Meds seem to be useless

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Regular Member

Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 44
   Posted Today 8:53 AM (GMT -7)   
Hello to all....I have been away for a while so let me start with this, 33 male with BP II. I have been on as many different meds as one can imagine, the problem is that none of them really seem to help. Initially they may appear to work but after about 2 months they seem to lose their effectiveness. My BP has now caused me to lose my dream job (police officer) and in turn caused an extreme amount or stress. Can anyone out there relate to the medication problem I have described and if so could you hand out a little advice.



Regular Member

Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 285
   Posted Today 10:16 AM (GMT -7)   
Weclome back Un

So glad to have you back. We have been on a recruitment drive to get more males in here. And, you being a former police officer, I have to ask you why do criminals wear those saggy drawers when trying to run from you guys?

I am so sorry about your job. I have lost a few myself due to this condition.

But now down to business. I have similar problems with my meds. My pdoc has adjusted the dosages and they work great for a while then I'm drop back some. I guess I have a weird BP2, I tend to stay on the hypomania side instead of the depressive side. My drawbacks always start with the lack for a need to sleep. A little over a month ago I went into a mania and ended up in the hospital. My pdoc is under the opinion, and I trust my pdoc, that the lamicatal should decrease these manias and hypomanias. Probably not stop them, but lessen the severity. When I was in the hospital, he increased my lamictal to 400mg a day and it knocked me out of the mania in under a week. When I first started on lithium 3 years ago, I was at therapuetic level with 300mg. Now for some reason, I alternate 600mg and 900mg every other day to get the same level. Go figure.

But once again, glad to have you back

I want "I wish I had one more day to spend at the office" on my tombstone.

I used to be crazy, but now I have enough money to be called eccentric.

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 130
   Posted Today 10:57 AM (GMT -7)   
hi undone i know how you feel i suffer from bipolar 2 been on meds since i was 15 now 30 nothing really worked even ect i had recenly for depression sent me manic ended up in hospital just got out not long ago ive decided to stop my meds complety and cross my fingers and hope for the best but i would keep trying different combos hope you feel better soon.

Regular Member

Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 44
   Posted 11/25/2006 8:43 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks to the both of you for your replies and far as the question about the baggy pants....I do believe it would take years of research and millions of dollars to answer your question. One thing I do know they can't run very fast with those saggy drawers :-) Cap you commented about the lack of need for sleep, I also experience this problem. The lack of sleep (despite being on Seroquel) causes me immense problems and things just spiral down from there. Gaz, I tried the no medication route and it DID NOT do me any good at all so I probably won't go down that road again, I hope you have better luck than I did.


Regular Member

Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 362
   Posted 11/25/2006 8:53 AM (GMT -7)   
Just putting in my two cents. I can relate to what you said. I don't think my meds are working either. But, I'm newly diagnosed and haven't gone through a million meds yet, and hopefully won't have to. I hope we can find the right combination for me.

Also, I'm on Seroquel too and it knocks me out, but only for 3-4 hours and then I'm up again. It's really boring and getting old, this not sleeping thing.

I hope they can find the right meds for you too.
Take Care,
    "God grant me the serenity to accept the things I can not change, the courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference."
  DX: ankylosing spondylitis, periferal neuropathy, chronic migraines/headaches, depression/panic attacks, bi-polar, hypothyroidism, hypoglycemia, sleep apnea
  RX: synthroid, estradiol, cymbalta, geodon, lamictal, inderal la, klonopin, seroquel, imiprimine, aspirin, (relpax, phenergan, esgic plus PRN for migraine)
  Surgeries: hysterectomy 1997, tonsillectomy 2001, deviated septum 2005, cataracts (both eyes) 2006

Regular Member

Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 215
   Posted 11/25/2006 10:23 AM (GMT -7)   
As I have said before, I am training to be a mental health counseling, so naturally I think everyone can benefit from therapy! Like the surgeon who thinks everything is cured with a knife.

Therapy can give you a cushion, so to speak. You can gain some understanding of what makes your symptoms worse and to help you with what the medications don't cover.

As with any chronic illness, perfection is an unrealistic goal, but progress IS realistic. Remember, progress, not perfection. Don't beat yourself up here, you are doing the best you can and that is all anyone can expect of you. We are here for you.
The Lady Dragonfly
Yes, it was me...I know because I was there when I did it. Lupus sufferer, bipolar II sufferer. Currently on Indocin for chronic pericarditis related to lupus, and cherishing every deep breath without pain. Vegan and loving it!

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 1529
   Posted 11/26/2006 11:26 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Undone,

Welcome back!

