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I'm just wondering what it's going to take for me to accept this Bipolar 2 diagnosis, and accept that I need to take meds.  I took meds for over 5 years, and there was 6 months in there where I stopped, then went back on because I was not doing well.  Now I've been off again for about 4 months, and am crashing from about 3 months straight of hypomania. I'm again and that really depressed point which has always been the point where I desperately reach out for meds.  

 

I just don't understand why I have such a hard time accepting both the diagnosis and the need for meds!  I'm so damn stubborn when it comes to all this!  I can completely accept that there are people who DO need meds, and who ARE truly bipolar, I just am totally resistant when it comes to me seeing me as one of these people.  When I was convinced that I needed to be on meds, I would read here alot, even when I wasn't posting, and it kept me on track.  Once I'd been the most stable I'd been during these years of taking meds, basically the first half of this year, I somehow convinced myself that all along it had been the meds that had been making go through such a hard time, because it took years for me to get to a stable point, and it's easier to blame the meds than the diagnosis.  So I stopped reading stuff on here and started reading stuff about people who had managed to deal with bipolar without meds, or who believed they were misdiagnosed, and I totally became convinced that this could be me!

 

My pdoc was on board I think because she knew I was going to go off meds anyway and she'd rather have me under her care, and my tdoc was on board because I think she honestly wanted to believe I could do it like I wanted to believe, and I convinced her that it was the right thing for me.  She said that in all her years she'd only had one person come successfully off meds, and that this person was doing really well.  I wanted to be this person, not the other people whom she said would end up suicidal or hospitalized.

 

So my latest months of hypomania were ok, a few weeks were actually really high and euphoric, the rest I was really agitated, anxious and angry, yet SOOO productive and focused, I own an online store which is my only source of income (to supplement child support and food stamps), and I completely updated my store and added tons of new products.  I cleaned up a lot of areas of my house and got rid of a lot of stuff that needed to be moved out.  There were times when I felt on the verge of losing complete control, a lot of pacing and ranting and crying went on when I was alone just to get through the intensity.  But the productivity was so needed!

 

Now I've crashed, I have no motivation to work, I'm wasting October which is one of my biggest sales months in past years because of Halloween.  I'm once again thinking a lot about my desire to be dead, even fantasizing ways I might do it (which I never would because of my kids, but it's still scary when these obsessive thoughts come).

 

I made an appointment for Friday with my pdoc because I just can't stand feeling like this.

 

I seem to see a lot of people on here that just seem to take the whole diagnosis and need for meds so much more in stride than I do.  Are there any of you who struggle as much as I do with it?  If you have gotten to a point of true acceptance, what did it take to get there?  

 

I think because I'm bipolar 2 and so have never had a full blown mania, and because I've also never been hospitalized, there is not so much outside "evidence" that I seem to need to convince me.  I wasn't officially diagnosed until I was 40, so all my life up until then I explained away all the weird things I'd done with other explanations.  My parents had always supported these beliefs in me as well, that I was "free spirited" "creative" blah blah blah.  So it was hard for them to accept that all these things could be chalked up to bipolar and not to their cemented beliefs about me, so this too has made it hard for me to believe the diagnosis.  There was always a denial of my problems, and an explanation that made them comfortable and able to accept my lifestyle.  So it was easy for me to adopt these beliefs too.  Really, there was so much that I hid from them through the years, I only showed them the side of me they could accept....

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Try not to let it define you.  Bipolar is not who you are, it's something you deal with. People with high blood pressure need meds to control it, as do lots of people who need meds for this or that.  So don't over think it. It's just your happy pill.  ^_^

 

I do know how you feel. When a doc first said I was probably bipolar it was hard to accept and believe. It made me question my whole life was not what I thought. I resisted believing it about myself for years. Once I was on a med and felt great and decided I didn't need it anymore and went off... and all hell broke loose that took years to settle down.But the mood issues are real and I know if I go off meds completely eventually I'm going to have a hard time again.

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I think because I'm bipolar 2 and so have never had a full blown mania, and because I've also never been hospitalized, there is not so much outside "evidence" that I seem to need to convince me.  

 

 

Same here....  I am still not truly convinced that I have BP, but whatever.  The bottom line for me is, the meds make me feel better, so I take them.  I've tried to go off meds many times and it's always been a disaster.  Nothing wrong with taking meds if you need 'em.

