An Impossible Disorder

Where to start?

I'm a 27 year old guy from New England, living in Hollywood. I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder as a young teenager and then proceeded to meet with various therapists, at least until I got tired of seeing them. I was on Lexapro, Depakote, and Topamax and possibly some other meds whose names escape me at the moment, but would take them off and on to the point where I never felt any change from being on them or off. I graduated college in my home of Connecticut in 2008 and moved out to Los Angeles the next year to live on my own and try being a professional actor. I stopped taking any pills the summer of 2010 and have lived free of them ever since. During this time, I came to the realization that I wasn't bipolar, but most likely borderline. My mood shifts on a hourly basis most of the time with some shifts coming as frequently as minute to minute. These rapid cycles are far faster than what rapid cycling bipolar is suppose to be. Hell, I'd love to bipolar now, at least to experience weeks/months of manic-ness before having to be depressed again. Instead I'll rapid constantly day to day, hour to hour.

I find it very hard to set goals since within a day or two (that long if I'm lucky) my whole outlook on things will change and I'll have no idea why I felt the goal was a good idea in the first place. I have a history of quitting things dating back to 1st grade where I purposely flunked a reading test in order to stop having to take them. There were 3 of us who made it to the highest level, I purposely failed, another student failed legitimately and the 3rd passed and skipped to 2nd grade a year early. I quit playing the trumpet the day high school band practice was to start my freshman year, solely because I was going to have to miss the first few days since I was at summer camp. I later became friendly with a lot of those band kids through the choir and theatre program at school, but was always an outsider.

I've consistently suffered from binge eating and sometimes anorexia/bulimia. I'm 5'8" and walked around in college at 230. My peak weight was 260 and now after a year of going back and forth between starvation, binge eating, throwing up, and excessive exercising, I'm down to 185.

I sometimes see myself as the only real person in the world, like a solipsist. I'll see my life as a story where everything I do has a purpose and meaning. Other times my worldview borders on nihilism and I don't see the point in anything. I feel ashamed that I have a hard time experiencing real emotions, at least towards other people. I am constantly aware of how I come off to other people, mostly in a negative way. Sometimes I can't stand the sound of my own voice, but that doesn't stop me from talking and talking.

For as long as I can remember, I've tried not to have to make decisions and just tried to go with the flow. For instance, in art class in school, I used to just do a similar drawing to whatever the teacher used as an example for the various projects. I still do this as an adult, acting like I'm apathetic towards whatever happens, only to get annoyed when decisions others make don't go the way I want them. Now I don't know what I want and I feel like at 27 I'm running out of time.

I dropped out of my first college after a semester and eventually went back a year later and got a BA in Performing Arts. I was told by pretty much everyone to have a backup plan/subject, but since I see myself as the main character in this world of ours, I just assumed everything would work out the way I wanted. Well, after four years of living out in LA, I'm pretty much totally out of the acting game completely with very little desire to audition or meet new connections. I've burned so many bridges both in the acting world as well as past jobs, school connections, and other people due to my lack of care about the future.

The biggest psychological problem I have started when I was 12, at least that's the farthest back I can remember having it. I'll try to "start over" and declare that from this moment on, I'm going to live my life for real. This started out as a quest to be perfect and would last for a day or two before I'd have to start over again. Sometimes these "new lives" would last for an hour or two before I made a mistake and would have to start again. Every birthday, new year's, and other meaningful days since around 1998 have been days where I try and "start over". It's almost impossible to explain this to people and I usually don't. The longest I've gone without starting over is around 45 days and that's over a period of 15 years now.

I feel stuck and trapped now. I don't have the money or insurance to regularly see someone to talk and get treated if there even is one. I'm writing this just to vent and I hope I didn't ramble on too much. I feel better at the moment, but of course within an hour or so I'll feel completely different.
Gadling Gadling
26-30, M
2 Responses Jan 22, 2013

That is really comforting to know. Thanks.

I really identify with your story.
I know exactly what you mean by starting over. I will often take a short sleep, saying I'll be a different person when I wake. I suffer minute by minute mood swings, switching from love to hate and back again in a short time. You are right, unless you have this, how can anybody understand and how do you explain it?
Im shocked by some things I read on here. Its like someone has been watching me & reading my mind.
You are not alone.