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Are we feeling better?


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There are all sorts of statistics about our disorder, like how long it takes to get the right Dx, and how many years of productive life we lose. Not to mention upwards of 20% of us who take our own lives, like my dad at age 47...

With all these struggles, various pdocs, 50 million different meds, in and out of psych wards and jobs, are we being helped at all? Is all this a farce? Are we better off then before, or if we did not receive help?

The statistics claim we live better and longer when we receive treatment. Do WE agree?

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Yes.  But only through time and through hard work with both the pdoc and a therapist (and a hormone consultant and AA).  I was pretty high-functioning for how sick I was, but I was at the end of my rope when I was diagnosed and would likely have killed myself by now.  It's been tough, sometimes I thought it wasn't worth it, and I never actually believed I could really be better enough to make life worth living.  But I am.

What I think are necessary components: a strong deep-down desire to get better (and not to die) even when I do feel like giving up, stubbornness, flexibility, teachability.  And at least one committed, skilled, compassionate caregiver who doesn't think just surviving is enough.

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I would have to agree with NARS.  If I didn't seek treatment this spring, I don't know that I would have made it to see another and if I did, it would most likely be a very unpleasant time getting there.  I have very little doubt that if I go off meds, my life will be the worse for it and probably much shorter.

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yes.  I can think of at least two occasions where I would have eventually killed myself if I hadn't gotten treatment. 

On the less dramatic side, the times I've been adequately medicated have been wonderful compared to times when I haven't been.  The difference between depressed and comfortable, severely anxious and normally relaxed, is infinite. 

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I haven't imploded my finances since becoming medicated, which I would cautiously point to as a sign that yes, meds have made my life better. I think. I hope. I've been sufficiently stable over the past little while to begin questioning whether I was ever bipolar at all, and I hate taking meds, so maybe I should just go off them? I know this line of thinking is ludicrous, given the journal entries I have left for myself, but it's there. Must. Avoid. Danger. Must. Take. Lithium.

For all my life I've been ambivalent about taking pills (well, since they stopped being chewable Flintstones multivitamins). This side of me looks at the dozen pills in my palm and thinks I don't want to live like this. But on the other side, I don't want to live untreated. Good hypomanias were grand, yes. I think everyone agrees. But I don't want to crash again. I don't like wrecking my life, damaging my relationships, and harming myself -- all things which came of being untreated. So yes, my life is better, and it IS the meds tipping the scales in my favor... but I am human, and therefore conflicted. Just so long as I keep taking my damn meds.

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I dont know.... i guess i am having a lot of trouble right now, so.... well..... yeah...

i'll admit that many times if i were without meds I probably would have offed myself.... no exaggeration.  the fact of the matter is, though, that, even though I am on meds, the balance just never seems to work.  I have been rapid cycling like mad and have been fucking things up left and right.  would someone from the outside refer to me as "fuctional?"  Yes... but there is a difference between semi-functioning and barely being productive and what I used to be.  merely "fuctional" is not always acceptable.  I act really well to try and pretend i am ok sometimes (until it gets way too hard to bare).... I am a fucking theatre major... i might as well put all my skills to good use in my everyday life.  other times i am fucking crazy and people have no idea how i go from soooo down to my acting ok, to my off the fucking wall.

sorry, i'll stop myself before i rant anymore.  maybe i am just one of those people who hasnt been correctly treated or just has a shitty doc (I vote both).  I like to think that i can start being well soon and start actually living a life that isnt sometimes just a lie.  maybe at 19 it is just too early for me to expect relief and i have to hope that i dont play too close to the edge....

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What I think are necessary components: a strong deep-down desire to get better (and not to die) even when I do feel like giving up, stubbornness, flexibility, teachability. And at least one committed, skilled, compassionate caregiver who doesn't think just surviving is enough.
Yes, i totally agree.

I haven't imploded my finances since becoming medicated, which I would cautiously point to as a sign that yes, meds have made my life better. I think. I hope... I don't like wrecking my life, damaging my relationships, and harming myself -- all things which came of being untreated. So yes, my life is better, and it IS the meds tipping the scales in my favor... but I am human, and therefore conflicted. Just so long as I keep taking my damn meds.

And once again, an arousing "AMEN!" to lmnop, who i adore.

i'm still working out the emotional issues, but my pdoc and i are on the stability road. i'm sleeping regularly, eating regularly, and functioning. i go to work and go to school. i bitch when i have to stay late at work and when the alarm goes off in the morning. But i bitch because i'm experiencing life, not just fucked up moods. i think it was best said when lmnop said that "I am human, and therefore conflicted." Precisely.

On the good side of 6 pills a day to keep the crazies away,

Dionne

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Life is a little drowsy right now, but so much better. LOVE, I mean LOVE the beginning of hypomania. Then I rapidly descend into rage and anger. Then comes the major depression, and the passive suicidal thoughts that I'm afraid may become more than passive someday.

My questioning point is always after the depression is lifting nicely, and I'm feeling energy again like a real human being, I begin to ask myself "was it all in my head? Was it THAT bad?"

Yeah, it was all in my head - isn't that the cruelest joke of all - and it WAS that bad. Hmmm. Maybe BP's have selective amnesia. I know I do.

It's all for the good. It'll be worth it. I'm halfway talking to myself here too. Keep going.

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