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Depression, replaced with what?

That awful, all-encompassing depression has gone.

I don’t know what it’s left me with. I can’t tell if I’m manic until I’m really manic, flying high, and my partner’s kinda the same. If I’m hypomanic right now, it’s weak, I can’t tell ­čśŤ

I’m hella irritable, I have a decent amount of energy and motivation, and when I’m not flying off the walls in a rage things are going okay. Psychosis still a major issue, but it always is and I don’t count that as an indicator of mood.

I’ve got more things done with my pets today than I did in five days of depression. It’s crazy quite how much your energy levels and capabilities change with your moods. That’s something I wish more people understood.

I wish I could swallow or erase the irritability. It’s SO HARD (read:impossible) to contain it, and it ruins everything around me. I feel so damn sorry for my partner >__<

I get scared whenever I feel like this, I feel like I’m totally ruining our relationship and he’ll stop loving me.

You could argue this is ridiculous, he understands it’s an illness, he’s stuck by┬áme through harder times yadda yadda yadda…that’s true, but it doesn’t mean my symptoms don’t wear him down over time. A bit of irritability might not seem a big deal, but it shows itself as hatred and lashing out verbally, and that’s awful.

On top of that he never gets any respite. I never have okay days, so he never gets any relief. I hate myself for what I put him through.

It’s tough, but we adore each other…that has to count for something.

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And depression follows mania

Gog here.

The worst thing about Anon having bipolar is that every single time she feels something, we both zero in on it and are terrified it means the opposite episode is approaching.

Now let me make something clear, this IS NOT like when Anon’s parents immediately ask “are you manic?” whenever she cuts her hair or buys something, oh no.

We worry when we notice such a symptom / emotion, as nine times out of ten, we are right.

Because Anon is never stable, this means she bounces immediately from one episode to a next…depressed,manic,depressed, hypomanic,depressed,manic,depressed, hypomanic,depressed…etc etc…

These episodes last anywhere from 2 weeks to 6+ months, the average is probably 1 month for a manic episode and 1-3 month for a depressive. She goes straight from being manic to depressed, straight from being depressed to manic, it is NEVER ENDING.

Can you imagine? I live with her and I can’t imagine how difficult, how scary, that must be.

Anyway, today Anon had a moment where her thoughts and feelings were low. She zeroed in on it, I zeroed in on it, and we were both scared.

I reassured her. We will cope with whatever happens, it might not be a low episode, you might just be tired because you haven’t been sleeping etc etc…

But as the day’s progressed, that depressive episode is certainly incoming.

Both episodes are devastating, in different ways.┬áManic episodes mean no sleep, lots of activity, wild ideas, anger, and trying to talk Anon out of spending ┬ú1000’s, moving house etc.

Depressive episodes mean sleeping 16 hours a day, struggling to find the energy to brush her teeth, crying, lashing out, and the almost inevitable suicidal feelings.

Neither of these mood episodes are easy, but we have to live with them, because we don’t get anything else.

I really wish people could understand quite how devastating an illness bipolar can be

That is why we started this blog – it’s all well and good people can have high functioning bipolar and live successful lives, but it is not fair to think everyone with bipolar can live like that.

As ever it would be nice if we had medical support now, and Anon had medication to help stabilise her or medication could be added to try prevent this low episode…but thanks to the good ol’ NHS this isn’t a possibility.

We’ll keep living, we’ll keep loving each other. We can get through this together.

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Up or down? Low or high?

Gog here.

For all the world it feels like Anon has to be┬áhaving a mixed episode…either that or she really, really doesn’t have Bipolar disorder anymore.

She’s switching so quickly, especially a few days ago; for hours she would┬ábe hypomanic. She was┬áenergetic, active, she would sing, laugh, train the dogs, work on them with all sorts…and then she would be low. Maybe not truly, seriously depressed; but certainly angry and with some sadness, triggered by all sorts.

The lower spurts don’t last too long, rarely more┬áthan an hour, and as I said it’s usually anger over actual despair…we’re so confused by her moods at the moment.

Her psychosis is back with a bang.

Looking back at her mood chart we had over a week where she rated her psychosis 2/10 or less – several┬ádays were even a 0! That hasn’t happened in close to a year now ­čÖé

Then the stupid guy tried to talk to her on the phone, and since then her psychosis has been really bad…her paranoia seems worse out of everything, and brings with it a lot of racing thoughts and, of course, intense anxiety.

That’s another thing, are her racing thoughts caused by the paranoia or mania? Or is the paranoia caused by mania, or is the mania caused by the paranoia? It’s all very confusing…

Basically, we’ve been struggling.

