Anonymous asked: I've been suspecting that I may have bipolar for a while, but one thing that makes me think I don't is that my depressive episodes are usually triggered by something (usually my thoughts). Can depressive episodes in bipolar be triggered?
Hey there, Anon.
Everyone’s bipolar is different, and works differently. Some people experience bipolar in fairly regular intervals of time, and will have an episode after X amount of days/weeks/months/years. Other people may have irregular amounts of time between episodes, especially if they have another disorder along with their bipolar.
I know that my PTSD can sometimes break me out of a hypomanic episode and throw me into a depressive episode, if I’m triggered a certain way.
Ultimately, you can only know for sure if you have bipolar/depression if you’re diagnosed. Especially if you feel like your moods may be triggered more than cycling along, you should talk this over with your doctor.
Anonymous asked: What's the deal with dreams? My cyclothymia has been pretty manageable since starting on fluox at Christmas, but lately I'm experiencing full on depressive episodes in my dreams, with exactly the same intensity as real life. These will often happen even when I've been reasonably fine during the day. Have you heard of this before?
Hey there, Anon.
There are many theories on dreams and why we have them, but studies seem to suggest that they’re our subconscious ways of working through mental worries. Studies have shown that women who had nightmares after giving birth were significantly less likely to have post-partum depression than women who took sleeping medicine to avoid nightmares.
Maybe your dreams are attempting to sort through some aspects of your depression. What’s important is whether or not you feel alright when you wake up. But as long as the dreams are just dreams, I think you’ll be ok.
Anonymous asked: Hi. I'm 19 and have bipolar 1, and was hospitalized for it two months ago. Now I live with my boyfriend and work full time, fiscally supporting myself and being in a serious relationship. I don't know if am healthy enough to handle all this though. I have no space and time to process the mass of thoughts and feelings I have on a daily basis. Sometimes I want to go back to the hospital just to get a break. I feel bad because I do care about my boyfriend, I just feel suffocated. What should I do?
Hey there, Anon.
First, I want to say congratulations for being able to successfully juggle all of those responsibilies thus far. That takes an amazing amount of devotion to your tasks, and most neuro-typical people would be hard-put to keep up with that.
If I were you, I would talk to your boyfriend about it. Your love for him is clear, and you obviously want nothing but the best for him. If you include him in the conversation, you both can discuss options together. Maybe there are things you can both do together that will help the feelings of suffocation.
Anonymous asked: I haven't been diagnosed and I can't talk to anyone professional about this because I don't have the money to seek professional help but I might have something along the lines of depression? I've lost interest in the things I used to like. For example I wanted to go to school for art but I lost the passion to and now I don't know what I wanna do with my life. I feel inferior to my family and friends. I cry often and a lot. I also feel self hatred, low self esteem and low confidence. Any advice?
Hey there, Anon.
First of all, I want you to know that there are free resources available for those with depression, as well as other disorders. These will vary state by state, but you can definitely find them online. I know that Safe Horizon was a good organization that I went to in NY, and many organizations will offer the ability to help you locate resources; I went to a Planned Parenthood for a health checkup, and when I told them about some of my trauma, they gave me lists of free organizations for counseling/support groups for youths. You can find free professional help if you reach out for it.
I also want you to know that the depressive episodes that we experience can be devastating. Anyone on this blog can relate to those feelings, and understand - without judging you - what that’s like. We love you. You are not weak. You are not broken. You may feel cut off from it right now, but you have passion and feelings that matter, and thousands of things about you as an individual that no one else has. Not in the whole world.
Stay strong, Anon. We got your back.
Anonymous asked: hey, so i've been to a psychiatrist who said she thought i was bipolar. she told my mom, and my mom didn't believe her so she made me go to a different one. i'm over 18 but still financially dependent on my parents so i don't really have a say on what psychiatrist/psychologist i see. i definitely think i need help but my mom won't let me have help. any advice?
Hey there, Anon.
Well, if you have bipolar, no matter what psychologist/psychiatrist your mother switches you to, the diagnosis should remain the same. Maybe she needs to hear multiple confirmations before she can accept the diagnosis as truth. If your mother trusts the opinion of this new doctor, and they confirm you with bipolar, they have the potential to be an ally. Perhaps you could invite your mother to sit in on a therapy session, and allow her to talk to your doctor afterwards.
