, I think you'd need to be off meds successfully for twenty years before you can say 'yep, this is much better'. I look on conventional meds as a fall back now - at least I know if it gets really bad I can just knock myself out with something.
I was going to see a cranial osteopath fairly soon - apparently compressions of the skull can have an effect on mood, so I thought I'd try that. I also tried Emotional Freedom Technique - that helped for a short time but unfortunately I haven't had the money to do it again!
It might be worth visiting a homeopath before you come off your meds (if you do decide that's what you want to do). They can often give you something to help your body re-balance, plus being ready if you do get depressed. It's also a good idea to keep professionals involved so that you have an objective eye - I have often found complementary therapists to be much more in-tune with my needs and moods than the doctors I used to see. I'm also lucky that I have a couple of good friends who can see when I'm getting high and will point it out to me (I have a blind spot when it comes to spotting my manic episodes!).
Good luck with whatever you decide to do! There was a chap on here who did the same, and I believe he did well - I think his username was Hedgehog, although he doesn't seem to post here too much these days - his posts might be helpful for you to look at as well.
Let us know how you're getting on xx