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3 Stories of Rapid Cycling

Rapid cycling feels like a roller coaster

Rapid cycling is defined as four or more manic, hypomanic, or depressive episodes in any 12-month period. Rapid cycling occurs in 10-20% of all people with bipolar disorder, and is more common in women (read this article for more facts about rapid cycling). 

Bipolar disorder varies greatly from person to person. Similarly, rapid cycling can also mean different things for different people. To meet the clinical definition, there must be 4 episodes in a year. But some individuals can experience multiple mood shifts in the same day (for a visual depiction of this, check out the graphs in this article). Rapid cycling can also vary in how consistent it is: some people see the same patterns year after year, and for others it seems to be random. In this article we will hear from 3 different perspectives:

  • Melanie, who often experiences several cycles in the same day 
  • Lauren, who’s rapid cycling changes throughout the year
  • Lyndsay, who consistently has around 4 mood shifts per year 
What does rapid cycling feel like? 

Melanie: For me, rapid cycling is when I experience multiple “highs” and “lows” in a day. I am an extreme rapid cycler and I have several mood shifts throughout the course of a day. It’s really hard to handle, and it’s exhausting, as someone who works full time in an office setting. It doesn’t change minute to minute, but it sure feels that way! It really affects my energy levels and how I interact or want to interact with other people. 

Rapid cycling feels like your mind is playing tricks on you. You are sad one minute, hyper the next, giddy, and then back to sad, teary, and wanting to hide. It’s very confusing and it’s scary how fast your mood can change and change and change. You feel like your moods are changing so quickly and you don’t know when you will feel “right” again. It is one of the most frustrating parts of having bipolar disorder. 

I have to say that I have had to become a very good actress and very good at suppressing my moods at work, and as a result, at the end of the work day, or on the weekend, the moods can be more severe. I become frustrated with how emotionally labile I am, and I feel terrible that I have anger outbursts, am agitated and rude when I am in a  hypomanic state, or that I am “useless” and amotivated when in a depressed state, i.e. unable to cook, clean, empty the dishwasher, put things away etc.”

What is also confusing and frustrating about rapid cycling is that you can be anxious regardless of what state you are in. Or at least, that’s what happens to me. 

Lauren: Rapid cycling feels like a large roller coaster- but one that is never ending, with highs and lows of unknown duration and height/depth, going around over and over again. The depression of knowing you’ll fall, and the happiness when you’re climbing up, the anxiety when you realize you’re going to start falling again any moment.

Lyndsay: It feels painful (mentally and physically), stressful, scary, and dramatic. Most people think mania is great, but it’s not. During my manic episode, I spend a lot, I can’t feel any emotions, I shut people out, I’m impulsive, and I’m mean. Then I cycle into a depression, and it’s a quick transition. It’s usually a mixed episode for a couple weeks (both manic and depressed), and turns into full-blown depression. That’s when I deal with the repercussions of the mania. I’ll have spent all my money and find myself in severe debt. My relationship will need mending. My physical health will deteriorate. Imagine experiencing the mania to depression (back to mania) four or more times a year. It’s exhausting. And it hurts. It hurts my brain and it hurts my body. I think the worst part is knowing that it’s going to happen. No matter how hard I try to treat it in advance, it always happens; and I never know the severity in advance.

How often do you “rapid cycle”? Do you have mania or depression more often? Has it changed over time? 

Melanie: It depends on the day. I notice that on a typical work day, I start off in a hypomanic state, I am okay for a few hours, then I feel a wave of sadness after lunch, then I have trouble focusing for the rest of the day. By the time I leave work, I can be a little hyper, and my mood will change again. Sometimes I get so hyper by the end of the day that I have trouble sleeping. 

I first noticed the rapid cycling a couple of months after my diagnosis. Initially, my “main” state was hypomania. After a couple of years, it changed to depression. I am not sure if this had to do with life circumstances and events or if it’s “normal” for this to change over time. I do notice that when I am under stress, my predominant state switches to “hypomania”, because in that state, you feel “invincible”. 

My rapid cycling involves multiple cycles throughout a day. The day will end with whatever the predominant mood is. Under stress, I am very hyper and have difficulties sleeping, experience insomnia and of course, this is a dangerous cycle in and of itself! 

I think my rapid cycling will change again and again, depending on what is going on with my life. 

Lauren: My rapid cycling varies- in the summer I get longer but more frequent lows, and in the winter I get higher and more frequent highs. My cycles could change on a weekly or monthly basis. Sometimes I feel ahead of the game and my meds are on track, other times it’s a guessing game and I can’t keep up. I’ve had several major depressive episodes, which add even more frustrations to the mix. Because of this, I usually have to adjust my medications several times a year. The doctors I’ve seen said this might just be my new “normal”.

I was diagnosed with Bipolar type 1 over 13 years ago, when I was 18, but it wasn’t until a few years later they determined it was rapid cycling. It’s been suggested that I had child onset bipolar, but since they didn’t think that was possible at the time they just called it ADHD. So honestly, I don’t remember a time in my life when I was “normal”. I remember getting in trouble a lot growing up, and not being able to control my emotions, but also not really knowing what my emotions even were in the first place. I look back on it now and honestly remember it as living in a haze until I was diagnosed properly and started on the correct medications. 

Lyndsay: My rapid cycling is generally four times a year with little episodes in between. I would explain my episodes throughout the year like this: Every spring (March/April), I cycle into a manic state. My doctors and I assume it’s because of the time change, plus spring is “happier” than winter. I experience this mania for about four months, until a depression cycle comes along in August. I’m curious if this could be related to the start of school, as life changes from fun and playful to busy and structured. I become stable in October and stay that way until January when I find myself in a depression. Mania hits again in March/April. It’s like clockwork.

As I’ve gotten older, I find myself having more manic episodes than depression. I live in Southern California, so the abundant sunshine helps A LOT with managing depression (plus my sun lamp). When I lived in Ohio, the winters would generally be a time of severe depression. 

It seems that all people with bipolar would experience this, but they don’t. My brother, for example, has bipolar disorder and generally cycles once or twice a year (between hypomania and depression). The important thing to remember is that there are multiple types of bipolar disorder. My brother is generally depressed most the time; but he’ll have a few hypomanic episodes here and there (they do not last long). Plus, he’s never experienced full-blown mania.

Do you have any tips on how to cope with rapid cycling?

Melanie: I try my best to avoid triggers like negative people, too much sugar, anxiety-provoking situations and too much stress. And don’t watch the news before bed! 

It is hard to avoid stress, especially family emergencies and there is always “the unexpected”. You have to figure out what calms you down. I highly recommend meditation or hypnosis (hypnotherapy- it’s not what you think it is- not how it is portrayed on TV!). I have learned many techniques to calm down, even if it is short-lived from hypnosis. One technique that I tell people to try is counting backwards from 25, and picturing yourself writing each number down on a blackboard, one at a time, and erasing each number before writing the next. Visualization exercises help. And don’t forget to breathe. Another good one is counting backwards from 25 and picture yourself walking down a staircase, one step at a time. And each time you write down a number or walk down a step, take a deep breath! 

