My Illness Is Defining Me

Hi I was first diagnosed with bipolar 1 with psychotic features when I was a junior in highschool when i had an extreme manic episode and had to be hospitalized. I had another one in my senior year with another visit to the hospital(both were inpatient stays). I can remember getting out the second time this happened and being on so many medications that i was zombie like. But anyways I have been battling the disease ever since and have not been admitted since. I still have ups and downs. but the thought of what i have plagues my mind everyday. That i need some medication to be "normal" now. I have been through so much lately, lost my job. had to move back home. Thats another thing, i cant stay at one job for more than a couple of months. I dont know what it is. I cant take this anymore. I dont know who i am anymore because of what has happened to me. All the medication and doctor visits, therapy. its not what i want for me. right now i am on lithium 600mg, lamictal 150mg. I am trying to decide whether or not to go off my meds. sometimes i fear the mania that might come, but at other times i crave it. I dont feel alive anymore, i feel as though im drifting through life without purpose. I use to know what i wanted to do and when i wanted to do it and now i just have no clue. I feel like a waste. I'm not happy, very depressed. The meds dont seem to be doing anything. ive lost most of friends, and the ones i do have i barely see because of my depression. I dont know but if anyone can relate or share some sort of insight or shed some light on what im feeling might be, please let me know.
mentalcoaster66 mentalcoaster66
22-25, M
5 Responses Sep 21, 2012

I'm sorry to hear your story but ultimately you must hang in there and find the medication that works for you. Trust me it's out there. Maybe no medication is the answer as long as your aware of your behavior and triggers for the behaviors. Good luck!

I went off my meds once before but I was giving my family a hard time, and I ended up having another psychotic episode and went back in hospital. If I have to continue on meds to avoid psychosis I will. I'd like to try again without meds but this time have an antipsychotic on hand just in case. I must get lots of sleep otherwise I'll go psychotic.

sorry to hear you are going through such a tough time, depression sucks. I used to be a lot more depressed when I was on 1000mg Sodium Valproate and 10mg Olanzapine, I felt like a zombie and the thought of having to be on the meds and a zombie for the rest of my life made me depressed. I discussed this with my doc and he said we could try reducing my meds, I am now only on 5mg Olanzapine and I feel much better and I am still stable. I found that therapy has helped me a lot, I meet regularly with a psychologist. I would like to try and go off my meds completely as I have gained a lot of weight, but if I feel I'm going manic again I'll go back on them. Exercise helps a lot with depression, I go for walks. I also find that writing posts like this in forums makes me feel better.

Story of my life. I had an episode my junior year and then senior year. I was put in the hospital several times.

Hi I can relate a little. Im thinking of trying to go off my meds but im aiming to do it over a year as I need to change my lifestyle first to give me the biggest chance of success.
I was diagnosed at 30 after a major psychotic episode requiring hospitalisation although I have had bipolar for most if not all my adult life. I was happy to finally know what I had and that something could be done to help it.
Your post sparked my interest because of its title 'my illness defines me' . I promised myself after my diagnosis that I wouldnt let bipolar define me that I would define myself. Two years on I find it is defining me because I have not made the changes I wanted to as in lifestyle , healthy living etc. Im on medication it stops me from getting highs but not lows. Because of that I have lost friends or think I have( I made most of my friends during extended mania periods) .Most of my family choose to pretend nothing is wrong with me and wont talk about it. Now im stuck with just a steady dull feeling I miss my highs . I miss feeling alive ,feeling happy being creative and active. Some days are better than others like today but generally I dont feel 'alive'.
I know its dangerous to go off medication but I feel I need to try. For me taking medication is like giving up, its letting my illness control my and define me. I want to control it, to define myself.