Bipolar Support Forums To Share and Support One Another

New...and scared

Ask questions! Share your worries and fears.

by TheDancer » Thu Feb 16, 2017 4:06 pm

Hello everyone,
I was recently diagnosed Bipolar II and now I am trying to find a psychiatrist near me to start a medication.
I am still coming to terms with this diagnosis. I always knew there was something "off" about me...and then I laughed in my psychologist's face when she said she was diagnosing me (after 6 months of therapy so far).
My husband is supportive of my mental healthcare, my friends are all understanding, my parents were caught off guard but also understanding. I have good support right now.
But I am scared. I was misdiagnosed all through my teens, then decided to give up trying to figure it out in my early twenties. Now, I know I have a very difficult path of finding a balance of medication and life itself ahead of me. I am in my late twenties. I have a 3 year old who has never known any different but I am so, so sad for her.
I'm worried this will be years of finding that balance, years I don't feel like I have in me to just keep trudging along. I want to go to school and get a career, to settle down and find a rhythm and start living life, but I feel like this diagnosis has caused my life to pause - with no end in sight. It feels like an excuse, instead of a reason, that my life has been in shambles all this time.

Just some support from peers who understand more of what I'm actually going through would be great. Everyone around me can sympathize with me...but I need some empathy.

Thank you for reading.
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by Spm24 » Thu Feb 16, 2017 4:37 pm


Welcome. You will find alot of support and understanding here.

It sounds like you have a good support team in your corner. Also that your looking for a pdoc for help and medication. You already have a tdoc. So your heading the right direction.

Once you get a grasp and understanding on everything you will see yourself moving forward.

As to life being on pause, that's a good way of putting it. Many of us find the pause does not last that long others find it lasts longer. But we are all different. Many people here have went through school or have a career

So hang in there it will come together for you. It will not happen overnight or be easy but with hard work it can be attained for you....
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by Lulu25 » Thu Feb 16, 2017 4:47 pm

Hello Dancer,

It's natural to be scared, its scary finally having a name to all the chaos even though you wanted to find out. I'm 30 and was diagnosed at 20. I've spent the last 10 years avoiding and denying my diagnosis, which led to all kinds of problems. I've finally accepted it and I've dedicated my energy to treatment and discovering who I am and where the BP fits into that equation. This is merely my advice but I think looking at BP as a separate entity was destructive to me. Now I try my best to embrace it and accept that it is who I am. It is a part of me, sometimes a scary and out of control part, but a part of me none the less. It's good you are searching for a pdoc (psychiatrist) and I really really recommend a tdoc (therapist) as well. You mentioned it feels like because of your diagnosis, your life has paused. Maybe a new chapter in life is beginning? Educate yourself, ask questions, advocate for yourself, research pdocs and tdocs, read reviews. I did/do these things and it has been very beneficial and I feel I have control of my treatment.

You have a 3 year old, mines is 4. Oh parenting and BP is a wild ride. I know where you're coming from and I get sad for my daughter too. But in the end, I love and adore my child. I have bad days and she does not understand them but I try to explain it to her in ways she will understand. Believe me, I struggle and having OCD with a 4 year old is exhausting! lol I'm beginning to see it is therapeutic too. She challenges me to face my issues instead of allowing them to rule my life. You're child will love you on good days and bad days. And to be honest some of my greatest days with my daughter have been brought on by hypomania. Bc then mommy does things like jumping in puddles, rolling down hills, playing on the jungle gym at the park with her, and she laughs and loves it.

It is great to have supportive friends and family, not all of us do. It's natural to be scared but you're taking the steps and accepting it is one of the biggest/hardest ones. Plus, this support group is amazing and has got me through some really bad days. Find a pdoc and tdoc, find medication(s) that work for you, and let us know how it goes. Keep us updated. It is nice to meet you and welcome. I've learned pdoc/tdoc are just as important as medication. Sorry, I tend to be long winded. (blame my racing/obsessive thoughts) :lol:
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by Pancake » Thu Feb 16, 2017 5:19 pm

Hi Dancer, welcome.

