bipolar diorder

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    Community Voices

    Welcome to the #Family

    I am a 53 year old wife and mother of 2 (boy, 21 and girl, 18). I was diagnosed with Bipolar Type 2 in 1995 and ADD in 2001. My husband was diagnosed with Clinical Depression in 2007. My son was diagnosed with ADHD in 2008, Anxiety Disorder/Clinical Depression in 2010, and Bipolar Type 2 in 2014. My daughter was diagnosed with Depression/Anxiety and PTSD in 2017. We each have our own meds, therapist, and medication manager (currently, our med managers are all in the same practice, which makes appointments, etc a lot easier).
    Being in a family with multiple MDs has its perks. If one of us runs out of a prescription, we can borrow from another with the same medication until we get ours. We carpool to appointments. If one of us feels sick, someone else immediately asks, "Did you take your meds?"
    It (obviously) also has it's pitfalls. You never know when you walk in a room what (and how many) moods you'll encounter. Juggling appointments, especially before the kids could drive, took planning. Dishes and laundry were dependent on at least one person being "up." The worst is the "contagious" factor: one person's prolonged depression pulling the rest of us down.
    My family is pretty open about our diagnoses; we're blessed to have a circle of friends who accept us the way we are. I'd like to hope our frankness about mood disorders makes others feel less afraid of their own mental state (because we all know people who suffer silently). We've each had friends come to us with questions regarding depression, anxiety etc. The friends of my kids frequently come to us before talking to their parents because they know we'll understand (more than once, I have approached a mother to navigate that opening conversation).
    WOW! Thanks for reading- I didn't realize I had so much to say! #Depression #BipolarDiorder #PTSD #Anxiety #ADHD #Bipolar2Disorder #SeasonalAffectiveDisorder #dysfunctional

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    My Experience with Bipolar Depression vs. MDD

