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How can I learn to accept that I have bipolar disorder with its associated states?

Responses (34)

HCH 3 Jan 2010

"Support Groups"... are fabulous

bluehaiku 10 Aug 2010

I was diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder. It is still difficult for me to even say that because of the stigma associated with it. Usually the people with BPD are the ones you here about killing their lovers because of their insecurities. They are frequently grouped with other diagnoses, such as antisocial disorder, narcissism, and a slew of not-so-nice terms. I am none of these. I am simply a girl who gets too involved and gets her heart broken, has abandonment issues, and frequently chooses the wrong guys. I have poor impulse control which led to promiscuity. Now I also suffer from PTSD, and my impulse control has led to dangerous self-harm, such as cutting.

I wish we could come up with new names for these things, but I finally looked at it this way- every diabetic's illness is not treated the same because it isn't the same. Every person with cancer goes through their own unique symptoms and ups and downs.

frankie72 21 Nov 2010

Does the meds interfere with your sex life?

izzyruth 3 Jan 2010

WE have to accept what we cannot change! However knowing the problem is a chemical imbalance, we seek the best care, from the best doctors, and do our part to reclaim our life.

smileyhappy 25 Jul 2011

Exactly the words I was going to say. Once you accept it. You start living again.

SharR 4 Jan 2010

I was diagnosed about 5 years ago. I had great support from my medical Dr. and my psychiatrist. I had been with them over ten years. I went into a psych hosp after an attempted suicide. However, my family was less receptive. They thought I used the disease as a ruse for my odd behavior at times. Finding the right medication is a real challenge too. Bi-polar is very difficult to treat because of the constant changes in the chemicals in my brain. I reacted well to my diagnosis because it is such a relief to finally put a name on the strange behavior that had constantly disrupted my life. I only cried once when I learned that I had the second most serious mental illness there is next to schitzofrenia and second most likely to carry out a suicide. However, I also learned that I can work with my Dr.

frankie72 6 Jan 2010

thanks for your support it brought tears to my eyes because i many a times thought about suicide i lost my mother at six years old and nobody thought it didnt affect me and i wanted to be close to her again and that was the solution lots of mood swings, anger, growing up and i didn't think twice when somebody dared me to do something i still sometimes even with the meds react on impulse but its gotten much better i have a great doctor. I've been clean now for a year of drinking and respect my wife don't cheat on her anymore thank you!!!

kattybee 9 Mar 2010

I cried while reading your post it was as though someone were describing me. could you tell me how and when you got diagnosed, i have suffered with depression from a very early age, lots of bad things happened to me as a child and doctors have always put my state of mind down to that, but i have always known deep down that there is something wrong with me mentally, funnily enough i am over the things that happened to me, i have come to think **** happens. I have always made light of it, even make jokes about it, which my friends find hilarious, i think because of how extreme were the things that happened and of how light i make of it, humour has always been my safety blanket, coping mechanism and it makes people see me as funny, instead of weird, to the whole world i am a clown, indoors i am so different.

bobby2130 5 Jan 2010

i have bipolar once you get on the right meds and start feeling like you are your normal self you will be so glad . im on lithium and when i got on it i felt like i had been set free . i hope you the best of luck .

hucklebery324 21 Mar 2010

I agree, but what we tend to do, is to take the medication, feel better,dont follow up when we are feeling better, just when we feel bad, and crappy. never to realize we must use the good time to train for the bad, and so on.The VA is IMFAMOUS for giving lots of drugs, little bit of help.

sjzoey 5 Jan 2010

i learned to accept myself by understanding i am not my disorder... my imbalance can be controled by taking meds. and caring enough about myself that i want to be loved for who i am not pity for what i am not... i do not listen to my head ... i trust my drs.

frankie72 6 Jan 2010

you have to trust your heart also

sjzoey 6 Jan 2010

frankie i to have been clean and sober for 16 yrs. thankx to great dr.s and not giving into the neg. thoughts my head gives me... i learned in aa to trust my drs. and stay on meds till i found the right balance... groups help so much

reelwater 5 Jan 2010

Hey frankie72; I have been diagnosed for about 30 years. You know that saying; the destination is not the key but how you get there is. That is how bi-polar is, at least for me. I kept thinking, okay I'm gonna get to where I want to be now. It isn't like that. You are a work in process always. You have to take EXTRA care of yourself in every aspect of your life for the rest of your life, whether it's taking your meds. faithfully, having emotionally supportive friends or getting support like you are here. Looking back my biggest challenge was going thru the hundreds (if not thousands) of med. adjustments over the years. I always thought that I could take the meds & it they would cure me. I was naive for years searching for the perfect combination of drugs. Surround yourself with people who love & respect you in ALL ways. In other words rely on your intution when it comes to the various states you experience.

