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Off The Rails

I have been off the rails recently and it has been scary. I’m like a menace to society, and I think I need to lock myself in my place till I can get a grip, which is not feasible cause I have a job and I have bills to pay. I find myself not able to control my mouth. I don’t know what’s going to come out of it. I can be rude or witty or random. Then I look at my text messages and I go from one thought to another with no continuity which is bizarre.

It got so bad that I made an emergency appointment with my therapist who I haven’t seen in over a year, and went to see my psychiatrist to adjust my meds, which is really disappointing. I was so proud of myself to finally be off the Wellbutrin and on a low dosage of my mood stabilizer and I don’t know what happened.

I walked into my psychiatrist office and just burst into tears. I tried to explain the feeling and even now it’s hard to articulate. Often times people think that bipolar disorder is ups and downs. You are either manic or depressed but, for me, that is not the case. My experience of mania is actually a deep seated depression. It’s almost like my mind is playing a trick on me, or trying to keep me from feeling the depression so I go off the rails. It’s really hard to pin point the root of the sadness when on the outside I’m acting up and wild. People talk about the euphoria of mania but it’s a fake high. It’s a shield to protect the mind from the depression which can be truly hard to manage. So now I am supposed to change my dosage and possibly add Zoloft but I’m not going to add Zoloft until I see what the additional milligrams of my mood stabilizer does for me. It’s funny how I attempt to negotiate with my shrink on these medical decisions. I’ve been working in psychiatry for over a decade so I’m not new to the rodeo of meds but I understand I’m not a Doctor. It has taken me years to understand my illness and thankfully I’m not manic like I was back in my 20s which I refer to as the roaring 20s but, it’s kinda a close feeling cause when I think back to that time I was very depressed and lost but, I didn’t know it cause I was ignorant.

But I am in my 40s now so know better. Sadly, knowing better doesn’t make it any easier but at least I have a support group of people that love and care about me. People that I can depend on and I can’t say I have had that in the past. Then you come across some random people that can be a wake up call.  I’ve skipped the gym a lot lately and the other day I was walking down the street and my dry cleaner guy was standing outside smoking a cigarette and he stopped me to say hi. I haven’t seen him in ages and he patted my stomach and said, “You got stomach.” Oh my God I wanted to shoot myself. So, today was the first day I’ve been back to the gym in a long time, which is a huge red flag that I am off cause I have always been religious about working out.

So now I have my new medication. I agreed with my shrink I have to return to therapy. And let’s just hope things will shift. We can only pray.

Off The Rails

Erica Loberg

Erica Loberg was born and raised in Los Angeles, CA. She attended Columbia University in New York and graduated with a BA in English. She is a published poet and author of Inside the Insane, Screaming at the Void, What Men Should Know About Women, What Women Should Know About Men, Diamonds From The Rough and Undressed.

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APA Reference
Loberg, E. (2019). Off The Rails. Psych Central. Retrieved on February 27, 2020, from


Last updated: 14 May 2019
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