    I used to feel like there was a revolving door in my emotional guesthouse. A joyless, listless version of me wandered in like a vagrant, stayed a while and left. There was enough time to tidy up my mess and have some peace before a charming, risk-taking bad boy version burst through the door. These bipolar guests took control, ran the show, and they all had bad manners. Without psychiatric and therapeutic support to manage my extreme highs and lows, every depressive episode cycled to a hypomanic episode. Sometimes there were periods of a balanced mood post-depression, but hypomania always arrived next. Now that I have become educated about bipolar disorder cycles, I recognize some important distinctions between bipolar depression and unipolar depression, also known as major depressive disorder. Bipolar disorder is easily confused with depression because it often includes depressive episodes. However, there are some key differences: Bipolar disorder tends to recur on a somewhat regular basis. In a typical cycle, a depressive episode will sometimes end abruptly, followed by hypomania, then followed by another depressive episode. They may be weeks to months apart, but the cycle continues. Does it sound exhausting? It is. With depression there is no “up” period. Unipolar depression may feel like a pervasive sense of hopelessness, worthlessness, loss of enjoyment and a decreased ability to manage day-to-day tasks. Depression may slowly creep in, hang around for several days or weeks and have a glacial quality. Bipolar disorder always includes symptoms of mania or hypomania. The shorter-lived cycling between hypomanic or manic episodes and repetitive depressive episodes may be an indication of a bipolar spectrum disorder, not a unipolar depression disorder. While clinical depression cannot evolve or “turn into” bipolar disorder, a person previously diagnosed with depression may actually have a type of bipolar disorder. If you’re unsure whether your experience is one of unipolar depression or bipolar disorder, please consult a therapist and psychiatrist for a full psychological evaluation. Don’t self-diagnose. Before I received an accurate diagnosis, it seemed I had a string of depressive episodes. It’s possible that some hypomanic cycles were milder and went unnoticed. The early experience of hypomania didn’t usually affect me much, if at all. I might feel cheerful, well-rested after just 4 hours of sleep, focused and on top of the world. After a depressive cycle, this wouldn’t seem like a problem. Hypomania felt kind of awesome at times … nothing like how manic episodes are depicted in movies. In the past, hypomanic episodes would sneak by because I didn’t know what the early signs were. I thought, Hmm…I have been feeling absolutely awful for the past four days. Today I feel better…much better just overnight. This quick turnaround isn’t usually associated with unipolar depression. It felt wonderful until it became too much to handle. My bipolar depressive episodes were more noticeable because they were short-lived, intense and sucked my energy quickly — sometimes in a matter of hours. By contrast, once the first episode of major depressive disorder has occurred, recurrent episodes will usually begin within 5 years of the initial episode. On average, those with a history of MDD will have 5 to 9 separate depressive episodes in their lifetime. Another difference is that antidepressants made my depression cycles worsen, which then made hypomania’s impact worse when the pendulum swung in the opposite direction. When I was prescribed a mood stabilizer instead of antidepressant medication, I experienced a steady return to emotional balance within a couple of months. Before finding the right medication, and before mindfulness practices and talk therapy, I would sustain a level mood for several weeks. But the balanced mood would escalate to a level of unstable emotional intensity not found in MDD. This time period of gradual, intensifying hypomanic symptoms is called the “bipolar prodrome.” The prodrome period can be weeks to months long, making it harder to recognize. The most common prodromal symptoms tend to be a sudden elevated mood, overly positive self-talk, decreased need for sleep, increased activity, compulsive spending, hypersexuality, and obsessive, grand ideas. For a while, friends may not notice I’m off balance. I seem confident and purpose-driven. I’m extroverted, charming, quick witted, and I get stuff done. However the prodrome can shift suddenly in a few hours or a few days to unmanageable high-flying moods and poor choices, followed by the depressive shift to a loss of energy, motivation, self-worth, and a flat emotional affect. Unipolar depression is characterized by a slower, pervasive experience of worsened mood without the highs of a manic cycle. While these two have similar qualities, they’re different enough to have distinct diagnostic criteria in the DSM-5 . Unipolar depression and bipolar depression share the same symptoms with three main differences: Bipolar depression is more episodic than unipolar. Bipolar depression is always on the edge of mania. Due to the mania risk, bipolar depression treatment differs from unipolar depression treatment. Here are some steps that will help a mental health provider offer you an informed diagnosis: Make a list of what you’re experiencing, when and for how long. Rate the severity of the symptoms on a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being the least intense and 5 having the most impact on your functioning. Track this list for at least a month, if possible. Ask your friends, family or someone you trust to tell you what they notice. An external view is important, because both depression and bipolar disorder tend to draw a person inward, away from self-awareness. Note changes to your appetite; quantity and quality of food; sleep; use of substances like cigarettes, alcohol, caffeine and other drugs; and the motivation to do daily tasks before, during and after an episode of depression. There may be important clues that will help your provider offer an accurate diagnosis. When depression subsides, do you return to a balanced mood for a significant amount of time (months or years), or does your mood become gradually euphoric, intense, impulsive and unmanageable for you and those around you? Consider asking a psychiatrist to give you an assessment for both major depressive disorder and bipolar spectrum disorder before a diagnosis and regimen of medication. With medication and interpersonal and social rhythm therapy (ISRT) , my depressive and hypomanic episodes become fewer and less intense. When they subside, life becomes more manageable. I am reconnected with myself, others and the environment. I have more patience. I wake up feeling calm and well-rested from at least 7 hours of sleep. I make healthy meals, find time for rest and play and hit the gym after work. I’ll be in bed by 11 instead of 2 a.m. and drift off in 5 minutes. I don’t feel like a superhero. I simply feel like me again. It’s not always this way; medication isn’t a magic wand. I still have occasional episodes, however, they’re less intense and don’t last as long. The tools I’ve learned have helped me trust my moods as authentic and less worrisome. My emotional life has improved from drastic and exhausting travel between the north and south poles to living in a balanced, temperate emotional climate near the equator. Whether your diagnosis is unipolar depression or bipolar disorder, finding the best tools will make a big difference in living a healthy, emotionally balanced life. That’s something both of these disorders have in common.