Breathing is important. It is very scary when your heart is racing and you feel nauseous from anxiety, because you feel like you can’t breathe. I think if you can stay calm, maybe your moods won’t change as often, or you can make it slightly more bearable for yourself.  I also recommend finding a hobby, or a distraction. Distracting your mind is very important. Recently, I bought adult “colouring books” and have been enjoying colouring in them and find it relaxing. Journaling or blogging is another great outlet- writing your feelings feels like I am getting the thoughts out of my system. 

Lauren: Some people keep a log, but that can be difficult if you have a lot of cycling, so I get help from family and friends. My spouse has bipolar as well, and is able to clue me in on different changes so we can tackle them head-on. I also try not to get upset with myself if I get into a depression funk. I have little notes around my bed so when I wake up I can see them and remind myself that it’s not permanent. Sometimes the switch in cycles is so quick, I wake up feeling a complete 180 from the day before. I’m not going to lie, some days it’s really hard to be a functioning human, but somehow I always come out ok.

Lyndsay: Visit your doctors every single month, no matter what. I used to think I only needed to see my therapist and psychiatrist when I was depressed or needed medication. Boy, was I wrong. Seeing my therapist regularly meant she could see my cycling before I could. This happened multiple times. It’s important to have someone who is unbiased (and truly, just someone else) to tell you when things are changing. We don’t always recognize it until it’s too late. By seeing your doctors regularly, together, you can catch an episode before it happens. This usually results in tweaking medication or seeing your therapist more often. That may sound awful to some, but it will help you get through the episode/cycle with minimal effects (to yourself and your loved ones).

Also, keep a mood journal. I never realized how “scheduled” my episodes were until I started keeping a journal. It was only then that I knew when I would become manic or depressed, which helped me to plan/prepare in advance. It’s made such a difference.

As for coping, don’t shut people out. I used to do that, and it only made things worse. I had to learn how to let people in, and it took me a while (by a while, I mean years). It’s much easier to handle the episodes with someone stable around you. For example, during a manic episode, my boyfriend will monitor my spending and take away my credit cards (not forcefully; we made this agreement before the episode). When I am depressed, he will be calm and understanding, and know to get me ice cream when I need it. It helps tremendously to have someone who understands the best they can, and that only comes from allowing them to come into your life completely.

What do you wish other people knew about rapid cycling?

Melanie: I wish people knew how exhausting it is. It really is like being at war with yourself. You are fighting with your mind. You want to find a neutral state, but it’s very difficult when your moods keep shifting, shifting, shifting. It’s very hard to find “a happy medium” and to find calm when your mind is always in flux.  

Rapid cycling is frustrating, and can seem scary and confusing to the person who experiences it and the people around him/her. The best way to help someone who experiences rapid cycling is to just be there! Be there by offering a hug, being patient, learning about it and lending an ear. Anyone who wants to support me, has to be willing to 1. Educate themselves and 2. Listen. 

Lauren: I wish there was a way to read it better, not just for other people but for myself as well. Sometimes people don’t get it, they will remember I was depressed/upset, and then if I am suddenly happy, but then get down again, they just give up and get frustrated that they can’t read me or track how I am. It’s not like there is a countdown timer going for each cycle. If it’s frustrating for them, how do they think I feel?

Lyndsay: I wish other people knew that rapid cycling is a part of bipolar disorder, and I don’t need pity. That might sound harsh, and I don’t mean it to be. I don’t want people walking on eggshells around me, no matter the episode I’m in. I’m not “crazy” and I will be okay; it’s simply a part of my life. If I had an employer, I would hope they would somewhat understand that I will cycle frequently, and I’ll either need time off or need accommodations. Though I suppose that’s the reason I am self-employed. I’ve gotten used to the idea that “other people” won’t understand bipolar disorder or what I go through; but I don’t expect them to. I used to get really upset at people’s ignorance, but you’ve got to understand that they don’t experience what we do, so how would they know? And that it’s okay for them not to know. As long as they try to understand, that’s enough for me.

Comments

I completely understand. I feel like there is no place in this world for me. I try and try and I'm always swept back into this despair. I always thought my behavior came from my upbringing and I was just lashing out. I started drinking at a young age and have had so many black outs to count! I felt good when I drank. I was so promiscuous and thought all the guys wanted me. So I would go out behave naughty and then go back to work and be a responsible adult doing everyday normal things. Then the manic would come back and yet another black out wild night followed by depression. This continued throughout my 20's. Looking back, now that I'm 38 I was a train wreck! I made a name for myself and moved out of town. I'm too ashamed to go visit and get severe anxiety over it. But I'm college educated and landed good jobs in the last 18 years so I thought I was okay but just liked to party once or twice a month. It's so hard for me to explain this to people but then when I do bring up things to friends or family they say Jenn we know you're bipolar. I have been to numerous Drs and have taken 10 different medications. As of right now I'm spiraling out of control again! I have been for a while. I left my 6 figure job and have social phobia bad! I try to participate in social gatherings and sometimes I can hold a conversation and other times I feel they are judging me and I just want to run and hide. It's frustrating! I just want to be normal. I'm tired of dealing with these mood swings! One minute I'm fine and the next I don't even know who I am. I have never been married or have any children. Every relationship I ruin and the thought of trying to raise a kid when I can't even control myself is not a good idea. I am currently back in a relationship with a guy that I dated for a year and we split for 8 months and now back together. He is so patient and he loves me so much. Why? Only he can answer that. I am so difficult to handle. I have outbursts and call him every name in the book and then five minutes later I'm the sweetest girl. It's not fair to him. Just last night he said to me he thinks he handles my rapid cycling well but if i don't get help he will also leave again. I am currently out of work! And it's hard for me to wrap my head around how I went from a hard working 70 hour a week important job to staying home afraid to leave the house! I am taking lamotrigine and Wellbutrin and I'm on my 10th or 15th physiologist! I just want it to end. I'm exhausted from this. I have one good friend and the other ones think I'm crazy. I distant myself from my family because i don't want them to know how unstable I am. It's so frustrating! I'm at a point in my life where I've never felt so alone and ashamed. Sorry for the book I just wrote. But it felt good to get it out.

Could anyone recommend a good information site for coping strategies in rapid cycling? I am awaiting assessments but as a student of psychology 3rd year I already know that my symptoms fit the criteria for bipolar 2 rapid cycling. I struggle with extreme ups and down, my experiences fit well with Melanies accoubt, but i am currently stuck in a severely irritable depressive mood. I can't be around people but I dont want to be alone. My doctor told me this morning to simply wait and attend my appointments and do whatever helps in the meantime. But NOTHING I do is helping. I sometimes don't even know what I'm feeling, just great dispair and agitation, so I can I find how help when I don't even know how I feel?

Thank you all so much for this. It is so great to know I'm not alone with this. I'm 53 and was diagnosed as bipolar when I was about 23. I have been on lithium since then.
I think my mood swings might be minor compared to others as I have been able to hold down a job. I also have a supportive family and good close friends.
I have had long years of low mood but lately I am so down one day and wonderfully happy the next. It is difficult to cope with and I have difficulty trusting myself BUT I am so pleased to have some feelings of happyness instead of the constant lowness.

