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I Have Bipolar

I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder, last year while travelling abroad. My episodes are very manic followed by depression once my medication (Lithium and Olanazepine) have stabilised me. Being ill in a psychiatric hospital in a foreign country made it even more traumatic as my family had to fly out and I was literally jumping off the walls in the hospital!!! However everyone was very intrigued by me being English and very understanding. I had totally lost touch with reality and had lots of self beliefs that are very personal to me and which I still haven't shared with anyone other than my psychiatrist and partner because I know how people would more than likely respond. After this episode I started working in a new job however quickly became unwell again I think because of stress and definitely because of a lack of sleep. I lost my job as a result as they were reluctant to take me back despite being initially very supportive. I am now in a situation where I am probably at my fittest to work as I am well aware of my disorder now and accept it but justifying my employment which total a year is very hard as most employers become apprehensive. I have considered justifying this gap by not disclosing and using other reasons. However I feel that due to the stigma of having a mental illness and people not really understanding it and how we can live a normal life with the right support and medication, society and employers alienate people with a mental illness as being mad, crazy, dillusional when hearing the words 'schizophrenic' or 'manic depressive'. 
crazyone crazyone 21-25, F 12 Responses Jul 20, 2006

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Hi, I have bipolar too. I was diagnosed at 14 1/2. I don't know how to advise you. i just want to say keep up the good work. You're not alone. I do have 1 suggestion, talk to your dr who is giving you your meds and ask what you should say about the gap. Feel free to email me. God bless

i had a mental breakdown at work because of my bipolar. i didnt know it was that but apparently i have bipolar not otherwise specefied which is a lesser version i guess but it felt full blown. i swear i have the real thing but anyways. I totally understand. My mother had to come and calm me down becaue i was alone at subway and i told all the customers to get out and everything. i def know what you mean by stress.

what can you do when nothing lets you stop crying

well it\'s been a year now and hopefully you\'ve learned to stop crying or do what I did to just accept it and now the tears will end eventually. My marriage ended and it caused severe depression which lasted about 5yrs. there wasn\'t a day that went by when I didn\'t cry. sometimes just tears coming from my eyes, other days where I broke down and cried. but after awhile I just accepted the tears , knew they wouldn\'t last long and the day would come when I\'d just stop crying. Thank God it finally happened. I hope it happened to you.

I'm a Sociopath but for obvious reasons I've never sought out assessment. Although I had a brief exchange with a diagnosed psychopath recently who confirmed what I'd always believed was true. It's strange hiding in plain sight and knowing that normal people, even doctors, could never truly understand me. People don't understand that we actually can be decent, law abiding people, as if somehow not having emotions or empathy makes us incapable of acting logically. Of course, anyone who hears this will probably assume I'm not what I say I am which is fine. <br />
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In the case of the author I would recommend finding blogs written by people who have your condition. You would be surprised how many people are out there like you, worrying about the same things. <br />
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I wish you well.

Well done for trying to get back to work!<br />
Take that step, and also take ownership of the strength it took to do it!<br />
However you get there, by saying it was an ill relative, or child-rearing, as long as you can do the job, I don't imagine they'll go much deeper.<br />
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Mental health is easily judged, robbo21, I can't imagine going through what you did, you must have felt so angry at the time, and let down. It rips families apart, medical professionals just don't see the full picture sometimes, I hope you have some peace.

I'm on lithium.Was on Olanzapene which can decrease your white blood cells.But at least I'm stable and can enjoy life.Don't be too quick to go back to work.I did and had a relapse.Good luck.

I suffer from mental illness too. People look at me like I am a crazy. I wish could live in place that understand mental illness.

me too jim, me too

I like the idea of telling them you were trying to be self employed. Seems like that answers all the questions they could ask. Good luck to you. I hope it all works out.

It is sad that there is some many people with what they call mental illness. The treatment that our medical society gives is backwards. Mostly. Think about why you would all of a sudden have Bipolar. Did it really start in the brain? Or is it something else. Your body in an interconnected system. They seem to want to put bandaids on peoples problems for profit. Think about the body. The liver is the filter of the body. What happens when this gets clogged up. What happens when your stomach or small intestine or pancreas has problems? Are you digesting your food properly to feed the brain? There are so many things modern medicine does not even look at. They just stick you on some pill to cause you other problems. This is a sad World.<br />
losthealer

I too have bipolar and thyroid. bipolar existed for years (30ish) undiagnosed and thyroid happened just this year. probably due to lithium poisoning of the thyroid gland. this is a very common event hitting approximately 60% of all the lithium users.<br />
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As for the absent year, I would not hesitate to say you were trying to be self-employed and you just weren't very good at marketing yourself so now you are looking for a regular job. I wish you the best of luck, it's a very difficult situation.

My Mum was wrongly diagnosed with Manic depression when I was about five. It has turned out that she has an under active thyroid. Her immune system is attacking her thyroid gland and she has scar tissue around it which soaks up thyroid hormone like a 'sponge'. Before she was diagnosed with thyroid problems, if she found herself in a stressful situation, it was as though the 'sponge' had been wrung out and there would be a surge of hormone flying round her body which would cause Manic like episodes and she was hospitalised.<br />
I still feel very angry at the medical professionals dealing with my mum because I think that hormonal imbalance should be the first thing you would check for when there is suspected mental illness. Instead she was given loads of drugs that she didn't need and they had horrible side effects. I know that what my Mum went through is so much worse than what I saw as a child so I have no right to feel hard done by but I just can't help it. I feel bitter cause I missed out on having my mum around, I didn't understand at age six why Mummy was acting so weird and so I clung to her legs and screamed when two Men came and dragged her away and put her in the ambulance. My Dad also suffered, he always did his best but couldn't cope and in the end I had to live with my Grandma and Granddad. All it needed was some blood tests!!!

I had the same problems with work. Do you have a child? I always told them I took time off to raise my kid. If not you can say it was to help an ill relative or something like that. Not only does it cover your empty spots, but makes you look like a real dogooder too. I think we are moving into an era when mental illnesses are becoming more understood, but it is a long road ahead.