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Old 03-29-2009, 04:08 AM   #1
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BP Support Groups

Hi everyone,

I participated in my first two support groups for people who have bipolar and schizophrenia last week. They are two separate groups that meet on a weekly basis.

In the BP support group, I introduced myself and shared some of the experiences I've had over the 3 years I've been diagnosed. I met someone else in the group who hears voices and whose bipolar also falls more on the manic side. She has BPI with psychotic features and has been diagnosed for the past 5 years. I'm the only rapid cycler in the group, but one member said that he knew someone else who had ultradian rapid cycling BPI like me. There are 5 people in this group which is nice so I don't have to worry about experiencing paranoia when I'm in a large group.

The schizophrenia support group was just as helpful to me. I met several people there who had schizophrenia. One person also had bipolar. He had schizoaffective disorder bipolar type and has been diagnosed for a year. When he described his symptoms, they mirorred mine to a "T." It was wonderful being able to meet others who know what it's like to hear voices. I've been hearing them since 1991 and this is the first time (besides when I was IP in December) that I've met others who hear voices like I do.

If any of you have the opportunity to join a support group, I highly recommend it. My only regret is having waited so long to finally do it.
__________________
Atypical Bipolar I Disorder with Rapid Cycling
Meds:
Depakote 1500mg
Prozac 40mg
Risperdal 1mg titrating to 6mg/day
Klonopin .5mg (2x/day)
Trazodone 100mg or 200mg PRN

 
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Old 03-29-2009, 05:42 PM   #2
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Re: BP Support Groups

Hi, neondreams,

I've been in a support group for over a year now. It's sometimes helpful, but sometimes very depressing, too, when I see how some people just never get any better (some really don't want to put in the effort).
In general, though, it's a safe place where I can be just who I am and say anything and not be judged. They are very accepting people. In the group, too, I get understanding that a therapist cannot provide.
I am in two other groups, but neither one is specifically for bp.
I'm glad to hear you've joined the groups and so glad to hear you're finding kindred souls there.

Seaturtle

 
Old 03-29-2009, 05:57 PM   #3
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dreams in neon HB Userdreams in neon HB User
Re: BP Support Groups

Seaturtle,

Part of me is afraid of rapid cycling after hearing people's stories about their manic, depressive and psychotic episodes, but I'm willing to give this a try. If it proves to be too much emotionally, I will stop going.
__________________
Atypical Bipolar I Disorder with Rapid Cycling
Meds:
Depakote 1500mg
Prozac 40mg
Risperdal 1mg titrating to 6mg/day
Klonopin .5mg (2x/day)
Trazodone 100mg or 200mg PRN

 
Old 03-29-2009, 09:11 PM   #4
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Re: BP Support Groups

I am interested in checking out a support group in my area. I think I just may do that!

 
Old 03-29-2009, 09:41 PM   #5
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Re: BP Support Groups

It's funny, I just read an add in the newspaper tonight for a support group in my area. It caught my attention, but then once I started thinking about actually going, I got really bad anxiety. Social situations always make me nervous, but I would really like to give it a try. I'm just so scared. I'm not too sure of what.

 
Old 03-29-2009, 09:44 PM   #6
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Re: BP Support Groups

Quote:
Originally Posted by caitlin122 View Post
It's funny, I just read an add in the newspaper tonight for a support group in my area. It caught my attention, but then once I started thinking about actually going, I got really bad anxiety. Social situations always make me nervous, but I would really like to give it a try. I'm just so scared. I'm not too sure of what.
I have severe paranoia when I'm around people -- especially groups of 6 or more.

To my surprise, I found that I was able to handle myself pretty well, but I think that had alot to do with the friendliness of people in each group. If they had been cold or uncaring, I would have been very paranoid.
__________________
Atypical Bipolar I Disorder with Rapid Cycling
Meds:
Depakote 1500mg
Prozac 40mg
Risperdal 1mg titrating to 6mg/day
Klonopin .5mg (2x/day)
Trazodone 100mg or 200mg PRN

Last edited by dreams in neon; 03-29-2009 at 09:45 PM.

 
Old 03-29-2009, 09:47 PM   #7
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Re: BP Support Groups

Quote:
Originally Posted by dreams in neon View Post
I have severe paranoia when I'm around people -- especially groups of 6 or more.

To my surprise, I found that I was able to handle myself pretty well, but I think that had alot to do with the friendliness of people in each group. If they had been cold or uncaring, I would have been very paranoid.
Dreams,
I think that's what I'm afraid of...is people being cold, unfriendly or uncaring. But after hearing your experience I definitely am more inclined to give it a try.

 
Old 03-29-2009, 10:25 PM   #8
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Re: BP Support Groups

caitlin,

I hope you do give it a try. It can't hurt and you might end up making friends in the process!
__________________
Atypical Bipolar I Disorder with Rapid Cycling
Meds:
Depakote 1500mg
Prozac 40mg
Risperdal 1mg titrating to 6mg/day
Klonopin .5mg (2x/day)
Trazodone 100mg or 200mg PRN

Last edited by dreams in neon; 03-29-2009 at 10:25 PM.

 
Old 03-30-2009, 01:25 PM   #9
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Re: BP Support Groups

I can't do groups, I'm freaking out enough over the DBT group I have to start in April....but my fear is connected to my PTSD and something that happened when I was a kid and all that stuff. So I don't think I could do a group for support. That's why I come here for support, because I can be all by myself but wiht you guys at the same time.

kat

 
Old 03-30-2009, 04:29 PM   #10
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Re: BP Support Groups

There is a BP support group that meets in my area two times a week and I've been encouraged to go by my mother and my social worker. But I just can't seem to muster the courage to go. I also suffer from major anxiety and am fearful of group situations.

I did however have to participate in a partial care program after I was hospitalized which was mostly a support group for people with similar mental problems such as depression or schizophrenia and liked it enough. But after two weeks others people huge problems become quite daunting and become hard to relate to when you're not suffering so much yourself.

Sam

 
Old 08-07-2009, 08:20 AM   #11
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Re: BP Support Groups

After being diagnosed with Bipolar II last week I decided to educate myself as much as possible on it and decided to attend a support group. I did some research and while there's not much in my area, there are a couple. I called the contact for one of them to confirm the time and place and showed up last night, a little early, only to find out from the janitor that the group wasn't meeting there anymore and he didn't have any information on where they moved. I was already nervous about going since it was my first time and whenever I think of support groups, I think of the movie Fight Club. I guess my search will continue to find a support group in the area.

 
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