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WhyGenTom


Member

Posted Fri Dec 28th, 2007 8:26pm Post subject: 6 Years of Hell, 2 Months of Mental Torture...
Heya, my name's Tom and I'm new to this forum and have to confess I haven't seen The Secret Life of the Manic Depressive series, but through no lack of trying.

Having had a quick read through some posts I want to express my absolute delight that there is a forum like this avaliable for people to talk through there issues and feelings.

A little background to the reason I'm posting. I'm 18 years old, and for the last 6 years have had difficulty fighting what was originally diagnosed with depression, and also obsessive compulsive disorder which affects both the way i act and the way i think. It took me away from school for 3 years, and has also affected my college life. It has also lead me to spent great chunks of my life shut away, but also having extended periods of happiness to the point where i have become iritable not anxious with how alert and happy I am.

In late October, I experienced a severe manic episode for the first time. In the past I have had hypomanic episodes which my GP and a CPN i saw for sometime seemed to over look, but in this instance it was a Thursday morning in which I experienced what I can only describe as an adrenaline rush followed by a complete loss of control and found myself, in something of a cimenatic way no doubt fueled by the countless hours I had shut myself away watching TV and films, heading down to the train tracks feeling completely lost, unable to find a purpose or feeling that wasn't overpowered by dispair and pointlessness. It was whilst I was walking down, clearly appearing distressed that a local lady stopped me and asked me if I needed help, originally ignoring her she physically stopped me and somehow managed to calm me down to the point I was sat on the footpath while the police and paramedics arived. They took me back to my house, while in my mind I could only feel they weren't realising how much I was suffering so I ran in and shut myself in a room thinking a familiar place may calm me down, at this point they appeared to loom in on me and I paniced, lashing out and striking a police officer in the face which lead them to handcuff me and have an oxygen mask because I was having a panic attack put on me at which point I passed out, fading in and out of conciousness.

During the time I was unconcious I was having vivid dreams of being a flash of light that couldn't switch off, continuosly heading down a read that wouldn't end. Before (around 4 hours later) i regained full conciousness, still handcuffed, in hospital. A few hours later I was allowed to leave, and head home still extremely depressed unable to grasp the whole scenario that had took place.
The following week I went back to college fighting extreme mood swings, having still not seen a doctor because of waiting lists and their apparent inability to see the desperate situation I was in. I was feeling extremely uncomfortable around people, worrying it was all going to take place again.. and although my anxious behaviour was picked up on by teachers and fellow students it wasn't really seen as anything unusual for me. Ironically, in the middle of the week I watched an old rerun of Whose Line Is It Anyway? on Freeview, and saw almost a carbon copy of the way I can behave in Tony Slattery acting anxious and clearly uncomfortable infront of other people, who I was later told appears in the documentary because he suffers from Bipolar Disorder.
On the Thursday morning (my day off) almost exactly a week after it happened the first, i experienced a similar feeling of dread and fear take over my body, at which point I took Diazepam (given me by my doctor in order to fight the effects of what they described as a 'panic disorder'). This time I felt more in control but the feeling of completely dispair, and derealization lasted for 9 days.. ending in what I can only describe as an attack of rage and anger that lead me to trash the garage, destroying a great deal of (fortunately worthless) possessions. At this point my neighbour heard the noise and came to help me, taking me for an emegency appointment at the doctor where I was told i was experiencing a manic episode, which needed to be tested for psychosis (something which still hasn't been done). I was offered prozac and cipralex to ease my depression and anxiety, the latter of which I took and have been told once I have seen a psychiatrist in the new year if I indeed I have the symptons of Bipolar I then I would be advised to take Lithium, and in the mean time to read up on the effects of it.

Having done so I was wondering what people would recommend I do, the harmful affects of the Lithium in themselves are not what worry me, it's more the fear it will destroy my personaly, charisma and creativity.. which are the few remaining things I feel I have kept after this episode.


I have mainly logged my experience for myself, because I have big gaps in my memory I thought it might help to trace my steps and see what I could read into the whole experience. I don't expect anyone to read through the whole thing lol. But I would like to know how you all deal with your experiences, depression, anxiety and what your views on mood stabilising medication are.

Thanks for reading.

Hope you've all had a good Christmas and have a great New Year.

Take care xxxxxx <3

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busy clippers


Member

Posted Fri Dec 28th, 2007 9:03pm Post subject: 6 Years of Hell, 2 Months of Mental Torture...
Welcome Tom, glad you found us.

