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Sana


Member

Posted Thu Apr 5th, 2007 1:30am Post subject: Hello! I'm a manic-depressive in Tokyo
Hi people,

This is my first time I've posted a topic on the Forum.
Someone kindly gave me a DVD copy of " The Secret Life of the Manic Depressive " before he left Japan for his country.
I'd been wanting to watch it for months, and after watching it I thought about how people with manic depression or depression are discriminated in Japan.
I suffer from manic depression too, but a mild one. I've been on medication for about four years now, but I only take an anti-depressant and two tranquilisers because I'm allergic to most kinds of anti-depressants. I don't take lithium either.
I'm a fan of Mr Fry and I'm so glad that he speaks out about his illness and tries to help others with the similar problems. Whether bipolar or not, I love Mr Fry very much!

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Crazy_in_a_box


Member

Posted Thu Apr 5th, 2007 2:31am Post subject: Hello! I'm a manic-depressive in Tokyo
Hi Sana, Welcome!

how people with manic depression or depression are discriminated in Japan.

I have to ask, in what way are they discriminated? Is it the same as over here? It would be interesting to hear from the perspective of another nation and culture....

In fact, if anyone from a different country could talk about how it differs in their country join in too!

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Sana


Member

Posted Thu Apr 5th, 2007 3:21am Post subject: Hello! I'm a manic-depressive in Tokyo
Hi Crazy_in_a_box!

Thank you so much for your message! X-D

Well, in Japan, many people still think that brain illnesses like manic-depression, depression, or schizophrania are " special" illnesses which happen only to " special " people. Here " special " means " not normal " or even " insane ".... :'(

In Japan it's quite difficult to get a job if you're bipolar or depressive. I've been unemployed myself for more than two years, partly because I felt so depressed when my mum died of metastatic ovarian cancer two years ago.
I receive pensions for mentally disabled from the government although I'm a 30 year old girl....

I'm glad that I could find this forum. The people here seem very nice and seem to care about each other. I don't have a place where I can speak out about my illnesses ( manic-depression, anorexia, generalised anxiety disorder, etc. ) in Japan. Japanese people aren't really open about psychological or brain illnesses. Most of them seem to avoid talking about them, well, at least to me.

When I'm manic I tend to write too much, too long. So I'll try to make this message short. X-D
I also get very aggressive when I'm having a manic episode, although it's getting better. A few years ago I was really...mad...and lost a few friends. But my Japanese best friend never discriminates me or criticises me, which is really helpful and I must thank her.

I'm now studying basic medicine only a bit to be a medical secretary. In my opinion, there's nothing wrong with having manic-depression and depression.
They're brain illnesses and they should be treated without any discrimination, and WE HAVE THE RIGHT TO SPEAK OUT ABOUT OUR ILLNESSES!

Sana xxx

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Nadia


Member

Posted Thu Apr 5th, 2007 3:52am Post subject: Hello! I'm a manic-depressive in Tokyo
Hi.
In Russia many people are depressed - I don't mean they have BP disorder,
they just suffer from different kinds of stress and depression.
Feels like that doesn't count as "disorder" or "illness"
here.
"Stop moaning! Brace yourself! Be strong! Come on, stop it!" etc. While
you just can't. I never thought i have some kind of disorder, I just thought I'm
weak and useless, because I can't stop.
Our medicine is pretty ancient.. And even if it has "evolved" somehow,
people are scared to visit psychiatrist - because in USSR
it was like stigma - "Aha! Crazy one! Ewww.." And we remember this..
I've heard some psychiatrist complained "Most people won't visit us even if
they end up in the gutter. They are afraid to visit us."
Well, I think this will change..

Nobody cares if you are depressed. They think you are just
lazy pathetic idler who should be kicked or fired.
Or they will say "Go take some pill, and control yourself after all!"
Ha... like if it was plain headache.
On the other hand, ppl will think you are the craziest crazy, and will hate you
for this..


I'm glad that I could find this forum. The people here seem very nice and seem
to care about each other. I don't have a place where I can speak out about my
illnesses ( manic-depression, anorexia, generalised anxiety disorder, etc. ) in
Japan. Japanese people aren't really open about psychological or brain
illnesses. Most of them seem to avoid talking about them, well, at least to me.