    Community Voices

    This was some years ago….Someone told me once that he admired my baking and envied me but wouldn’t tell me why he envied me…., then destroyed my just baked goods and tossed it away during a Very scary argument where he grabbed a knife to hurt himself then waved it at me angry and yelling and I ran away in panic. His explanation was that he needed All my undivided attention and I was not giving it to him at the time. After years, short therapy had passed, he says that he can very well destroy something that he admires and I cannot wrap my head around that. Then, there was no admiration only the illusion of it? Am I wrong or can you deliberately destroy things you admire!?

    Community Voices

    😂 and free Britney!

    <p>😂 and free Britney!</p>
    1 person is talking about this
    Community Voices

    I dont Knowww! 😂😂😂

    <p>I dont Knowww! 😂😂😂</p>
    7 people are talking about this
    Community Voices

    Why can’t I get past sitting on the couch

    I have a million things to do! Change the cat box nobody’s favorite but mine is so easy. It’s an automatic and if I wouldn’t let it go so long it’d be a snap but I do. My daughters been on vacation for a week, and I had all these big plans to have stuff done we’re having a Peloton bike delivered tomorrow so I have to have boxes moved out of the way we’ll most are gone. She comes in tonight and I haven’t accomplished anything #BipolarDiorder #ADHD since #manicdepressivedisorder can you tell I kinda switch from topic to topic I’m sorry I’m hard to follow anyway I did bring the new litter thing in from the car so that’s half the battle. Right! I continually think of what I need to want to do and I even set time of when I’m going to start doing them but I always revise the times and stuff never gets done. I never get off the couch.

    4 people are talking about this
    Community Voices

    Does filing for disability really work

    On the fence about filing for disability for #BorderlinePersonalityDisorder and #BipolarDiorder . I also have agoraphobia anxiety as well panic attacks. I know it will entail other doctors appointments which I hate at the moment due to Covid and the whole mask situation. I cannot wear one. Most my doctors do telehealth as well know my situation and so normally I make appointments to where I’m normally the last one as to not out anyone out. I’m wondering if this will actually help and not make things worse. Don’t want to set my self up for failure As well as causing triggers and more episodes

    5 people are talking about this
    Community Voices

    Anxiety and bankruptcy

    So last Friday or Saturday I got a letter from a bankruptcy attorney saying I was being sued and he could help me. I looked up on that local court records and yeah I'm being sied.

    About 2 years ago I was doing real well after I paid off my house and I got a loan to get a new roof and windows. I was doing real well till I had a bad depression and was in the hospital got out and went manic and blew up my credit.

    I went and seen a bankruptcy attorney about it and he told me I'd be okay that I could most likely keep my house and It would cost me $800 to start and then $200 the next month and $200 the next month.

    Well my doctor submitted a paper to social security for me to get a payee but social security couldn't find a payee because of technicalities between federal and Illinois law. In Illinois the local mental health agencies also do payees for people. According to Medicare laws your provider cannot be your payee because it's a conflict of interest. If I was just getting SSI and Medicaid they could be my payee No problem but I'm getting Medicare assault they couldn't do it. I didn't have anybody else that could do it. So basically they just let me be.

    Since then I've dug myself another hole I'm about $3000 in debt now. how about that doesn't matter because the bank and the store that are suing me are from 2 years ago.

    The suit doesn't even have a hearing till March So I have time to save money. I got $300 for it tomorrow. Then next month because I won't have any loans to pay since I'm going to file bankruptcy anyway. I can have another four or five hundred.

    If the bankruptcy lawyer still gives me the discount because I was getting social security then the $800 will start it off going fine. If not I'll have to save up some more money but I have plenty of time.

    There's a small chance I could lose my house but it's very small. According to Illinois law they can't take your house if it's less than $15,000 and mine's only worth $10,000

    There's a small chance I could be cleared incompetent of handling my own money and I would have a state guardian. Although there's a small chance of that even if I just get sued whether I file bankruptcy or not. That's freaky.

    It's still just weighing me down now. I can't stop thinking about it. It's the worst anxiety I've had in 10 years. After thinking about it all day I get tired and sleep for 18 to 24 hours and then I wake up think about it again and do the same thing again.

    I've been talking on here that helps keep my mind off of it but it's still just gets to me every time I stop.

    #Anxiety #BipolarDiorder #bankruptcy

    27 people are talking about this