Firstly hi, I'm a newbie, so glad I found this forum as I've been feeling lost and some of the posts I've read have really helped me.
So I think I've finally accepted that I have BP but now it's just really scaring me. I first realised that something wasn't right about a year ago, my doctor thought I was depressed - I didn't want the meds so just started living healthier and worked hard to find my direction in life. I realise now that what happened was I experienced a manic episode, it wasn't too severe but it made me think there was nothing wrong with me and that the doctor was talking rubbish. Over the last few months I've been experiencing extreme mood swings, the doctor says I have rapid cycling BPII, at first this meant nothing to me as I was high at the time and thought I'd be fine, but now I know that I really do have a problem. I've been finding everything so difficult lately, and no one understands, it's making me really hate myself and feel like i'm out of control. I am very fortunate in that I work with people who are trained councellors and know a lot about mental disorders, they're a real help but they don't have it!!!!
I was at the doctor today and was told I have to wait 4 weeks before I can see a psychiatrist, it seems so far away! I'm scared that I'll never lead a normal life but I'm more scared of losing my creative energy. My mood swings don't get really extreme, most people just thing I'm really energetic and happy as I hide everything else inside.
I need my creative energy, I'm a musician and songwriter and also run various youth music initiative projects suporting charities and minority groups. I fear that if I go on meds I'll lose my creative talent and wont have the enthuiasm to work hard on the projects that mean so much to me. When my doctor first mentioned meds I told her I'd just stop drinking and start living a healthy life, but then I get hyper and none of that matters too me - I think I do need the meds, but does anyone know if they'll have an effect on my creativity and energy?
I know some musicians who are on meds and doing fine, but they're just performers as opposed to songwriters.
Sorry if this is a big rant, but I have no one else to rant to at the moment.
My creative juices were totally zapped by meds...which was a depressing thing in and of itself. I went to school to be a fashion designer. Medication helped to kill that dream. I am 2 1/2 weeks med free, but I am still withdrawling, so exteremly tired. I would seek intense therapy before you try meds. THey aren't magic and have serious and dangerous side effects. I wish I had known I had alternatives. Also, if you are drinking, that can really aggravate any problems you already have. I wish the doctors would use medication as a last resort rather than a quick fix...just my 2 cents.
I can understand how you feel and the worries of meds taking something you love away. For me, it has helped me better focus on the writing or painting that I have done and still do. THe passion is still there for it, the depth I think is deeper because the thought is much clearer then it was prior to meds. Just my experience
Thank you for your responses, sorry I kinda dissapeared for a bit, it happens . . .
I'm still waiting to see a psych dr - seems to be endless complications!! But I've been doing lots of research and what not, and kinda reassured myself. I guess my biggest worry wasn't so much that I'd stop being able to write and create songs but rather that I would be losing a part of me. I'd persuaded myself that my bipolar was the reason I'm such and outgoing, sociable person, but through talking to a lot of people who have bipolar I've realised that I'm not defined by it - just that sometimes my outgoing personality can go to extremes and sometimes it can dissapear. I'm gonna hope I'm right, and hope that I can find a way to avoid meds for now.
I'm really greatful to have this space to talk, I'm not very good at talking - well at least not about real things, I can talk nonsense for hours
i share in your concerns. losing my 'creative mode' as i like to call it is a very sad thing to think about. i am normally NOT creative at all. i only get creative when i am in either a high, euphoric mood or a horrible, low mood. when i am my usual self i am not the slightest bit creative, and have absolutely zero urge to be creative. it just does not interest me.
but get me in one of my moods and watch out! i'll drop everything at the drop of a hat to focus solely on creativity.
luckily, i have a psychiatrist who is very in tune with creative sides. i told him that it made me really sad to think about my creative moods being taken from me. he has told me that he will try me on meds and/or alternative therapies that he feels are less damaging to the creative self. as of right now, i am only taking loxapine, in hopes of getting past a minor psychosis i'm having...once this passes we are going to look at something more long term. he is definitely willing to work with me in finding the right drug so that i don't knock out the good moods entirely.
it is our goal to find a drug that keeps some of the creativity and euphoria alive, but knocks out the feeling that i have to quit everything else in life in order to focus solely on it. that is what i do - i get it in my head that i want to take black and white photographs or something...and i stop going to work, stop eating, stop doing normal every day things and focus only on my new project. so our goal is to just stop it from interfering so drastically...but still maintain it to a lesser extent. he's a great doctor. i am really thankful to have him.
For me it helped slow me down so I could focus on one project at a time and actually finish them!! When not on meds I am easily distracted and I thik so quickly it's hard for me to get my ideas down. I love to write. I am good at capturing an audience and holding them until the end...do not be fooled by my posting...
So don't be afraid. There are things more important in life, such as being functional. I know it is scary but you have a lot to gain by getting everything under control.