I’ve been living with Bipolar Disorder for 12 years. Although it’s less of a visual ailment, the disorder can often RUIN life as you know it in the drop of a dime.
Many don’t understand that the mood disorder causes highs and lows in your moods that are seen as mania and depressions.
I spend a majority of my existence in the happy medium of “normal” to “pre-manic” behavior. Basically, I’m scatter brained, free spirited, outgoing, and sometimes reckless.
I’ve learned a lot as I’ve managed my day to day life with Bipolar Disorder, and although during the tough times, it can be difficult to function like others, the time between mood swings depends on circumstance and where you are mentally. Does that make sense?
So in the last 12 years, I’ve learned a ton about being bipolar and what it means for me and the life I live.
Don’t give energy to people who “don’t get it”
Bipolar disorder isn’t something you can turn on and turn off. It’s a complex brain disorder that can often feel like a hurricane mixed with a tornado all at one time. Once I stopped getting irritated by every person who caught an attitude, only to say they were bipolar, I was able to focus and give a perspective on what it means to be bipolar. Same with the “pray it away” and “you’ll get over it” type folks. It’ll get over it because Bipolar doesn’t define me, however it is a part of me.
People will ridicule what it’s like to be bipolar, fuck them, they’re stupid
Let’s just be honest, the first time I got a day pass from rehab. If you’ve never wanted to jump out of a window because you’re so sad, while simultaneously wanting to swag surf and speak 1000 words a minute, you can’t tell me what bipolar is about. If you’ve never been so incredibly sad that you slept a whole day, only to get up and brush your teeth and the thought of leaving your room is exhausting, that you go back to sleep, you can’t comment on anything.
Managing the highs and the lows of bipolar disorder was always my pitfall and struggle. With regular medication, it’s easy to feel normal, and often I would decide to go off my therapeutic regimen, and that’s where the problem lies. There’s a stigma around being medicated & crazy, that I struggle regularly to avoid being grouped in.
Be Unapologetic because although it is a piece of you it’s NOT WHO YOU ARE
Yes, I have bipolar disorder. No, I’m not bipolar. The minute I stopped making excuses for my mood swings, and accepted them as a part of my person, I had to focus my energy to let myself know that it doesn’t define me. I’m more than my scars. I’m more than my mood swings. I’m more than the times that I blow my whole savings in 30 seconds because I’m sad.