I Hate Bipolar Jokes

Each time people say "You're bipolar" or "so-and-so is bipolar" I secretly cringe inside. Anybody that has lived with a relative with bipolar knows it's not fun.The worst of it comes when they are off their meds or when they're bipolar and don't even know it.The latter was true about my mom who didn't find out she was bipolar until I was 14 going on 15. On top of that, she also has schizophrenia. Before she got diagnosed with Bipolar 1, there were good days and hellish days. On her good days, she would get up and drag my two siblings on a car ride, no planning or forewarning. For example, she wanted to make a trip from Tennessee to Nevada, but only managed to get as far as Texas. Most of the road trips we took were completed, though very brief. But they were fun.
Then on the hellish days, she would be no fun. She would often stay in bed or snap at me or my siblings for no particular reason. Just looking at her made her angry. It was really scary.
But many people have not had the said experience above. Nor would no one want to. And if you are reading this or any other stories like these, I urge you to not joke about Bipolar again if you don't know.
montezia93 montezia93
18-21, F
3 Responses May 20, 2011

My mother is also bipolar and i didnt know or fully understand until about a year ago when i went to live with her. I was taken from her as a child and recconected with basically a stranger at 18. She would snap at my sister and yell at her and hit her just for not pronouncing a word correctly it was horrible to watch. She would at times also get angry when people looked at her. I didnt comprehend that part until I myself was diagnosed with bipolar disorder at 15. It was crazy and scary to me to see the similarites i had with my mother. There was nothing i could do accept go along with it and be there when she was down and get out of her face when she was angry. I wanted to stay and be there for my sister but couldnt for my own health reasons. I regret leaving my sister with her but theres nothing else i can do. i cant help and social services wont. My mom has completely erased me from her life and wont let me contact my sister. It kills me everyday. I just want my sister back.

With respect to you and how you feel, I think you should be more open minded about it. People don't mean it offensively. And even if they did, you shouldn't let it bother you. My dad was an alcoholic and although he wasn't violent, he caused A LOT of problems for my whole family. People tell jokes about alcoholism and my friends lightly use the term (example: "John is such an alcoholic! He drinks every weekend!") and I just let it go. People say things when they have no idea what its like and getting mad at them won't help you or them. If its not a compliment or constructive criticism, ignore it. :)

Well it's been some time since I posted it and I have changed. I am a little more open minded about this type of joke now but I do hope that others can take some time to really educate themselves about this condition.

Nope. Not funny. Oh, I can laugh at a few of the things I've done when I was hypo-manic but you might say I have license (the diagnosis) to do so. I cringe when I hear the immediate bipolar speculation that someone who has just made the news for a violent act. My children really hate the flip comments their friends and co-workers make about their mom or dads being bipolar. Having a bipolar parent was something they survived. Too often kids are just made at their parents - for doing what parents are supposed to do - love them and get upset when they are self distructive.