I have been diagnosed with major depression after several suicide attempts and finally had ect which helped tremendously for 2 years. Now the suicidal ideation is back. I cry for no reason with occasional manic days where I feel I can conquer the world. During this I scrub the house, shop and decorate and make great plans. A new psychiatrist suggested bipolar after learning of my racing thoughts and sporadic bouts of insomnia. I have been self medicating all my adult life but stopped now so I can evaluate my now major depression. I also found that ect treats bipolar so I know it sounds extreme but seems to be the best option for me cause meds usually don't work for me.wishing u all well

I've gone through many of the same things you have. It's absolutely ridiculous. I feel the same way about life as you do. Wore out! Meds don't work for me either. I'll battle through it until I can't. I'm 60 now and been going through this since I'm 22. Many failed relationships,lost jobs, mostly depressed. I have to force myself to do most everything. I wish I had a positive note to end on but.... Hang tough people.

A while back I was diagnosed with bipolar rapid cycling. I know that now because my mom dug up an old letter written by my psychiatrist in private practice to a specialist when he had gotten to the point where he felt I needed another approach. I was in such a state that I didn't retain the information of the diagnosis very well when he told me about it. So now it's about 20 years later. In the meantime I've received several other diagnoses including Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and Schizoaffective Disorder. I am very frustrated because my moods swing so quick. There's a huge gap between who I want to be and who I end up being around loved ones. I take medications and I don't know if anyone is prescribing the right meds, but right now I've just gone through trying out new meds and them not working. So I've pretty much feel meds aren't not the be all and end all - thought I can't really say I'd be better off without them. I'm leaning towards trying to get more involved with my recovery as much as possible and seeing what helps with this in addition to medications. I have been very determined to find a job - but I think for now I need to surrender that need and focus on other areas that can make a difference in how I feel. I am seeing my counselor today and I might ask her thoughts on other things I could do to help with managing symptoms.

I love when im manic. Get so much done. Shoppi g is a problem. Im so tired of this. The worst is the depressive state. Help before i do so.ething stupid.

I've recently been diagnosed as bipolar 1. I'm causing so much destruction in my relationship with my anger. At the flip of a coin I can go from happy (ish) to severe anger and irritability. I work a lot of hours, anywhere from 72 to 84 hours at night every week. I just feel my job is the only constant in my life at the minute. Even though it might be one of the things that is triggering my illness. I can be very abusive towards my partner, and it's destroying my soul. I know that might sound strange, but I'm so scared of being left as a shell of a person. I've got 2 beautiful children and a loving partner. I just can't see it and I end up going into a fit of rage at the slightest thing. I cant talk to my partner too much, everything I think and feel would sound stupid to her. I think I'm at the beginning of a long journey. Fingers crossed

Having just seen my psychiatrist he thinks I am rapid cycling. Good to read comments above. I can be so happy for a day or two then right down feeling useless and worthless. Take both lithium and depakote which seem to stop the extreme highs but still feel exhausted mentally by all this.

Does anyone else go from hypo-mania (which the doctor refuses to recognized and keeps getting mad that sleep meds don't work) and hypermedia. She told me yesterday that mania had to last a week or more without sleep. I have an appt with the psych next week and I hope she will say I can cycle between these two within the same day.

i have lived with rapid cycling bipolar for 30 years i had postnatal depression with both of my children this was quite severe and involved hospitalisation
my bipolar set in but looking back i did experience bi polar when i was at university
now i go from extremely down for 3 weeks then straight up to unbelievable highs. this lasts about a week then normal for 3 weeks.
i am able to get relief from 3 types of anti psychotic drugs one being lithium.i fake my way thru work i work with children most people would never know i paint and i do my most magnificent pieces when im high i rarely paint when im low sometimes i wonder why i have this and i get jealous of those who are 'normal' i really got everything that stephen fry went thru its a fantastic documentary any way i am hi at the moment and have a painting in an exhibition in australia thats my story

Which ones have worked for those of you with rapid cycling? i've hated all of the meds, I don't feel any of them have really worked.

I identify strongly with Melanie. I have yet to be diagnosed or seek professional help but I am at the point where I know I have to. Mental illness in the African American community is highly downplayed and ignored. Your family and peers don't understand or really seek to educate themselves, so I'm really just coming off as crazy to them. It's extremely frustrating when they ask "well what's wrong?" and I can't explain myself. I don't know why I'm crying one hour and then I'm extra optimistic the next. I don't sleep. My eating habits are up and down. I went from 200 lbs in high school to 114 lbs currently. I'm 26. I do have a history of substance abuse which I'm currently working on. I'm in debt and don't have a drivers license due to irresponsible choices. I work in an office and it's so difficult to mask the emotional, mental, and physical pain on a daily basis. I start the day on an extreme high point. I feel great. But by the end of the day, I feel worthless. I have all the symptoms listed from different sites. Hopefully I will find the strength to get over my pride and seek help. I don't wanna kill myself before I'm 30. Thank you to everyone who has shared their story. It's comforting to know we are in this together.

It is so good to read all the comments. My partner is BP and is really struggling. He cycles about 2/3 times per week and it is a huge strain on our relationship. Some days I just can't talk to him because he is just so angry and rude and offensive. He is always ashamed and sorry afterwards and I know he can't control it. He upsets all those he loves and then hates himself for it. Unfortunately the health system just doesn't work for his cycles. When he's ready to get help it takes a few days to get an appointment and then his mood has changed and he's not in a place where he can get help. It just feels like we are all waiting for something bad to happen and because he can't get the help or medication he needs, it feels inevitable.

