Exploring the possibility that I may be Bipolar?

Trophy Wife Asked: Exploring the possibility that I may be Bipolar?

I've always had some mental depression problems. I was diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder when I was 19. I would be depressed and lay in bed for weeks at a time, cut myself and act like a real butt to my family a lot. Since then I've improved, I got married and had two children which are now 2 and 4. But for the last year or so I've noticed some new symptoms that are really beginning to interfere with my life. I find it a struggle to accomplish simple tasks like cleaning my house. I'm usually a clean freak, but lately I just can't find the motivation to do it. I started off this morning feeling really GREAT! But after an hour or two of cleaning I lost the good feeling and I'm back to feeling like crap, depressed and like there is nothing to be happy about. I've been having issues with sleep, I either sleep from 8 at night until 10 the next day and still feel exhausted all day, or I'm awake until 2-3 in the morning and then feel like I'm in a state of Euphoria the next day. I'm irritable with my husband and feel like pulling my hair out most days. I either eat all day long, or I starve myself for days. I've been on several meds from my general practitioner for depression, but they never seem to work. So I am left untreated. I just want to feel "normal" if that's possible. If anyone has any info on Bipolar or whatever else could be wrong with me and what I can do about it, please share. Thanks.

Answers:

Answered:
Bipolar disorder which is what it is now called (used to be called manic depression) is a mood disorder which effects a persons mood and is caused by chemical imbalances in the brain. In bipolar disorder a person has mood swings from depression to mania which have to last 7 days each to be diagnosed but generally last weeks or months at a time. I developed bipolar when I was 15 and diagnosed at 18, when I was depressed I would sleep constantly, cry, wouldn't leave bed for days, didn't eat, wash, dress, constantly felt suicidal, hopeless and worthless, withdrew myself from family and friends and stopped going to school. This lasted for 6 months. Then I switched into mania when I was constantly full of energy and felt like I was on top of the world I was so happy, didn't sleep for days and if I did I would sleep up to 3 hours only, went out every night abusing alcohol and drugs, got into meaningless relationship, had sex with strangers, spent every penny I had and even stole from my mum, shop lifted, racing thoughts, aggressive and irritable, psychotic when I would hallucinate and be delusional to the point I stabbed myself and almost my boyfriend, I was constantly doing one thing to the next and I nearly failed college. This lasted for 4 months. Bipolar disorder is something that is very severe and effects your everyday life. I ended up being hospitalised because I was psychotic, hallucinating and delusional.

Your mood swings do not sound like those of Bipolar disorder and neither do some other symptoms. To me it sounds more like a borderline personality disorder, this is when someone has rapid mood swings which can switch within mintues, hours and never over a few days, basically it means you are emotionally unstable, your emotions are all over the place causing rapid mood swings. Eating disorders such as under eating and/or over eating, self harm are symptoms of borderline and it can be misdiagnosed as depression. I have both Bipolar and Borderline, it sounds more Borderline. The best treatment for it is DBT which is a therapy especially made for treating Borderline. Meds can help but its generally therapy that helps icon smile Exploring the possibility that I may be Bipolar? Obviously I am no doctor, I could be entirely wrong, just my opinion. You should really talk to your doctor about this as no one on here can diagnose this. Good luck icon smile Exploring the possibility that I may be Bipolar?



BritsyGirl Answered:
Well I'm Bipolar and it really seems like you show the signs of Bipolar Disorder. It isn't a wise decision to go to a regular doctor for medication, because they don't know what would be best for your condition. The wisest thing to do is to go to an actual therapist that can prescribe you medication that will help you. It is important to always take the medication and to take it for several months to give the medication time to start working, and then decide if it is helping or not. It won't solve your problems immediately and that is why people often stop taking the medication after a short period of time. Seriously try to commit to it and see if you get results. If it doesn't work, then try something else. Don't give up because you don't want your symptoms to worsen. Especially if you have a family that depends on you.



J Answered:
You should avoid self-diagnosis based on symptoms you believe you have which could also be among those considered characteristic of common mental diseases. Only a professional psychiatrist can make that diagnosis, and after extensive & specialized training. Many people have short attention spans and high-low emotional oscillations. This does not mean they are all clinically-diagnosed bipolars.