Anonymous asked: hi.. I was just diagnosed with bipolar but my sister attempted suicide in march so most of my family's attention is focused on making sure she gets better which I completely understand (!!).. but my mom tells me what I'm going through isn't as serious and that basically my stuff is trivial in comparison to her alcohol problem/depression & my sister's attempt. so now I feel like a failure bc I didn't kill myself & completely invalidated & self absorbed bc wow I should be focusing on my sister...
trigger warning: suicide/depression/self harm
I guess I’m just looking for validation? or help/advice? I’m feeling completely hopeless and lost and like I have to handle the maze of pdoc appts and bloodwork and meds and such all by myself and that my mom has realized my worst fear in that she doesn’t think any of this is a big deal
I want to start with a little background information about myself. My mom was a drug addict until I was 12, and until that age I lived with her and her drug addicted/abusive/shit head boyfriend. Even after getting sober, my mom still wasn’t the “mom” I wanted and expected her to be. I know how it feels when that one person or persons who are suppose to take care of you and support you and help and guide you at all times, aren’t there for you and don’t do those things. It’s crushing and can make you question your self worth and wonder if there’s anything that you’ve done to cause them to react this way to you. I tell you this in hopes that you’ll see that any advice I’m about to give you is done with honest understanding of how you may be feeling and with nothing but good intent.
From the average point of view the one currently showing symptoms is the one with the “bigger” problem. People have a habit of needing physical proof of things. You could have two people who are physically ill. Person A might have a higher fever and be in more physical pain than Person B, but if Person B happens to be throwing up, than more than likely person B is going to be seen as more sick. The same example can be used to depression. If two people have depression and one self harms while the other one does not, the person who SH will be seen as “more depressed”. To people who understand or live with mental illness, we see how ridiculous this is, but to the “average” person, they need that proof. In their defense, physical issues tend to seem easier to deal with than purely emotional ones, so people tend to gravitate towards helping those first. This isn’t of course to excuse your mother or families behavior but to understand that this could very well be a primal instinct.
You’re not a failure because you didn’t attempt suicide in the same way your sister isn’t one because she did. The month of May is Mental Health Awareness Month and the slogan is “NOT ALL PAIN IS PHYSICAL AND NOT ALL WOUNDS ARE VISIBLE” and I can’t words with how perfect this is. I’ve been at a point where self harm wasn’t “helping” (ie: satisfying) me any more and I couldn’t attempt suicide again, so to me staying alive and not physically self harming was my punishment. I decided that I didn’t “deserve” death. Dying would be an escape and that was too good for me. I still feel this way at times and I know others who do also. I can’t imagine anyone who knows any two things about mental illness that this type of thinking isn’t “as” disordered or dangerous and the toxic thoughts that lead to a suicide attempt. You not being in a hospital bed isn’t proof that you’re not in pain. Not all wounds are visible.
Your family is going through a very tough time right now. But you wanting to take care of yourself isn’t selfish. You still wanting love and support isn’t selfish. Your mother has a sea of her own issues to deal with. There’s nothing you can do to make her better or do make her see that her behavior is wrong. The only thing that is in your power, is you. You are not hopeless. You are strong and you can be strong, for you. In the words of the wonderful Detgen “Be your own advocate”. Go to those appointments, close your eyes and take deep breaths during blood work, set alarms for your meds, tell your psychiatrist everything. Do this for you, because you deserve it. Because you don’t need validation to know that you’re not OK. Because despite the fact that she may be your mother, someone who is clearly not properly handling their own mental health issues has no right to be judging yours.
But if you need someone to believe you I am that person. I believe that you are hurting. I believe that you are not alright. I believe that you need help. And I believe that you deserve that help. I believe that you will get that help. I believe that you will prove that you don’t need to prove a damn thing to anyone in order to get that help. I believe that a year from now you are going to look back at these struggles and see that you are a strong individual who overcame a very troubling time. I believe in your feelings, I believe that they are real and valid, and above all else, I believe in you.
fight for yourself, because you deserve it.
Anonymous asked: this is weird but i guess i don't feel "bipolar enough" to warrant the diagnosis i have received... does this make any sense? have you ever felt this way??
