6/26/2009

Coping With Manic Depression

Late last year I was diagnosed with manic depression and OCD. I was told that basically I would have extreme highs and lows in my moods, be majorly happy and then majorly depressed. I've been doing well, I thought, dealing with it.

Until Wednesday morning. I woke up with a headache, and Aaron was being, well, Aaron. Goofy and happy in the morning. But because my head was splitting I reacted to him being upbeat in a way that was way out of proportion to what was going on. Without using any words that I used, lol, I'll tell you I basically bit his head off for being loud. I had hurt my back in the middle of the night, (don't ask) and was dealing with that, and was majorly angry that he didn't ask why I was hurting. I started yelling at him for basically no reason, until he had no choice but to raise his voice to try and calm me down.

Neither of us handled this situation well. In the days and weeks previous to this, I have been very upbeat, goofy, singing silly songs, poking and picking at him, and basically being goofy and upbeat, or so I thought. What I didn't see was all my over-reaction to things that Aaron would say or do.

After really getting depressed due to our argument on Wednesday, I started really researching manic depression. I don't know why I didn't do this last year. I was trying to cope with being diagnosed with this THING, and it never even occurred to me.

What I found out was that manic depression is another word for bipolar disorder. I discovered that it is NOT just depression, but rather, it effects every aspect of your life.

As I read more about this, and about the symptoms, I ran across a few sites where people talked about their symptoms, and how they cope. Every person with this illness has manic episodes that are different. For me, I am very goofy, very ANNOYING in that I pick and pick and don't give, and very argumentative. I know right now, writing this, I may be a little unclear, but bear with me.

This annoying, goofy mood I am learning, is a manic mood. Sometimes called hypomanic. Luckily, I am not as bad as some people, but what I realized in my research was that I get in this mood, but then after a few weeks, or a week, sometimes as little as a few days, I get very depressed. I don't want to see anyone, or talk to anyone. I want to be alone.

So....I am still researching this. One site that really helped me, because it is less clinical than others, it's written by someone who actually is bipolar, is http://www.livingmanicdepressive.com/index.htm .

So....you will probably be reading a lot about moods, my manic episodes, and my battle within.

Currently, I am a little balloon-headed, because of an anti-histamine I took last night. I have bad allergies. I found out yesterday that the VA Medical Center will not give me medical care because I didn't serve for 24 months. Never mind that I was honorably, medically discharged. I tried to call the county mental health department yesterday and today, and left several messages, but never got a call back. I left a message at the end of the business day today with the director, to let him know that I've been trying to get help, and that I've been basically ignored. I also told him that if I don't get a call back on Monday, I would go above him. We'll see. Why is it so hard to get people to do the jobs they are supposed to do? If people quit jobs they didn't like, we wouldn't have unhappy, unemployed people, and stuff would actually get done.

So anyways. Aaron is also seeing if he can get medical care through the VA for me, under him. I don't think so. I think he has to be 50% disabled.

So anyway.

When I get depressed, into a depressed mood, I want to be left alone. I have a hard time, like other depressed folks, dealing with everyday things.

In both my manic and depressed moods, I have a hard time dealing with a lot of input at once. For example, the television being on, Aaron on the phone, the dog barking, music on, and the kids arguing. That's almost impossible for me to handle without ear plugs.

In my stable, manic, and depressed moods, I have a hard time remembering things, I am OCD, like the rest of my family, so I count things, it's hard for me to sleep with the doors in my room open, ie. closet, bathroom, bedroom. I am doing it though. Yay! Sometimes I just can't, but I am learning to deal with that.

I would like to take an anti-manic medication, because I feel like if I do that, the fog in my head will clear. I don't know if I have bipolar disorder I or II, but I am sure that once I go to the mental health department, they will help me figure that out.

As for dealing with it until then, well, this is my cross to bear, and I know the Lord won't give me something I can't handle.

Aaron is being extremely supportive, especially considering that we are learning that I am not PURPOSELY trying to be argumentative, or purposely overreacting. YAY! I try really hard not to, and sometimes I can't even tell that I am. So this is a huge relief.

Anyways. I am off for now, but this is what I am handling currently.

More when I know more. Lol.

K

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