Mary Beth Answered:
I'm bipolar and It sounds a lot like me, one minute I'm happy, the next I am pissed then happy again the depressed, I also have trouble concentrating! Talk to your psych about it. I am on 4 meds for bipolar and have been hospitalized twice. It is an imbalance of seretonan and norepranefrin ( didn't spell them right :(I get irritated very easily, dislike things that I use to love!



Rebecca Answered:
Typically Bipolar episodes are much more severe that what you describe AND they last for many weeks or months. However you might explore cyclothymia, it is a mild type of Bipolar that cycles faster that typical Bipolar.

Everyone has moods like those of Bipolar Disorder……. because everyone has mood swings, momentary loss of judgment, likes to go shopping, likes sex, feels down sometimes, gets angry now and then and is hyper on occasion. The difference is that all of these symptoms in Bipolar are so intense that they interfere with your ability to function. Think of a pole (biPOLEr) with 0 at the center (0 being normal) and 10 at one end (manic) and -10 at the other (deep depression). Most people have swings but stay within 3 to -3. I have fairly severe Bipolar 1 but since my psychosis is mild I go from -9 to 9…. Also depression that comes and goes is not bipolar but just recurring depression, you have to have mania for it to be Bipolar….. you have to go to both ends of the pole.

Rapidly changing emotions or becoming angry or sad easily is not all there is to Bipolar. That is just having emotions. People with Bipolar Disorder do not just change emotions quickly, they go through periods of depression followed by periods of mania or elevated mood. Mood affects everything about you…. your energy level, self esteem, sleep patterns, appetite, sexuality, emotional response, judgment, etc….. not just your emotions. And while rapid cycling is possible, it is rare. The average person with Bipolar only cycles two or three times a year and the moods last for weeks or months. It is considered rapid cycling if they cycle 4 or more times in a year.

While everyone with Bipolar has a different set of symptoms and a different severity of symptoms, this is what Bipolar is like for me:

Depression – too tired to get out of bed, shower, even to brush my teeth. Cry all the time, sleep 16 hours a day. Feelings of self loathing and guilt that drive me to think of suicide but I'm to tired to even think about how to go about killing myself. It makes you feel small and worthless and completely insignificant. It makes you think about how big the world is and how meaningless you are in it….. and it refuses to let you have any good thoughts or see any good things…. when you look in the mirror all you see is pain, you don't even see yourself, you don't taste your favorite foods anymore, see that flowers are blooming, whether or not the sun is out, you become so inward that you hardly even notice your surroundings….. You don't even feel love for people anymore…. positive thoughts are just not possible…… it is a deep dark hole with no way out and no light for hope…. and most of all it makes you feel sooooo alone. And even if there were someone who cared about you they would be better off if you killed yourself……. because all you will ever be is a burden……. this can last from a couple of weeks to a couple of years.

Mania – Way too happy! PARTY GIRL! love drink and drugs. Talk really fast and pressured because my thoughts are going faster than my mouth can keep up with. Hypersexual – like I sleep with strangers and guys I just met on the internet or I masturbate 10 times a day. I once became bisexual because there were twice as many people to sleep with. down load porn and spend tons of money on sex toys. Spending sprees….. I once spent my mortgage money on african violets, yep, $1500 on African violets (then I got depressed and let them all die). Quit my job because I wanted my vacation pay for lottery tickets and I was so convinced I would win that I started shopping and writing bad checks because I'd be rich as soon as the numbers were drawn. Decided that I could replace the furnace in my home by myself… I mean how hard can it be….. Only sleep 2 or maybe 3 hours a night for months on end and never feel tired. In the end I was unemployed, $30,000 in debt, and had almost lost my home, which needed a new furnace because I had removed the old one.. or parts of it anyway. This can last for months.

I also have mixed states when I am depressed and manic at the same time which are truly the worst… By body and mind are depressed but there is this undercurrent of energy running all the time….. I'm highly emotional but the emotions tend to be negative (guilt and anger) I have intrusive thoughts and urges to mutilate myself (like wanting to stick my hands in the garbage disposal or cooking them on the BBQ), and I also have psychotic episodes where I hallucinate. This is when I am most suseptible to suicide because I am depressed, wanting to hurt myself, and I have the mental energy to plan and carry it out.



Carys Answered:
It doesn't sound like Bipolar at all, your mood swings are too fast and nowhere the extreme of Bipolar moods. It sounds more like borderline personality disorder.



jason e Answered:
This is a great article on Yahoo! on this subject.Hope it helps you out.Should be what you are looking for.



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