That's a funny thing with your meds: normally meds take up to 12 weeks to work properly and progress may not be very visible for up to a couple of months (well, with mood stabilisers and antidepressants anyway; anti-psychotics are different), but with you it seems to be the other way round. I often find it remarkable how different people's experiences can be. What does your pdoc have to say about your experience? Do you feel like the approach he/she is taking is systematic, or is it more haphazard? The thing is, the problems could be with the meds themselves or the dosages, or the combinations. These things really do have to be worked through systematically, and if you don't feel that this is happening, it may be a good idea to seek an opinion from a different pdoc.

I'm so sorry you've lost your job. Did your employers know about your condition? If so, did they make reasonable allowances? If not, might it be worth bringing this to their attention and asking if your case could be reconsidered? At least with the police force, they know the law on discrimination!

So sorry you're going through this.

Rosie x

People are not like fish: they do not work well battered.

When I'm not in my right mind, my left mind gets pretty crowded...


Moderator, Bipolar Forum

Regular Member

Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 44
   Posted 11/26/2006 1:03 PM (GMT -7)   
Wow, so many replies!! Thanks to everyone.

Seechell.....the experience you are having with the seroquel is almost exactly what I am going through with it, only my initial sleep will only be for an hour or so.

Counter.....No the police were not aware of my problem so there is no discrimination involved in this situation. It was my BP and me that caused the situation I am currently in.

Lady.....The counseling I go through seems to be about as helpful as the medication. I'm not saying I have a poor therapist, I'm quite simply saying that nothing seems to be working. Progress has been very limited for me, I very much respect bluntness and I have asked the Psych and Therapist what they feel is the problem with this lack of progress. Their answer was that I am a "complex" and they are not sure where to go with me.

Regular Member

Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 215
   Posted 11/27/2006 12:59 AM (GMT -7)   
I have to tell you, I have something I have said for years:

Those who can't do, teach; those who can't teach, teach gym; those who can't teach gym become psychologists.

On some level, I truly feel that way. I have said here before, I am a Rogerian. Under this technique, if the client is not making progress, we take this to mean that the therapist is at fault. Either we have not done our job properly, we have been resistant in our efforts to be open to the client, or that we are just not the right answer for every client. NEVER is the client said to be at fault. A client can be resistant, but it is the job of the therapist to break down this resistance. I don't think you are being resistant, I think you are desparately seeking relief to your discomfort in your own skin.

There are many schools of thought in therapy. Right now, the emphasis is on cognitive-behavioral. The offshoot that is so popular right now is dialectical behavioral therapy. In my view, both of these things are judgmental. The client has to behave in a better way for the therapist to view that there is progress. I don't like them because I think they are entirely wrong for the majority of bipolar sufferers. It is about masking problems rather than dealing with them, or at least dealing with them in very limited and stiffling ways.

There is a LOT of judgment going on in the treatment of bipolar illness and in the way that society views it. I refute the idea that those with bipolar are severely mentally ill, because it is not so.

Lets take are trying to help yourself. You are trying medication and therapy. You are coming here to try to gain both support and added perspective. You want your life to be better than it is. I don't view this as mentally ill at all.

As for being "complex" POPPYCOCK! To be human is to be complex!! I am willing to bet that you fall well to the right of the bell curve on an IQ test. I have a feeling you are fairly intense. You are male and I sorta doubt that sitting for an hour and talking about your "feelings" is productive. If you were my client, I think I'd focus on a strong sense of self and work towards believing in and trusting yourself, not waste our time discussing the past which is probably not terribly relevant. I'd also try to get you focused on THINKING about your difficulties and challenges and finding creative ways to help yourself and stop trying to "feel" things.

I view myself as complex. I am a BFA in Design, a watercolor artist, a musician, a gifted writer, I have list of hobbies as long as your arm, and I have been diagnosed as highly intellectually gifted. I am on my 6th career (studying for my 7th and last). I am a mile a minute. Being my friend is a challenge, unless one is equally as energetic and/or extremely patient (imagine my poor therapist!). I am studying to be a mental health counselor because I see it as a place to bring my intellectual and creative gifts to the same table at the same time, and use my highly developed intuition. I am not wild about the career choice, on paper, but it really seems to fit.

I am sorry you are not having much success. There is a bind in therapy. If you keep switching therapists you end up telling the same story over and over and you don't get anywhere. Then again, if you don't switch from one who isn't doing you any good, you'll never get anywhere. How can one tell which is which? I'd say switch. Check the American Psychological Society website and see if you can find a Rogerian in your area. Those who follow this school of psychology are relatively few and far between right now, because the pendulum is swinging the other way, as above.
The Lady Dragonfly
Yes, it was me...I know because I was there when I did it. Lupus sufferer, bipolar II sufferer. Currently on Indocin for chronic pericarditis related to lupus, and cherishing every deep breath without pain. Currently in graduate school for mental health counseling, class of Fall 2007. Vegan and loving it!

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