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I have such a hard time accepting my diagnosis. It took several hospitalizations for it to stick in my mind. I understand how hypomania can be tricky, because it's not full-blown mania, it feels less severe. But it can actually cause just as much damage as a manic episode. And in bipolar II, the depressions tend to be pretty bad and more often than in bipolar I (I'm starting to think I may be bipolar II and not I but diagnoses are not that important). 

 

Hypomania can feel great! I love them, but for me they either turn into a depressive episode, or elevates to mania. You said you were feeling depressed and lacking the energy and motivation to do things. That is something you have to accept is not typical if it's occurring for prolonged periods. I don't know you, but from what you describe it sounds like there is something you need to accept and address with proper treatment. You aren't alone in the acceptance troubles. I'm still working on this and I was first diagnosed 11 years ago. Best of luck with your pdoc appointment. It was good to call. 

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I didn't get the BP diagnosis until I was 37, and then I refused to believe it (despite some pretty textbook episodes). I had the most dreadful mixed episode last year, which is what led me to finally seek treatment. I'm surprised I survived it, honestly. But in any case, I don't want to go through that again. So I'm medicated, which is not all that bad, save the process of finding the right meds,which is a bitch.

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Thanks everyone for not just reaming me :).  I HAVE gone through long periods of acceptance of the diagnosis and the meds, it's just that every time I reached for a pill bottle my heart dropped a little because it reminded me, and I just didn't want to constantly think of bipolar.  And then I felt good, and I just had to see what I'd be like off the meds.  It's almost like a scientific experiment, but it's my very life I'm fucking with. And I completely understand the theory of episodes damaging your brain and making it harder to treat, I can see all that for OTHER people, it's just so hard to accept that it could be me too.  I question things way too much, and I over think things, for sure. But the people who say they have dealt with their bipolar without meds sound just as convincing as those who say they need meds.  So which do I believe??

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Also, my life is in a bit more personal turmoil than usual, so part of me thinks what if my depression is situational?  What if I just need to ride it out and I'll be back to my hypomanic productive self?  Even though I was only loving the hypomania about 40% of the time, there was a lot of over the top intensity that I was not enjoying.....

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every time I reached for a pill bottle my heart dropped a little because it reminded me, and I just didn't want to constantly think of bipolar.  And then I felt good, and I just had to see what I'd be like off the meds.  It's almost like a scientific experiment, but it's my very life I'm fucking with.

 

When I was screwing around with my meds, I saw it as a "science experiment" too. Because the meds were working I figured I could do well without. And for a week or so it was great! So that was my "proof". I didn't notice I was slipping before it was in a crisis situation. I used to let my meds and diagnosis define me (and I still sometimes slip back into that thinking). But I am not bipolar. I have bipolar. 

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So I stopped reading stuff on here and started reading stuff about people who had managed to deal with bipolar without meds, or who believed they were misdiagnosed, and I totally became convinced that this could be me!

 

It's hard to not get caught up in the info out there that talks about not needing meds to help control the bipolar, especially looking through the you tubes.  Watching certain ones made me think I didn't need meds, and I was feeling very guilty about everything (in the videos they talked about how psychiatry was a hoax, meds weren't needed ... there was even a pdoc who was there to wean her patients OFF of meds because she didn't believe in them.

 

 

I wanted to be this person, not the other people whom she said would end up suicidal or hospitalized.

 

You can still be you (on meds) and not be suicidal or hospitalized.  Meds help those things from happening (to an extent).

 

 

If you have gotten to a point of true acceptance, what did it take to get there?

 

It took me going off of meds for a few months to realize I needed them.  During the few months off of them, I lived in such a delusional world and was hallucinating a lot.  It took all those months, then being put back on meds, to realize that all those months weren't real and had been wasted.

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Also, my life is in a bit more personal turmoil than usual, so part of me thinks what if my depression is situational?  What if I just need to ride it out and I'll be back to my hypomanic productive self?  

 

Sounds like journal entries I have made! I'm always doubting what's real and what's just me reacting to something... or I maybe I should just toughen up... or ride it out.. etc.  Stress and turmoil definitely agitate and depress me.  So I think "is it bipolar or just normal reactions to life?" 

