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Long Road to a Correct Diagnosis

i've been diagnosed bipolar my whole life and as an adolecent, i was on meds from age 5 to 18. i was highly over medicated for most of my childhood and i spent 5 years of it incarserated within the juvenile system including both jails and treatment facilities. i have had many many many (more than 23)  incorrect and later discarded diagnosis other than the one everyone (theripists, staff and docs) all shared, which was bipolar dissorder. ive been on over 65 different medications and at one point i was on 20 different pills a day. it was rediculous with every different med i tried i got a whole new spectrum of side effects. i didn't know which way was up let alone if what i was feeling was really me so of course i was misdiagnossed and utterly lost.

the one thing i felt for sure throughout my entire life, was that i was not bipolar. it was too extreme for what i  was experiencing day to day and i didn't exibit enough of the markers for me to be satisfyed with that diagnosis, but i also (with my own research) didn't find anything else that quite matched what i was. i knew something was wrong or unbalanced, but i was a kid locked up with rules and meds i was required to take with no access to the proper avenues or unbiased opinions to look to. when your in the system your reccord follows you i.e. every theripist that ever talked to me for an hour or more from day one on wrote chart notes and gave opinions and every on after went off of my reccords and charts and past notes, diagnosis, and opinions of those psychs that came before them- not me or what i said. i learned very quickly that it was easier to say what people wanted then to try and figure out what was real. my motto used to be "i don't talk to people who get paid to listen".

it took me a long time (because im stubborn as hell) to decide to conform, and play the right kind of games to get me out, but i did at the age of 17. i was paroled and i stopped all meds because i finially could. and for the first time in too many years i felt my own feelings. boy was it different!

i went a couple years just trying to manage my feelings without anything or any one and i was doing ok enough to live life until i had my daughter. i was living with my father (who has always been the first to tell me somethings wrong with me) and i developed post pardom depression alongside all the feelings that come frome being trapped within my fathers house and his words. i decided for my daughters sake that maybe i should just concede to the fact i did need more help then just managing things myself and trying to stay rational (which was working for the most part prior to this). i went to two different docs and the seccond one i found i liked. she seemed genuine which i hadent found before. any way, we tried 2 or three different meds all failing with the last one having a side effect of retartive disconisia (sp horribly) it scared the crap out of me and it was all too much. i remembered that there was a reason i stopped taking meds. i stopped going, but the one good thing that came out of going back to see someone, was what i feel is a true diagnosis. i am bipolar type two.

currently i am on no medication. i'm out of my fathers grip. i live with my wonderfully supportive, loving husband patrick and our beautiful, sensitive, charismatic little girl araya (whos smile makes my world go round btw), and im happy. i mean i still have sad days and mood swings every now and then, but im managing it all with out medication, or a theripist. i am so much more content with my life.  and more and more when negitive thoughts or feelings occur, im finding new ways to deal with them and new ways to catch myself before i fall down whatever slippery slope presents itself... its a slow process but im doing it. all the while being bipolar type two. high five for me!

lifeispoetry lifeispoetry 18-21, F 5 Responses Aug 11, 2008

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I am really happy to hear you've found a balance that works for you, after so many years of having "help" imposed on you. I was hospitalized at 12 for a year and a half, then when I was in college, the depression and self-injury came back and I spent the next 2 or 3 years in and out of public institutions. Finally someone there referred me to a private psychiatrist who took the attitude that the multitude of drugs they had me on was a "chemical straitjacket." She took me off all of them. That was amazing! I know what you mean about finally feeling your own feelings. For me, the med-less path didn't last, and after much trial and error, I've found a combo that works for the most part. However, I've also had two courses of ECT for depressions linked to post-partum depression and the "empty nest" stage of life and motherhood. Having to be hospitalized is the worst for me now, because it sets off the memories of childhood experiences like the ones you describe -- and I get even crazier in the hospital than I was when admitted. So I try to find doctors who understand this and won't freak out at the stuff I do and hospitalize me. I'm not challenging you or your story or warning you that this will happen to you.....I hope it doesn't! I hope you can keep managing the illness or condition, which your self-awareness makes you able to do. It gives me courage to be as assertive as possible in my "treatment." Your past powerlessness in jail and hospital will continue to motivate you to take the reins in your own hands. Bravo to you!

Ok your story is great, and I pray that nothing happen to cause you any negative disrupsions,,,when I was 27 I married the Love of my life, and it was great for many years almost 9,,,but my dignises is different than yours,,,in that with my manic I have schizophrena,,,which means I hear and see things on top of being manic,,,which caused some major problems,,,like I believed that God was talking to me and told me to sell everything in my house,,,and get a bus tickit to Farmington, New Mexico,,,than a six year trip living on the road hitchiking all over,,,by myself,,,that high lasted from 1995 to 2003,,,when I got remarried,,,I am doing fine with no meds,,,but I have to work real hard to stay focused,,,,things can carry me away real easy,,,,,but I have school and my mom who I take care of,,,that makes me have to pay close attention to what can trigger my really bad manic times,,,,I wish the meds did not affect me the way they do,,,,I refuse to take them because I do not like to be slowed down,,,and in school I have a 3.62 GPA,,,meds make me feel like I can not think clear,,,anyway keep up the good work,,,and if you ever need someone to talk too I will be here for you,,,Love and Light Mary

my twin sister is bi polor <br />
my heart goes out to you

no you are bipolar type one.

High Ten for you!<br />
<br />
You did it and that's wonderful!