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About yellowbutterflies

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    New Zealand
  • Interests
    Painting a sane picture of the world using an palette of insane colours.

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  1. What are the pitfalls and positives of dating someone with bipolar when you are bipolar yourself?
  2. Creativity is defined as the ability to create something novel, something new. The patent office has a very robust database of creative people. This seems a fairly objective measure. Are their studies on the incidence of bipolar disorder? I'd find something like that a little less subjective than the studies I've read. These tests are subjective. Note, though, the Expression of Creativity Questionnaire should rule in patent holders. The others, idk, I'm not sure they matter. They are measuring personality type, not so much MI. I actually tend to question the more subjective tests for MI. For example, I hold no faith in the ones you find online. I believe I have an MI because of my lived experience, not because I've been given a battery of tests or that anyone else has been tested. A different standard is used for concluding one thing is present as opposed to when concluding that two things are present and there is a causitive link between the two different things. Moodiness does not mean one is mentally ill. And there are many millions more who relax after work sketching, playing an instrument, writing fan fiction, creating the next engineering patent, etc who are not factored in studies focused on a the relatively few people who have achieved fame. Ten thousand creative people case reports is still a drop in the bucket to the world population of creative people. Could you post a study that demonstrates how this link is derived? The studies I’ve seen speak mostly to cyclothymic personality type or temperament being associated with creativity and associated with bipolar disorder. That generally is all the conclusions state. (My research is limited, so please refute as appropriate.) The reasoning one seems left to draw if so inclined is that since cyclothymia is associated with creativity, and since bipolar people tend to have a greater incidence of cyclothymic temperament, those with bipolar disorder, therefore, are more creative. This is a fallacious logic. There isn't a bipolar link. It's limited to personality type. I have not seen anyone try to measure the sujectivity of "more creative," unless you want to count the BAWS which is all in the eye of the rater. I don't think that's what you are arguing, but I'm not totally certain. Thanks for your thoughtful reply, I have been busy with uni exams and a new job so I've been flat out and not able to reply. I still hold that bipolar and creativity are linked. While the studies aren't as robust as we would like them to be it is hard to imagine that the accumulated evidence holds no significance. It is a difficult link to establish - the tests are constructed under paradigms which are uncertain in that the very causes of mental illness are still poorly understood. Therefore it is difficult to establish the link between mental illness and creativity. I believe the arguments these neuro-psychologists present are to be taken seriously. An interesting question is are there any papers which refute the theory that you know of? Another point to make is the level of scientific funding which goes into this area of research is less than that which goes into, say, the effect of medication on bipolar disorder. In this latter case the outcomes are relapse rates - it is much harder to measure outcomes of creativity, which are subjective. For example what is a creative painting and what is not? What is a creative piece of writing to one person may be rubbish to another. Hence the difficulties of measuring creativity hinder progress in testing this hypothesis. Cheers, YB
  3. Which papers in particular? I don't know which PubMed entry you refer to - I used Scopus as I said. I don't have time to go through the whole lot, I've been real busy with a exams and a new job, hence the late reply.