frankie72 6 Jan 2010

thank you i've wondererd if i would ever be cured now

reelwater 10 Apr 2010

Frankie; your welcome. This is going to be my online support group from now on. Thanks to people like you who reach out~

anglwitch6090 7 Jan 2010

My dad gave me the best advice ever. He said, "You are Bipolar. You can't help that. We'll get you the doctors and the meds you need to stabilize. You are not crazy, unless you want to be. Crazy is a choice. Crazy is not taking your diagnosis serious, not taking your meds, not doing what the doctors tell you. I support you 100% with your illness, and the behavior it may cause, if you're doing your best. I won't put up with Crazy" I wrote those words down when I got home that night, and now read them every day.

pjs411 9 Aug 2010

How lucky are you to have such a supportive person in your life... and what profound advice. I am going to copy it and give it to my grown sons. They are having a hard time accepting my diagnosis that I received in April of Bipolar 2 and anticipate the worst, even though my behavior has been stable since June (after one episode and a subsequent medication adjustment). I guess they just need time to adjust and believe that my behavior is stable, that I no longer have rage or impulsivity. It just seems as if they can't accept that I did not choose to have this... that it was out of my control. I have tried to educate them by letting them read books and even took my one son to my therapist with me. He is a little more accepting but he is definitely not totally buying it. My younger son (27) basically stays away as much as possible, he lives in another state and just doesn't want to deal with it or me unless forced... it is very hurtful. Well thanks again for sharing your father's message... you are indeed very fortunate to have his support. Take care

harleyhoney2130 30 Jan 2010

you need people to be understanding and drs that listen to what you are saying . iahd to switch drs a couple of times to find one that understod me .on here is great support , look in your area for support groups your local hospital is a great place to start looking . reading all you can about bipolar will help they now have alot more information than they use too

harleyhoney2130 30 Jan 2010

what meds are you on lithium wors the best for me

merchslady53 26 Feb 2010

frankie72 You need to remember that you start from today. the past is the past, don't live there. Work with your Dr. Don't be afraid to tell him if you feel a med is not working, but first give the med a chance. Always feel free to talk openly with your Dr. if you don't then find another Dr. You are the patient and should never feel afraid to be open with your health care professional. I am a work in progress, I had attempted suicide before I was correctly diagnosed, and then it still took sometime. I have finally quit feeling guilty about the past as there is nothing I can do to change it. I am on the right combo of meds. So don't give up if you feel things aren't progressing fast enough. with the right attitude and the right Dr you will pull through!

prism 28 Feb 2010

Hi, I hope you are getting some good therapy and psychiatric care. And don't be discouraged if that requires a little shopping around, sometimes the finding the right professionals takes some trial and error.

If you really have Bipolar, you can probably verify it and begin to feel more comfortable after reading about it, identifying similar patterns in your own life and asking those who are close to you to share their observations. On the otherhand, Psychs aren't without their imperfections either. If the diagnosis doesn't fit, keep seeking help- I know I had to go through several years and multiple counselors and psychiatrists before I was properly diagnosed.

reelwater 10 Apr 2010

I have really enjoyed your answer & find you to be very Intelligent.

TheDodos 3 Mar 2010

It's not so much that you have to accept that you are "bi-polar" by title. But rather, you must acknowledge, accept, and address the specific characteristics that led to the diagnose. You must accept that your moods fluctuate and that at times, these moods become dangerous to yourself and to those around you. Understand that sometimes your sadness is irrational, your anger unjustified. Identify those times in your life where these issues have presented themselves. Prove to yourself that they exist--more importantly, admit that they do--and do so without the nomenclature, without the moniker.

