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quietly bonkers

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About quietly bonkers

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  • Birthday 10/23/1973

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    a cold, sad place
  1. I'm curious what the experience of others has been over time. Does this sort of illness get better or worse? I have noticed that I haven't had any euphoric mania in 15 years, instead I have ahedonia and depression in the fall and winter and mixed states with anxiety in the summer. I was euphoric in my 20's and now its just negativity in varying levels of energy. I question the bipolar diagnosis because I am never euphoric anymore. Happiness went right out the window about 15 years ago and it's stayed gone. Is this normal? I appear more functional than I used to, mostly because I've become better at hiding my illness. So I'm less wild and crazy, yet I feel worse most of the time. I'm now in my mid-40's. What has been others' experience as they age?
  2. getting over things you've said

    I do this too. Sometimes when I"m stuck replaying some dumb thing I said over and over, I try to cram something else into my thoughts to disrupt it. I'll think of something I have to plan, like what am I going to wear the rest of the week, or what am I going to have for lunch tomorrow, something that requires enough thought that it will knock a kink into that looping thought circle.
  3. My stomach felt queasy a lot at first with Abilify, but it's gotten better. I had aversions to certain foods and couldn't eat much without my stomach hurting. It felt oddly a lot like pregnancy morning sickness, so I followed the same remedy, which is to eat more frequent, smaller meals, and simpler foods. It seems like letting my stomach get too empty or too full made it all worse, so I ate less quantity at a meal, but added a snack between breakfast & lunch instead.
  4. I think memory problems can be a symptom of depression, in both of my last two big episodes, I couldn't remember anything. I ended up carrying a notebook or planner everywhere, otherwise I'd forget everything I was supposed to do. Bills stopped getting paid, I got in trouble at work, I'd go to stores and have no idea why I was there once I got inside. I have had the same worries as you, that the meds are doing it but I know after all the symptoms lifted the last time, the memory got better again (I was able to stop carrying the notes around). I am worried this time because it seems to be taking longer for my memory and concentration to come back, but I did some googling around and read somewhere that the cognitive impacts from a mood episode can take some time after the mood is resolved to fully come back. And I feel like in the last few weeks I'm getting better at remembering again. My concentration is starting to come back a little too. It's hard when an episode goes on for months though. I will say I took effexor and seroquel as a combo for many years and my memory was still good then. It's only been in the last five years I've really noticed the memory problems. I've read a lot of those brain training things are a sham, what is important is to keep learning and doing new things.
  5. Good to know, I'm doing vitamin d and I'll add in extra b''s since I'm still getting the tingling. Thanks!
  6. I take Lamictal and have really dry eyes, but I thought the dryness was a consequence of getting older rather than the meds. But maybe there is a connection and I just never realized it. I used to wear contacts every day but now I can only do it a few hours a couple days a week, the dryness makes it too uncomfortable. But again, not sure if it's the med or just my eyes. I'll ask my eye doc when I go in this year. My vision is blurry but that is normal for me, haven't been able to see past my own nose since I was 10.
  7. What will help with anxiety

    This is good to know. Maybe part of my hung over feeling was taking it too late at night. I'm a night owl so I sometimes stay up later than I should even if I have to get up early, so I was taking it at 10 or 11 pm and getting up at 6. Might consider giving this one another shot.
  8. What will help with anxiety

    I have tried Vistaril, and it did help me. The problem was I felt sick the next day when I took it, particularly if I took it in the evening, the next morning I'd be dizzy and really sleepy at work, which made concentration awfully hard. Which is a shame, because I found it really did help with the acute anxiety. Now that we're talking about it, I'm considering giving it another run just to see if the same thing happens. I'm very alert thanks to the Wellbutrin and Abilify, maybe that will counteract the drowsiness. Did you find you adjusted to it as you took it? Maybe I didn't give it long enough for the side effects to even out. I think I am unhappy with Wellbutrin. It was less effective in pulling me out of depression than Abilify and Lamotrigine, but every time I try to decrease the dose I start getting depressed again. So I'm sort of stuck with it until I can find a way to taper off without bursting into tears every 10 minutes.
  9. Trouble looking people in the eye

    I used to think I was clever looking in people's direction but not quite exactly at them, but it backfired because the people kept turning and looking behind them to find out what I was looking at. So I look in eyes for short periods as best I can. Like you, I have found it gets easier with time. The more I'm forced to be around people, the easier it gets. I hear you about meeting people is endured rather than enjoyed. I'd like to enjoy being around people, but my nerves make it so uncomfortable I just want to leave.
  10. Have you tried Remeron yet? I've heard it's very good for sleep plus mood. I haven't, but I've heard good things & my pdoc has said we'll talk about it at my next visit. Right now I take 10 mg of melatonin to sleep, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. But it's better than nothing. I have done low dose seroquel for sleep but it gave me the same problem you had with ambien and no one wants to deal with that for months on end.
  11. What will help with anxiety

    L-theanine is worth a try. I know it's an amino acid, and since all the amino acids are in protein foods, it makes me feel relatively safe in using it. I've tried other amino acids for other things, but not this one. Probably will research it a bit and give it a shot.
  12. What will help with anxiety

    Dropped the wellbutrin, started crying a lot, went back up. Been using headspace app daily plus exercise. Seem to be a hair better. I am accepting that I may never be fully free from OCD and anxiety and the obsessions and I are going to have to learn to get along. Might still try remeron or ask about buspar, we'll see how meditation and more exercise go first
  13. I'd be interested too, I have read about ERP and it sort of terrifies me, because it requires "leaning in" to your intrusive thoughts and not doing the rituals one usually does to combat them. I struggle to leave the house also, and the only way I can do it is through a very specific set of rituals that have to be done otherwise I'll go into such a panic that I can't function and end up turning around and going back home anyways. If I think about not doing those rituals, it scares me to no end. I would guess a good therapist has dealt with this and knows how to handle it, I'd be curious how it has worked for people that have done it.
  14. I've read therapy is best, I've avoided therapy because of my insurance, I'd be basically paying out of pocket. Maybe it would be worth it. I could set up a payment plan I suppose. It might be worth it. There are a lot of hours I waste on checking and other rituals. I could get that time back for productive things if I had this thing under control. I'm also starting to do some meditation & mindfulness on my own. High hopes for that. not so sure about the risperdal since I already take another AAP. But something to keep in the back of my head if everything else fails. Thank you both
  15. Over the last few years, I've noticed that once my depression is under control, my OCD takes over. And I haven't found anything that helps the OCD yet. I've tried nac and starting the OCD workbook. I can't take ssri meds because they send my moods twirling. The intrusive thoughts, constant checking, only allowing certain numbers in anything I use, having to step on everything symmetrically, fearing my thoughts are going to cause things to happen.....I could go on, but those are examples of what I deal with daily. I would really like a better handle on this stuff. So in my search for ideas, i would love to hear what has worked for other people.