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Mikal


Member

Posted Fri Dec 28th, 2007 11:27pm Post subject: 6 Years of Hell, 2 Months of Mental Torture...
Hello Tom, welcome to the forum, you'll find people in a similar boat here. I too suffer from gaps in my memory, so I need to write things down. O_O

I'm 18 myself and also waiting to see a psychiatrist in the new year - January 10th, in fact - for an evaluation and to determine the extent of my bipolarity. My doctor already told me he thought I had Cyclothymia, but the highs I experience are a little more severe and the lows are devastatingly low, which leads me to believe I'm either Bipolar I or Bipolar II, I have to wait to see what the psychiatrist believes.

At least you managed to only destroy worthless things, you can be thankful for that. What medication are you currently on and what dosage? I'm on 150mg of Venlafaxine and 15mg of Olanzapine (antipsychotic mood stabilizer) currently.

All the best,
-Mike

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WhyGenTom


Member

Posted Sat Dec 29th, 2007 12:51am Post subject: 6 Years of Hell, 2 Months of Mental Torture...
Cyclothymia was my doctors instinctive diagnosis before I had the manic episode, because I had been a few times before about something different and was ignoring anything wrong emoitionally.

I'm currently taking 10mg Cipralex for anxiety which I've taken for 7 weeks so far and have had no real effect and I've got Diazepam for if the serious rage or depression comes back, which are incredibly effective but are something I've tried to avoid taking because of how damaging and addictive they are.
I've turned down Fluoxetine for depression because I had very little success with it in the past, finding the side effects completely ruled out any positives, and I'm still looking to make a decision on Lithium because I hear it's extremely effective but has a great deal of physical side effects like liver and kidney damage and weight gain aswell as the emotional... castration almost.

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Byzantium


Member

Posted Sat Dec 29th, 2007 1:10am Post subject: 6 Years of Hell, 2 Months of Mental Torture...
Welcome.

I haven't been here long, but I think you'll find the atmosphere here excellent.

I've been in a cesspit of depression recently so I won't say much (it would probably devolve into uselessness), but, good luck with everything, I hope you enjoy your time here.

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seasun545


Member

Posted Sat Dec 29th, 2007 9:04am Post subject: 6 Years of Hell, 2 Months of Mental Torture...
Hi Tom,
Of course we read your story, very intense episodes indeed. Sorry you´re going through that, I´ve felt the same, maybe a bit "softer" version, but I understand the incredible dispair and I feel for you.

I´m a new in this BP world, just seven months since I realized and dared to ask for help and to make matter worse I´m now about leaving treatment cause I had no luck and my shrink thinks "i´m just sad", that´s all (well, you can read it in "can´t believe it" thread ).
I´ve been having mood-stabs and antideps now, and, those stabilized my moods but I´m still stuck on depression. I can´t help you with that.
But the point of Lithium and the fear that it takes away creativity and personality has been talked here before and, as I remember, most people agreed that, having lithium and having that mood swings under control they were able to focus on all those tasks and enjoy them even more, being more effective. Focus on something is usually hard when you´re having rage episodes and manic episodes (I talk by experience). Don´t you feel that too?
Anyway, you´ll have more comments from people here having lithium.
Take care

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Mikal


Member

Posted Sat Dec 29th, 2007 12:32pm Post subject: 6 Years of Hell, 2 Months of Mental Torture...
I'm going to upload TSLOTMD to megaupload, it should be done by the time I get home from work tonight (around 6.30pm). It will be in .mp4 format though, which is what quicktime or ipods use.

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Hanny


Member

Posted Sat Dec 29th, 2007 3:44pm Post subject: 6 Years of Hell, 2 Months of Mental Torture...
hello tom and welcome,
im sorry to hear you are going through such a tough time at the moment, but you will fit in here very well. as we are all very supportive and are happy to listen and help whenever you need it. which hopefully is one thing that will help immediatly as i know all too well how long it can take for medication to work.
stick with it though, as they will work eventually. once again welcome and hope we can help.

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Anonymous


Unregistered

Posted Sat Dec 29th, 2007 4:28pm Post subject: 6 Years of Hell, 2 Months of Mental Torture...
Hello Tom,

This forum has been a great place, I don't make posts much but I do read it often. I was diagnosed in Nov and began medication in Dec, it took me a while to accept that I had bipolar disorder, it is type 2 and I rapid cycle. My medication is Lamictal, and I think it is working a treat, too soon to say however. I thought I would write to you, because I too experience an uncontrollable and violent rage. Panicking has happened often where I find myself in a situation and I have to get back home, home home home is all I can think about, I don't think about the cars whizzing by, honking at me, or almost getting knocked down by a double decker. I experienced major depression when I was 17 to 18 with 2 suicide attempts, and have had problems as young as 5 (which probably sounds ridiculous... but it is true). Now 23, I went to Norway after graduating uni, a little like Stephen Fry heading off to Belgium. Btw, it was this documentary that made me come to terms and accepting that I had a mental illness. In Norway I received much needed psychiatric help, I think the health service is really good there, they really helped me and I feel very grateful.

