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Hi. I have been poking around these boards for the last few months. I feel like in a lot of ways I don't quite belong here. I was SUPER fortunate to be born to a psychopharmacologist, who after getting over his intial denial, made sure I received the best care possible.

So that is kind of what the Doonesbury cartoon is about. I know I have been lucky.

Sorry if I go on too long...

I am 43 now, and my late 20s and early 30s were pretty much intermittently in chaos, because I was depressed so much. I was able to perform on some levels (got through law school, somehow), but not others (couldn't hold a "career" type job, I am okay working part-time). I was never hospitalized, because whenever I was sickest, I was living at home with my parents. To be honest, I think it would have been embarrassing to my father, who trained my pdoc, for me to be hospitalized, so there was that complication.

The only mania I had ever had until recently was jump-started by Prozac when I was first treated. Until this year, that meant I had gone 18 years without even being hypomanic. But I am now married, and my husband has intractable epilepsy. This year has been really hard. We have been in the emergency room so many times. He is actually being evaluated for brain surgery.

Right after the first time he was taken to the ER, he lost his license so we had to move closer to his job so he could ride his bike (he basically supports me). So he was sick, and we had to move, and I just started getting sooo anxious. I basically fell apart. I can barely remember that 6 week period, except that I was miserable. Now that I don't live near my parents, and my dad's generation is mostly retired anyway (so he doesn't have the connections he used to) getting psychiatric help was a whole new ball of wax. So while everyone (including pdoc, my dad, and MSW) agrees I had a mixed episode, the episode had ended by the time I saw my new shrink.

As I said, I don't get nearly as sick as most people here, so I was able to kind of struggle through it. I have a fantastic husband, and some wonderful friends, who truly understand mental illness, so that is good.

But I just have noticed lately that I am getting more irritable and bitchy. The thing is, when an interaction where I am irritable and snappy happens, I don't *feel* like I am being bitchy, I feel as if I am being completely appropriate in my exasperation. It is only in retrospect that I realize I was out of line. So I have had to call people and apologize (well, I didn't have to, but I was a bitch). I apologized to my husband, and he confirmed that my mood has been changing.

I really don't feel that bad right now. And we have been having so much stress in our lives with my husband's medical problems, I am wondering if maybe I am behaving within the standard deviation for someone under stress? Maybe I can also put it down to the holidays (which I HATE by the way; I am Jewish, so there is that whole thing, plus my family makes gift-giving hell)?

I just am afraid I am missing the early signs, and will have another episode, which suckedsuckedsucked. I agree with the assessment that they are worse than depression or mania, it was horrible, the worst I have ever felt. But, I also don't want to call the pdoc for no reason, since I am a relatively new patient....

Oh, and I almost forgot, I actually do have pretty serious problems with Migraine; that is actually the more disabling illness for me, we have not had much luck treating it. I am not quite at Chronic Daily Headache levels currently, but I go through spates of that a couple of months a year.

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Welcome! That sounds rough and frustrating.

Nobody's in competition here; it's not like pain only after a certain amount is worth the label.

Some people can have symptoms between episodes, or symptoms that are episodes themselves, so it's not necessarily leading up to a major episode. But, either way, it's worth calling the pdoc for, especially since you know it's enough of a problem / potential problem to post here. Even if it's a new pdoc. They're there to help you out.

Have a look around. If you have any problems feel free to pm any of the mods!

resonance

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Hi Welcome to the site. It takes time to develop a sense of belonging. I hope that with time you will feel entitled to be here. Give us the chance to get to know you. ;) I'm sorry that you have MI too. No particular set of people get exempt. Unfortunately not even relatives of psychiatrists. That you know. People here might be able to help you understand your symtoms in anticipation of a full blown phase. Again, welcome.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thanks for the hellos, everyone.

When I initially posted, after I had spent some more time looking around the site, I decided it was just to early for me to tell whether I was just having a couple of bad days, or if my mood was changing.

But after going over the last few days of this week with my husband, he agrees with me that I am definitely getting irritable and jittery. He says it is a little spooky, I have a different personality. Sleep is starting to be problematic. My appetite has dropped . My concentration is seriously shot to pieces. I am constantly shedding frustrated tears because I keep losing track of what I am doing. Well, and I am also just in tears a lot because I am in tears a lot these days.

I am scared, I don't want to go through this again, is this now going to be a semi-annual feature of my life? How bad will this episode get? How do you stop it? Are we going to have to change my meds, which until June had been working great for almost 15 years? I haven't had to go through that in a long time, I really don't want to be off meds, I was really prone to episodes when I was not on it.

Definitely calling the pdoc on Tuesday, the 2nd.

Now I am going to go look for some threads for more info. Everytime I come here, I discover a part of the site I hadn't noticed before, very cool.

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