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Bipolar and working

Jess96

Jess96

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 20, 2019
Messages
62
Location
Manchester
Hi so it’s been a year since my diagnosis, I’ve always been high functioning through my struggles until my breakdown last year I’m 24 and I’m a manager I worked very hard to get here,
But I can’t seem to get back to a stable place where I can manage will normal life stresses without wanting to kill my self.
I don’t want to give up my job and lifestyle but I’m wondering if I can work anymore everything seams too much my concentration is not there.
What do I do has anyone felt this way stuck between wanting to work and have a nice life but also want to give up
 
daffy

daffy

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Dec 16, 2007
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11,165
Location
hiding behind the sofa
You’ve done well to become a manager at such a young age. Are you getting any help either medicated or therapy. Does your workplace know you have had a breakdown because it may be worth talking to your HR department to see if theres any support they can give you
 
N

Notalwaysever

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 12, 2010
Messages
194
Location
Florida, USA
I had to change career as my illness changed over the years. I was a restaurant manager, the hours and stress were just too much for me, looking back I don’t know how I ever did it. You might not ever to change much, if anything, maybe just work a few less hours until you get stable again. I don’t know what type of manager you are but I found having to deal with everyone’s problems was just not for me anymore.
 
Jess96

Jess96

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 20, 2019
Messages
62
Location
Manchester
Thank you both for your replies I was a sales manager now I’m a finance manager my employer are fully aware of my mentle health that why i changed to finance in the same department for a while to try get back stable, I’m on qutiapine, duloxatine, promazine and buspirone I was in therapy befor covid but I had just got a new therapist so I don’t feel comfortable over the phone so I am just waiting for me to see them in person again which hopefully will be soon. I’m really lucky to have such a supportive employer but I’m starting to see a little frustration from them non intentional. I really want to go in a programme as an inpatient to do some intense care but I don’t think I’m ill enough. I’m not sure where your from but I live in the uk England and it’s a lot more difficult to get inpatient help.

I want to be successful and have nice things work has always been the one thing Im actually good at I want to go back to sales because I love it so much
But I just can’t handle the stress/employee management/exspectations I don’t know how to fix that xxx
 
P

Pear

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Joined
Apr 12, 2020
Messages
77
Location
Ireland
I was a manager in financial services until I was 33 when I had my first bipolar episode. I have only worked briefly since then. I’m now 50. I can’t imagine working in financial services on meds. I find meds the hardest thing. You sound like you like your job so hang on to it as long as you can.
 
R

rawlinsc

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 22, 2020
Messages
130
Location
Perth Amboy, NJ
I have bipolar and I have only ever worked part time. I have other mental health and physical health issues in addition to the bipolar.
 
Jess96

Jess96

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 20, 2019
Messages
62
Location
Manchester
Thank you for your responses it’s really helpful to hear how other people
Are managing work with bipolar I have more lows then highs
 
JessisMe

JessisMe

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Joined
Feb 27, 2020
Messages
2,643
Location
Nashua NH
I have bipolar and I have only ever worked part time. I have other mental health and physical health issues in addition to the bipolar.
If you don’t mind me asking are you on disability for them?
 
JessisMe

JessisMe

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 27, 2020
Messages
2,643
Location
Nashua NH
Thank you both for your replies I was a sales manager now I’m a finance manager my employer are fully aware of my mentle health that why i changed to finance in the same department for a while to try get back stable, I’m on qutiapine, duloxatine, promazine and buspirone I was in therapy befor covid but I had just got a new therapist so I don’t feel comfortable over the phone so I am just waiting for me to see them in person again which hopefully will be soon. I’m really lucky to have such a supportive employer but I’m starting to see a little frustration from them non intentional. I really want to go in a programme as an inpatient to do some intense care but I don’t think I’m ill enough. I’m not sure where your from but I live in the uk England and it’s a lot more difficult to get inpatient help.

I want to be successful and have nice things work has always been the one thing Im actually good at I want to go back to sales because I love it so much
But I just can’t handle the stress/employee management/exspectations I don’t know how to fix that xxx
It’s very difficult to get inpatient help here in the US too...
 
GaryC123

GaryC123

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 6, 2016
Messages
144
Hi so it’s been a year since my diagnosis, I’ve always been high functioning through my struggles until my breakdown last year I’m 24 and I’m a manager I worked very hard to get here,
But I can’t seem to get back to a stable place where I can manage will normal life stresses without wanting to kill my self.
I don’t want to give up my job and lifestyle but I’m wondering if I can work anymore everything seams too much my concentration is not there.
What do I do has anyone felt this way stuck between wanting to work and have a nice life but also want to give up
I can relate somewhat. I was diagnosed also at age 24, however, I worked another 24 years afterward until I finally just gave up and applied for disability. I was going from job to job and burning just about every employment bridge behind me having episodes of both depression and psychosis.