Thank you so much for sharing all of this. In some ways my situation became a bit clearer after reading Melanie's super-rapid cycling story but in some ways I am more confused.
I was diagnosed with Bipolar II ten years ago but I've had it as long as I remember myself (at least from the age of 5). My younger years were very much up-and-down on a constant basis but mostly hypomanic although at the age of 10 was the first time I thought of suicide. Through my teens I was mainly depressed but only a few times like a vegetable; most of the time, even when I'm super depressed and feeling suiciadle I still can't sit still... i have had VERY serious depressive episodes since being diagnosed, despite being on lamotrigine. I have tried to commit a suicide (rescued by police) on one of the occasions and I would say that I've had at least two deeply depressive episodes per year for the last 10 years since taking medication. Now, other than the prolonged epidodes, I would go through a billion emotions all within a day, sometimes within one sentence. It's a rollercoaster and I feel ABSOLUTELY INSANE. I am fighting within myself on a constant basis and overanalysing every single little thing. As many of you mentioned yourselves, I too had to become an incredible actress. Most people can't tell most of the time cause I am so damn good at it. It's like I am one person on the outside but inside is this monster. I don't sleep, my brain is working ALL the time. At night I have to face all my monsters within. It's a full time job!!!
For the past 3 months I have had what I thought was a manic episode. Losing touch with reality, hallucinating, talking non stop and too fast and not making sense. At first it felt pretty amazing but then it was just like having a CONSTANT panic attack that just wouldn't go away. It was impossible to hide and people were making comments. I went to see a doctor and said my meds obviously aren't helping and I'm not sure they ever did. Doctor said they found in my notes that BPD was mentioned a few times. I used to think I had both (cause so many people suggested it that I went and read books about it etc). Now I'm being taken off my meds entirely before the doctors can think of what to give me. I think it is because my cycling is so rapid that one of the doctors might have suggested that it's BPD rather than bipolar. But I have many more symptoms of bipolar than BPD, and some BPD symptoms don't apply at all (like, my depression is not connected to my self image in any way, I just wake up feeling hopeless one day or yes something might happen than makes me think that I'm not appreciated and surrounded by fools who don't appreciate my genius so I might as well kill myself- that type of thing!). It doesn't sound like any case of BPD I've ever come across.
Anyway, I am SO curious whether any of you here who have ultra-fast rapid cycling (within one hour/ day) have ever been suggested to that you might actually have BPD rather than bipolar? Or is anyone here who's got both?? This is THE FIRST page online that I found which mentions cycling in such rapid form. I have read dozens of articles from psychiatric doctors online that say that "rapid cycling bipolar" means that each cycle lasts a couple of weeks at the very least.
ANY advice would be appreciated and I am aching to hear things in details! I'll be happy to provide more details myself as well, although this post got so long now that I bet only a few of you managed to read through to the end! ;)
Thank you so much for your time and Thank you SO much for your comments- in advance!

hi. i think you could have both. i was diagnosed wigh BPD many times over my life, but once bipor too and it was changed. later i asked to see a pyhc and i got bipolar diognisis again but with BPD too. its really hard. I even had two years of therapy for BPD. it helped me see how much trouble i was in. it did not reduce my my severe symptoms. This just dug up the past and lived my abuse in the sessions, making my illness worse. These days people say how articulate i sound.....welll...that must be my therapy! Not a total waste then. (rolls eyes)

This sounds exactly like me. I was diagnosed with bipolar around age five as Bipolar Not otherwise specified. Shortly after I was started on medication which, after about a year of trial and error to find the correct combination, worked wonders. I would have occasional hypomanic episodes and occasional depressive episodes. I have always dealt with ultra rapid cycling. Now that I am twenty the doctors are suggesting a personality disorder diagnosis instead of bipolar. Apparently because I don't fit into the DSM 5 boxes for bipolar I or II's timeline I can't have bipolar!? The problem is I have more symptoms of bipolar disorder than Borderline personality disorder or really any other mental illness. I just want to find the right medicine combination as the two that I was on have been less effective recently. I wish there was any easy answer.

I fell in love with a clinically diagnosed Bipolar over the course of this year. We had talked about her condition and past things that had been triggers and all of that stuff. We never fought argued or anything....everything with us was better than id had with anyone else in the past. This was all because our communication was great, we could talk about anything without a problem. She had decided not to take her medication anymore because insurance had changed and it was really expensive, and she was doing really well with no swings or anything. She did tell me to let her know if anything changed and she would look into actually picking them up. At the end of July she found out her mother was dying and things progressively changed over the next few weeks...less communication and seeing each other. Said she needed space and time and i did everything i could to be there for her when she let me. Then she broke things off saying it was too difficult to deal with a relationship and it was unfair to me...i didnt fight or anything cause i couldn't possibly understand what she was going through, but i told her i would continue to be there in anyway that she needed me. She kept reminding me about some of my stuff at her place and i had a key so one day after work i made my way over to get a few things. It was the first time id seen her in about 3 weeks. The whole house was redecorated, her hair was dyed darker and she was very distant, all our pictures and everything were gone and my stuff was bagged up in a closet. I asked her if we could talk and she said she couldn't...so i left. Two days later i get a text saying that i crossed a line showing up unannounced at her place and that my number was blocked, she deleted me from everything. I gave her the space hoping she would come around and talk to me but 2 weeks later she popped up in a new relationship...with a guy at her work, which is totally not like her. As far as i know she still isn't on her medication and i feel like im helpless and useless to someone i really care about, i was making plans to spend the rest of my life with her and she had told me, her friends and family that i was the guy she had always been waiting for, but now i haven't heard from or seen her in 5 weeks. any advice on this would be great, i know these episodes can last months, a year or even longer if she is off medication and i just want my best friend and the girl i fell in love with back in my life..

Hi Anonymous, I feel so bad reading your story, and am hoping you've found some resolution one way or another? I had a similar experience, falling for someone bi-polar, feeling 100% convinced this was *the* someone I was going to spend my life with. This was all during their mania, When they hit their depression, they distanced themselves , I eventually had to ask what was going on, and they said they couldn't do a relationship. I understood, moved on (to a degree) with empathy, and understanding that bipolar is hard to cope with. And a few weeks later, *in a relationship* shows up on social media, and I've been confused and heartsick since. Basically wondering if I can't read people properly, if I'm foolish for falling for someone who clearly wasn't in the same boat, or if it's a product of the disorder and they did care about me, like I thought they did, at one point. Anyway, I just wanted to share that, and hope you found resolution. I am not looking to win this person back, I think they've moved on to the point where I am forgotten, but I still care and worry and have empathy for this person and hate not having closure. Good luck with everything.

Like many others have stated in this comments section, I have rapid cyclic and mixed episode bipolar 2. I have been in and out of therapy since I was 18, though I am quite sure that my problems started in my early childhood, around age 8.

Over the years I have been diagnosed with major depressive disorder, then major depressive disorder with psychotic features, before finally being diagnosed with rapid cylic bipolar 2 about 5 years ago. Most recently, I have started seeing a psychiatrist again and was diagnosed with mixed episode bipolar 2 and rapid cycling.

Again like many have commented, I at first thought that I couldn't have bipolar because of my misconception about "mania" and the mood swings lasting months at a time. It wasn't until a friend of mine, who also suffered from bipolar 2 suggested that the extreme shifts between depression and anger that I was experiencing could instead be due to bipolar rather than depression, that I talked to my then-psychiatrist.

I still had trouble believing it because my moods would shift so rapidly, sometimes within minutes and always multiple times during the day. Even though I researched and read up on rapid cycling, the description of it (that is 4 or more mood swings during a year) made me think that couldn't possibly be me, just because of the truly "rapid" nature of the mood shifts I experienced.

I also work in an office environment and find it so hard sometimes ... most of the time ... to deal with people. I either find myself too lethargic and apathetic and have to force myself to work on what I need to do, or I am in a hypomanic episode and find myself snappish and angry. Unfortunately, I simply don't have the option to stop working.

On top of all of this I have also been previously diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder and suffer from social anxiety. Stress definitely makes things a lot harder to deal with. My mood swings seem to get worse/more frequent and the anxiety also gets worse.

As Sara and others mentioned earlier, you get to be a really good actress to try and hide what is really going on from others. But that takes it own toll, in energy and time, which can seem like a very large price sometimes.

It has been really great to read these stories and see the comments from others like myself who struggle each day to live a "normal" life. Dealing with these issues day in and day out can be very frustrating, especially when you are around those who can't or don't understand what you are going through.

