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Manic Maverick

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  1. Exactly, it just seems to me Wonderful.Cheese wants a mental illness dick waving contest... well okay, I admit defeat on that one, WC does appear to have more severe bipolar than me. Bravo. Congratulations. I'll go get your gold star. There's no ego stroking going on, I was in the middle of a conversation with someone who this is also relevant to so I sent a link. It's not like I'm getting him to come over here and fight my battles for me, we're just astounded at the superior intellects who can magically undiagnose mental illness through the internet. I sure wish I had that power. And in all seriousness, I was surprised to see shit like that on a website which calls itself a support community. What if I was depressed right now and came here for help? "Oh you're not taking medication so you're fine, fuck off" isn't really what I call support.
  2. BTW I just had to send this thread to a bipolar friend of mine who I referred to earlier. He's not on mood stabilisers either and he was most pleased to learn that this means he's actually not bipolar. Thank you, oh wise Wonderful.Cheese, for you have freed us of our illnesses.
  3. Yeah, right, because I'm sure you know more about my mental state from a few forum posts than a qualified psychiatrist does from performing a formal diagnosis and consulting with the therapist I had been seeing for weeks. Please, explain to me more about how you're qualified to invalidate my diagnosis because I said on an internet forum that I'm not medicated. The bipolar diagnostic criteria states that function is impaired during episodes. If you look at my experiences of depression in my post above you'll see that spelled out pretty damn well. The criteria also states that episodes can be infrequent, in fact it is very common for severe episodes to be spaced out and for the disorder to not affect people for years. So yes, in between episodes, it's absolutely possible to function without medication. I question if you've even done any basic research into the disorder you're claiming I can't possibly be suffering from. Honestly, what the fuck kind of "supportive community" is this? I'm now actually being told I don't have the thing I'm diagnosed with because I disagree constant medication is the only way to treat it? Really?
  4. I likely will leave. I can see I'm not wanted here. But I still plan to update the thread when I see the GP because I believe that info can be useful for users here and people searching the web.
  5. This is a very narrow minded view. Now I'm beginning to understand why other forums have called this place a shill for big pharma. I thought it was stupid conspiracy stuff at first but now I see where they're coming from. Meds are required for some people, but others can manage without them. It depends on the individual and how they want to be treated. I know in the US you have this culture of popping a pill for everything anyway, but I prefer to avoid that if at all possible, hence trying to come up with a compromise. Anyway, if anyone finds this thread through Google while looking for information on promethazine, it can help hypomania, mania, and anxiety, as long as the sedative effects work. But because the sedative effects are technically a side effect, the effectiveness is limited in the long term for most people. 25mg will probably just make you sleep, 10mg makes you feel like you've been up for too long and makes you brain feel a little dead (perhaps because it's a weak antipsychotic). It may help to stop bad thoughts in depression for this reason but it won't help with mood and it will likely become ineffective quickly. If you want to try it, you can buy it OTC from any pharmacist in the UK. I think it's prescription only in the US though. I am seeing a GP who specialises in mental health soon (best I can do in lieu of a proper pdoc on the NHS right now) and if I get anything from that which helps me as a PRN I will try to update the thread for the benefit of others searching the web for information.
  6. Fair enough. Well I'll talk to my GP about it and see what she says. I might just get the promethazine to send me to sleep for now. But if I go on meds 24/7 in the future it'll probably be Lamictal.
  7. Does Lamictal stop hypomania? I know it mainly fights depression, but when it comes to hypomania I've read reports from "it only stops it a little" to "it has no anti-manic properties at all."
  8. I'm asking questions here right now out of pure curiosity The fact is although I don't want to go on meds right now I do realise I may very well have no choice in the future. And I'm still seeing my GP next week and may bring this up. AnneMarie, do you get any side effects from the Lamictal?
  9. Out of curiosity, if it worked so well for you, why are you talking about it in the past tense? And I signed up to this place because I believed it would be a supporting community I could come to when I was feeling down. It seems that instead it's simply full of people saying "JUST TAKE MEDS EVERY DAY OR GTFO."