  4. I apologise for not reading your comment on BAWS before I posted. What I'm uncertain of is the level of cumulative evidence needed before you can trust scientists' conclusions. For example not every test can be perfectly reflective of a trait as dynamic as creativity. There are plenty tests out there such as the Experience of Creativity Questionnaire, Adjective Check List Creative Personality Scale, Neuroticism, Extraversion, and Openness Personality Inventory (NEO) and the Figural and Verbal Torrance Tests of Creative Thinking to name just a few. You trust the questionably robust psychological tests which box you as ‘mentally ill’ so why not trust other tests under a similar psychological paradigm? Also the moodiness of artists has been qualified. Personality/temperament may be measured by NEO (Srivastave and Ketter 2010) and I'm sure there a more tests out there. There are examples too numerous in history to list - as you mentioned - not just the well-known ones such as V.G. (see Goethe case study below). Perhaps giving them the credence they merit is warrented. It’s the abundance of studies and case studies with similar conclusions which are persuasive. Scientifically the link is actually accepted. The current research accepts the legitimacy of the existence of a link and focuses on why it exists and what (neural pathways, etc.) underlie the relationship (eg: Srivastave and Ketter 2010). ‘Clinical implications of the high rates of creativity within bipolar disorder (BD) have not been explored.’ (Murray Johnson 2010). This refers to the relative novelty of such studies. I having checked PubMed but will take your word for the scarcity of studies on it. A search on Scopus database reveals 153 studies for the combined search terms “bipolar” and “creativity”. The break-down is as follows: 1960s - 1 1970s - 10 1980s - 17 1990s - 31 2000s - 94 Of course not every study is entirely relevant and this is just one database - and not even the best one for psychological studies (I just happen to use this one frequently for my studies). However the number of studies is basically exponentially increasing every decade. I’m glad that the scientific community has acknowledged the link between creativity and mental illness (e.g. forms of BP). From a personal perspective I can easily relate to the link, both in myself and in close friends and family members. However lets stick to the evidence… Literature reviews: - ‘extensive literature supports connections between bipolar disorder and creativity’ (Srivastave and Ketter 2010) - 'Bipolar disorder is associated with the positive psychological traits of spirituality, empathy, creativity, realism, and resilience.’ [Literature review of 81 papers] – (Galvez et al. In press) An empirical study by Nelson (2010) - ‘A total of 100 artists from a range of disciplines completed the Experience of Creativity Questionnaire and measures of "positive" schizotypy, affective disturbance, mental boundaries, and normal personality. The sample of artists was found to be elevated on "positive" schizotypy, unipolar affective disturbance, thin boundaries, and the personality dimensions of Openness to Experience and Neuroticism, compared with norm data. Schizotypy was found to be the strongest predictor of a range of creative experience scales (Distinct Experience, Anxiety, Absorption, Power/Pleasure), suggesting a strong overlap of schizotypal and creative experience.’ ‘Anecdotes’ or CASE STUDIES: - ‘In Goethe's life poetic incubation, illumination and elaboration seemed to be associated with psychic labilisation and dysthymia, sometimes with depressive episodes in a clinical sense. Thus, creative work was on the one hand triggered by depressive and dysthymic moods and served on the other hand to cope with depressive moods as well as with suicidal tendencies. In line with modern empirical results Goethe's scientific and social activities and achievements were associated with personal well-being, but also with lack of poetic inspiration.’ (Holm-Hadulla et al. In press) ‘Despite its sceptics, it is now generally accepted that the link is empirically grounded.’ (Glazer 2009). The evidence is compelling. There is plenty more of it - I have just brushed the surface. Perhaps all that your disbelief reflects is an inability to be compelled. BTW my background in psychology is at University level (Stage III) and I am a scientist. I am also very creative ;P. I can give you the full refs if you are interested.
  5. Yep. I mean, I'm forgetful all the time, but when I'm depressed, I will forget to do simple hygiene things, and when I remember, I won't do them anyway. Also, I can't make connections between successive thoughts that would be obvious to anyone else when I'm depressed, leading to a slower thought process. It's like there's a ridiculously thick fog over my entire brain. I love the expression 'fog' to describe what goes on in my mind when I feel like this... and forget everything. Main Entry: fog Part of Speech: noun Definition: heavy mist that reduces visibility Synonyms: London fog, brume, cloud, effluvium, film, gloom, grease, ground clouds, haze, miasma, murk, murkiness, nebula, obscurity, pea soup, smaze, smog, smoke, smother, soup, steam, vapor, visibility zero-zero, wisp, haar (Scottish) Notes: haze is atmospheric moisture or dust or smoke that causes reduced visibility while fog is droplets of water vapor suspended in the air near the ground causing reduced visibility Antonyms: clearness [don't we all wish for this!] Main Entry: fog Part of Speech: noun Definition: mental unclarity Synonyms: befuddlement, blindness, confusion, daze, haze, maze, mist, muddledness, muddlement, obscurity, perplexity, stupor, trance, vagueness Antonyms: cognizance, understanding [and this!] From Thesaurus.com
  6. It's easier to lie when the form says "Do you have an illness that affects your ability to work" because then you can subjectively state 'no' (as you are on meds which control the ups and downs). What they've asked you is harder to lie about, you esp. can't ask your doctor to lie for you. Good luck.