»I know I did a long response to a similar ask on this not to long ago, but I can’t find it to link here. So please bear with me (or bare with me if you so choose) while I repeat an opinion I’m sure many of you have already heard.«
Oh i think many of us have felt that way. in my opinion what it comes down to is the stigma surrounding mental health and how hard is can be to ourselves as one of “those” people. Even if we’re not aware of it, we classify those people we call “ill” and we, or people who know/love, can never be be one of “them”.
at the same time this isn’t always done in a negative light. we look at people we view as truly sick and our troubles seem so trivial in comparison that calling ourselves sick seems dramatic and undeserved.
so it comes down to a combination of two things that really need to stop: negative stigma about mental health and comparing ourselves and our issues to others. The pain you feel and the struggles you have are unique to you. just because someone somewhere may have it “worse” doesn’t make your situation any better. a child starving in a third world country doesn’t make a child in a first world country any less hungry.
I get asks ALL THE TIME that are along the lines of “i don’t self harm enough” “i don’t sleep around enough” “i’m not reckless enough” all these stereotypes that people have of bipolar disorder or just mental illness in general and because they don’t fit into the box they and society have created, they think it’s a wrong diagnosis and because of this, a lot of them won’t get help. because they’re not “those” kind of people. but like i said, it’s not all negativity. your pain is your pain and it deserves to be recognized and helped and you deserve to be happy and free of unnecessary troubles. don’t compare yourself to others. don’t fall victim to a stigma.
and to cover all my bases, just in case you really honestly think you don’t have bipolar disorder and are being treated for it please bring this up immediately with a professional. they will not laugh at you or get mad and will more than likely be happy to answer any questions or concerns you may have.
Anonymous asked: hi i was just wondering if when you are manic/hypomanic you still experience mood variation throughout the day? is it like being stuck in fast forward all the time or are there periods of respite? will the morning be worse than the evening, or vice versa? especially in prolonged cases where the episode lasts weeks or months?? thank you
this is different for everyone and whether or not you have other disorders is a main factor. also you may have a rapid cycling subtype of bipolar disorder, causing your moods to change more frequently than “normal” bipolar. for myself, i also have BPD, so i have the emotional swings within mood swings. basically it could be a number of things causing you to feel this way, so if you can i suggest speaking with a professional.
Anonymous asked: I'm in college. I don't want my parents to know that I'm bipolar, but I also feel like I owe them an explanation for why I would flip out randomly at them as a teen. I'm also high-functioning autistic, and they attributed it to that. I already get my opinions discounted because of the autism, and I cannot imagine what it would be like if they knew I was bipolar. Also, one of my parents staunchly believes that mental illnesses are either severe or nonexistant and probably wouldn't believe me.
I feel like this is very much a weighing your pros vs your cons situation and at the end of the day do what’s best for you in your heart.
But since you wrote in, I’ll assume that you want my opinion for what it’s worth. I don’t see you telling them about the bipolar diagnosis as being helpful to you. If you don’t need them for medical help in regards to your mental health, they don’t HAVE to know. I understand you want to be able to give them an explanation, I think after receiving a diagnosis, we all feel this way, at least for a period of time. But you stated that one of your parents might not count this an explanation. And having someone, esp a parent/someone that you love/admire, telling you that your illness isn’t real or that you really don’t have it can be very hurtful and harmful. I’m sorry that your parents seems to not be very understanding, it’s awful that your opinion is discounted over your illness. Let me assure you that that is not at all fair or OK. You named one positive of telling them you have bipolar disorder and that would be them possibly understanding your moods as a teenager, but if they already attribute that to the autism, is there any harm in allowing them to continue to think that? Compared to the fact that there could be emotional harm in telling them this news.
However I am not in your shoes and these are not my parents. If you feel that it would benefit you to tell them, if it would take some weight off your shoulders, than by all means tell them. I don’t know your entire story and I only want whats best for you.
Anonymous asked: my hypomania makes me feel like a fake because it doesnt interfere with my life :(
a defining difference between mania and hypomania is that hypomania often goes undetected because it doesn’t interfere with the day to day life of the person with it. you’re not a fake because you don’t have full blown mania. you just don’t have it. that’s not something that’s in your control. i’m going to assume you have bipolar type two and say that BP2 isn’t any less of a disorder than BP1, you’re not faking bipolar disorder because you don’t have type one. Just please, be nicer to yourself. You’re not a fake.