  10. Yeah that's why I was skeptical of that suggestion of benzos in the first place, seemed tantamount to developing alcoholism to deal with depression, same basic thing. To answer all the questions then. First of all I don't think I'm really in a position to decide how severe my condition is. But I can tell you what it's like when I'm depressed, I'm sure you can relate. It's that state of mind where you simply hate yourself, you have a voice in your head telling you how fucking horrible you are, how easy it'd be to just kill yourself, how everyone would be better off for it. And as you go through your day you continuously feel the urge to just break down and cry for no real reason. And then the paranoia comes on and you think everyone's talking about you, everyone hates you, people are watching you and spying on you through your phone and your computer, everyone is against you, and that just fuels the depression and suicidal thoughts even more, and as it keeps going you develop delusions, and the paranoia becomes your reality, and suddenly you can think of nothing else but all these horrible paranoid thoughts of how everyone you know would prefer if you were dead. And so you try and find ways to deal with it, so you attack and cut off those people and you hurt yourself to try and let the pain out. It is absolutely horrible and I certainly don't think there's anything "not very serious" about it. Every single time I get upset I get worried it's that depression creeping back again and it terrifies me. Conversely, however, hypomania is wonderful. To be clear, I do not have full on mania. But the hypomania I do have as not negative at all. I have these massive ideas about how I'm the most intelligent person in the world who is destined for greatness and I have all these amazing creative ideas rushing to my head every single second and I have unlimited motivation to just get all this amazing stuff done right now, and if I'm not doing new amazing things it's because I'm finally getting my three hours of sleep a night before I do it again. I fucking love it. I wouldn't trade it for the world. If I could be hypomanic all the time I would. So back to now. Yes all I know about medication is what I've read, not just on message boards but just generally online, when I was first diagnosed I did a lot of research before I made the decision not to have it for now. Maybe it's because being on medication every day for the rest of my life is an admission I have something seriously wrong with me. I don't know. If I was to go on meds 24/7, Lamictal would be my first choice, but even with that I've seen reports of people saying they have developed life threatening rashes, gained weight (even though it's supposed to be weight neutral), headaches, memory problems, and all sorts of other things. I even saw that someone went deaf permanently because of it! And Lamictal on its own wouldn't do anything to help my paranoia, so I'd probably have to another med with its own set of side effects along with it. I'm not exactly keen to do that.
  11. To continue from my last post. The only reservation I have for benzos is, if I feel depressed for, say, a few weeks, and I take it for that time, I may risk habit forming behaviour. BTW I did yet more research on the doctor's original suggestion of promethazine and I found it can actually be used to help anxiety as PRN, which is potentially handy. But still found practically zilch on it helping depression of any sort.
  12. First of all thanks for all the helpful posts. This is all helping me a lot. I am very anxious and reluctant to be put on any sort of medication 24/7. I have many personal reservations about that. Firstly I don't personally consider myself, at this particular time at least, in a severe enough state to warrant that. Second, I like who I am and I even like my hypomania, I just want to rid myself of the horrible depression and the paranoia. Maybe that is just an unrealistic goal. And third I don't want to have to put up with 24/7 side effects and switching around to different meds if certain ones don't work for me etc. It sounds like a nightmare in and of itself to me. So I gather Seroquel is pretty much off the table and the only thing that has a chance of working is benzos. Can you tell me exactly what benzos can do for depression? My Google-fu turned up a lot of articles about benzos to treat mania in bipolar but I found very little about them helping depression. As I mentioned earlier in this thread, I found some forum posts saying they don't help the depression itself but they help you relax and not focus on depressive thoughts. I also asked a bipolar friend of mine who does use benzos for bipolar and he told me they do help him feel better. He told me the reason they are not officially recommended for depression is because if they become habit forming they can worsen depression in the long term but used as a PRN they do not have this effect. He also told me doctors only usually prescribe small doses like 0.5mg and that's far too little to have that sort of effect anyway. Would you all agree with this assessment?
  13. Yeah I know it's a sedative. Am I to understand that the sedation effects lessen as the dose increases? Would you have to work up to higher doses? I have heard of people using it as a PRN for anxiety instead of benzos so I'm sure it must be possible to take it in that way without being completely knocked out if the dose is right.
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