Surviving with Bipolar II

It’s been years between when I last wrote on this blog,however, I am back. I was diagnosed with Bipolar II in 2014 on my 29th birthday. Exactly on my birthday. What a gift to receive. Learning I had this chronic mental illness was both a blessing and a curse. I finally had a name to put to the ups and downs of my moods. However, now I had to learn how to manage it effectively and was told that it was not curable. It can only be treated just as if you had diabetes.

My mother also has Bipolar, although a different type. I was familiar with the instability that the illness brought and was terrified. My mother was in and out of hospitals. She had tried to commit suicide a few times during my childhood. She was constantly moving us from place to place, school to school. Due to her illness, she was heavily medicated and would either sleep a lot or be out spending money.

Now that I’ve been diagnosed, I see a lot of the same traits and characteristics. I never experience the mania, just something called hypomania. It’s an irritable, yet productive state where my mind is racing. I can’t move fast enough. I get annoyed when people can’t keep up with my train of thought. But mostly, I experience the depression. The kind of depression that wants to kill you. Hence the title, surviving with Bipolar II. There is no living with it. I either feel too much, or feel nothing at all. Most of the time, I feel nothing at all.

Life goes on, but I lay in bed. Slowly wishing that I wasn’t constantly being put on new medications. Many of the medications are expensive and because of my illness I am not working. This puts a great burden on my husband. I guess healthcare in America does not see that mental illness creates holes like these. The people who need medication but might not be able to get it. I have been put on a cocktail of anti-psychotics, anti-convulsants, and anti-depressants. Let’s not forget the benzos that allow me to forget my anxiousness over the whole situation.

The things that people say to you when they find out you are depressed range from funny to downright ridiculous. I’m not just sad. I’m not moping. I’m not playing the victim. I have an illness. An illness that threatens to take my life everyday. Only those that have the same illness will understand. Unfortunately, that’s how it works. I wish more people would have empathy and compassion, but they don’t see it the same way.

I will be using this blog as an outlet not only to discuss this topic but many others. If you are a fellow, please follow.