  7. Actually there is a link between creativity and bipolar disorder. It's been evidenced scientifically. "After three decades of research, there is persuasive, if not definitive, evidence linking creativity with bipolar disorders in particular." "Our bipolar disorder patients (one-quarter of whom were taking lithium) performed better than healthy controls on the BWAS, and similar to healthy controls on three other creativity measures." BWAS = Baron Welsh Art Scale - Claudia M. Santosaa, Connie M. Stronga, Cecylia Nowakowskaa, Po W. Wanga, Courtney M. Rennickea and Terence A. Ketter. 2007. Enhanced creativity in bipolar disorder patients: A controlled study. Journal of Affective Disorders Volume 100, Issues 1-3, June 2007, Pages 31-39. I think that the highs and lows one experiences in cases of bipolar moods make it easier to get in touch with your creative side and be inspired by the world around you. Ever since I've been medicated (i.e. on lithium specifically). I've been totally uncreative compared to my former self - I'm still pretty creative but I don't express myself by writing or painting anymore. I'm not surprised that only 1/4 of the patients were taking lithium, if it was more perhaps there would not be a marked difference??
  8. Numerous studies suggest BP disorder progressively damages the brain - particularly hippocampus damage or dysfunction (which affects memories, moods etc). According to this hypothesis, mood stabilizers and antidepressants are thought to alter mood by stimulating cell survival pathways and increasing levels of neurotrophic factors to improve cellular resiliency (http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/286342-overview). Perhaps your illness is causing the brain damage and the doctors are trying to improve your condition. Just throwing that possibility out there. Also quoting Wiki is poor form. As is subjectively highlighting the side-effects which support your point and leaving out the evidence which doesn't.
  9. Hi, Recently I've started to experience a distressing slight tremor of my head, especially when sitting still. I am worried it will get worse or is irreversible. It is uncomfortable and distressing. Is this a case of essential tremor or will it go away if I reduce the medication causing it? I don't want to go on further medication to control it. I want to decrease the drug which is causing it. I have been on 800 mg of lithium and 20 mg of aripiprizole for over a year now (for BP I). I have been on 20 mg of fluoxetine for about 8 months. I have been stable all this time with some "break-through psychotic thoughts" occurring about 6 months ago. I understand all three medications I am on can cause tremors, which makes it difficult to determine which one is the culprit. I have an appointment with my doctor in a few days and am hoping he can shed light on the matter but wanted to get some opinions from here before the interview. Finally I have also had slightly elevated kreatin levels for the past 6 months which may be an argument to reduce or switch the lithium. Other than the tremor and the elevated kreatin levels I am experiencing no known (bad) side effects. Thanks for your support, yellowbutterflies
  10. Oh no, that sucks big moose. You must be feeling pretty bad about the whole situation, especially when you felt so strongly about the doggie. Hope you don't let yourself get too down about it :/ yellowbutterflies
  11. Hi Isis, Sounds like you've thought everything out real well! There is lots of good advice on this thread about keeping costs down too. You might just want to be aware that you may have to budget more than if you didn't have a dog, but it sounds to me like the benefits outweigh the downfalls in your situation. I can only relate to you from my situation which is that I currently won't get a cat because I am saving for traveling and wouldn't know what to do with a pet if I went away for several weeks (catteries are expensive). Don't want to be a downer, just sharing my current circumstances with you . Good luck and I hope to see some photos of [insert name of doggy here] on cb if you go for it! x yellowbutterflies
  12. Isis If this was just a poll I would say "Cute! Yes go for it!" If you want my opinion you have a really good pros and cons list and you've broken it down well. From there just go over it and put values on each pro and con item, eg: how important is money to you? etc. and take it from there. Good luck! yellowbutterflies
  13. Hi all, Just wondering when it became clear there was something wrong and it wasn't all just in the doctors' heads. For me because I suffered psychosis along with depression and mania it took a while to accept that there was something wrong with me. Just wondering why it can be so difficult to accept it sometimes. I realise the poll is not fully fair because you can accept it and yet still not fully accept it ever. It's a hard question, I guess. Peace, yellowbutterflies
  14. Seems to be working now, have exported all my photos to smaller sizes...
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