I have personally found that meditation and breathing exercises can really help to calm me down and reduce the stress and anxiety, especially helping me to focus when my thoughts get to racing.

I want to thank Melanie, Lauren and Lyndsay for sharing their stories, as well as everyone else who has commented and shared their personal stories here. Knowing I am not alone in the things I have experienced, the lack of understanding for what it means to be rapid cyclic and bipolar (both from ourselves and from others) fosters a sense of community that makes me feel good when I see it.

Hi,can anyone shed some light on this!!!! My daughter is 20 she has been struggling with her mental health for a long time it took me a while to recognise it don't know why though as their is a history of mental health in my family from my mother to sisters then on to two of my daughters so does that mean I should me an expert,my sister took her own life 7 years ago my eldest daughter suffers with anxiety & depression,& the youngest has bi polar not sure which one she has but yesterday she took a small over dose and ended up in hospital,a male nurse said shed had a rapid episode which I've never heard of before,I've tried talking to her but she shuts me out and can be quite vile the way she speaks to me when she was younger I just thought it was because she was because of teenage attitude,I'm mentally exhausted and really don't know what to do I'm hopping this suicide attempt doesn't lead to another,however reading your posts has given me more insight to her behaviour.

It seems I have the strangest version of Bipolar, I am more unipolar as in I am stuck in the "hypomanic" phase and I have mood swings (anxiety, irritability, despair, anguish, etc..) all throughout the day I am under a lot of stress and it feels like my mind refuses to calm down and let me relax and I sleep only about 5 hours anymore sleep I try to get is so fragmented. is anyone else experiencing or have experienced this? the brain being stuck on the "on" switch does it ever calm down? does sleep ever normalize? do the mood swings let up somewhat once the major stress is removed?

Thanks so much. I've been diagnosed with major depression 2 years ago but since a long time ago I don't feel only depressed anymore (can that even change? Still confused about that) It's like someone clicks on a button and I start to have full energy, my mind is working 100 times faster and I can't do only one thing. 2 hours later I find myself on my bed totally numb and depressed again. But I only heard from bipolar disorder mood swings that stay at least a weak or month and I was so confused. But then I did some research and found this article. I feel exactly like Melanie.
I have physical chest pain from my heavy heart but can't let my emotions out because I still have toxic masculinity of thinking that crying is weak which doesn't make sense because I'm a girl... Hm whatever.
I feel relieved reading the comments knowing that I'm not alone.
I also read that medications don't really work on rapid cycling people, is that true?

Reading this article is almost like a narrative of daily life. Initially, I thought I must be wrong and it's just day to day normality as cycles are supposedly weeks long, or that's what the smart people say. I cycle multiple times a day. It makes life really hard. I was misdiagnosed with depression 2 years ago and was treated as such with increasing doses and it just didn't help, I always said it feels like I'm circling the drain but won't ever fall in or move away from it. Recently I moved to a new Dr and he got the diagnosis spot on and I started treatment. I am still in the build-up phase as I had to ween off the antidep's first, what a horrible experience.
I guess a way to describe it is like having a playlist of music but every song is different, slow song followed by hyper rave song followed by country followed by pop, followed by a rave song again followed by a blues song followed by a sad song. Each song evokes a different emotion and they are cycling the whole time.

My wife really tries to support me but it gets really overwhelming for her as well, we have a baby and it's taking a toll on her, to the point where her frustration is being vented by targeting me. Everything I do is wrong, my hobbies are "Removing me from spending time with her and my family" although it is how I escape day-to-day frustration and it doesn't feel like I am not spending time with them. I spend 2 hours with my child every day when I collect her from daycare, we eat at the table together most nights.

I overspend and get into debt, do really stupid things, like ruined one of her friendships by tempting her friend to see if she would risk wanting me as I craved being wanted at that time, I needed adoration. This happened in a hypo-mania cycle which I made worse with alcohol. Afterward, I just can't believe the crap I get myself into, I would never do such things normally. I love my wife and child with all my heart and really hate myself for the things I do. I no longer drink any alcohol.

I get angry when my phone rings as "People are bothering me when I am trying to do things". Functioning normally in a workplace is a challenge and I have to check my emotions all day. Sometimes I have to go to the restroom for some quick alone-time to think about my actions before I do them for fear of overreacting and being rude or nasty towards someone.

It feels like I can't trust myself and I am a horrible person. Life is not what I imagined it would be during my youth. I bounce between hobbies when I lose interest in the one I pick up the other, this cycle is about 3 months only to rinse and repeat it again. I have a horrible memory, I misplace things all the time and get mad at myself for doing so. They keep me sane, it's my escape from my predicament and stops me from doing stupid things.

I understand the challenges and things I did was wrong, but the best way to describe it is that at that moment it made perfect sense to do what I did. If that makes sense?

This article would help people understand what it's like living with this sickness which has no cure and you have to medicate until you hit 6ft. I really hope that the course I am on now will achieve balance and get me the way I was 10 years ago. I just want to get on with life with my family. If you have BP and you have a wife which can cope with the strain you are lucky and should hold on to that. It won't be easy for them, it will be really challenging and sometimes horrible.

A

I am concerned about my sister and rapid cycling bipolar. What medication or medications worked best for all of you, and what ones were the worst? Any help you can give would be so much appreciated.

I am 25 and was just diagnosed as being 'on the bipolar spectrum' after seeing a new psychiatrist. Previous ones didn't think I had enough of the mania component, except for when I was 18 and on a really high dose of Zoloft. I'd been first diagnosed with depression and anxiety at age 11 and been off and on a series of SSRIs and SNRIs since, as well as some mood stabilizers when I was going through a pretty bad time at age 18 after which the doctor later determined had been triggered by too much serotonin --up till now, she was the one doctor I really felt was attentive. Others either seem forgetful about my history/don't bother asking and also are unconcerned about my reaction to medication side effects (physical symptoms like stomach problems especially). Reading Melanie's story really made me feel a connection: I am not sure where I fall on the bipolar spectrum (generally more depressive, though lately hypomania triggered by a lot of factors, including work stress, and the news these days!)because I have always thought I could not be bipolar because of the rapid shifts in moods. If I am feeling hyper, it does not usually last several days, though occasionally I have been experienced this. Most often, though, it's been rapid changes throughout even 1 day. One question I had was: does anyone else have significant physical manifestations of symptom fluctuations? (constipation and feeling colder while depressed; feeling warmer with racing heart and sometimes upset stomach and shakiness when feeling more manic)? Thyroid and other blood work has always come out normal and I am not taking any medications, hoping to manage this with alternatives to medication for now...

