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To My Relatives Asking Questions About My Bipolar Disorder This Holiday Season

Since I was diagnosed with bipolar 1 with psychotic features, you have been asking me a bunch of questions. So, I would like to tell you five things about my condition during this holiday season:

1. I am not “crazy,” and I am not “just doing this” to get attention.

The auditory hallucinations I’m experiencing are because of my condition. I am not making all of this up. Please, stop calling me names and stop asking me if I am “losing it.” I am not.

2. My mood swings are not like your typical mood swings.

Please, stop comparing yourself to me. This is not because it’s “that-time-of-the-month.”

3. My episodes are not by choice.

I am dealing with manic depression. I am not just sad. I am not lazy. I am having trouble getting up in the morning.

4. I am not a killjoy.

I’m sorry if I can’t keep up with the holiday feeling. I’m sorry I barely get out of bed and talk to you. I wanted to, but my body won’t let me. I am too empty to function. I am sorry, too, if you are having troubles keeping up with my mood change. I am sorry if you are confused. I am, too.

5. I want your support and understanding.

I want your love, and I want your respect. I want you to be here for me while I am trying to recover. I want you to understand and accept my condition.

I love you, guys. I need your support and love more than ever. I cannot handle your frowns, frustrations and disappointments. Please, bear with me. Be with me. One more thing, please stop comparing your struggles with me, and please, stop calling me weak. I am trying to survive every day. I am fighting for my life every single day.

Happy holidays.

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