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Bipolar II

Job Security or Insecurity

My job sucks -- like bad.  But when I think about it, most of the jobs in my life have sucked, and I’ve had to deal.  I’ve never had a job that fits my needs. Or my mind.  Having chronic hypo-mania can be a difficult condition to manage in the work force 'cause you can multitask and complete tasks faster than the person next to you, BUT that same ability to excel at an accelerated pace leads to problems.

You finish your work wayyy before your co-workers do and people notice so they dump more work on you.  You think so much and so fast that you get bored really easily.

I took a good look at my employment history and it's laced with bipolar tendencies.  I almost have to laugh when I look at my resume; at how I’ve worked all over the place.  The only consistency in my life has been my writing.  I’ve written over 600 poems and a book and am still struggling with my “work…job…career…”  I’m not sure what to call it anymore.


Bipolar II

“How Many Men Have You Slept With?”

“How many men have you slept with?”

“Uh…”

“Five...twenty...sixty...?”

“Umm...”

When I was first evaluated by my psychiatrist, and finally diagnosed with hypo-mania, I didn’t have an answer to that question.  I still don’t.  A lot of people, men and women, have no idea what their “number” is so I never really felt bad about it.  But…it's a sad flag of reckless behavior which, as a hypo manic individual, has never been tempered.

Promiscuity became somewhat normalized with shows like "Sex and the City" and characters like Samantha Jones, however, when it's a part of your real life, it can be hazardous.


Bipolar II

It’s Not You It’s Me, It’s Not Me It’s Them

I’m probably gonna say something a lot of people don’t want to hear, but when it comes to helping a loved one with a mental illness, if they’re not ready to get help there is really not much you can do about it.

I had lunch today with a friend's friend who has been in and out of psych wards, and she read my book, so thought I could be of some assistance in the matter.  I was useless.  But I didn't feel bad about it. I sat there, saw the look on her father's face, and felt bad for HIM.

People try to help the ones they love but often times, depending on the type  sickness a person is experiencing, all the love in the world won't do much.  It’s a terrible situation.


Bipolar II

Suicide, Skid Row & Tacos

I’ve never been suicidal, but have certainly acted suicidal.  It’s part of my disease.  It’s kinda ridiculous when I break it down.

My thought process is somewhat funny to me. I think to myself, I have wayyy to much to offer in this lifetime and so much to do, so how can I even imagine offing myself?  I can’t. My manic, inflated self-esteem that produces grandiose ideations about myself keeps me alive.  HOWEVER, that invincibility that characterizes manic people has gotten me in some serious trouble.

Before I was diagnosed and medicated, I lived in New York City.  I would fly through the streets, hitting up that club or meeting that new person, and looking back, although I was not “suicidal,” I acted suicidal.  My invincibility made me put myself in suicidal situations.  There is a big difference between the two but both of them can end badly.  It’s kinda scary.  Mostly because I am thirty-five years old now and things haven’t changed.


Bipolar II

What It’s Like To Live With Bipolar II

On April 14th, 2011, Catherine Zeta Jones came out to the world, explaining that she suffered from Bipolar II Disorder. Merely a year later, on June 15, 2012, Jones made an appearance on ABC’s "The View" and Joy Behar inquired about her experience with Bipolar Disorder. Zeta briefly responded to the query then moved onto promoting her upcoming film.

Now here we have a problem. We live in a society that often times manifests fears and ignorance about mental illness and here is a prime example of an opportunity to clarify Bipolar I versus Bipolar II -- which unfortunately didn’t happen.

With a celebrity-driven culture, we have a window to engage in an open dialogue about mental illness and recognize the fundamental differences between Bipolar I and Bipolar II, but we don’t capitalize on them. Mr. "Tiger Blood" Charlie Sheen has displayed blatant manic episodes live on national television and YouTube, yet everyone just calls him “crazy.”

Such examples leave us at a loss to educate and communicate to the public about this relatively unknown disease.


Coping Skills

The Side Effects of Side Effects

“I’d rather been skinny and crazy than fat and sane.”

And that is no joke. We talk about side effects of our medications, but what about the side effects we get from the side effects of our medications? I’m talking about fat. Yup. A woman’s favorite word to hate:

F A T.

A few years ago I was dabbling with different medications trying to figure out what worked and what didn’t work. I heard that lithium can potentially make you fat, but was willing to give it a try. I tried it and ran five miles a day to make sure I didn’t fall into the fat club. But I did.


My Five Point Plan For Happiness: Then And Now

I have horrible taste in men, and it’s really getting old. I’m not gonna lie, I spent most of my twenties in a pseudo-manic high so I lost a lot of years trying to find true love. I managed to scare off most of the men in New York and Los Angeles with my intensity, which left me perpetually alone. By my late twenties all my girlfriends were either engaged or fixing their wedding veil before walking down the aisle and I was starting over.

When I was twenty-eight years old I was diagnosed with chronic hypo mania, Bipolar II. Prior to my breakdown I had what I believed to be a solid plan intact. I called it The Five Point Plan.


General

Welcome to Tales of Manic Depression

Bipolar disorder is one of the more challenging mental health concerns to live with day-to-day. And because the disorder covers a wide range of behaviors, it actually is divided into two distinct disorders -- Bipolar I and Bipolar II.

The primary difference between the two disorders is the presence or history of manic episodes (Bipolar I) versus the presence or history of hypomanic episodes (Bipolar II).

How does one live with this disorder? What are...