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Living With Bipolar Disorder: My Story Watch

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    This post is going to be about Bipolar Disorder. My experience with it and what it is.

    I don’t think anyone has ever made a thread on it before so I will because it’s one of the most misunderstood mental illness out there. Before now I was completely and utterly ashamed of speaking about my problems at length because I was convinced it would make people think less of me or treat me like an invalid. I also believed I had to apologise for my problem but now thanks to a really good friend I met on here, I realise that I shouldn't be ashamed of myself for a problem that isn't my fault. I can't help my mood swings but I won't let it define me as a person.
    I'm pretty sure everyone knows who I'm talking about. She has been a huge inspiration to me and to many other people struggling with mental illness on this site and even though she’s no longer on here, her legacy of being brave and speaking up about our demons will live on.Thank you Emma.


    What is Bipolar?

    According to Wikipedia, Bipolar disorder is a mental illness characterized by periods of depression and periods of elevated mood.The elevated mood is known as mania or hypomania depending on its severity.Everyone dealing with bipolar has different experiences with the severity and quickness of changes in their mood (for me an episode can last about a week minimum or three maximum), but in bipolar disorder these changes can be very distressing and have a big impact on your life. It's easy to find it incredibly overwhelming. Bipolar disorder can not be cured unfortunately. It is a lifelong illness. You can only try to maintain healthy stability in your life by taking your medication and making good lifestyle choices.
    There’s more information on the types of bipolar, symptoms, treatment, self care and other useful resources on the mental health charity website Mind.


    My experience with Bipolar Disorder.

    What is ahead might be triggering for some:
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    A bit of back story first:I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder four years ago after I experienced my first psychotic episode. It didn't happen immediately. At first it was just the suspicion of the school’s guidance counsellor. It was months after the episode and my diagnosis of anorexia and bulimia that I was then officially diagnosed with bipolar. Now a few people may know I live in Nigeria. Here there is a stigma against mental illness. Some believe it is punishment from God, others believe it is a problem for only the weak minded. You can imagine how upset my family was to find out about my numerous problems. I was immediately sent back home (I was a boarding student at the time) and forced to live the life of a shut in. No one could find out about my illness. I didn't get any further treatment for various reasons. It is insanely expensive to get proper mental care and my parents were in denial about my problem. For the longest time I was in denial as well. It was like a death sentence. Being told you will have to suffer this for the rest of your life. It was like my world had fallen apart.

    With mania for me it’s like I am myself except to the power 10. I can be charismatic, flirtatious and carefree. That’s how it starts. With this euphoric elation like you're on top of the world and you can do anything you set your mind to. I have no inhibitions. My thoughts are racing and I have so many brilliant ideas, I'm very productive, friendly, talkative,sexually charged and it’s amazing. Everything is moving so fast. But then things start moving too fast. Out of my control. It’s like my mind is racing at the speed of light and I can’t focus on anything, I can’t sleep. I'm constantly making the wrong decisions. Then the delusions of grandiose kick in. I'm a ****ing genius or the most beautiful person alive. I'm the next Einstein or the next Dr King. With the delusions, when it gets too out of control, there’s psychosis. I start becoming insanely paranoid. Hearing things that aren't there, seeing ghosts, hearing invisible voices, religious imagery, the sounds of a machine gun being fired at me, figures in the shadows, the strong conviction that I'm being watched by someone through the front facing camera of my phone. It’s so real to me. Sometimes there’s crying and twice I've fainted.
    I don't really remember these experiences too well. Often it’s recounted to me by friends and family who just assume I'm a bit nuts. But what I find the most scary is the rage. When I'm manic I am very irritable and prone to violent rage. The littlest thing could set me off. Often it’s because no one understands my genius or pays enough attention to me.On several occasions I've come close to hurting people I love and myself.

    Mania is like being on a bullet train without brakes heading towards a brick wall. An episode can last for 1-3 weeks. I also experience hypomanic episodes. This is like mania except to a lesser extent and without the psychosis.

    The depression is crippling. Especially when it comes right after a manic or hypomanic episode. It is like falling from the sky and hitting the ground hard.The regret of my actions during the manic episode is intense. I am incapable of functioning normally and I can barely get out of bed in the morning. Very often there’s thoughts of suicide and I self harm by starving myself for days as a form of ‘punishment’. It’s difficult to talk about so I won’t carry on. This can last for a week or two. Once it lasted a month but that was only once.


    Because I have bipolar this means I can’t drink or do drugs and even caffeine is a big no no.These are all things that are part of the ‘teenage experience’ but I can’t take part because of how harmful it will be to me. I have to take care of my health. I am barely controllable sober. What would happen if I was drunk? This makes social interactions hard for me. It makes me an outsider. My friends see me as boring because I won't even have one drink or a little hookah.
    Managing social relationships is also hard. I push people away because I don't want to take anyone on ‘Ari’s wild ride’. I don't want to hurt anyone and I don’t want people to have to deal with me.