Dear Sana, that's how I feel too!
there is no one around to whom I can tell about my illnesses -
I've tried once, and regreted it later..
This forum helps A LOT

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Sana


Member

Posted Thu Apr 5th, 2007 8:54am Post subject: Hello! I'm a manic-depressive in Tokyo
Hi Nadia,

Yes this forum is great, isn't it? I never expected to find such a nice place where you can speak out and ask somebody else for advice or help. I'm new here, but I feel literally warm inside everytime I visit the forum and think that maybe I can find really nice people who I can openly talk to.

Well I'm not sure if I should talk about this now because I'm new here, but I'd like to be honest to all of you....

I'm on another forum for a UK band, and I once wrote about Mr Richey Edwards, the lyricist and guitarist from the Manic Street Preachers and also about my own illnesses. I received a huge response, probably more than 500 people read my post. But some of them didn't like my post at all and we sort of had a row on the forum. I was sad when one of my English friends wrote, " Sana, just delete this thread, ya? I do love you, you know I do, but this is too much...." Now I do admit that I chose a wrong place, it's only a forum for music after all, although I'm still on the forum.

One of my problems which annoys me so much : I can't hold a kitchen knife. When I try to hold one, I feel like slashing or stabbing myself. So when I cook I use a knife which you use to eat your meals.

I'm sorry I'm Japanese and I'm not good at English. If you find my expression offensive or upsetting, please forgive me.

Thank you again for your lovely message, Crazy_in_a_box and Nadia. I hope I can contact as many people as I can. We should never be ashamed of our illnesses, and I do hope we can help each other here.

Much Love,

Sana xxx

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Sana


Member

Posted Thu Apr 5th, 2007 8:57am Post subject: Hello! I'm a manic-depressive in Tokyo
PS: I do care about you if you're depressed, Nadia!

Sana xxx

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meekychuppet


Member

Posted Thu Apr 5th, 2007 9:28am Post subject: Hello! I'm a manic-depressive in Tokyo
As much as I admire Japanese culture and especially your theatre, that's pretty warped but it also seems no worse than the UK in terms of attitudes. The outcome may differ but the prevailing idea is that mental illness is to be feared rather than understood.

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Sana


Member

Posted Thu Apr 5th, 2007 10:21am Post subject: Hello! I'm a manic-depressive in Tokyo
Hi meekychuppet,

Thank you for your message. I love your country and have been there six times. ( Liverpool and Macclesfield are my favourite places, where I spent about two months to study English back in 1999. )

Can you get enough support from your GP or hospitals? To me the UK seems to be better than Japan in terms of treating people with mental illness...I wonder if I'm right or wrong though...

In Japan about 30,000 people kill themselves every year, mainly from depression caused by the stress from work.

NHK, the national broadcasting corporation in Japan, started a campaign about a year ago to help and understand people with depression. But as for manic-depression, we still have a long way to go.... :'(

Sana xxx

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Fourth Feline


Member

Posted Thu Apr 5th, 2007 1:43pm Post subject: Hello! I'm a manic-depressive in Tokyo
Hello and welcome Sana !

I am fascinated by Japanese culture, and was interested to hear how it related to Mental illness. I have never visited your country, but as an ex martial artist of the Shotokan style and, reader of Zen based Buddist philosophy ( and to a lesser degree Shinto) - feel I know just a little of your traditions. Current Japanese culture also seems fascinating due to it's rather abstract relation to our own, but my only exposure to it is on television.

It is ironic that my own (late) father, fought against the Japanese in WWII, but was as interested by the Japanese warrior ethical codes as he was later wounded by their protagonists ! He came home without bitterness, only regret that such a culture should have been dragged into the whole affair.

Sorry to hear about your Mother, but glad you have come to join us here. I have been reasonably fortunate regarding medical treatment and the way that in the U.K. Mental illness is beginning to become one of those 'Disabilities' it is illegal to discriminate against.