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So I stopped reading stuff on here and started reading stuff about people who had managed to deal with bipolar without meds, or who believed they were misdiagnosed, and I totally became convinced that this could be me!

 

It's hard to not get caught up in the info out there that talks about not needing meds to help control the bipolar, especially looking through the you tubes.  Watching certain ones made me think I didn't need meds, and I was feeling very guilty about everything (in the videos they talked about how psychiatry was a hoax, meds weren't needed ... there was even a pdoc who was there to wean her patients OFF of meds because she didn't believe in them.

 

Yes!  It's so hard because it seems like the opinions are completely opposite each other, I tend to believe whatever is serving me at the moment.  Now I'm not doing well, so I'm back to trying to believe the diagnosis and the need for meds, just out of desperation.

 

 

Also, my life is in a bit more personal turmoil than usual, so part of me thinks what if my depression is situational?  What if I just need to ride it out and I'll be back to my hypomanic productive self?  

 

Sounds like journal entries I have made! I'm always doubting what's real and what's just me reacting to something... or I maybe I should just toughen up... or ride it out.. etc.  Stress and turmoil definitely agitate and depress me.  So I think "is it bipolar or just normal reactions to life?" 

 

 

This sounds exactly like me!  I'm always trying to compare myself to other people, to "regular" people, and I figure, they must go through all this that I go through, yet they are still functioning, working, thriving, not going to dr.s to try to find out what's wrong with them.  That's when I start to think I'm either really weak, or a "drama queen".

 

I think one of the biggest humps right now is I feel like I'm letting people down (including myself), there are so many "supporters" who come out of the woodwork once you announce that you are getting off your meds.  Suddenly everyone is telling you how happy they are for you, as if you've finally "seen the light", or discovered some sort of enlightenment that they discovered long ago.  I feel like a failure....

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And today I'm totally up again!  Yesterday was a neutral day in terms of depression, it was the first day I didn't feel depressed in weeks, though I didn't feel up, just didn't feel depressed, didn't quite need to drink as much as I have been.  Now today, I'm back to way up, the really happy/euphoric/super-horny/no anxiety kind of up!  But, this won't keep me from seeking meds again, because no matter how long it lasts this time, I now fully remember the crash, and in the end it's just not worth it.  Plus, it's not like I'm being productive because I'm just too horny and I can't just focus on one thing, my attention is all over the place, so I can't get any computer work done.

 

So with much research and a sprinkling of intuition, I'm thinking of asking for Latuda.  I really would like, if possible, to find a mono therapy med, before I was on Depakote/Celexa, but I just don't like SSRI's.  But I need something for depression, and I was reading that Latuda is a bit like Lamictal in that it actually really helps with the depression part of bipolar without pushing you into mania.  I can't take Lamictal cause I got itchy on it and they won't give it to me.  Any thoughts on Latuda?

 

Thank you for everyone who answered on here!  I really just need support for going back on meds, because I know it's what I need to do, and I needed to hear from people who struggled with the same push/pull about all this stuff.  So thank you!

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Yes! I am always comparing myself to "normal" people and feeling like a loser for not being able to run with the big dogs. But I'm slowly trying to accept myself and realize I'm not a "big dog"...  I'm just a dachshund- lol.  Some days I'm better at remembering that than others. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I had a hard time accepting my BP (and other) diagnoses.  I resented taking my medication every day.  Lately, though, I've become somewhat grateful that there are labels for my behavior and treatments for them.  At least it gives me some hope that these problems can be addressed, even if it takes a while.  And it's helpful to be able to compartmentalize my behaviors under different "umbrellas", as it were, because then it's easier to see what's me and what's the disease(s).

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Bipolar is not who I am, but it most certainly an un appreciated guest. Exhausted with trying meds, exhausted with trying. At least before I had the diagnosis I had realization that I am not like others, I was ignorant. Ignorance was bliss.

I really don't know if there is a better for me. So far no go. Took my hypos away............,meds make me a different type of unstable.

Patience they say, well I got none left.

Considering going off my meds, of course with doctor supervision, but it is quite apparent no headway is being made.

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I just got to thinking, I'm glad I have a diagnosis and accept it because now people believe me that there is something wrong (or whatever word) with me.  Like, ie, a certain person in my life needs to see something on paper and know what something is to believe it.  With a diagnosis that is possible.  If it were just a bunch of random symptoms I wouldn't be believed except that it was something other than "bad" behavior.