Lamictal/Lamotrigine is a bit of a 'wonder drug' - it is actually a anticonvulsant, helps epileptic patients, but for me it helps with the rapid cycling and my depression, not many side effects either, I just have a dull headache, a little nausea, but I presume this will go away eventually. A pretty neat drug. KatySara has also told me that this is the drug that bipolar women take when they are pregnant too. I have a feeling though, it isn't doing much for my hypomania as I have been feeling pretty damn fine lately, if it becomes a problem I'll address this later. I love my hypomania - the happy one, not the irritated, angry and violent one. Hope that makes sense. Anyway, so far all is well, as for losing your personality and creativity, I was afraid of the same thing, still a little worried, but Seasun summed it up. Btw Seasun I can't believe it either!! I hope you are doing okay hun. Have a virtual hug! Many people have assured me that once the medication kicks in, you become more in control, you can focus on things much better and the creativity doesn't go away. The psychiatrist had recommended that I did not take antidepressants however. I know that sometimes antidepressants can cause bipolar people to experience full blown mania. Not sure why some people take and some don't. This is my experience so far, hope that it will help out some way.

Hope you are all doing okay, Xmas can be a tough (smile everyone. Nothing is wrong, nothing at all... type of situation). Have a happy new year too everyone. Byzantium - well done in the Oxford offer btw, good stuff! Never got to say congrats. I wish they didn't take away the documentary on youtube. Anyway, virtual hugs all round, not as good as the real thing but HUG (!!!) anyway.

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Mikal


Member

Posted Sat Dec 29th, 2007 7:24pm Post subject: 6 Years of Hell, 2 Months of Mental Torture...
As promised, here's part one of the documentary in .mp4 format, for anyone who wants to see it but is now unable:

http://www.megaupload.com/?d=Q70HNLBZ

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WhyGenTom


Member

Posted Sat Dec 29th, 2007 7:52pm Post subject: 6 Years of Hell, 2 Months of Mental Torture...
Heya all, thanks for being so supportive...

Focus on something is usually hard when you´re having rage episodes and manic episodes (I talk by experience). Don´t you feel that too?

That's probably one of the most misunderstood parts of it, when i spoke to my doctor i got the feeling they saw that as just a minor side effect but it's really difficult to get on with life and you have minimal attention span. I take great comfort in music and playing my guitar, and at the moment trying to focus on that is almost impossible which is so iritating, and brings on more negative feelings i could probably do without.

Does anyone know how Lithium actually works and what affect it has? Is it a cerebral kind of affect, or is it more of a permanant tranquiliser?

Take care all. xxxxxxx <3

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WhyGenTom


Member

Posted Sat Dec 29th, 2007 9:29pm Post subject: 6 Years of Hell, 2 Months of Mental Torture...
As promised, here's part one of the documentary in .mp4 format, for anyone who wants to see it but is now unable:

http://www.megaupload.com/?d=Q70HNLBZ

thanks ever so much - damn youtube for taking it down in the first place because i've been dying to see it, can't thank you enough.

xxxxxxxx <3

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Mikal


Member

Posted Sat Dec 29th, 2007 9:37pm Post subject: 6 Years of Hell, 2 Months of Mental Torture...
Don't mention it, I watch it all the time, especially when I'm feeling shitty. It really helps a lot. The more people who watch it the better, it's quite inspiring. I'm uploading part 2 at the moment, so I'll post the link to it when it's done.

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Byzantium


Member

Posted Sat Dec 29th, 2007 11:55pm Post subject: 6 Years of Hell, 2 Months of Mental Torture...
Byzantium - well done in the Oxford offer btw, good stuff! Never got to say congrats.

Oh, thank you so much!

I'm afraid I don't have many words to say other than that everyone here is fantastic and I love you all.

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Mikal


Member

Posted Sun Dec 30th, 2007 4:28am Post subject: 6 Years of Hell, 2 Months of Mental Torture...
http://www.megaupload.com/?d=1NQOHG6E

Part 2 of TSLOTMD, enjoy it.

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