I was just diagnosed with being 'on the bipolar spectrum' after an initial visit with a new psychiatrist. I am 25 now, and had my first psychiatric visit at age 11..since then have had the diagnosis of major depression and generalized anxiety, including some social anxiety, though that I've learned to cope with a bit better--lots of 'acting' as others point out, though this gets exhausting. The doctor I had been seeing most recently was generally inattentive, ignorant of my history (never took the time to really get into it, and I wasn't sure what was important to emphasize anyways, given my lengthy history of doctors/ medications), and also acted like I was making it up when I would say how I reacted badly to SSRIs and hyper-sensitive to most medications... bad diarrhea in addition to sometimes jitteriness and flulike symptoms on SSRIs.. tried lamotrigine, couldn't sleep on it and also caused other stomach problems for me and a feeling of weakness. Right now I am not taking anything except a multivitamin. First I thought it was helping a lot (the B vitamins maybe?) in boosting energy levels and focus but I am still having what I guess you'd call a lot of rapid cycling, just more on the hypomanic side--exactly as Heather said, I'm either too revved up mentally and physically to sit still and concentrate (though in some ways this is fine for writing, if I can get enough exercise beforehand, but very tricky...and disastrous for more structured work duties) OR I am too lethargic/mentally foggy and generally unmotivated. I can't make social plans because I know that my mood will likely have changed 10 times between making the plans and following through. Even when I want to socialize I cannot make up my mind. I really appreciate everyone sharing their stories, and Melanie's in particular resonates with me. I never thought ( and most doctors up until now agreed) that I could be bipolar because I was not manic enough and if I was ever manic (or more accurately, hypomanic for the most part) it was too rapid, changing throughout a single day. The only time I really felt truly manic for a while was when I was on a really high dose of SSRIs at age 18, but even then it was overall more hypomanic plus anxiety. Lately I have been more hypomanic overall, lasting days even weeks but having days in between where I am very depressed and soemtiems having low moods change back and forth within a single day. My biggest source of confusion (because no one else has talked about this) is this all coinciding with physical symptoms. In addition to racing heart and trouble sleeping, I have had major feelings of temperature fluctuation--generally run cold, but when feeling more manic, get really warm sometimes... since starting/stopping lamictal, was more constipated than ever before in my life and now that seems to be going in the opposite direction, and am wondering if this is because I am feeling more hyped up in general lately? I have never had a thyroid issue as far as I know (recently had bloodwork done). Am not currently on any medication and am hoping to cope with this as best I can with alternatives to medication, for fear of side effects. A regular workout routine has been my saving grace, as has throwing myself into my work as a researcher/writer. Suggestions/thoughts anyone?

I wanted to sincerely thank everyone for sharing your stories. I have felt since I was a kid that I was k i different from all the other kids growing up. I'm junior high I went through a lot of anger and took it out on everyone by the time I graduated I had no close friends. I got married and had my first child at 20. I was diagnosed with post pardon depression. From that day I have been to Dr. After Dr.and hospitalized once. Diagnosis was always severe depression. I have been a on just about every depression meds out there but they would'nt help for very long. Ten years ago I was diagnosed with bipolar type 2. Later added attention deficit disorder. The one thing I didn't opened up about to my doctors was I would have mood changes several times a day. I didn't realize until I found this website that I am not the only one that has mood swings several times a day, and there mania only gets you feeling normal and not out of control. I always just thought my mood swings were just another thing that made me different and just had to deal with. Again thank you all, sounds like I hv some talking to do with my doctor.

Very informative lol

Wow, reading Lauren, I've had a lot of insight. I would agree with what she comments about, except i've never been diagnosed with anything, especially since my parents dont understand mental illness ( traditional asian parents ).

When i in the first grade, i remembered i couldnt focus in class since everyone had their math books out when i zoned in and i still had the previous book out. In second grade, i remember in class i couldnt stop thinking about assembling my own burgers and asked my mom about it. She said it was cause i was hungry. I NEVER stopped trailing into thoughts and getting lost in them while in class pr doing anything else. But i decided they were NORMAL, and still think it is.

I remember being such a naive kid as a preteen until i startsd to get too old to be naive (14) and i began to start this cycle of sadness then being okay then sad then okay, etc.
the definition pf the sad cycle is always changing since i mature through the years and through the cycles but kne thing is sure and unchanging - i cycle back and forth from weeks or months at a time.
When i was 14 i started to feel a void in my life. 15 first time feeling depressed and a friend and this is when it kind of started. From when i was 15- 18 i went on and off into depression and confronted with a fight with all my friends so i would alienate myself to be alone and friendless.
But since 18-19 amd 19-20 i noticed that i went through heavy phases of depression then feeling a little better and okay and hope and just
Over the months pf cycling back and forth i became more aware of my cycles and learned how to control my sad phases better. Sad phases included me not wanting to go to work not wanting to go to school not wanting to hamg out with friends . I joined a sorority then dropped out since my sad phase rolled in ... and then i would panic when i missed work or class since i had so much coming up ...

Now im turning 20 and i just got over a 2 month sad cycle (now im better at getting over them) and i missed school and hated my body and face and was stressed but i cleared up slowly in the past week and today i feel better.

Im so sorry my thoughts are cluttered for amyone reading this....
ive never went to a therapist or talked to anyone about how i felt except for my boyfriend (once) but he told me that its since my parents never disciplined me...
just sharing what i go through. If you guys are undiagnosed and go through what i go through please comment!

I was diagnosed as a rapid cycler back in 2003 when I was 18. My psychiatrist was the best and I saw her regularly she understood me better than anyone and was there for me during my pregnancy and my son's first year. She ended up quitting at the hospital where I was and I've never been with another person since who I was open with. I've never wanted to be committed so I lied my face off to most professionals and have since been told I am not bipolar as rapid cycling is a lazy diagnosis and has no valid standing. I started to believe that was true and have refused meds until I'm suicidal then go on until I feel better and quit again trying to convince myself I am normal. I am normal to me! This is how I've always been. I've always been overwhelmingly​ happy or malignantly sad. I have BPD as well which I did CBT for and it helped me immensely. I now have three kids and a husband who is understanding. I have no professionals involved at all as we moved provinces. With the move I lost my disability assistance which was something I definitely need as I've gone back to work and never can last more than 3 months without quitting or being fired. I am so down I constantly am fighting the darkness and thoughts I have no control over. I decided recently to commit myself and then changed my mind as I felt good again. I am booked to be assessed with a new psychiatrist and plan on being totally honest. I need to be with a shrink who believes in and understands rapid cycling. I'm happy to have found this article and these comments as they're comforting big time. It's nice to be reminded you're not totally alone and misunderstood.

Bottom line I need medication and I need help. I have 3 children who I love so much and who I am their whole world and I need to kick these thoughts before my impulsivity gets the best of me during a low. Keep fighting everyone. The one thing I thank the struggle for is my compassion. If I never struggled to live and never had such pain I'd never understand others the way I do.

