Overdoing it with bipolar is not mentally healthy. Overdoing it is something people are encouraged to do regularly. The 9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. workday is a laugh for many people as work follows them, via cell phone, home, to the gym, and to the park with the kids. And then there's cooking, cleaning, friends, obligations, hobbies, and more with which to contend. And that doesn't even take into account "side gigs," which, for some reason, we're all supposed to have now. And while some people can handle a go-go-go lifestyle, people with a serious mental illness certainly cannot. When you have bipolar disorder, overdoing it comes with a very hefty price.
Mental illness puts thoughts in your head. The fact that mental illness puts thoughts in your head is pretty much the definition of most mental illnesses. If it wasn't for the unhealthy thoughts and feelings that we have, we wouldn't be sick. And just like everyone, we tend to judge our own thoughts and feelings -- even if they're illness-generated. Moreover, the judgment of our own thoughts and feelings often gets translated as a judgment of ourselves. For example, if we judge our thoughts and feelings as unacceptable, then we may feel that we are unacceptable. So, let's take a look at mental illness putting thoughts in our head and how we judge those thoughts.
Do people with bipolar disorder have good sex lives? Do people with bipolar disorder have sex lives at all? And what effect does mood have on one's sex life? These are just some of the questions that people ask about the sex lives of people with bipolar disorder. Let's explore some of the answers.
One of the main differences between bipolar I and bipolar II is that bipolar II experiences hypomania and not mania. Last week I wrote from the perspective of a hypomanic mind, but what is hypomania really? Is hypomania fun or is it just plain crazy?
This year, the holidays have made me mad. Now, there's a lot to unpack in that statement, but I want to start with that simple statement because that's how it feels. I feel mad, and I feel mad because of the holidays. Not surprisingly, that's not all there is to it, however.
The holidays can cause a bipolar mood swing. And by that, I mean they can cause a mood episode that wasn't present before the holidays. So, for example, you might have been stable before the holidays, and then depression sets in. You might have been depressed, and then mania sets in. A swing from one mood or euthymia (a state without mood episode characteristics; stability) to another mood is pretty common at this time of year. So, let's take a look at bipolar mood swings during the holidays.
When bipolar symptoms quell, I tend to fear bipolar symptoms coming back. That's right, the absence of bipolar symptoms can actually bring about fear and anxiety. I know that might sound self-defeating, but if you've been on the bipolar rollercoaster for as long as I have, and have seen as much bipolar devastation as I have, you'll understand that fear of bipolar symptoms is actually quite rational. It's a waiting-for-the-other-shoe-to-drop feeling. So if you fear the return of bipolar symptoms, what do you do?
I find pain destroys my ability to think. I find that once pain reaches a certain level, I can no long formulate rational thoughts, and all I can think about is the pain. I short, pain kills my brain. This feels like a curse for someone who uses her brain for a living. However, pain's penchant for affecting one's ability to think is hardly limited to me.
Bipolar is usually medicated to a manageable level. In other words, people with bipolar disorder who are on medication are not "back to normal," rather, they still exhibit some bipolar traits but at a manageable amount. This is completely different from what I was told for years after diagnosis, and it's also different from what people see in the media. People seem to think that a pill will make the person back to who they were before the bipolar disorder. I'm sorry to say, this just isn't true for the vast majority of us.
People feel the need to "correct" mental health language constantly. This is mainly a product of political correctness and virtue signaling -- both of which I detest. In fact, talking about mental health and mental illness is like talking through a minefield. Wrong mental illness name -- boom -- you've exploded. Wrong sentence structure -- boom -- you've exploded again. And the thing is, running around correcting mental health language simply shuts down conversation altogether, and it's that exactly the opposite of what mental illness needs? Mental illness needs more open acknowledgment, not people shedding in the dark scared of being publically shamed for incorrectly using words.