World Bipolar Day!

Hey, so it’s been brought to my attention that it’s World Bipolar Day, and I think I’m going to do this questionnaire that I found on a follower’s site.  So, without further ado, here we go.

1. What does bipolar disorder mean to you?

Bipolar disorder means that you are a creative individual that has ups and downs that are more extreme than others.  That’s all it means to me, to be honest.

2. What was your life like before you were diagnosed with bipolar disorder? 

It was one big blur of emotions.  I was boy-crazy, extremely high with the mania and extremely low with the depression.  There was a time where I was seriously contemplating suicide, but I obviously never did it. I had no support system, so I was basically on my own at that point.  I was a poor judge of character and situations.  I thought I could do anything or nothing; there was no in between.  That’s all I remember.

3. How old were you when you were diagnosed?

I was 18 when I was diagnosed, but didn’t find out until near my 19th birthday. (Stupid nurse with his stupid brain.)

4. How do you manage your symptoms?

I try keeping a schedule now that I’ve learned that it’s a treatment to help bipolar disorder. It seems to be working, and I like keeping a schedule.  I also take abilify. It’s proven to not only help my psychotic symptoms, but it helps manage my ups and downs.

5. What is life like for you now?

Life is grand! I have the most amazing boyfriend that supports me and isn’t afraid of my illness (probably have stated this before, but he is also bipolar) and everything has settled down.  I can function without being boy-crazy.  I can think.  I can feel emotions and then let them go.  There’s so many things that are a positive to my life.

6. Has having bipolar disorder affected your friendships, personal life, or professional life?

Yes, it has, but it’s done that for the better.  I told my friends about it, and they’ve pulled me aside and said “I have that too.” We’ve bonded over having bipolar disorder, and we’ve confirmed that it’s nothing to be ashamed of.  It’s like going to the doctor for having a broken arm: there’s some wounds that need healing and you need some attention brought to that injury and you need to fix it.  It’s also affected my schoolwork, and that makes me work well under pressure.  When it was midterm week, I was manic.  I aced everything given at me, and it was a wonderful feeling.  It’s like I can “throw myself” into manic episodes and it can be handy.

7. How do you think society treats people with a mental illness, especially bipolar disorder?

To put it in a blunt way, society treats those with mental disorders like crap. (I censored myself there, but you get the point.)  They expect us to lose our tempers rather quickly and they think we’ll throw things at people and can’t control our emotions.  It stinks.  I don’t like it, and I really don’t think other people like it.

8. Have you ever felt discriminated against or looked poorly on because of bipolar disorder?

Yes, I believe I do.  My mother refuses to believe that I have bipolar disorder because I don’t “act bipolar.”  I need a mood stabilizer (she’ll agree to that) but I “am not bipolar.”  I am kind of looked down upon and had to lie to various doctors because I can’t say the B-Word in front of my mom.

It’s a bummer, but I can manage.

9. Do you have any words of advice for people in the world suffering with bipolar disorder, or other mental illness?

I know this sounds cliche, but stay strong.  It’s hard. God knows I’ve been there, and I’ve self-harmed, I’ve hated myself, I’ve bashed myself… But I stayed strong.

Look at where I am today.  Everything is right with my world, and you know what?  You could be the same way in 5 years. You don’t know.  I have the scars to prove that I’ve struggled, but who doesn’t in this lifetime…?

Sweetie, things will be alright, so Stay Strong.

Update – March 27th 2015

It’s been a while, at least to me.  I’ve been doing good and I’ve seen to recover from that weight thing by myself.  I haven’t weighed myself in a couple of days, and I’m not as obsessive as it when I wanted to lose weight.  I want to lose it in a healthy way.

As for mental health things, I’m suddenly dealing with a lot of anxiety.  When my boyfriend said something about video chatting, I started shaking and couldn’t breathe.  I know this could be a side effect of Abilify, and I hope it could be treated with something more than a pill as needed (they make me tired and I can’t deal with it).

I’ve had no hallucinations so far, and that’s a great thing.  I also found out that I can adopt if my schizoaffective disorder is under control.  I would love to adopt a bouncing baby boy, and I have some names picked out for him.  I also might adopt a little girl as well, but I’ve got to be in check with my symptoms.

I’ve got my first job, and I’m really stoked about that.  I don’t think it’d be much stress, regardless of the fact that it’s fast food related.  I believe I’m going to be a cashier, and I’m totally fine with it.  I’m nervous because orientation is Monday.  I get to see who I’m working with, so that will be interesting.

But these are things that have been happening, and I’m happy where I am right now.  If you told me a year ago that things would be alright, I wouldn’t believe you.  But… I’m happy. Very happy.

Racing thoughts and Other Things.

