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un/misdiagnosed craziness


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hi. this is my first post; it's kinda scary. it's also incredibly long, so probably not many people will read it. although i'm hoping someone will.

i have no idea what's wrong with me. i saw my first psychologist when i was 5, for anxiety. next time was at age 11, again, for anxiety. i became anorexic around this time. in year 9, i developed school phobia, and missed all of year 9. remission with anorexia (which was untreated).

in year 12, i developed really severe academic anxiety - i.e. i became so convinced that i would fail everything, that i had a difficult time doing anything. i got through the year with support from my GP and one of my teachers, ended up doing very well, and got into a very good university. which i quit after 6 weeks, because of anxiety and - new fun - depression.

i started seeing the most wonderful psychiatrist in the world when i was 17. she was awesome - she did long term psychotherapy as well as dispense meds. she diagnosed me with severe anxiety, MMD, and bulimia, which later morphed into anorexia again. i went back to uni, and was okay for a year, although academic anxiety was still a problem. oh, and i've been on antidepressants (mostly SSRIs, plus some fun with tricyclics, effexor, and serzone). by 21, i was a nonfunctional mess. anxiety had become so severe that i couldn't function, except for not eating and compulsive exercise.

at 22, i went completely insane. i was intent on self destruction. i drank bottles of ipecac and then went running, in an attempt to give myself a heart attack. i went running in the middle of the night. drank excessively. used illegal IV drugs. shoplifted. stepped up self injury (which began at 17) to the point where i was getting stitches every few days. at this point, i was on an SSRI - can't remember which, thioridazine, and xanax, i think. i seem to have a super-liver, so medications don't seem to affect me at all until i'm at a high dosage.

changed psychiatrists at 23. stupidest move of my life, and that's saying a lot.

tried many meds, primarily for anxiety. still couldn't handle uni, and eventually became unable to work. received IP treatment for anorexia at 25, and have maintained a healthy weight for close to 2 years.

i am no longer actively self destructing. no SI, ED, shoplifting, non-prescription drugs, and so on. but still, i seem to completely LOSE IT every few months. for a while in 2004, i had what was diagnosed as atypical OCD. i already have 'typical' OCD. this new OCD was a NIGHTMARE. it sounds minor, but i could not stop counting. at all. and it was REALLY LOUD in my head. i became unable to hold a conversation, because the counting was so loud. my perception was altered - bright lights and so on became a major problem. i have huge chunks of memory from that time that are just gone. anyway, i went into hospital, and was put on large doses of clomipramine, clonazepam, and pericyazine (NB: i was also not sleeping and exercising compulsively). the counting went away for a month or so. then it came back. my psychiatrist changed my meds to lexapro (titrated up to 40mg), edronax (8mg), and pericyazine. i was needing up to 80mg pericyazine a night to get 3-4 hours' sleep. i started seeing a foaming at the mouth CBT nazi for treatment for the OCD, which was unsuccessful, as no one, including me, could figure out the 'obsessions' that were supposed to be driving the compulsion to count. at this point, several things happened. i ditched the CBT bitch. my psychiatrist prescribed lamictal. i started doing meditation. the counting stopped.

i started to become reasonably functional. until i stopped sleeping. completely. anxiety and agitation were severe. i was DXd with bipolar I, and taken off antidepressants, remaining on lamictal. i crashed into a really severe depression. went back onto the antidepressants. started functioning for a while. then stopped sleeping. again. lamictal lowered, pericyazine ceased, and replaced with 6mg xanax for sleep. so i started sleeping again. constantly. i fell into hypersomnia, amotivational syndrome, and severe depression. so i bumped up my lamictal. my mood improved a bit, but sleep is getting problematic again (i.e. not enough of it).

i'm now 27. i DEFINE 'failure'. i don't have a job. i haven't finished undergrad. i had to move in with my mother last year due to total nonfunctionality.

i don't know what's wrong. every time i start to get functional, something in my brain seems to fuck up. i'm going back to uni in 4 weeks, and i CANNOT be like this. i don't know what to do. i'm depressed, fatigued, anxious, insomniac, inexplicably hungry (i'm not on any 'hungry meds'), and scared to death. am seeking a new psychiatrist, but i live in a small city, and those who choose to stay here tend to lack competence.

i'm so sorry this is so long. i just have NO idea what i'm doing.

thanks.

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firstly, you are not a failure for not having finished school yet.

you're sick.  if you'd had cancer or a car crash and that had delayed your schooling, would you think you were a failure?

it is not your fault that your moods get out of control and make it hard/ impossible for you to do things like go to school.

as for what to do now... is your uni in the same town you live in now?  what meds are you on now?  what meds have you been on that you think helped?

i know that you've been down a long tough road, but it is possible to get stable somehow.

i hope you find a good psych.  whenever i have to switch psychs i make a list of all the meds i've been on and how they made me feel to try and help them.  one thought i was obsessive for doing this, but it can speed up the finding the right cocktail process.

i wish i could say more.

i'm glad you're posting here. 

keep posting and let us know how things are progressing.

take care,

penny

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Ditto. The above. I like your handle, btw, blueberry. Yummm

Your story is, depending on how you look at it, unfortunately or fortunately, not unique here at CrazyBoards. This is an amazing community of brilliant, strong, wise, and like you, sick people.

We are here to support each other as we navigate the shark infested waters of stabilizing mental illnesses. Almost all of us suffer from multiple diagnoses, making treatment a challenge at times, to say the least.

I encourage you to stick around. Peruse the forums, find a home(s). The people here are kind and insightful, non-judgmental beyond belief.

Stay.

Let us know how you're doing, no matter how crazy you feel--someone has been there and back again. Unfortunately, so many of our illnesses ARE recurring, or they morph into something, or our meds stop working (we call this "pooping out" on a med).

Welcome, and stop right now with the failure talk. It's your illness(es) pissing in your ear and telling you it's raining.

Best,

Suze

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Hi, blueberry...

I second everything people have said already. Glad you made it here! You've come to the right place.

Reading through your post, I'm wondering a couple things. I take it you are still seeing the psychiatrist who prescribed the lamictal, right? What is she suggesting at this point? Also, how much Lamictal (and other meds) are you taking?

I'm glad you're here. Like others said, please roam around. You're sure to find some ideas that fit, words of encouragement that are meant for you.

Best wishes,

revlow

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