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Handling Criticism About Your Bipolar Disorder Treatment

If you have bipolar, you likely have experienced criticism about your bipolar disorder treatment. This is almost always unfair. Learn how to deal with it.People like to criticize me about my bipolar disorder treatment and my guess is, many of you have experienced criticism about your bipolar disorder treatment, too. Sometimes people feel like their criticisms are helpful and sometimes, I swear, the people do it just to be dogmatic or cruel. No matter what their motivation is, though, it isn’t helpful and can be very harmful. If you get criticism about your bipolar disorder treatment, here’s how to handle it.

Criticism About Bipolar Disorder Treatment

Everyone seems to have an opinion about how to treat bipolar disorder. And while doctors have good reasons for their beliefs, others have formed their beliefs about bipolar disorder treatment mostly on hearsay, rumor and myth. You know the kind of thing: “Oh, I hear that Jenny’s friend’s roommate had bipolar and fixed it by exercising five days a week,” or “I read on the Internet that bipolar disorder is actually caused by taking antipsychotics.”

Sure. No problem. I hear random anecdotes and webpages also have the cure for cancer.

And this doesn’t take into consideration all those of an antipsychiatry persuasion who will tell you how evil psychiatry is en masse.

So basically, what I’m saying is that criticism about bipolar disorder treatment can come from anywhere, anytime and for any reason. And, thus, it is very common.

Fighting Criticism About Bipolar Disorder Treatment

My feeling is that when someone criticizes you for treating your bipolar disorder in a certain way, you can either fight them on it or ignore them. Both of these are the right response depending on the situation.

Fighting someone’s criticism of your bipolar disorder treatment can be a useful reaction if the person really is trying to be helpful and is basing his or her opinion on some random mythology. You can often combat these people and ideas with science. Educating someone on the realities of a brain disorder can bring them onside.

On the other hand, if you run into rabid antipsychiatry, anti-medication or anti-treatment folks, your arguing with them will likely just make you crazy. You’ll go around in a circle. You’ll try to use logic. It won’t work. You’ll just feel battered at the end of it. Take my advice and just ignore these people. They are not worth your time or effort.

The Important Thing to Remember About Bipolar Disorder Treatment Criticism

The really important thing to remember about bipolar disorder treatment is this: you and your doctor are the only people qualified to make assessments about your treatment. That’s it. Just you and the person who intimately knows your medical history. Period.

The important thing is not to let criticisms about your bipolar disorder treatment make you alter a perfectly good treatment plan. If someone else has a point, discuss that point with your doctor. But don’t let some random person’s criticism of your bipolar treatment affect your dedication to getting better. Don’t let criticisms make you waiver from what you know to be true for you.

Remember, if you had cancer, people wouldn’t direct you to not get chemotherapy, and even if they did, you wouldn’t listen because you would believe your oncologist’s recommendation over someone else’s. This is exactly the same. You are getting the treatment you need for your bipolar disorder based on medicine and science. And that beats anecdote and myth any day.

Author: Natasha Tracy

Natasha Tracy is a renowned speaker, award-winning advocate and author of Lost Marbles: Insights into My Life with Depression & Bipolar.

Find Natasha Tracy on her blog, Bipolar Burble, Twitter, Google+ and Facebook.

2 thoughts on “Handling Criticism About Your Bipolar Disorder Treatment”

  1. Yes I thought science would help us find a blood test that helps us know what medicines will work or not? I can relate to the above comment but our body and brain is changing all the time. So really what med to stick with can be a hard choice. I think the author of this blog is trying to get us to see that others don’t have all the facts and experience of the disorder and its just hard not to tell them off. We get ill and we need a doctor. I’m on a healing journey myself and do my own research I guess there’s no exact science. We just cope. We are resilient.

  2. I used to work with an obese diabetic woman who lost a lot of weight. She had her stomach stapled and was put on a very strict diet by her doctor. Over time her doctor was able to reduce her medication because her blood sugars improved as a result of the massive weight loss, healthy eating and a number of other healthy lifestyle changes. However this did not last forever because she didn’t have the discipline to stick with these healthy lifestyle changes. Eventually she ended up on extended sick leave as a result of diabetic complications and then had to retire on a disability pension.

    In comparison…

    I’ve been through a number of different trial medications for my bipolar in the past. It was hell but eventually I reached one I was willing to live with. After I was relatively stable, I was able to focus more on the holistic approaches such as a healthy diet, regular exercise, good sleep hygiene, stress reduction (meditation), coping skills, (CBT therapy, counselling) etc to support my new found stability. These non-medicinal holistic approaches enabled me to reduce the amount of medication that was necessary (and therefore most of the side effects). That’s why non-medicinal holistic approaches to bipolar are so important to me. They’re a great motivator. I don’t want to go back to all the medication I was on before because that was a living nightmare!

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