Anyone Bipolar??? - page 3

I was wondering if anyone is, or knows of any successful bipolar nurses. I am non-medicated but cope with my symptoms via behavior modification and therapy. I do not want to rely on medication if I... Read More

  1. by   Alois Wolf
    Well I have a question about this....Though I am in no way asking for medical advice, Bi-Polar (manic-depressive to be exact) runs in my family and I know I have some of the symptoms... but I'm too afraid to get help because I'm afraid that when I go get a job that they will ask about that and what medications I'm on... I know Equal Oppurtunity and all that... but still... even though I have been diagnosed with clinical depression in the past when I went away for school the first year (that was a BAD year) I never saught treatment... Again I'm not asking for medical advice... but what I want to know is will this put my dreams of becomming a nurse in jeopardy because I'm afraid of being alienated due to an illness that I can't control? I really do want to get into therapy for it and I'm not afraid of disclosing this information because I think it should be talked about more in the open... *sigh* It sucks. Even tonight I was so restless that I couldn't sleep so I cleaned out my closet and packed four garbage bags of clothes to take to work and still didn't sleep and right now its 3 in the morning and I'm still not tired. I know I'm in a manic phase because I've been so antsy for about 3 weeks now and I know in a couple more weeks I'll be going down hill again. Even now I'm starting to get emotional over dumb crap.Just posting this makes me really want to get into therapy but I'm so afraid that it will affect my career plans. Usualy, I'll be stable for a good 3-4 months, then terribly depressed then for a month or two (usualy less than a month, I always feel more depressed more of the time, the manic episodes occur less frequently and for shorter durations than the depressed) I will just be on the ball and nothing can touch me, also the time when I get more aggravated and annoyed with rents and things like that. I'm not ashamed to say that I have hit rock bottom before and have made some stupid mistakes where my own life is concerened, but I really am thankful that I am alive today. I've grown a thick skin of sorts when things start bothering me, but every once in a while things still seep in and I'll just have to cry myself to sleep. So yeah.... It's funny... you never really admit these things to yourself until you're talking about it with people with similar situations...

    PS took the clothes in to donate them... I just didn't randomly take in four garbage bags of clothes to my job... that would be a little... weird?
    Last edit by Alois Wolf on Nov 22, '07
  2. by   Atheos
    Well, as far as I know, some BON's do ask about your mental health history when getting your license. It is not a bar, they merely want a recommendation from your mental health practitioner that you can safely practice. In any case, unless I am mistaken, a private employer can't ask that. At least not where I am. I did hear that in Texas you may have to go through their TPAPN, which is what the put the nurse junkies/alcoholics through. What that has to do with being a beeper I still can't figure out.

    Of course, if you aren't officially diagnosed, you can say no to that question but, I would get help...
  3. by   Liddle Noodnik
    Quote from Alois Wolf
    Well I have a question about this.....(..PS took the clothes in to donate them... I just didn't randomly take in four garbage bags of clothes to my job... that would be a little... weird?)
    Ha ha about the clothes, I couldn't quite figure that out

    I have nights like you had. They don't mean I'm manic but they DO tell me that if I keep it up I MAY become manic - or depressed. Taking care of my sleep is a major MAJOR behavioral thing I do to keep from triggering mood swings in either direction! Almost have to force myself like a mean parent sometimes! (See the sleep hygiene thread for more). Some have to force themselves to eat. Some have to give someone else their checkbook. But I digress.

    Anyway - the most important thing is you, not the outside things. Although you may not attain the outside things if you don't find out whether it IS bipolar, or depression, and start taking care of it. I ended up getting treatment for my bipolar and being on loads of meds when I went into crisis - I couldn't hold off any longer. I put myself in major jeopardy by waiting - ended up w/ a suicide attempt (1985, first time I was dx with depression) - and upon hospitalization went into a major manic state (probably triggered by an antidepressant too). This was after getting sober! which is supposed to be a good thing! (I was using alcohol to control my bipolar, probably).

    I also wonder if my illness would have advanced so far, whether I'd have needed so many outpatient and inpatient hospitalizations, so many different meds that I had to try - if I had started out by taking care of it sooner - and started applying the principles I know about now. MOSTLY dealing w/ the illness spiritually. When I am not right w/ God - I am not right about anything.

    Anyway - trying to say, it is going to affect your life anyway. Do you want it to make a MAJOR impact, or a more manageable one? To learn more about the illness from someone who has it and has written books, I would check out http://www.bipolarhappens.com which is a mostly behavioral management method.

