Posts tagged Bipolar Disorder
I was watching the 11th episode of “Homeland,” one of my favorite shows earlier, and it was confirmed that the main character is bipolar. She was shown in the depths of a manic episode. Her mentor witnessed her episode and blamed himself for her illness. He had apologized to her for failing her and blamed himself. When she started coming down she told him, “I’ve had this since college. You didn’t do anything, I just came this way.” That just hit so close to home. Partly because I’m bipolar and partly because I’ve cared for other people who are bipolar. Unassigning blame lightens the burden of this illness and makes it more bearable.
The past week and a half has been eventful, luckily most of it was neutral or positive. I used to underestimate the worth of peace in my life. I thrived on drama and chaos; it could make me feel alive like little else could. These days I appreciate peace; having it improves my quality of life, which in turn helps me from falling into an episode.
Things that have happened this month, in no particular order:
I returned to work after being out sick for three weeks
I started dating again
I spent time with my grandparents, nieces, nephews, and other family members
I got to see and talk to my brother
My mother moved out
I got a new supervisor
The anniversary of my sister’s death and birth
I made peace with the miscarriage that haunted me most and I honored my lost child
I had my third counseling session today. It was my first with the licensed therapist, I will call her Jan. The counselor in training, whom I will call Jane, didn’t join in for today’s session. Jan wanted a solo session with me to get a better grasp on my case. She had read the file Jane started, but had questions of her own.
She asked me what had originally brought me there, so I told her about Shawna and all the shit she stirred up and the PTSD. I just gave her a brief rundown of the facts and she said that Shawna seems like a devious bitch that fits a classic abuser profile, i.e: deceptive, manipulative, isolates him from his loved ones, jealous, possessive, controlling, etc. After the appointment, I was hanging out with Tori. She had counseling today too. She said that she told her counselor the whole story about Shawna and her counselor said Shawna is a cunt. I thought that was funny.
Jan asked me about my bipolar diagnosis and wanted to know some of my past symptoms. She said there is often a misdiagnosis of bipolar disorder when it is really PTSD. I told her about the family history of bipolar, some of the low and highlights of past episodes, and some of my behaviors. She didn’t make a conclusion one way or the other, or if she did, she didn’t inform me. It’d be nice to have my bipolar diagnosis wiped away, but I doubt that will happen. From all I know of bipolar disorder, I certainly meet the criteria, and the seven psychiatrists I can remember agreed with the diagnosis of bipolar 1 and PTSD.
Music has often been a lifeline for me, especially when I can identify with the lyrics of particular songs. Not all of these songs are about Bipolar Disorder per se, however, they resonate facets of the bipolar experience.
10. Chumbawamba – Tubthumpling lyrics (I get knocked down)
Bipolar disorder is a roller coaster. This song serves to remind us that we are fighters and we will survive and get through the episodes. We truly only fail when we give up and stop fighting.
9. Nirvana – lithium
This song describes the Bipolar Battle perfectly. The structure of the song itself is reminiscent of Bipolar Disorder and its irrational thought patterns and short attention spans, jumping rapidly from image to image with little or no connection. It was written by Kurt Cobain, who unfortunately, lost his battle with Bipolar Disorder and killed himself April 5, 1994. Like many of us, he suffered far more depressive episodes than manic/hypomanic ones. The last several years of his life were spent self-medicating with hard drugs, such as heroin and LSD. He also took lithium to treat his bipolar symptoms. Lithium is the most well known medication used to treat Bipolar Disorder. However, it carries its own horrors. It is relatively toxic and it is common to experience tremors, nausea, diarrhea, lethargy and dehydration. It can cause damage to kidneys and thyroid. It can also leave those who take it feeling tired, dull, empty and lost.
8. Godsmack – Whatever
Irritability, rage and social isolation are common symptoms of an episode, This song describes bipolar rage and isolation.
7. Matchbox 20 – Unwell
Bipolars still face a lot of stigma and discrimination. Many people automatically assume we are “crazy” and withdraw from us. We just need a little understanding.
6. Tonic – Tonic – Take Me as I am
After the bipolar diagnosis we are left trying to explain it to those we care about and we hope they can accept us as we are.
5. Placebo – Meds
Medications are often the cornerstone of bipolar disorder treatment. Many bipolars choose not to medicate as they do not wish to lose the manic highs. Or they will take the meds during depressive episodes but go off of them when they feel better.
4. Aerosmith – Amazing
3. Three Days Grace – Break
At one point or another all bipolars can identify with this song.
2. Good Charlotte – Good Charlotte – Hold On
Suicide is the leading cause of death for those with bipolar disorder. This song is a reminder that we can get through those terrible times and it also reminds us how killing ourselves would affect those we care about. This song has literally saved my life.
1. Manic by Plumb
The most well known aspect of bipolar disorder is the manic episodes; this song is from the viewpoint of someone who loves a bipolar who is in the throes of a manic episode..
Honorable Mention: Macy Gray – Relating to a Psychopath
After a lot of thought and discussion with close friends and family I decided to file a complaint with the police against Shawna for harassment and cyber-stalking. I got sick of handling the burden. I was putting up with her bullshit for months with the hope that it would soon end. I figured the situation would finally be resolved once the baby was born and his paternity was proven by a DNA test. Despite her claims that she wants the test done she continues to delay it any way she can, even after Tori, Jess, and I offered to pay for it.
I reached the point of giving up after a several hour long text message argument with her on September 29th, the day the test was supposed to be done. I want her and her friends to leave me and my blog alone and since they don’t listen to my requests I took legal steps to ensure my protection. I used other means at first: I blocked her from my MySpace and Yahoo messenger several months ago; I made my MySpace profile private last month, and had my phone number changed on September 30th. (more…)