I just found out that my wife has rapid cycle bipolar and I want to be there for her and try to be as understanding as possible she goes threw very servair mood swings one minute she's laughing and then the next she's crying then a minute later she's so angry, I just got out of jail and am dealing with trying to stay out and she's always been there for me and she puts on a happy front and keeps her emotions to herself trying not to let anyone in, we also have 4 teenage kids and she works every day of the week on call and it's dealing with the public and she's a very private person who hates being out in the world and talking to people, nobody knows who she really is and what she's going threw and I'm the only one that she has opened up to and I want to know how I can be there for her and make her feel like I'm with her and I wanna help her and not let her feel alone, I know she feels like she's all alone and I know she puts on a happy face for me and our 4 kids but it's not fair I need to find out how to help her for her mental health before the depression gets to much for her one day and she ends up committing suicide, the only thing that really calms her down is going into our bedroom with the lights off and just getting away from the outside world, she also gets really emotional when she puts different food in her body like sugar her moods change could be every 10 minutes and she's told me that she's thought about suicide before and that's the only thing that calmed her down when she was really depressed, I just wanna know how I can be there for her cause I only found out today about what it's called bipolar, before today I just had heard the word I didn't know what bipolar meant it all day I've been reading different articles about it and I'm scared for her and I love her so much I wanna help me so please help me what I need to do to be there for her and help her. Thank you all so much, Eddie

Thank you to everyone for your honest comments. It helps to make me feel less strange and alone. I'm 55 and cycle like clockwork every 4 weeks. When I am manic I go to counseling, make all sorts of commitments to courses etc, spend money and get lots done then I crash and can hardly get out of bed for 4 weeks. I take lithium, antidepressants and HRT but nothing seems to alter the cycle. Does anyone have advice re helpful medication or treatment?

Please consider neurotransmitter testing and supplementation. One of the therapist's at our family counselor is bipolar, for example, and does not have to take any drugs. Neuroscience is one company that makes them and runs the simple saliva tests to cater the supplements to your body's needs.

My husband refuses to be tested, so we will most likely not make it. His abuse during his every 3 months' monster phase is beyond awful. There is no doubt in my mind that he has a mood disorder because his two distinct different personalities are unmistakable. He screams, yells, breaks things, threatens to leave, puts my child and me down, even acted scary. Then, he snaps back to rational thinking and being a good dad and husband. It is terrible.

My daughter is 31. She has been having terrible problems with alcohol for about 6 or 7 years. As time goes on she just gets worse and worse. Of course her drinking means that she ends up in the company of some pretty awful people. Drinkers of course. These men that she finds only seem to make her life so much worse. She then drinks more to get away from her terrible life and so it goes on. We have tried for years to give her as much support as we can. Financially she has depended on us for years now.
Trying to believe that if we let her hit 'rock bottom' she would finally quit drinking. All that happened was that she became really ill and had to be taken to hospital. She isn't the type of alcoholic who can carry on some kind of life. When she drinks, that is all she does. She stays in her flat and drinks and smokes all night and all day until she physicality cannot cope. Then she has a few days off it, then it all starts again.

She has a good education, is good looking, and when she isn't drunk she is good company. It is tearing our family apart to see her throw her life away like this. As her mother I seem to be living her life too. If she has a good day - then I have a good day,

I think she will end up,, by accident, killing herself. It is so, so sad. She had tried AA. That took us years of pleading with her to attend some meetings. They seemed to help a little bit but she has stopped going. I think she realises that there are people there just like her who have managed to quit and somehow she doesn't seem to want to be part of that. She just keeps making up excuses or lies about why she won't go back.

She has managed to get through interviews and even managed to go to work. That lasts sometimes only for a few days. Then she starts drinking and lets everyone down again.

i have seen post and i have seen people going through a lot of things cause of a stigma that one doesn't pray for but all thanks to little help i got from Dr Moises Nieto Farino who saw me through pains and make me understand that nothing is to impossible for God to do. now she is well and started her life over again at a point of breaking down. i still cant say much but God know that i am so happy I know I can't make her stop, I have tried. I realize from reading other peoples posts that I really need to get myself some help, I have paid $10,000. of thousands to get her help and to pay for her life and yet, here I am, depressed and so stressed about something that I am failing to fix. As a mother that is so painful. Alcohol addiction is a terrible thing. It robs people of their lives really. It often feels to me that I am watching her, very slowly, killing herself. Taking me with her too. After I finish writing this I am going to book my self an appointment with a good therapist and try to find perhaps an AA meeting. I have to do something . ThanK YOU Dr Moises Nieto Farino. FOR ALL OF YOUR HELP AND ASISTANNCE TO HELP HER REGAIN ALL SHE LEFT BEHIND. YOU COULD CONTACT Dr Moises Nieto Farino FOR SOME PERSONAL COUNSELING OR FAMILY COUSELING.(CONTACT INFO...moisesfarino112@gmail.com

I have been diagnosed with bipolar 1 with rapid cycling and have tried every medication on the market and nothing is working. I am a married for 18 years and I can be sweet one minute and a crazy screaming violent and the cry and go to bed for weeks at a time from being so depressed I can't eat or shower and my husband is as supportive as he can be, but he's running out of patients and is heartbroken because he says he can see glimps of the real me and can't help. What do I do I can't live like this anymore.

I was diagnosed at 27.i had my first major depression at 19.ii definitely believe stress is a major trigger.i have been told i also have bpd though i am not convinced i really appreciate reading all your experiences.it is a lonely disability as i feel i am misunderstood and people don't know how to deal with me.like many of you i put on a front because i want to be liked.i am positive in my comments even when i feel like death inside.over the years i have taken out loans and now i have to try to get free from debt.i feel i am having to play catch up because when i am depressed i can't do household chores.even getting dressed is impossible.i am taking a fair amount of meds and don't have major highs which is a relief.i can't afford to get into more debt.take care.i hope you all can have some peaceful times.you are all sensitive caring people.

I go through these cycles constantly. I literally cycle several times per hour sometimes I want to commit suicide but no sooner do I think about it than I am happy again. Fear is quickly becoming my best friend.

I have a lot of rapid cycling traits but I wonder where is the line between normal emotional experience/emotional expression and bipolar? What is normal? Maybe some people just experience a greater range of emotions at different frequencies?

Very helpful to those who are about to seek help.

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I had these decidedly alternate days of cycling/recycling until 1976, when after a single long (2 1/2 hr) psychiatric interview I started taking lithium. This worked---and I'm 84 now! Now I take a different regimin of medicines, but still under medical supervision. Now I have quite normal mood swings, except rarely. These rare episodes aren't severe and sometimes occur if I don't properly stick with the medicine as prescribed. I'm lucky, really. But that fine psychiatrist opined that my mood swings cost me $200,000 in my lifetime earnings. I think he was right. Dr. Humphrey Osmond, an Englishman via Canada and Alabama.