I’m having racing thoughts again, and I think it’s because my meds might need to be adjusted.  They’re not as bad as they used to be, but I think they can impair me from functioning at times.  Does anyone else freeze when they have racing thoughts and they try to overthink them but it’s impossible…?

Anyways, I can’t believe it, but I’m doing better.  I was just going through a depressive phase, which I notice that I hallucinate more during that time, and everything is alright with me.

I cancelled therapy for once.  It’s nice to cancel it because you know there’s nothing really to talk about.  There’s not really much of anything to talk about except weighing myself excessively.  It needs to be addressed, but I need a break right now.

My boyfriend and I are doing well.  I’ve fallen more in love with him than he has ever known. He makes me happy, and I make him happy.  We haven’t fought or anything because we communicate well.

That’s about all I have to talk about.

Unexpected. 

I told my boyfriend that I was schizoaffective. He seemed to be fine with it. I made sure to tell him that it wasn’t going to change who I was, and he didn’t seem hesitant to grab my hand, kiss it, and say that he accepted me regardless. If that’s not loyalty, I don’t know what is. 

EDIT: I also hallucinated twice while seeing my boyfriend as well. It wasn’t scary at all. He’s also noticed a difference in my mood, and he loves it. 

Learning How to Cope & More.

I’ve had better days, but I’ve had worse days as well.  I guess I need to learn how to cope with things in general.  I should cope with anxiety, but instead of just sitting here with my crocheting things (that’s how I cope with anxiety), I’m watching a Korean Drama.

I’m finding new ways to cope, and I have it down to these activities:

  • Journalling, which is something I do when I’m depressed or bored.
  • Watching Netflix (Apparently, it helps me keep my mind off of things)
  • Crocheting, which helps me work out my anxiety.

I also saw someone cook when they’re stressed, anxious, sad, or just happy.  I want to learn how to cook amazing recipes, so I may try some cooking in the future and see if that calms me down.

I think that I’m getting better.  I’ve just stumbled a little in the past days.  But you know what?  I want someone out there to read this blog and I want them to say that I showed them what recovery looks like.

As for the future of this blog, I will still talk about mental health.  I’ll talk about my experience and past a lot more to further myself in therapy.  I might talk about other disorders if people would like that.  I don’t mind.  I’ve known someone with bulimia; I’ve known others with DID.  I’ve known people that have more than one disorder.  I’m willing to talk about my experience with them, with their names changed of course.  (It’s going to be for educational purposes only, not a gossip thing going on.) Or maybe I’ll make this a personal blog as well and delete my other blog.  I’m not sure.  Time will tell.

That’s all I feel like writing today.  I’m just giving you guys a heads-up.

P.S. I am going to see my boyfriend today and throughout the whole weekend.  I’ve decided to tell him that I’m schizoaffective in May.  The reason why is because I brought it up to him in the past, and he said that no matter how mentally disorganized I am, he will still accept me and he cares.  I think he’s alright with it, but still, I’m gonna bring it up at a later date.

I’m getting worse. 

I had trouble with eating and starving myself and with voices telling me to do that. But now, that’s changing to more risky behaviors like taking my sibling’s laxitives to purge in a way. I ate something that was 400+ calories, and I weighed myself after. I gained weight back. So I did 200 crunches, took 2 laxitives, and ate prunes on top of it. 

I hate myself right now. I’m just getting over the hallucinations, and now I’m hurting myself again. It’s all because I’m afraid of calories. Next week, I have a therapy appointment, and I’m going to bring it up. I don’t want to have anyone diagnose me with anything else, but if I have to be more messed up, then so be it. I just feel so worthless right now. 

I’ll try to stop, but it’ll be really hard. 

Five Nights at Freddy’s and Mental Health?

I was thinking to myself about schizophrenia and how people see and hear things, the paranoia behind the disorder, and other things like that. Then I shifted my thoughts on how to describe this mental disorder to someone who doesn’t Know about how this feels. I came up with the game Five Nights at Freddy’s. 

For the uninformed, Five Nights at Freddy’s (henceforth called FNAF) is a Game that is popular because it invokes fear. You have to survive 5 whole nights with possessed animatronics such as Chicka the chicken, Freddy Fazbear, and Bonnie the bunny. You must close a door whenever they appear, and that uses energy. You are limited to a certain amount of energy per night. There’s FNAF 2 and 3, but for now, let’s focus on the first game. 

This game will make you jump and scream. You’ll panic and think that these animatronics will hurt you. You hear things. You think they’re in a room, and you feel so confident in that answer even when they’re in another room. You get paranoid thoughts. You have false (though not extreme) beliefs. 

When you move to the 3rd installment of the game, you hallucinate, and the hallucinations cause the player of the game to jump. They freak out and it’s because the hallucinations try to hurt you and you can’t seem to escape them. 

This is how I view schizophrenia: a big game of FNAF. (This is my opinion of course. Just thought I’d share.)