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I just got to thinking, I'm glad I have a diagnosis and accept it because now people believe me that there is something wrong (or whatever word) with me.  Like, ie, a certain person in my life needs to see something on paper and know what something is to believe it.  With a diagnosis that is possible.  If it were just a bunch of random symptoms I wouldn't be believed except that it was something other than "bad" behavior.

 

For me the fact that I have a diagnosis doesn't seem to be enough for people, my best friend who is bipolar 1 and just got out of the hospital just told me yesterday "you seem to be doing well off the meds, maybe you're ok off them".  And all the times from my past that I've identified as either manic or depressive episodes and have tried to explain to my mom why these things I did were the result of bipolar, and she STILL says "well I just always thought you were adventurous and independent".  And she's a counselor!  Because I've never been hospitalized or ran down the street naked, apparently all my inner suffering isn't valid.  And somehow, I am *mostly* able to keep it internal, or at least keep it all at home, I can be frantically pacing back and forth, crying, digging my nails into myself for hours, alone at home, but I just never would do this in front of anyone.  I'm able to get my son to and from school and keep him fed.  So, there are no obvious problems, and this all supports me trying to just tell myself "everyone who lives on earth suffers internally, and it's natural to want to die because this suffering is unbearable, everyone feels like this, just suck it up...."

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I just got to thinking, I'm glad I have a diagnosis and accept it because now people believe me that there is something wrong (or whatever word) with me.  Like, ie, a certain person in my life needs to see something on paper and know what something is to believe it.  With a diagnosis that is possible.  If it were just a bunch of random symptoms I wouldn't be believed except that it was something other than "bad" behavior.

 

For me the fact that I have a diagnosis doesn't seem to be enough for people, my best friend who is bipolar 1 and just got out of the hospital just told me yesterday "you seem to be doing well off the meds, maybe you're ok off them".  And all the times from my past that I've identified as either manic or depressive episodes and have tried to explain to my mom why these things I did were the result of bipolar, and she STILL says "well I just always thought you were adventurous and independent".  And she's a counselor!  Because I've never been hospitalized or ran down the street naked, apparently all my inner suffering isn't valid.  And somehow, I am *mostly* able to keep it internal, or at least keep it all at home, I can be frantically pacing back and forth, crying, digging my nails into myself for hours, alone at home, but I just never would do this in front of anyone.  I'm able to get my son to and from school and keep him fed.  So, there are no obvious problems, and this all supports me trying to just tell myself "everyone who lives on earth suffers internally, and it's natural to want to die because this suffering is unbearable, everyone feels like this, just suck it up...."

 

 

I'm sorry it is like that for you.  That must really be hard.

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Bipolar is not who I am, but it most certainly an un appreciated guest. Exhausted with trying meds, exhausted with trying. At least before I had the diagnosis I had realization that I am not like others, I was ignorant. Ignorance was bliss.

I really don't know if there is a better for me. So far no go. Took my hypos away............,meds make me a different type of unstable.

Patience they say, well I got none left.

Considering going off my meds, of course with doctor supervision, but it is quite apparent no headway is being made.

 

I felt like this for the first four years of meds, that "meds made me a different type of unstable", that's how it felt, that the meds were making it all worse.  And now that you've written this, and now that I'm thinking about it, it kinda makes sense, meds interact with the chemistry of our brains, and if our brains are already compromised with something like bipolar, then if the chemical interaction happens to be unfavorable, then it's going to make it "look" like it's making us worse because it's just increasing the symptoms, the symptoms that we are already prone to because we are bipolar.  So, perhaps it's NOT the meds that are creating the bad effects, but our brains, and the meds are just not the right ones.  The right meds will take the symptoms away, the wrong ones will increase them, right?  Hmmmmm....

 

For me I finally DID find the right meds, and the irony is that I didn't get off them because they weren't working, but because they WERE working, and I started wondering if I really needed them, because I felt so much more stable (still never have been 100% stable, but on meds was definitely better than this...).

 

Maybe you just haven't found the right meds yet?  Have you tried Depakote?  That's the one that instantly made my whole outlook on everything look clear and bright again....  It just put my brain right.

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