I GUESS I HAVE WRONG PSYC DR BECAUSE I HAVE EVERY SYMPTON MENTIONED. THANK YOU ALL. I NEVER HEARD OF RAPID CYCLING BEFORE. I AM 64 YRS OLD. I'VE WAS DIAGNOSED WITH NO 1989. I TALK SO FAST CONSTANTLY AND CHANGE FROM 1 SUBJECT TO ANOTHER.I AM BOTH DEPRESSED AND MANIC . I CHANGE SO QUICKLY. I AM ASHAMED TO ADMIT I'VE TOLD LIES SINCE CHILDHOOD. MY FAMILY.HAS ALL GIVEN UP ON ME. I KNOW MY SISTER LOVES ME AND SHE USED TO HELP N. I DEPENDED ON HER TO BE THERE. I AM SORRY I HAD TO DEPEND ON HER AS SHE WAS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ME, I HAD NO ONE ELSE. NOW THERE'S NO ONE THEY DON'T UNDERSTAND WHAT IT IS TO BE BIPOLAR. I TAKE 13 MEDICATIONS A DAY, IS THAT NORMAL FOR BP.I HAVE LEARNED MORE FROM ALL OF YOU FOLKS THAN I'VE EVER LEARNED FROM BEING WITH MY PSYC DR OR MY COUNSLEOR. PEOPLE CALL ME A CLEANING FANATIC.I START THE MINUTE MY EYES OPEN. THAN I EXERCISE TRY TO GO FOR A WALK BUT BECAUSE OF THE PAIN IN THE BACK OF MY LEGS AND HIPS I CAN'T WALK AS FAR .IVE THOUGHT ABOUT SUCIDE FOR YRS BECAUSE THE MANIA GETS SO BAD , SOMETIMES I WOULD JUST FEEL AT PEACE FOR 1ST TIME IN MY LIFE. I AM A CRYER. WHEN I REMEMBER. MY CHILDHOOD IT'S SAD . I THINK AT TIMES IT WOULD BE NICE TO HAVE A HUSBAND THAT WOULD UNDERSTAND WHAT IT IS IM GOING THROUGH N.BE HERE FOR ME ,AND DON'T LEAVE.IN MY LIFE EVERYONE I EVER LOVED LEFT . WELL THANK YOU TO YOU ALL , FOR YOUR BLESSINGS. GOD BLESS YOU. I FEEL LIKE I HAVE REASON TO LIVE FOR TODAY.

This is my story. I am a man, at age seven I knew something was wrong with me. You could see the mood swings by my report cards each year. At age 12, I had 2 pistols and 2 rifles. I took them and put them on the kitchen table. My parents asked why. I said take these away from me, I am afraid I will hurt myself. They told me to take them back to my room and come back downstairs. Them took my on a drive by a mental institution (where they lock you in a room and loose the key), they told me any more talk like what I said and that is where they will put me. At that point I was cycling 6 months and 6 months. At 20 I married, had two children right away. It was until I was 44 that I was diagnosed with Bipolar. I went on meds. Lithium killed my thyroid. That marriage ended after 24.5 years. Three years later I married again. I was stay working for the same company since I was 20. I was a computer programmer. I was promoted to Team Lead. Great news right--- not. After 28.5 years with the company they told me I was going to India. I said no I am not. That was in March 2006. On June 1, 2006 they were having a RIF(reduction in force). I volunteered for that. One good thing as they gave me a 1.5 years of service so I left a retiree. Now The stress of the job first, made me become completely logical no emotion. Years of therapy undid that. But talk about rapid cycling, I was on a 24 Hour cycle. That was 11 years ago. Now it is about every 4 days. I am 59 years old. This marriage just ended. Which caused me a lot of stress. which set me off, even on meds. During a manic episode, I did something against my religion. They threw me out. Now that I am even as I can be, I am mad. I sent a certified letter to my elder, I intend to confront him in about 6 hours from now.

I have BP1 rapid cycling I cycle daily usually starting the morning in a depressed state. Then before noon im full on manic. After i swing back down to depressed followed by another manic phase when I get home from work. I am on meds and try to treat myself right but being hyper sexual can cause problems with relationships. Have some good doctors but not the family support. Im seen as week and im the one holding down two jobs and all this BS. Wait i sound bitter...lol

Hi my name is Angela 55 I have lived with this disease all my life watched my mom and grandmother both die from side effects of this disease I started out as an abused child and and was un console able as a child by the time I was 15 I had my first child and I would have 4 total by the time I was 23 somewhere in there I became addicted to drugs and drinking witch would take me another 7 yrs to break the habit so I looking for answers 2 of my 4 children are addicted to heroine number 1 is female that has been diagnosed with several different mental illnesses schizophrenia, ptsd and bipolar the other male no mental illness diagnosed but severe heroine addictions I guess my question is are the the diseases pretty much go together thank you for any imput

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I am not sure if my boyfriend has a bipolar disorder perhaps someone can relate. Recently he got very angry over something that would normally not upset him and by the time everything was said and done he told me we were done. His mood was already bad when I arrived and spiralled quickly. He said some strong words and even got a little physical. That is very out of character. His parents had said to me some time ago that they think he has bipolar tendencies. We have gone through these breakups a few times. and these moods We have been together for 4 years. I will not leave someone I love but need help to know how to deal with this. I never know how long it will be before he surfaces again. He is 53. Thoughts....anyone

I'm 25 years old now and I have this experienced since childhood that always want to commit suicide,i always want to end my life,it started when i was in elementary.now i observed that everyday i will have depression and after that i will be angry for no reason and then i will interact with others and feeling like i'm so happy so energetic and then after that i will feel like what they say panic attact and goes back to feeling depressd again.and i have this memory loss all the time like i dont know what i did yesterday ..and this is my everyday routine.pls help me if what kind of mental illness is this.,and thank you so much for reading this

If you are in a crisis, please call this number which is a crisis line with listeners trained to help you: 1-800-273-TALK (8255), as we are not a crisis center. You can also reach the Crisis Text Line by texting START to 741-741. For a list of international crisis centers visit this page:http://iasp.info/resources/Crisis_Centres/

 

If you are not in a crisis and would like someone to talk to online, we recommend the websitewww.7cups.com It’s a free, anonymous online chat with a trained listener.

We're sorry if you are going through a difficult time right now. You are on the right track by asking us for help and you should know that you are not alone. Over 60 million people in the world have bipolar disorder and 1 in 4 people have some type of mental illness.

Read the list of the symptoms of bipolar disorder here –http://ibpf.org/learn - if many of these symptoms seem familiar to you, you should meet with a doctor to discuss it with them. Make notes of any symptoms you experience, how often and how long, and anything that was going on at the time that might have triggered them. You can use online questionnaires to learn more about what symptoms you have, but only a professional can diagnosis you.

Depending on what is easier for you and how your insurance works, you can either start with your primary doctor and ask for a referral, or you can start with a psychiatrist or therapist. Let us know if you need help finding a psychiatrist or therapist. This article has tips for finding a good therapist/psychiatrist and questions to ask at the first appointment to see if they are a good fit for you:http://ibpf.org/article/how-find-good-therapist  

You can also try going to a support group. Some people prefer to start with this because it’s free and low pressure. They are usually held on a weekly or monthly basis and you can walk in and don’t need to make an appointment. It’s comforting to meet people who are going through the same thing as you and you can learn a lot by asking questions about what has and hasn’t worked for them. Let us know if you would like help finding a support group in your area.  

We also recommend reading these blogs, which were written by people with bipolar disorder about what they wish they knew when they first found out they had bipolar disorder:http://ibpf.org/blog/i-think-i-have-bipolar-disorder andhttp://ibpf.org/blog/advice-newly-diagnosed

       We hope this information is helpful to you. Let us know if you have any other questions.

 

 

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