I want to hopefully offer a bit of reassurance. BP2 in particular seems harder to diagnose (mine took ~20 years, while I struggled with it more and more), BUT meds and therapy have done worlds of good.

Hopefully things will get easier for you from here. I hope you find a good psychiatrist soon (:
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by AvantGarde » Fri Feb 17, 2017 12:51 am

Welcome Dancer :)

Sorry you've been through a rough time. I don't have children but can empathise with the hardship of having BP and taking care of a kid, must be really tough.

Hope you begin to improve and the bad moments start being just fleeting memories.
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by TheDancer » Mon Feb 20, 2017 7:54 pm

Thank you ALL for your kind words, you are all so sweet to say those nice things to me. I recently got the Bipolar 2 workbook (my pDoc's recommendation, also mentioned on the subreddit for BP). Has anyone tried it out? It looks really intense but in a good way. I had a terrible weekend but today has picked up a bit since it was so beautiful outside my daughter decided to take a walk and we both felt refreshed.
I feel really lucky to have the support of an online community, I'll try to be a bit more active on the boards here!

Thank you all again, I hope you're all doing okay today.

Peace and love and light to you all.
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by Mocha » Mon Feb 20, 2017 9:18 pm

I'm glad you're feeling better today, Dancer.....

btw, I like your avatar...... :)

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by AvantGarde » Tue Feb 21, 2017 12:57 am

I like reddit's forum, haven't been there in a while. This one is better though
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by Mssy313 » Tue Feb 21, 2017 9:23 am

I understand what you are going through. I was misdiagnosed at 20 with postpartum depression. Then at 21 diagnosed with bp. My daughter only knew a depressed mom who slept all day and never had the energy or desire to play with her or laugh or smile. I carry a lot of guilt about that. It took about 5 yrs to get my meds right. It wont be easy, but its good that you have a good support system. Be patient with yourself. Be kind to yourself. They say exercise and getting sunshine is supposed to help a lot. (How do u do that on days when u can barely get yourself out of bed, right?) Get yourself a good therapist. Therapy is key! Good luck!
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by Found77 » Fri Feb 24, 2017 2:31 pm

Hi TheDancer,
I just got diagnosed BP II 1.5 years ago and it barely stopped me. As usual, I take the blow and just kept going. My meds changed from major depression drugs to BP meds. But I had a husband with ADHD, dementia and pancreatic cancer and 3 adult sons, 1 of whom was our dependent with GAD---generalized anxiety disorder (just like me)---and major depression unresponsive to any drug or ECT. I had no time to pause and my health allowed me to keep plowing through my life's demands.

My husband died last March, my life simplified and my stress level dropped significantly. My health improved greatly and I dropped a lot of meds and got healthier. This is where I would've noticed if my BP problems were very big because all other problems were quieting down. The good news is that most people don't see any difference in me. I have to tell even those close to me if I choose to let them know I'm bipolar because they can't see the difference. My counselor of 17 years didn't agree with my psychiatrist's diagnosis at first but I think I have her convinced by now due to symptom #3 below. There are 3 things that are significant changes for me:

1) I can sometimes want to stay up all night and not be ready to sleep until 6, 7 or 8 am the next morning.
2) I can get by easily with little sleep which is the opposite of how I've been for most of my life. This means I'm fine with 3-5 hours of sleep.
3) I feel an agitation that starts in my lower legs but can move up into my whole body and cause my arms and hands to shake. It feels like electricity pulsing through me.

The point of all this is that my diagnosis has not been a big tragedy for me and has not crippled me for life at all. I'm business as usual and in fact am benefitting from my new ability to function on less sleep than before. I'm happy and at peace with the world due to my active spiritual life. The fear I had initially at the label "bipolar" has not materialized in my life so far. Possibly you, too, will enjoy being on the right drugs for you and living a balanced life as a mother, employee and whatever other roles you choose for yourself. I wish you well!
Life's Journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body but rather to skid in sideways totally used up and worn out shouting..."Man, what a ride!" Mavis Leyrer.
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