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Unread 06-14-2013, 06:52 PM   #1
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Default So, this all is happening fast...

Hi everyone!

Two days ago I was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder and prescribed seroquel, working up to 300mg to begin with.

They wanted me to be treated last summer- I sort of flipped out, had episodes that turned into self abuse, and had to move home from college for a bit. I refused- due to my family thinking it was just me being 'emotional'- I am a theatre student, so of course I'm just being a drama queen, right?

Well, okay, I am a drama queen onstage- but offstage it's a little more serious than that.

Anywayssssss- I recently cannot handle all these episodes/mood swings/ I haven't slept since 1992 (I was born then, by the way)/ and my infatuations and obsessions on things have gotten annoying to the point where these rushing thoughts feel like I cannot control my own brain anymore. I made really impulsive decisions that sometimes aren't the best choices- and later feel bad about them. It's like a light switch.

Yada, yada, yada, ya'll get what I'm talking about.

I went to a counseling appointment this past week. I also box on a national team, and recently had a self abuse episode where I would punch my own self- (Because my competition wasn't that great? Kidding) so right away she threw me next door to the psychiatrist.

Bipolar disorder was thrown out at me again with a prescription.

This is all moving really fast for me. I was suppose to start the pills last night, but instead got drunk and went out because I rather not deal with it. I plan on beginning tonight- with the lack of support from family (which, we are Italian, it's suppose to be our thing I thought)- and I'm a little scared.

I'm worried because I don't know the real me. I've been living with this, and what if this takes away things from me? Creativity, passion, drive- I need all those things for my field, you know? I've never been able to sleep, I've always been on/off- that's the on going joke with me. It's obviously hindering my life in a big way, but that's all I know. I'm the funny, crazy, outgoing, and loud one in my group- and that's what's ME. I don't want that to go away.

I guess- what if I don't like the 'real' me? How do I know this just isn't me growing up and freaking out? I'm 21, I'm exploring things, doing things, I go to college- so whose to say what's this disease and what is just me being impulsive?

So I guess I'll step off from the soap box now. A lot of things are already happening this summer and this just was the bomb that I didn't need I guess.

A little support? Advice? Help?

<-- also, I really dig this icon and really wanted to use it. So there.
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Unread 06-14-2013, 11:01 PM   #2
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Default Re: So, this all is happening fast...

Originally Posted by Chelbten View Post
Hi Bambina35,

I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder when I was 23 and I understand where you are coming from being a young person. I also did not want to admit I had bipolar disorder, even going to the point of getting SEVERAL second opinions. Finally, I "accepted" what I deal with. It was not easy to do, but it was important for my health. All the time I denied what I dealt with, it was hurting me more. I cannot tell you that you have bipolar disorder as I am not a doctor, but I can tell you that if you believe that you do, you need to take the appropriate actions as soon as possible. I understand you don't want to lose the person you see yourself as, but leaving bipolar disorder untreated can be something a person regrets. Bipolar disorder does not have to take away your dreams or ruin your life. While it is true that life may not be the same as it was before, if you are able to accept yourself and find the correct support (ie appropriate meds, a good and caring doc, and family/friends who truly care about you) you can enjoy your life with bipolar disorder. Remember that there are millions of people out there who are dealing with bipolar disorder and that those of us who handle it best take it one day at a time. I really wish the best for you and know that there is a lot of good information both on this website and the internet. Yes you may have bipolar, but you are still 21 and this in no way caps the life you can have. Be a young person. Enjoy being you. Laugh, play, smile, and dance. If you are a theatre major, still put your all into that. Just know what you deal with, learn how it affects you and you will discover who you are. You said that you might not like you, but on the other hand, you might just love the person you become. Best regards.
P.S. You will surprised that some of the most creative people have/had been diagnosed with bipolar disorder...comedians, authors, intellectuals, and more. Take a look at this list that I just found in a bit of quick research.
Famous People known to have Bipolar Disorder
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Unread 06-15-2013, 01:28 AM   #3
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Default Re: So, this all is happening fast...

I don't know if this helps, but I'm still regarded as "funny, crazy, outgoing, and loud"---and creative on top of all of that---despite being on four different psych meds for bipolar disorder. IOW, I'm still me, only a little better controlled.

There are so many times I wish I'd been diagnosed at your age.....I might have had a much easier life and not made so many stupid decisions if I'd known I had BP and been medicated for it. As it is, I wasn't dx'ed till age 53, and by that time it had damaged my brain to the point where I have permanent short-term memory loss, and other cognitive issues which are fairly mild, but embarrassing for someone who's only in her mid-50s.

Try not to worry too much about meds altering your personality; you may notice some flattening of your emotions, and for most of us that's a GOOD thing. But bipolar medications aren't meant to take away your essence; if they do, that's a sign you're taking too much or taking the wrong kind.

The first year or so after diagnosis, you're probably going to be tried on different types in order to find the right "cocktail", or combination of drugs that controls your symptoms without making you dopey or weird. If you're lucky, you'll be able to manage with only one or two meds; many of us need 4 or even more.

At 21, it's true that you have a ways to go before you know who you really are and what you're all about. And 'freaking out' once in a while is normal even for people twice your age, bipolar or not.

Please don't make the mistake of believing your whole life is over because you've been given a diagnosis of bipolar disorder. Yes, it IS hard to accept---it took me over a year---but it doesn't have to define you, now or ever.

Welcome to PC! I hope you find plenty of support here.
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Unread 06-15-2013, 07:07 AM   #4
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Default Re: So, this all is happening fast...

I'm going out on a limb, but noticing your comment about having sleep problems for a couple of decades, maybe sleep apnea...or...something else in the realm of neurological, which has now begun affecting your mood. Same with the self-abuse. If you can't make a convincing case for your psychiatrist or primary care doctor to send you for neurological testing or to see a psychoneuroendocrinologist(a psychiatrist who focuses on the endocrine system/thyroid, adrenals, pituitary, etc.)discuss this with your family and have them carry the ball, since chasing down doctors is quite stressful. The psychiatrist might be correct, but most(in my experiences)aren't House. They, like doctors in other specialties, aren't curious or interested in challenging cases. It's easier to write a script for one or more drugs and send you on your way. Don't accept this diagnosis as the final word. That doctor could have made a bad call.

Last edited by intergalactictraveler; 06-15-2013 at 07:11 AM. Reason: typos
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Unread 06-15-2013, 07:31 AM   #5
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Default Re: So, this all is happening fast...

Bambina, now's the time to do a little reading. I would suggest reading the forums and checking the info that PC provides on bipolar. There are other good websites that I have found worthwhile. That's a good place to start.

I'm glad that you are here, and I hope that you stick around.
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