    Concerning the future, as difficult as it is to do so, I believe that there’s hope. It’s getting easier to spot symptoms and deal with them. Currently now I am meds for PTSD and anxiety disorder. Hopefully I will gain the confidence to seek for meds for my bipolar. Fortunately, the situation with MH here is changing. At a snail’s pace albeit but it’s much better than four years ago.

    My mother is more supportive of me and I have the lovely Emma to vent to when I need her and other nice people on here that have shown concern and are willing to support me.

    I constantly have to be aware of my illness. I can’t ignore it even when I feel ‘normal’ (I really badly want to ignore that this ever happened to me all the time though). I have to put a lot of effort into taking care of myself. I have to constantly watch for symptoms and deal with them or the consequences will be problematic. A wise person once said ‘It’s easy to avoid a car that you can see coming down the street but it’s really hard to avoid one that’s five feet away.’


    It was difficult to write this and it took two days but it’s done and I'm clicking the submit button before I can change my mind :lol:

    If anyone wants to talk to about their experiences with mental health the feel free to below



    Some people this might interest:
    SeanFM Ethereal World Airmed CoolCavy somemightsay888 Imperion
    The_Lonely_Goatherd
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    Thank you for tagging me! :hugs: This was a very brave post to do. :yep: It is saddening to hear that mh treatment is a snail's pace where you live, but it's good to hear that you have your mother's support. :hugs:

    Also, The_Lonely_Goatherd is who you want.
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    :hugs: thanks for sharing this - it has been very insightful and I see the struggles that you have to get through.
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    Thanks for the tags, posting to subscribe! Heading out soon but will try and read the blog post this evening :love:
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    (Original post by Airmed)
    Thank you for tagging me! :hugs: This was a very brave post to do. :yep: It is saddening to hear that mh treatment is a snail's pace where you live, but it's good to hear that you have your mother's support. :hugs:

    Also, The_Lonely_Goatherd is who you want.

    No thank you
    I was also inspired by your post as well. Hopefully more people will be able to share after this.
    :hugs:

    (Original post by SeanFM)
    :hugs: thanks for sharing this - it has been very insightful and I see the struggles that you have to get through.
    Prsom ! :lovehug:
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    StrawbAri so frustrated it's a PRSOM -.- I owe you a rep :mmm:

    One word : wow. Because you are so brave to share this with us !! Well done on that

    One of my friends has MH issues too, bipolar disorder as well. And what you said about being ashamed and stuff , she said the same. I think that no one should ever be ashamed of something like that ! As you said, it's not your fault, and it does not change the person you are

    I understand that you can be afraid of people seeing you differently etc, but you know what ? When I 1st talked to you here, I did not know you had MH issues, I knew after. You know what changed ? Absolutely nothing :heart:

    Ari you are a wonderful person, I told you that before and I'll never stop to remind you that. I am very happy you took the courage to write about all of this :hugs:

    Also about Emma, yes she's amazing and helped so much people here.. It' sa shame she's away. RIP :cry2:

    Anyway, I'm glad you could talk about it, and never forget how amazing You are


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    could you tag me next time ?
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    (Original post by FrenchUnicorn)
    StrawbAri so frustrated it's a PRSOM -.- I owe you a rep :mmm:

    One word : wow. Because you are so brave to share this with us !! Well done on that

    One of my friends has MH issues too, bipolar disorder as well. And what you said about being ashamed and stuff , she said the same. I think that no one should ever be ashamed of something like that ! As you said, it's not your fault, and it does not change the person you are

    I understand that you can be afraid of people seeing you differently etc, but you know what ? When I 1st talked to you here, I did not know you had MH issues, I knew after. You know what changed ? Absolutely nothing :heart:

    Ari you are a wonderful person, I told you that before and I'll never stop to remind you that. I am very happy you took the courage to write about all of this :hugs:

    Also about Emma, yes she's amazing and helped so much people here.. It' sa shame she's away. RIP :cry2:

    Anyway, I'm glad you could talk about it, and never forget how amazing You are
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    could you tag me next time ?
    Ahhh frenchie tu es génial !!
    Thanks so much for this !
    It took a while but I'm glad I've done it. Thank you for being supportive.

    I didn't tag everyone so it's not like I'm forcing people to read this but of course I will next time!
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    (Original post by StrawbAri)
    Ahhh frenchie tu es génial !!
    Thanks so much for this !
    It took a while but I'm glad I've done it. Thank you for being supportive.

    I didn't tag everyone so it's not like I'm forcing people to read this but of course I will next time!
    Aw merci, je suis aussi géniale que toi :mmm: :lovehug:

    And I'm glad you did it too :yep: does it help to write about it btw ? I hope it does :3

    Yes I perfectly understand that dw :hugs: and ouiiii I'll be tagged :woo: ty *sloth emoji*
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    Awwwwww StrawbAri you are so amazing and lovely (and beautiful just for good measure :cute:)
    idk what else to add to that apart from the fact you are amazing :lovehug: xxxx
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    (Original post by StrawbAri)
    No thank you
    I was also inspired by your post as well. Hopefully more people will be able to share after this.
    :hugs:
    Aw, thank you. I'm glad you read it and I'm glad you've shared. :hugs: I would love more people to talk about this.
 
 
 
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