Melissa’s Experience of Bipolar Disorder – 2016 – “First, you’re angry…then you’re depressed. And you can never say exactly why. That’s the best way I can sum up living with Bipolar Depression.”
MELISSA AND BIPOLAR DISORDER
There are days when I wake up angry and just wish I never had to get up so early to make a living. I would question why I have the life that I do and why I didn’t have it “made”.
Looking in the mirror would only make me angrier. I would tell myself, out loud, “You fat, ugly piece of crap! Look at you! You could never look right!” Even when I put on my clothes, I would suck my teeth and grumble insults directed at myself and my body.
The day would be full of anger, with every little thing pissing me off. Even people walking in the street irritated me. Worst yet, if they bumped into or jaywalked me.
I would give the nastiest of stares or the meanest of looks. When I ate, I would call myself a fat glutton in my head. When I got home, I would get irritated by little things such as an item of clothing being left on my bed or dishes in the sink.
When I exercised, I would grumble that I wasn’t doing it intense enough and I am a failure at weight loss. By the time I got to bed, all the day’s anger would form a black cloud that loomed in my head and I would be plagued with nightmares.
On the very bad ‘angry days’, I would cut my wrists, pull out my hair angrily in large chunks or bang my head against a hard surface.
The days I wake up depressed goes the same, but with a sad emotion. I would lay in bed staring at the ceiling, almost to tears wondering why I was alive.
Seeing my reflection made me pull and pinch at my body parts and cry real tears. Some days, I would avoid looking in the mirror. Getting dressed, I would cry because I felt ashamed about my appearance. The day would seem long and every little thing made me cry.
I would start to think that my boyfriend didn’t love me and wish he was with someone better than me. I would ponder on other things such as traumatic events
I went through and how I want a better job with a better salary. When I got home, I would overeat to try and ease the pain, which only made it worse after.
I would drag myself to exercise and call myself every synonym of “fat” and “ugly” and “worthless”. I would go to be weary and sad and cry about almost everything until I fell asleep.
On the very bad ‘depressed days’, I would contemplate suicide and write a suicide letter. I would try but somehow, I never succeeded.
I wish I could say that there were days I woke up happy and content with my life. But it just doesn’t work like that.
I wish I could talk about this illness with someone but in the country I reside, mental illnesses are a taboo subject and there is a certain stigma that comes with it.
I am a diagnosed Bipolar Depressed person. My brother is a diagnosed schizophrenic. Another brother was recently diagnosed with clinical depression.
I tried medication, but I stopped because it messed up my sleep pattern and made me feel like a robot. I had no feeling with them. And I wanted to feel, even though I hated what I was feeling.
I just sometimes wish I had someone to talk to. Maybe that would help with the feeling like I’m dying and no death was coming.
THANK YOU MELISSA
Despite great strides in awareness, Mental illness still carries a stigma.
Doctors often don’t understand and this may worsen the situation. Many still continue physical illness to be “more important” being unable to relate as easily to mental illness. The time from onset until diagnosis has been estimated on average to be 10 years.
TEN YEARS OF BIPOLAR DISORDER?
That’s 10 years of emotional agony and dysfunction.
10 years of alienation and isolation.
We ought to be going better. Awareness is the first step, education and understanding is the second, help and management is the third. In her honest description of her own experiences, Melissa gives us some idea of her experiences. Read up on this disease, you or someone you love may be affected.
To be continued …