Inactive 8 Mar 2010

Although only diagnosed this past Friday, I have been struggling with symptoms/characteristics for just over 20 years now. Began my 1st ever regimen of medication on Friday too (lithium), and have a follow-up with the MD tomorrow to monitor progress. This early on, I admit that I'm still experiencing a bit of difficulty letting go of the intense up-swings (manic episodes, I guess?), but - as my wife & I continue to research together - I realize that I'm not alone there either.

hucklebery324 21 Mar 2010

Its so good to see many responses with positive support, I am bipolar, I am bipolar. Im not going to die, but will be ready when I do. I went to war, and came home lost. I have PTSD, and whole bunch of other crap too. I searched for a reason why god didn't let me die instead of the others, but I lived. And you too my friend will live. Just remember one thing... the body cannot live without the mind, and the mind cannot live without the body, if they are at war, you wind up taking it out on yourself and dont even realize it. Dangerous stuff.

colinzimmermann 2 May 2010

First and foremost, make absolutely certain that you are bi-polar, and do not have another condition that mimics bi-polar disorder (there are several). Do your research on type 1 and type 2 bi-polar disorders and compare your symptoms - do they fit? Go to more than one psychiatrist (preferably at least one specializing in mood disorders). Bi-polar disorder is extremely hard to diagnose, particularly in the type 2 form where manic episodes are not so evident. The treatment regimen(s) indicated for bi-polar disorder can be highly detrimental if another disorder is actually the culprit. There is also the common issue of self-medication during manic and depressive episodes via alcohol/drug abuse which can further complicate the diagnostic phase. In other words, before tackling acceptance, make sure bi-polar is actually the problem.

Bentlygirl 15 Jun 2010

thank u for that post... i am totally new hear and im so thankful i found this site... i was hiding a pain pill addiction for years and did some pretty stupid things to get pills... i even got into gambling trying to pay for the pain pills, story short, i was diagnosed as bi-polar and ive been on lithium for a year. my husband and his damn family are so convinced that im bi-polar... ive never had lows in my life (mentaly_-unless i had major stress) but ive always been able to see the positive... as far as the manic side, i am a happy person but aside from the pill problem, which i beat, with help, i have never been "manic" I know I need to find a good doctor that isn't a freakin family friend and tell them the whole truth. i feel so trapped, there is so much more to my story... im a stay home mother of three, i have an amazing husband except he is an alcoholic and its ruining our family...

Inactive 12 Jul 2010

I was diagnosed with bipolar since age 12, but for the last like 7-10 yrs I've had no mania, just depression. Except for some impulse things that I realized I can control, that it is all in my head. They say I have bipolar2. I say that I suffer from Major Depression disorder and Generalized anxiety disorder. Whats your take on this? Been in and out of hospitals my whole life. I was a guinea pig. I was diagnose Just once, once like 8 yrs ago with borderline personality disorder. Am I really bipolar?

twinny 1 19 May 2010

alright frankie hope u ok im new to this site, but i worked with people with bipolar an its not a nice label to have but dont let people put u down or make u think yr different 1 in 4 people suffer with depression im 1, i no its hard not in yr shoes but get up in mornin an say out loud im goin to have a good day an make yr self look good not saying u dont, the lad i supported he ad learning disabilities so not the exact same but he stayed in bed an wudnt get out for a week unless toilet or drink, but now i see him an he walks the streets an meets new people an thinks positive im not a professionall prob spelt wrong but try think positive good luk, an accept who u r an people will accept u, im not perfect ad major issues was homless drunked an drugy but sorted it hope u ok

just take a deep breath and realize, everything will be ok! they (your doctors) will find something that controls your bp disorder. the depression and the mania will soon become less and less of a problem as you learn to cope and deal with everything. your doctors will help you manage. they may send you to therapy... which i recommend! i loved going to therapy and having someone to talk to. it was great. i could go complain and cry all day to my dr. and at the end of the day, i felt better cuz it was all off my chest

pjs411 9 Aug 2010

Hi, that's a good question... I guess by educating yourself (knowledge is power) and apprising yourself of possible triggers for episodes and also what to expect if an episode does indeed happen. Rapid cycling was the most shocking side effect I experienced in the one episode I have had since being diagnosed. Also by attending support groups, you can be around people who are supportive, "get it", and you can learn from their experiences. Of course, individual therapy is key to recovery.

I was only diagnosed properly with Bipolar 2 in April (after decades of it being diagnosed as depression). I am lucky that Lamictal was the drug that was initially prescribed and has been effective, after one episode and two adjustments in dose amounts. I also am in an out-patient program that has many kinds of group therapy sessions in addition to individual therapy, all of which have helped me in my recovery at a fairly rapid rate.

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