Recently Diagnosed With Bipolar

V

Ven8033

Member
Joined
May 19, 2019
Messages
16
Location
Colorado USA
#1
Hello everyone... like the title says, after 2 years of suffering and not knowing what was wrong with me I finally made an appointment to see a psychiatrist and he diagnosed me with Bipolar 2. I thought a diagnosis would be scary but part of me feels like a weight is lifted off my shoulders just knowing what’s going on with me and knowing I’m getting the help I need. I have so many questions that I couldn’t directly get answers from simple google searches so any advice, input, or encouraging words would be much appreciated.

My doctor is starting me on very low doses, and I have a med follow up in 2 weeks. So right now I’m starting on 25 mg of Sertraline and 25 mg of Lamictal. Any personal experiences with these medications would be great!

I also found that there’s a support group right down the street from my job, have these groups been helpful to any of you?

I feel so isolated and lonely, just posting on this forum or having a good support group with others with bipolar could be helpful.
 
F

fightthegoodfight

Active member
Joined
May 7, 2019
Messages
33
Location
Florida
#2
Hi Ven. Welcome. I'm glad to hear you feel hopeful and are hopefully getting some much needed relief soon. Medication saved my life, just fyi, though be patient as it can take some time, and you may need to work with your healthcare team to find the right dosages and meds.

I have bipolar type I. Bipolar covers a wide spectrum and there is significant variation within the disorder, even in the classifications. Everyone I've met has very different experiences with it, with certain overlapping factors and variation in severity. I'm not a medical professional, and you always should consult your healthcare provider, but I'm happy to share with you my own feedback and experience as someone who shares the disease and has been successfully working with it for the most part for a long time. What questions do you have? It's a broad topic!
 
F

fightthegoodfight

Active member
Joined
May 7, 2019
Messages
33
Location
Florida
#3
Sorry ran out of time to edit!

I used lamictal for a time but it was a problematic drug for me personally, however it works wonders for others. Everyone's bodies are different, and what works for one may not work for another. I have not used sertraline before.

Groups can be helpful, my best advice is to try it out and if you dont like it try another. Every group is different and has it's own personality and you may find you fit in better than others. This is just my 2 cents but I would try to find groups that foster more positivity than negativity, as it's easy to get sucked into really cynical thinking when one has a mental illness as you may already be well acquainted with and you want people who are going to lift you up, not bring you down. You want to feel safe, and empowered, not hopeless. So dont be afraid to try different groups. And remember, if you cant find one you like, that's okay too. You want to find a support system that works for YOU. That's what matters.
 
V

Ven8033

Member
Joined
May 19, 2019
Messages
16
Location
Colorado USA
#4
Sorry ran out of time to edit!

I used lamictal for a time but it was a problematic drug for me personally, however it works wonders for others. Everyone's bodies are different, and what works for one may not work for another. I have not used sertraline before.

Groups can be helpful, my best advice is to try it out and if you dont like it try another. Every group is different and has it's own personality and you may find you fit in better than others. This is just my 2 cents but I would try to find groups that foster more positivity than negativity, as it's easy to get sucked into really cynical thinking when one has a mental illness as you may already be well acquainted with and you want people who are going to lift you up, not bring you down. You want to feel safe, and empowered, not hopeless. So dont be afraid to try different groups. And remember, if you cant find one you like, that's okay too. You want to find a support system that works for YOU. That's what matters.
Thank you for your reply and your insightful information.
I really hope that I can find a good support group that is based on positivity, I think that could be quite helpful for me.
Most of my nerves currently stem from starting medication, it’s basically last resort for me and I know it’s very helpful to a lot of people so I’m hoping for the same. The thing that’s getting me down is the fact that even though I’m seeing a Dr and starting medication I know it’s going to take some time to find the perfect medications and dosage. I’m having trouble finding temporary coping mechanisms for my current symptoms. Like you said everyone experiences bipolar differently. Mania is not super intense or destructive for me. I splurge a little on dumb things like scratch offs, $7 coffee or a lot of junk food but nothing like I hear others experience like draining their bank accounts or cheating on their significant other. (Although me spending money on things other than basic necessities is quite out of character since I’m very frugal.) And I wouldn’t say my self confidence sky rockets but I sure do have enough energy to deep clean the house top to bottom at 10pm.
The main symptom that is almost to the point of debilitating is my paranoia - everyone hates me, there’s an intruder in my house that’s going to walk into my bedroom at anytime with a gun, there’s a person that lives in my attic, etc. I know that none of this is true but my brain won’t shut off and it makes it so difficult to sleep, concentrate, anything. I wish meditation worked for me but it just induces sleep paralysis and makes my already high paranoia go through the roof.
Anyways thanks for reading this if you do. It’s 5 am and I haven’t slept. Lol
 
F

fightthegoodfight

Active member
Joined
May 7, 2019
Messages
33
Location
Florida
#5
So medication tends to work best in conjunction with building good habits and behaviors on your part. This too will take time. Believe me I can relate to wanting to figure it all out quickly. I wish I had a magic pill for you and everyone else dealing with this yucky disease or any other mental illness. Introspection takes time though and learning your illness will be a lifelong process. But you only get better at it the more you focus on identifying it. Eventually your brain will be better able to say to you, "hey, you know this might be a bipolar symptom, I should pay attention."

Bipolar can respond well to certain types of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) so this is worth asking your psychiatrist about as it can be a useful supplement to the medication. It is not a replacement for the meds, rather it can complement them. Basically CBT is a way of "reprogramming" your brain to function more normally. This is not a pseudoscience, it is backed by medical professionals and it has a healthy body of objective research behind it and has helped many people including myself. It's highly effective for OCD, something I've had since childhood. While it wont stop bipolar on its own, it can be another useful tool to add to your toolbox in conjunction with your medication. The medication is the real heavy firepower though with bipolar disorder. It is what is really going to make the difference once you find the right meds. Remember none of this is professional medical advice, always speak with your doctor before making any significant changes

For ideas for you in the meantime to help you I can try to think of things that helped me, what do you like to do? What is your daily routine like? If you're uncomfortable sharing publicly feel free to dm me. Take care.
 
L

Lost86

Member
Joined
Apr 23, 2019
Messages
15
Location
Workington
#6
Hello everyone... like the title says, after 2 years of suffering and not knowing what was wrong with me I finally made an appointment to see a psychiatrist and he diagnosed me with Bipolar 2. I thought a diagnosis would be scary but part of me feels like a weight is lifted off my shoulders just knowing what’s going on with me and knowing I’m getting the help I need. I have so many questions that I couldn’t directly get answers from simple google searches so any advice, input, or encouraging words would be much appreciated.

My doctor is starting me on very low doses, and I have a med follow up in 2 weeks. So right now I’m starting on 25 mg of Sertraline and 25 mg of Lamictal. Any personal experiences with these medications would be great!

I also found that there’s a support group right down the street from my job, have these groups been helpful to any of you?

I feel so isolated and lonely, just posting on this forum or having a good support group with others with bipolar could be helpful.
Hello I know you sound like your struggling aswell but I'm adament it's what I have. I'm at the doctors on the 6th June. My behaviour. My moods my head everything sometimes makes me feel a stranger to myself. I can wake up overwhelmed asif I've something to be excited about I will be bouncing and then I carry out senseless acts. I will drink heavily and well don't like my actions. I'm on fleuxtine 40mg a day I think they stop me from acting out my dark thoughts but they ain't controlling me at all. I scare myself sometimes.
 

Similar threads