When you’re first diagnosed with bipolar disorder, it’s normal to be confused, scared, and upset. You may be grieving, and that’s okay. The pain may feel unbearable, but it will eventually fade. Though you may feel alone right now, you are never alone. There are people ready, and willing to help you. This illness may not curable, but it is manageable.
You are here
Grab a journal. This will become an essential.
1. Learn the basics.
Know what Bipolar Disorder is, and the symptoms of mania and depressive episodes. Write “Mania” on one side and “Depressive” on the other. Write all of the symptoms down, even if you haven’t experienced one. This information can be found on this website.
2. Identify your symptoms.
The best part about having bipolar disorder, is knowing you have bipolar disorder. There aren’t any other tangible benefits, but there are definite ways to cope.
I was diagnosed with Bipolar Type II disorder on January 28, 2014 and I want to write my first blog post in this space about some of the things I wish I had known then.
Here is what I wish someone would have sat down and told me on that Tuesday morning:
It’s been over eight years since I was first diagnosed with mental illness. I have bipolar disorder type 1 and have been blogging about living with my condition for three years now. As a mental health advocate, people who are in the exact same place I was years ago sometimes email me asking for help. What would I recommend to help them get better?
Getting any psychiatric diagnosis inevitably leads to a lot of questions. Once someone has been given a clinical label, it’s not surprising that they begin to wonder: why do I have this disorder? What’s the prognosis? What are the treatment options? What will my family and friends think? What does this mean for my work like? But getting diagnosed, when it’s the right diagnosis, can also answer questions people have been asking themselves all their lives. I was reminded of this last month when watching a fantastic video by International Bipolar Foundation blog colleague Christi.