What the Weather Would Look Like if It Was Actually 'Bipolar'


The weather is particularly tricky to diagnose, as any meteorologist will tell you. Yet so many of us are quick to confidently call it “bipolar.”

I know society is generally becoming more educated about my disorder, and I’m not even offended by that saying anymore. However, it does us all a disservice by spreading the stigmatizing myth that bipolar disorder is just about ups and downs.

Let me set the record straight and show you what a bipolar weather pattern would really look like. Because if the weather really were bipolar, none of us would recognize it.

Some days will simply be black. The sun won’t shine, the wind won’t blow and everything will stand still.

But don’t panic just yet. The weather hasn’t left us — it just can’t get out of bed today.

The sun will go to bed at 5 p.m. and wake up at 10 a.m. It will never be able to get enough sleep, even then.

Cloudy skies will linger for three, six or nine months, depending upon how well the new medication works out. It’s hard to be shining brightly when you’re depressed, and a pill that colors everything gray is useful, but only goes so far. 

Rain will fall even if there are no clouds. The weather is crying without any rational explanation why. And sometimes the rain will taste incredibly sweet. It’s been depressed, and has barely eaten anything today.

If the weather becomes manic, the sun will stay up all through the night. It’s had way too many good ideas to be able to fall asleep. The next morning the sun will be in a different position in the sky. It spent all of its money impulsively, and even though it’s 4.6 billion years old, it has to move back in with mom and dad.

Lightning strikes will flare unexpectedly. The day could be perfectly pleasant, but some small thing sent a quick surge of anger through it.

The pressure in the air might get tight enough to end organic life on the planet. There’s just too much on the atmosphere’s plate, and keeping it all together is stifling.

When guilt, worthlessness and hopelessness drift in, expect a continually cold front socially. Should delusions of grandeur roll in or inhibitions dissipate, expect it to get really weird. A hot rain or dry freeze could come out of nowhere.

Prepare for occasional gusts of wind reaching over 100 miles per hour. Sometimes it helps to just scream when the emotions get too intense.

The weather will change and fluctuate, no doubt. But that will take place over weeks and months, not days or hours. In the rare case, it flips back and forth in a short time — stock up your storm shelter. This is going to be some of the roughest weather you’ve ever seen.

Do you think what I’ve written is implausible? Because if you do, I’d have to agree with you. Perhaps next time you want to label the weather as bipolar, you’ll use a more accurate description instead. How about fickle? Or wishy-washy?

Whatever the weather is, it will never truly be bipolar. 

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Thinkstock photo via Michael Blann.

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