It’s hard for non-bipolar people to identify with this, but when I have bipolar depression, I don’t want anything. It doesn’t matter what it is, it doesn’t matter how I used to feel about it, it doesn’t matter how good an idea it seems, I just don’t want it with bipolar depression, and that’s it.
When I Don’t Want Food Because of Bipolar Depression
I’m a foodie. I love fancy restaurants and fancy foods that comes in portions so small you can barely see them. I love stuff made with liquid nitrogen or on the antigriddle. If you called me a food snob, you wouldn’t be that far off.
That said, with bipolar depression, it all feels kind of “meh.” I want it, intellectually, philosophically, theoretically, but emotionally, the “want” just isn’t there. And that’s because the enjoyment isn’t there. The depression robs me of that. And if you don’t enjoy the fancy food made by extraordinary chefs in stunning settings, then what’s the point?
Not Wanting Anything Because of Bipolar Depression
Not wanting anything is a product of bipolar depression and is closely tied to anhedonia – the inability to feel pleasure. As I said, if you’re not going to enjoy it, why do it? And you combine this with the lack of motivation in bipolar depression and, sheesh, nothing ever happens, and when it does, I don’t really care.
Not everyone experiences this in bipolar depression, of course, as I believe it is a particularly severe variant, but some of us definitely do. I actually find it hard to envision a depression where you still enjoy anything, but enjoying some things is actually “normal” in many depressions.
I Don’t Want My Friends Because of Bipolar Depression
Understand, I love my friends. I do. They’re wonderful. But as I explain believe, bipolar depression makes me not want to even see the people I love.
As I note in the video, however, seeing my friends is actually good for me. Social interaction matters even if I don’t technically “want” it.
What Do You Want? – Bipolar Depression
All this not wanting is something others don’t understand. In fact, it’s common for people to ask me, “What do you want to do now to help your mood?”
I understand this question. It’s completely reasonable. But it feels unanswerable. Bipolar depression feels like living in a void. Everything feels like nondescript, gray, dishwater, mist. So which of those nondescript, gray, dishwater things do I want? I’d have to say “none.”
The good news is, when I find myself wanting anything, it’s usually a good sign that things are looking up. And it does happen again. But waiting out the not-wanting-anything of bipolar depression is still very, very hard.