I have recently been diagnosed as being BPII. This really devastated me. I know this is a medical illness that none of us can help but try telling that to other people who think I should be able to "help it". If I could be "normal" mentally and have a productive life ALL of the time instead of just sometimes functioning, I would do it in an instant. I don't want to be like this and I try very hard not to be but it only works part of the time. I hate that there is such a stigma that surounds mental illness.
I am 32 years old and have had trouble with depression and anxiety since I was about 14 or 15. My parents and I always knew there was something not right with me but doctor after doctor didn't really help. I have taken every medicine you can imagine for depression with no relief. My therapist finally said I should see a Psychiatrist that she thought I was bipolar, in which case anti depressants wouldn't help, they can actually cause Mania to increase! so here I am now on Lamictal and doing fairly well, but I have gone from about 135 to 187 from all of my previous meds, and the fact that I binge eat as part of my disorder. I have been reading these message boards and I think they would be so helpful to me. I feel so much better when I talk to people who actually know how I feel and what it is like. I have tried to explain it to my husband but he can't truely understand. I have caused such havoc in our lives, in regards to money, almost having affairs several times, thankfully I have had some sense in judgement and not followed through. Just knowing what I am capable of doing when my illness is not controlled is enough to make me take my medication every day but it's not always enough. It's the old, when it's good it's really good but when it's bad, it's REALLY bad.
I have a wonderful husband and daughter and I just want to be as healthy and be the best I can be for them and for myself. My husband has put up with so much from me that when I hit bottom about 8 months ago, I thought that was it, I thought for sure after 11 years of marriage and 15 total years being together, that he was throwing in the towel. He proved me wrong and has never given up on me even when I thought I might. With the right level of medication I do much better most of the time. I have very short low level manic episodes, my bp is mostly depression which is why the doc told me it's bipolar II, and mine seems to be rapid cycling. It's all very bizzare to me how I can change into a different person in a matter of hours.
Last edited by Administrator; 09-01-2008 at 04:34 PM.
Reason: inappropriate request
I've found that trying to make others understand just frustrates me - and them. They can't understand: even families will tell people "You don't needs meds, they're the things causing your problems, just straighten out and stop it."
Unless you find it necessary to tell someone for, say work purposes, perhaps you just don't want to bring it up at all.
Your hubby sounds absolutely wonderful. You must also be a wonderful woman for him, remember that.
I've been told the same things about having chronic anorexia, agoraphobia and fibro. So it's not only the bp. Until people get an illness themselves, they don't get it.
Thank you! I don't tell people about my illness at all. The people I have told are shocked. My doctor even said that he doesn't understand how people couldn't just tell something was wrong with me. My answer is I have no idea because I always feel like I'm acting like a wierdo! Alot of time I feel ashamed that I can't just get over it and move on because until I was diagnosed that is what both myself and my husband tried to push me to do. I thought I was just lazy and irresponsible and couldn't get my life together. Once I was diagnosed it explained my whole life, from about age 14 until my now 32. I like knowing that I'm not crazy for thinking something was wrong with me,something is, even though it meant realizing I really was crazy if that makes any sense!
I am very circumspect about who I tell, because of the incredible stigma against this disease, and because I'm afraid it will hurt my career.
And I really do understand the nobody noticing. I often feel like saying, "hello people" how come nobody even notices I'm not even getting dressed (when I'm severely depressed, even if I force myself to leave the house changing out of my pajamas feels as insurmountable as curing world hunger.) I often feel like I'm screaming for help and no one, except my husband, hears me.
This may not help you much, but at least you're not alone--that is usually a comfort to me. Your husband sounds fantastic, and you will figure this out, and how to manage it.
I to suffer from BPII as well as anxiety/panic attacks and traits of personalty disorder. I also take Lamical and have lost 18 lbs. Still want to lose 30 more. In addition I take Klonopin, Wellbutrin XL and Trazodone. For the most part I feel middle of the road with some mania that only lasts for a very short time but severe depression that goes on for days or more. I got a dog and that helped. Husband left, lost job after many years of commercial real estate lending in a NY bank. Do not concentrate well or remember simple things.
I have no insurance but luckily have help from county. See shrink once a month, therapist once a week, group therapy once a week and get meds for free from 1stpharm. companies. I am very grateful for what I have. As of July 1st was approved for SSD. Not a lot but will manage. I was previously on State Disability. I had a lot of help thru this ordeal and read a lot on the internet. Do not feel purposeful or a contributor to society.
However this is what it is and I have found other means to a calmer existence. I do some reative writing, which I ham getting better at. I also plan travel tours that I would like to do. Been on this roller coaster for over 15 years but I do see recovery stragtigies taking place little by little. I hope this helps. Something positive must take place adn you will find it somehow. I know my past does not define my future. Don't get me wrong. I do have relapses; more often that I would like and but have been short in duration.
Your story sounds so much like mine. I have caused plenty of pain to my husband and two kids. Moved out a last month because I "wasn't happy" living in my house anymore. Got an apartment, signed a lease, and was back home, all in one week. That episode cost us around $2000 all together. But, like your husband, my husband continues to love me and put up with my crap. He truly loves me. And I know that should be enough for me. But sometimes, I just want more. I'm so restless right now. It's killing me. I can't sit still and my mind is racing constantly. But at the same time I'm depressed. Mine is mostly depression, too. I just started my second week of Lamictal on saturday, hopefully it will kick in and start doing SOMETHING soon. The "moving out" episode is the first true manic episode (I think) I've had. Anyway, you aren't alone. It's nice to come here and see that people will understand you. Because, unless you live with this disorder, I dont think you can truly understand it.
"I'm in my own little world. It's ok, they like me here"
I, too was just diagnosed recently and prescribed Lamictal. It sounds weird but I am already starting to feel better. I was so desperate. When I fnally got in for my first appointment (it took 3 weeks) I just broke down and cried uncontrollably. I have been suffering for what seems like my whole life and never knew what it was. The Dr. recognized it immediately from my test scores and 45 minutes of talking to me. What I didn't know at the time is that this same doctor has also treated 2 of my siblings for the same thing even though she never brought it up (HIPAA). She also said I tested positive for ADD. She is going to treat one thing at a time. Co-morbidity I think it is called. All these years I have been trying to treat myself based on my family doctor's suggestions of whatever anti-depressant he happened to be getting a kick-back on at that time. I suffered needlessly. I feel like I have been given a gift. Does anyone else have a similar story?