There have now been four close friends (whether I see them in person or communicate with them via electronic media) who have raised questions about the status of my unipolar Depression.
Perhaps, they wonder, perhaps you have bipolar disorder. A mild form. One without the mania. One with no psychotic episodes.
I can't diagnose myself. I don't think I am bipolar, but the milder forms are apparently very difficult to diagnose. Here are the behaviors o'mine that led friend(s) to this conclusion:
Here are some descriptors of bipolar disorder that fit me pretty well:
When I first went on anti-depressants in 1989 (holy crap!) I was worried that they would change my personality. I was afraid that whatever is the essence of me would just disappear. The docs assured me that fluoxatine was not mood-altering. And I would still be me. But not Depressed. Able to function normally as I had before the Depression.
Here was my biggest concern: I didn't want to lose the highs on my mood roller-coaster. I just wanted to shave a little off the lows. Because the highs feel really good. I can get a lot done. I have energy. I'm creative. I think of all kinds of awesome ideas.
And I sound exactly like someone who does have a diagnosis of bipolar.
(By the way, antidepressants did not alter my personality and did not alter my mood)
I am hoping against a bipolar diagnosis. For two reasons: I am so used to being just simply Depressed. I don't want to have to adapt to a knew stigmatized label. I don't care if it is the latest thing in mental illness. I would just as soon stick with boring, unfashionable Depression.
My other reason remains fear of treatment. Bipolar does not often respond to anti-depressants alone. Because that doesn't help with the hypomania. So usually they add some mood stabilizers. That strikes fear into my heart. I don't know why. Shouldn't I want to have stable moods?
Maybe the drugs I am addicted to are whatever is kicking around in my system when I am Up. So much for my avoidance of recreational chemcial use.
Grateful Crap: plain-speaking friends
talked with a friend
schedule doctor appointment to discuss bipoar (since neither I nor my friends can diagnosis it)
Quaker, teacher, parent,