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12 Songs People With Bipolar Disorder Relate To

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Editor's Note

If you struggle with self-harm or experience suicidal thoughts, the following post could be potentially triggering. You can contact the Crisis Text Line by texting “START” to 741741. For a list of ways to cope with self-harm urges, visit this resource.

No matter what genre of music you’re into, musicians have a way of touching our inner selves in a way few other things can. This is, of course, true for the turbulence of bipolar disorder in the same way it is for any other mental health experience.

• What is bipolar disorder?

That’s why we asked our mental health and bipolar disorder community for the songs they relate to in their life with bipolar disorder. While a few of the songs they chose directly speak of mental health and the bipolar experience, many often don’t. That’s the power of music; to speak to us in ways often unintended by the original artists.

Whether you live with bipolar or know someone who does, we hope the following songs help you relate.

Here’s what our community had to say:

1. “Girl Anachronism” by The Dresden Dolls

“From the lyrics to the manic beat of the music, it perfectly describes my bipolar II disorder, what it’s like to live with it, and people’s perception of you.” — Heather F.

2. “Falling Away From Me” by Korn

“When I am having my depressive episodes, it seems to put all my feelings, thoughts and actions into words so I can express my state at the moment. It helps my spouse realize what is going on with me and my head at the moment.” — Samantha W.

3. “Wish You Were Here” by Pink Floyd

“It is a song about the absence of another band member due to mental illness and drug use. For me, it is the absence in my own emotional/mental health. When I’m not properly medicated, I spiral out of control. I self-sabotage the good things in my life and take a back seat to my own well-being. I can see what I’m doing, but I can’t stop myself because I’m always one step ahead in my mind — that this next thing I do will bring me out of debt, depression, mania, or self-hatred. It doesn’t. The lyrics say, ‘We’re just two lost souls swimming in a fish bowl, year after year.’ Around and around I go, getting nowhere but wearing myself out, wearing myself down, wasting away, my mental wellness lost and forgotten.” — Keaton B.

4. “Papercut” by Linkin Park

“I always feel like there is a darker side that lies under the surface of my skin, and depending on how it feels when it comes to the surface will determine what end of the spectrum I’ll fall into. ‘Papercut’ describes this side so well. I was diagnosed at 16 after my first suicide attempt, and ‘Hybrid Theory’ was always like my own personal soundtrack.” — Hope G.

5. “Manic” by Coleman Hell

It’s literally about having bipolar disorder, but the line, ‘When I feel crazy, I hide it and fall apart in private,’ really speaks to me. When I got my bipolar diagnosis and started to tell friends, many people told me I didn’t seem bipolar, or some even didn’t believe me and said they would have known if I was ‘that crazy.’ I guess it just goes to show how good I am at acting like I’m OK. I feel like it gives me permission to stop trying to act like I have everything together when I don’t.” — Emily M.

6. “This Is Gospel” by Panic! At The Disco

“I feel it describes my fight with my demons and my struggle with taking and staying on my medication. It is my favorite song and I am proud to say I have been consistently taking my medication for three years, eight months, and one week.” — Kaitlin H.

7. “Primadonna Girl” by Marina and the Diamonds

“I relate to it because the song would remind me of my invincibleness and power to allure, but despite feeling invincible for a certain period of time, I’d then find myself drowning in utter sadness and misery.” — Veniz P.

8. “Half” by PVRIS

“The entire song talks about what it’s like live on both ends of the spectrum, being manic and then being depressed, and how it feels to be out of control.” — Katie S.

9. “I Don’t Feel Like Dancin’” by Scissor Sisters

“I love ‘I Don’t Feel Like Dancin’’ by Scissor Sisters. It reminds me of my hypomania. I feel it, I don’t want it but I almost have no choice, just like I have no choice but to dance when the song comes on.” — Lisa P.

10. “A Match Into Water” by Pierce The Veil

“There’s a line from the song that I really relate to: ‘The chemicals will bring me home again.’ My disorder is a chemical imbalance. When my mood drops, I feel so out of place and not familiar with anything or anyone. So, the chemicals in my brain will literally bring me home again. Also, the song is about self-harm which is something I’ve lived with for years.” — Julia D.

11. “Defying Gravity” from Wicked

“It perfectly captures the high I’m riding when I’m manic, specifically, when she sings, ‘Too late for second-guessing, too late to go back to sleep,’ and ‘Kiss me goodbye, I’m defying gravity. And you can’t bring me down.’ I’m incredibly impulsive and fling myself into everything. I never sleep; I’ll go for days and feel absolutely invincible. I feel like nothing or no one can bring me down from the high. It truly feels like I can defy gravity — that I’m unstoppable and I’m flying.” — Meghan G.

12. “Try a Little Kindness” by Glen Campbell

“Simple acts of kindness have kept me from danger in a suicidal mood and have helped me to ask for the help I have needed. Likewise, I have been able to get help to some acquaintances who have needed a helping hand. Like the song says, a little kindness may help someone along life’s way. No blame. No judgment. It’s a way of living I try to subscribe to. It helps me personally, and I hope it helps others.” — Glen C.

What would you add? Let us know in the comments below.

Images via YouTube

Originally published: September 18, 2018
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