ruralnurs, I, for one, thank you. I agree that the label is given rather frequently just as I believe ADHD is. I became even more disheartened by it when I saw the number of women who were diagnosed when I did my psych nursing rotation. When I read their histories, I couldn't help but wonder if their life circumstances and perhaps even normal hormone issues were not responsible for many of their problems. In addition, I was very upset to see that the drug reps sponsored Tuesday morning breakfasts for the psych hospital staff where samples and other literature was given for many of the represented meds. Unethical, if you ask me.
That is not to say that I believe BP and ADHD are not real because I am sure that they are..just that it has become too convenient in our society to diagnose these things, perscribe meds and consider it done.
The labels do affect people with regard to military service, licensure in various fields (including nursing), etc..
Lastly, as I stated before, this illness does run a broad spectrum, so even if someone does truly have it, they still may be capable of living a productive life.
Thanks for sharing this perspective.