We took everything right back to basics – if Anon had any doubts about leaving the house, she had to stay home. No walking the dogs, no trips to the supermarket, no appts, no socialising, nothing.

The result? The last few days her mood has been noticeably more manic than low-manic-low-manic-low.

Her daily physical pain (which is a huge issue when her mood isn’t good, and something┬áNO professionals take seriously) has gone from being between 8 and 9 out of 10, to firstly a 1 and then 0’s ­čÖé

Today she surprised me by turning up on a dog walk (bit of a shock and slightly concerning, but it was nice!) and she’s also done some training with our dogs we’ve wanted to do for months but never got round to.

Hopefully we can keep this manic episode fairly manic, fairly predictable, in the hypo stage rather than full blown mania…

And we’ll the stress as low as possible.

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From the murky depths to the skies

For the past month I have been very depressed; before that I had three weeks of mania. Now that I keep a chart, I have exact details of my episodes.

On 1st April we went to A&E (which was horrifying) because I was struggling with the suicidal depression…then yesterday, 4th April, I woke up heading towards mania.

Completely out the blue, with absolutely no previous symptoms.

Because the A&E trip was so traumatic, I guess it could have been caused by that – but still: yay, rapid cycling Bipolar…!

I’m not manic yet, just hypomanic.

Symptoms include lack of sleep (because of course – atm I’m getting about 6 hours, but not good sleep, I wake A LOT during the night). I have the energy, the irritability, and I feel fairly happy. I know ┬áthat as this manic episode continues I’ll get more psychotic, more angry, my thoughts will race and I’ll end up not sleeping at all. Until then, I’m trying to enjoy it.

The day-to-day differences with Bipolar is something I struggle with most.

I just can’t wrap my head around the fact that a few days ago I wanted to kill myself.

I was in extreme emotional pain, and everyday I was in physical pain too.┬áI didn’t move off the couch. I cried, I slept a lot, I self-harmed and┬áeverything was a struggle.

Then the very next day I woke up, I leapt out of bed and began *doing* things. In one day I did three dog walks ranging from 45-60 minutes – I hadn’t managed a 15 minute dog walk a day prior to that!

I carried a heavy pet cage upstairs. I fed all the pets (something I hadn’t been able to do for weeks; my partner had taken over responsibility) and cleaned several cages. I went from struggling to get┬áto the toilet to barely sitting still…in just 24 hours.

How can that happen?! And how are you supposed to be able to cope with that, or understand it?

Although I’m better off now, I’m still nowhere near okay, and I don’t want anyone reading this blog to think “well she’s fine now!”

I still have psychosis all the time. I am still planning to kill myself (don’t know how, don’t know when) because it is the only option – I KNOW this hypomania will turn into full-blown mania, and I also know there will be another horrific depressive episode following it.

My sleep is fucked (I’m nocturnal again…) and we can’t afford to let me spend any money – which I WILL want to do – because after the manic episode a month ago we still barely have any.

I can’t live like this.

But right now, with me hypomanic, this is as good as it ever gets with my illness, so I’ll enjoy it while I can ­čÖé

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Immediate depression

For fuck sake ­čśŽ

Over three weeks of mania, not even enjoyable mania, and then I wake up one day feeling crushed, suffocated and suicidal.

Where has this come from? How can this happen?!

Literally the day before we had made an emergency GP appt because I was dangerously manic, then the day after I was seriously depressed.

Here’s my mood chart for the past three days:

mood (with 10 being extreme mania with psychosis, 0 being actively suicidal): first day = 10, second day = 8, third day = 2
hopelessness: first day = 0, second day = 0,third  day = 8
sadness: first day = 0, second day = o, third day = 8
anxiety: first day = 0, second day = 0, third day = 7

I feel sad all the time, I’m not enjoying things, interacting even with Gog is a struggle, training, playing and walking the dogs is a huge effort… I’m just utterly miserable that I am back here, that I’ve lost that glorious energy, and that it only lasted three weeks. And of course the psyhosis is still here, that wondrous, fucks-with-your-head psychosis…

Of course mania fucking sucked, but I’d rather have it over depression I think, just so I actually ┬áhave energy to *do* things.

Please help me NHS, I could really do with any support at all…

Gog says he’s going to phone the GP to see if anything’s been done after our appt a few days ago. I just want to curl into a ball and sleep until this is all over.

maybe you could just kill yourself, and end all this mess, my head whispers,┬áwouldn’t Gog be better off without you anyway…?