I'm on disability now and it helps. The difference is I don't live a very extravagant life and really don't care to so it's not having a better lifestyle that tempts me to go back to work. What tempts me to go back to work is the feeling that I don't contribute to society--that I don't pull my weight and so others are working so their tax dollars can pay my way. Granted I make under the poverty level on disability but I get medicare health insurance and live with my folks, so I have a fairly ok life regardless. I just feel pangs of guilt about being a burden on society. I feel like I can't look people in the face and say, "I earn my living." I feel like I can't sit at the adult table or something with everyone else. It's very humiliating to me.

I mean, I suppose I could deliver pizzas or be a movie theater usher or something for a living. Of course, I'd be slaving for dirt cheap and wouldn't be able to afford health insurance. I'd also be calling in late most of the time due to lying in bed with hopeless depression. But, yeah, even a person in a wheelchair can conceivably find some kind of job they can do. Theoretically, just about anyone can do some kind of work unless they're in a coma.

So I either feel guilty for being on disability or else I slave away my life for pennies. Life sucks for some of us no matter how you cut it. Welcome to the world of having a mental illness. I hope you fare better than I do.
 
GaryC123

GaryC123

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 6, 2016
Messages
144
But of course, I don't live in Ethiopia or some third world country where I'm dying of famine either. So I can't even really say I have it rough, at least not compared to what is truly "rough". No. I live a pampered life. I'm a "loser."
 
Zana

Zana

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 15, 2020
Messages
46
Location
England
I'm 25, live in England also and whilst my pdoc is very good it is a bit of a struggle to get the help we feel we need sometimes. I'm not a manager but I have a very high pressure job and I'm 100% certain that the stress from that has exacerbated my condition. Something I've been thinking about recently is job satisfaction; even for a perfectly healthy person to work a job they don't enjoy it is difficult so for those with MH issues it's just going to be even harder to deal with and cause ripples throughout your life.

Suggest having a good think about where you really would like to work and strive towards that. I'm going to bite the bullet and take a part time degree in Psychology and maybe I can combine that with all the knowledge I've picked up to help others in the future. It was my cousin that helped me finally reach the decision; she's only 14 but she already knows exactly what she wants to do - lucky girl!!

All the best and God bless.
 
N

Nursesingermed

New member
Joined
Jun 25, 2020
Messages
3
Location
Washington
Hey Jess!

so first off - you’re a year out from your diagnosis. Be gentle with yourself. It took me about 4 years post-diagnosis to be functional again (and about 3 to start working part time). I think you’re doing great!

for me, coping skills have proven to be HUGELY helpful. I take the Most minimal amount of medication I have and depend on coping skills for the rest of my management. Biofeedback is a huge thing for me, though others it could be meditation, etc. finding your coping skills that allow you to function I think is the longest and hardest part of being ‘in recovery’ for Bipolar disorder because it is a lot of trial and error.

I currently work on call as an ER/psych nurse, but my ‘full time’ gig is medical student and single mom. For me personally, staying busy is one of my coping skills and though work is stressful, it is also a coping skills because I genuinely enjoy it. Medical school is def a trigger, as is parenting, so I also take a few minutes every morning to get centered and touch base with what my body is doing. I monitor that throughout the day, because I have some pretty big physical tells as to oncoming mood swings now that I have learned more about myself and my illness. This helps me deploy coping skills immediately to mitigate or even avoid the more damaging parts of a mood swing altogether.

working is not easy. It’s Ok if you need a break. But it is very possible for many people to have very successful careers despite mental illness. There are also people who are not able to work within the confines of their illness - and that happens. There’s no shame in that either. The goal is to be mentally healthy above all else. Take the time to get there. Have good expectations of yourself and develop small steps to your goal. That way, you can change things as your illness and coping/treatment evolves.
 
Zana

Zana

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 15, 2020
Messages
46
Location
England
I currently work on call as an ER/psych nurse, but my ‘full time’ gig is medical student and single mom. For me personally, staying busy is one of my coping skills and though work is stressful, it is also a coping skills because I genuinely enjoy it. Medical school is def a trigger, as is parenting, so I also take a few minutes every morning to get centered and touch base with what my body is doing.
Some really great advice in your post. How do you cope working in and studying in a psychiatric field (or at least in a field where psychology and ill-mental health is relevant)? It's an incredibly noble thing to do when you suffer yourself from mental illness.
 
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