    I am at the point now where I am on half the meds I was on (w/ medical supervision) partly because I got Jesus! and am healing! and also using a lot of the methods I have learned from therapy, from a support group called DBSA (depression-bipolar-support-alliance, which is free AND anonymous! - you don't have to have both depression and bipolar in order to go)! Also wouldn't have made it without the help of a group of very trusted friends who truly understood and DID NOT JUDGE! (many have said that trusting people from work is iffy). Also, the internet - when I couldn't talk to people face to face, I found people - I found a way to get thru. Even tho now I wonder if I said too much ... it did save my butt!!!

    The only problem I have w/ the bipolarhappens author is that she seems to tell people they can excuse their behavior because of the illness - and in instructing those who are close to people who have bipolar, she seems to imply they should understand, not blame, not get angry ... Well, if you are drunk and belligerent, it still hurts. Same w/ if you do wrong while manic or depressed - it's still wrong, and you still have to make it right - apologize, pay back the debt from the uncontrolled spending, whatever, stop the behavior in the future. That was a lesson I just recently learned - I kept excusing myself "because I was sick".

    I knew there was a reason I connected w/ you Alois lol - you'll be ok. I think one of the keys has been appreciating my own quirkiness! and I do Sorry I went on so long!

    *Alois*
    Last edit by Liddle Noodnik on Nov 22, '07 : Reason: (site wouldn't let me hug you!)
  4. by   Alois Wolf
    Thanks for you help zoe and stan, I really appreciate it. I'm looking up places to go as we speak. You've been a great help. Have a great thanksgiving!
  5. by   morte
    lol, i knew what you meant about the clothes.....i am doing the same thing tonight......they dont fit, out they are going to someone that they will......good luck
  6. by   Alois Wolf
    Okay... I have another question. A couple years ago I had gone to my PCP to get a refferal for therapy and he said something along the lines, "You're too young to be having these sort of problems." and procceded to give me a print out of lists of people in the area. I called a number of these numbers and half of them were so outdated I even got one that now a craft store! Does anyone have any ideas on how to find good psychologist/psychiatrist in any given area?
  7. by   Atheos
    http://www.nami.org

    I joined a support group and asked people in the forums. Word of mouth is always the best IMHO. They pointed me out to a pretty good pdoc.
  8. by   Liddle Noodnik
    Quote from Alois Wolf
    Okay... I have another question. A couple years ago I had gone to my PCP to get a refferal for therapy and he said something along the lines, "You're too young to be having these sort of problems." and procceded to give me a print out of lists of people in the area. I called a number of these numbers and half of them were so outdated I even got one that now a craft store! Does anyone have any ideas on how to find good psychologist/psychiatrist in any given area?
    What a nummy - yes, I agree w/ Stanley, also, you can call a hotline and ask for a list usually.
  9. by   Needa Nurse
    Hi Alois,
    I'm sorry you are having such a hard time finding a mental health care provider. A place to start is your health insurance list of psychiatrists/psychologist.If that is a no go, try a med school (UMDNJ or one or the Philly schools) or local hospital, or the NJ Board of Psychiatry. Once your diagnosis is in place by the psychiatrist, medications can be prescribed. Sometimes it does take a while for them to be helpful. Then you need a therapist, because the meds don't do it all. A therapist will help you deal with life and decrease the stresss which will exacerbate the BPD.

    It sounds as if you are on a rollercoaster of emotion. Medication will "mood stabilize". This in and of it self will make coping a bit easier.I think you need to fortify yourself. There is probably a limit to the stress you can tolerate without some kind of help.

    As far as I remember, getting a NJ RN license did not entail a questionaire about health issues, but that was 20+ yrs ago. When I moved to CA 6 yrs ago, there also was no questionaire that I recall. During job interviews, no one can ask about health issues, The employment physical occurs after you have been hired and the information is confidential.

    I was diagnosed as bipolar type 2 eighteen months ago, after being misdiagnosed for 20 years. Finally after 2 suicide attempts, and years of trying the wrong things, I feel pretty good. I hate to think anyone should have to go through what I did. There are options and you don't have to suffer alone. As other posters have said, support groups can help. They are people that understand what you are going through, and are nonjudgemental.

    Good Luck

  10. by   Liddle Noodnik
    Quote from Needa Nurse

    Good advice
  11. by   Alois Wolf
    Thanks for all your advice. I really appreciate it.
  12. by   Liddle Noodnik
    Quote from Alois Wolf
    Thanks for all your advice. I really appreciate it.
    ***Smooch***

    in a respectful non-harrassing type of way ...
  13. by   Alois Wolf
    Quote from zoeboboey
    ***Smooch***

    in a respectful non-harrassing type of way ...
    HAHAHA. *sigh* The world itself could use some Li if you ask me. It's a shame that a joke like that is funny but realistic in the same light.

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