Welcome to HealingWell and the bipolar forum. The guidelines for how long patients should be on drugs are just that -- guidelines. Docs don't always stick by them. I've been on Lamictal for 5 years or so. But Lamictal works well for me, better than other things have, so we just stick with it. If a drug stops working, or if your doc thinks you're going to be doing damage by staying on something too long, they'll try out something else after a while. But all that's assuming the drug works for you. I hope the new cocktail does the trick. I'd venture a guess and say that the majority of the people on this board started out diagnosed as depressed and later were diagnosed bipolar, so you're in good company.
Keep posting and let us know how that tricyclic works. I've never heard of anyone taking that one before.
Co-Moderator, Bipolar Forum