New member. A little concerned and awaiting diagnosis

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Mackem
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 84
   Posted 12/12/2008 1:03 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi all. Im a 30 yr old guy from England and am new on here. I've been having a torrid time lately and giving everyone else a hard time with my behaviour recently. I've suffered from bad mood swings and 'episodes' (I hate that label!) since my teens and have had the symptoms commonly associated with Bipolar.

I went to see a doctor on Wednesday (not my own doctor) who told me 'it is stress'. Afterwards I got really annoyed and wished Id said "What so its been f@ckin stress for the past 16 years has it!?" He was just a regular GP and not a psych. This brought me down even more as I felt like an idiot! He just dismissed how I was feeling straight away! crap he didnt even give me tablets for stress!!

I decided that after so many years Id maybe finally put my finger on what was wrong and I was darn well not going to let some local GP tell me I was stressed! I booked an appointment with my Doctor today and he has referred me after we discussed how crap I'd been feeling and also what I was like at the other end of the spectrum! I went in to see him with 2 sides of A4 paper notes on things I'd done and how Id been feeling and my symptoms! He must have though jees this guy is definitely ill! I'd manically written it down and it was in such a mess Im surprised he could read it!

He said that I'd described more highs than low symptoms. I agreed but also point out the depressive side and that was probably more I could add that I couldn't think of. It was a stream on consciousness list so it was never going to be fully comprehensive! LOL!

He also want me to take a blood test for an over-active thyroid as that can give similar symptoms apparently??! I'm darned if it isn't bipolar....Im near certain it is!!!

What happens next on the roller-coaster!? Would be nice to hear from you all! :-)

happy bill
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 1132
   Posted 12/12/2008 1:23 PM (GMT -7)   

 

    First, welcome. Glad to see you've found this board which is a good place to meet people who can honestly "relate" to your situation.

    Now as for your symptons, all i can say is that it isnt a 50/50 mix of up and down. Some of us get more up (myself) and others here experience more of the down side. They can both be equally destructive to your life and those around you. Since i suffer more from the manias my doctor and i are focusing more on that area of concern. My meds are abilify and yes, it really does smooth out the bumps of this condition. I still get micro manias but not to the point it was before (so engertic my hands would shake)

    Just remmeber, there is no cure, only treatment. And all treatments have some kind of side effects.  It is a bargin i fell is worth it to live a semi "normal" kind of life.

    Good luck and keep posting.

          Bill

 


Mackem
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 84
   Posted 12/12/2008 2:03 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Bill! Thanks for your reply! Its a big eye opener that you say symptoms arent 50/50! I was questioning whether i was just imagining that i was bipolar as i was expecting an up to be accompanied by a down! That isnt the case from what youre saying? That maybe explains things for me then I guess and leads me even further down the line of convincing me that i am bipolar. How long do cycles last? I must say Im really confused as to how long mine last as sometimes i can have ups and downs between hours, sometimes days, sometime weeks!! This is all new to me in terms of finally trying to realise whats been wrong with me and i find it hard to make timeframe distinctions between ups and downs ie. how long they last, the time period between ups and downs, the time periods between both of those and 'normality'....whatever normality is???! Maybe its normal for me to be up???! Im not so sure about down??! Im darn confused!!!

marthamae
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2008
Total Posts : 285
   Posted 12/12/2008 3:28 PM (GMT -7)   
I am bipolar and my cycles have certainly never been 50/50. I am much more on the depressive side. But I do definitely have my manias.

My therapist said if you think of "normal" as a straight line across, then I have big dips below and smaller hills above. This is my pattern. You might have big hills above with small dips below.

There is no regular time frame for me. I can go for years with no problems and then have a cycle up followed by a severe crash. However, in the past an up has always been followed by a crash. A depression is not always followed by an "up".

My manias are for the most part very productive. I've been manic and gotten college degrees. I've attained career goals. My house gets very organized and immaculate. Mania is not all bad.

But I have experienced the shaking and the "wild" weird behavior. The not being myself. But the mania feels incredibly good. Very high. You know you need to get off of it, but you don't want to.

In the last year or two I have finally been put on a cocktail of mood stabilizers. I have no idea if this will help my bipolar or not.

I thank god for my meds. I know I would not be here without them.

Mackem
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 84
   Posted 12/12/2008 3:40 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Marthamae. Thanks for your post! Its interesting to also hear you have long periods of normality without ups or downs. I was thinking that i may not be bipolar as im not sure whether i go up down up down up down etc continuously! The more I hear from people the more it varies person to person and that the consistent aspect of bipolar is some up-down phase no matter what the duration of these phases or the gaps to the the next ones!

I havent experienced any shakking but i have noticed rapid leg tapping when i think im sitting still??! Is this also a sign?

marthamae
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2008
Total Posts : 285
   Posted 12/12/2008 3:49 PM (GMT -7)   
I think the leg tapping could be a sign of agitation or stress or anxiety. Possibly mania. I'm no expert on mania as I am generally depressed.

For years I never realized I was bipolar. I thought I was just depressed with a weird personality. Then some doc gave me a test one day at the hospital and I totally fit all the symptoms of bipolar. Things suddenly became so crystal clear and it all made sense. A lot of the things I had been blaming myself for were symptoms of mania not personality flaws or weaknesses.

Yes, bipolar is up/down...but the downs can be very long or short and so can the ups. And there can be huge spaces in between. Some people have VERY mild ups...can't even tell. Others mild downs.

Do some reading about bipolar...there's a lot out there.
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