B is for Bi-Polar.

As someone who “suffers” with multiple mental health “issues”, I like to keep up with other mental health diseases that I don’t have. Since I’ve been in and out of a few psych wards growing up, I’ve met a lot of different people with different disabilities. Some of the most inspiring people I’ve met in my life, I’ve met in a psych ward. My team being in these type of places you learn a little about each mental disability. Every place I went to had that stupid “introduce circle” every time a new kid would check in, and you’d hear a lot of different stories about people’s lives and how they live day to day with their disability. I began to notice the eye rolls from other individuals when certain people would share their story. I became aware of the “disabilities” that others really just didn’t seem to care about? or just didn’t understand them and didn’t care to understand them. The main ones I noticed that had the most stigma where Schizophrenia, Bi-Polar, Anxiety and Eating Disorders. In the “real world” most people don’t understand Depression, but it seemed we all understood and had that in the psych ward.

So, Bi-Polar, what the hell is it? I’m not someone who suffers from Bi-Polar Disorder but like I said, I still care to know and try to understand. I’ve been that person that get’s the looks and the sly remarks about my disability, so I try my damndest to understand other people’s “problems”.

The definition you’ll find on google is:

“(of psychiatric illness) characterized by both manic and depressive episodes, or manic ones only.”
This definition may tell you what is it, but it doesn’t explain how living with bipolar disorder can affect a person’s life, how a person may act when having bipolar disorder, etc.
So next I googled, “what does Bipolar Disorder feel like”, these were the results that came up:
Bipolar disorder is an illness that produces dramatic swings in mood (amongst other symptoms). A person with bipolar disorder will alternate between periods of mania (elevated mood) and periods of depression (feelings of intense sadness). In between these two extremes, a person will have periods of normal mood. To help gain a better understanding of what it feels like, mania and depression are described below:

Mania

I had times when I felt terrific, better than I ever had.

I felt like I could do anything I set my mind to. My productivity at work soars and I work late into the night.

Then all of a sudden, I’m drowning in depression. I can’t get up in the morning to go to work and I feel like my life isn’t worth living. Treatment has greatly helped me to manage my bipolar disorder. Now I have an agreement with my wife–When I start showing sings of either mania or depression, my wife knows to make me an appointment with our family doctor.”

Mania is an extreme feeling of well-being, energy and optimism—you feel on top of the world. These feelings, however, can be so intense that you can lose contact with reality. You may find yourself believing strange things about yourself, making bad judgements and behaving in embarrassing, harmful and sometimes even dangerous ways. Mania can make it difficult or impossible to deal with life in an effective way. A period of mania can, if untreated, destroy your relationships and work.” –heretohelp

So, what is Mania? Mania is different types of feelings, feelings like:

  1. Very happy or over excited.
  2. More important than usual.
  3. Full of energy.
  4. Unable or Unwilling to sleep.
  5. Full of new and exciting ideas.
  6. Irritated with others who don’t share your same outlook.

When you’re going through a state of Mania, how do others see you?

  1. Jumping from idea to idea very quickly.
  2. Behaving in a bizarre way.
  3. Making odd decisions at the spur of the moment, even without thinking of the consequences.
  4. Speaking very fastly.
  5. Recklessly spending your money.

Depression

“Feelings of sadness are something we all experience from time to time. It’s a natural reaction to losses and painful events. With time, these feelings disappear. But for someone with bipolar disorder, a depressive episode can be much more severe. The depression goes on for longer and makes it very difficult to tackle the daily tasks and problems of living. A person experiencing a depressive episode will likely to have the mental and physical symptoms listed below. Not everyone who becomes depressed will have all these symptoms, but they will usually have several of them.”-heretohelp

What Depression Feels Like:

  1. Losing interest in things you once enjoyed
  2. Not able to enjoy things
  3. Loss of self-confidence.
  4. Feeling restless and agitated
  5. Feeling extremely tired.
  6. Thinking of suicide.
  7. Feeling useless and or hopeless
  8. Feeling more irritable than usual.

Now, these are the feelings the internet gave for depression, I narrowed them down to the ones I feel are legit for my depression.

When you’re going through a state of Depression, What do other people see?

  1. Loss of appetite and weight loss.
  2. Difficulty in sleeping or sleeping too often.
  3. Constipation.
  4. Loss of interest in sexual relationships.

So now, I ask you, followers, who “suffer” from bipolar disorder, what is REALLY like to live with this disorder? How id your day to day life? What do you struggle with most? Do you find medication does its job for you?


Let us know in the comments below, everyone should take a minute to try and understand what others are going rhough, and then maybe just amybe we’ll understand or at least end these damn stigmas.


If you’d like to check out more about Bipolar Disorders, feel free to click on the links I’ve provided and read some stories for yourself. There’s also a few stories on yahoo answers from people who suffer from bipolar their self.

 

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