I have friends in Poland, who report to me ( Like Nadia did from Russia ) - that it is still seen as somehow 'strange' and 'weak' to have a mental illness. They do not have access to Psychiatrists as readily as we do, and the doctor treats the problem in a very simplistic way. It sounds like the treatment I used to receive in the U.K. back in 1975 !

I have nothing else to add at this time, other than to wish you good health and the hope that you eventually find yourself in more understanding circumstances .

Warm regards,

Derek.

P.S. Your English is better than mine ! X-D

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Sana


Member

Posted Thu Apr 5th, 2007 7:00pm Post subject: Hello! I'm a manic-depressive in Tokyo
Hello Fourth Feline,

Thank you so much for your message. Well, I'm not good at English at all! In fact, I have to look up words in my Oxford Learner's Dictionary and check the spellings everytime I write something in English.

I'm Japanese but it seems to me that you know a lot more about Japan than I do! I have no knowledge about martial arts, Zen, or even Shinto. I love Soseki Natsume, a very famous novelist though. Mr Natsume spent a year or two in London in the late 19th century if I remember correctly. I love the Victorian art in your country. I love some of the works by Oscar Wilde, and the drawings by Aubrey Beardsley.

Only recently I have come to terms with my mother's death at last. She spent her last 25 days in a gynaecology & obstetrics ward. It was really sad and ironic because some women were suffering and dying while others were walking around happily thinking about their babies.

I'm new here, and I've started thinking whether I should be here. All the people who contacted me are really nice, I'm really happy about that. The problem is, I'm not sure whether I should say that I'm really bipolar, although my former psychiatrist diagnosed me as bipolar. Compared with the symptoms the other people have, I don't have particularly severe manic episodes. I'll be 31 this month, and when I was 27 or 28 I was really....what should I say?...I was on the verge of going mad. But right at the moment I'm better, even though I do suffer from depression.

Can I stay here with all of you and join the discussion, or should I leave...?

Sana xxx

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Fourth Feline


Member

Posted Thu Apr 5th, 2007 7:20pm Post subject: Hello! I'm a manic-depressive in Tokyo
Dear Sana,

Of course you should stay !

You do not have to be Manic Depressive to be here, although it sounds like you have Bi-Polar type 2 ( which I also have ) - where the 'highs' are not as dramatic.

There seem to be also people here who are just interested in understanding more about our situations, such as nurses, health workers and partners or parents of people who have the illness. I am grateful they are taking the time to understand.

This is an open house - and to exclude those without 'proven' Manic Depression would be foolish and against the wishes of the founder.

Keep up the good work Sana !

Derek. x


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Sana


Member

Posted Fri Apr 6th, 2007 1:22am Post subject: Hello! I'm a manic-depressive in Tokyo
Hi Derek,

Thank you so much...I always have mixed feelings when I try to do things. I'm like, " Oh should I do this or not? " or " Am I allowed to do it or not? " I think I'm an indecisive person. My ideas change many times in a day, so I sometimes regret doing or not doing things.

Bi-Polar type 2....Maybe I should think again about my manic-depression. Yes I do have more depressed feelings than mania, and my mania seems " milder " than others'. I think I'm getting better, but I'm really not sure when I'm going to have a manic episode again.

I'm also a hypochondriac. For example, my heart beats very fast and I feel sick when someone around me is sick, and I'm really worried if I'm also suffering from the same illness. It happens too when I feel stressed. I suppose I've been hypochondriac since around 14.

I wonder if anybody here is hypochondriac like me...?

Sana xxx

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Nadia


Member

Posted Fri Apr 6th, 2007 2:34am Post subject: Hello! I'm a manic-depressive in Tokyo

... Yes I do have more depressed feelings than mania, and my mania seems " milder " than others'. I think I'm getting better, but I'm really not sure when I'm going to have a manic episode again.

I'm also a hypochondriac. For example, my heart beats very fast and I feel sick when someone around me is sick, and I'm really worried if I'm also suffering from the same illness. It happens too when I feel stressed. I suppose I've been hypochondriac since around 14.

I wonder if anybody here is hypochondriac like me...?



Hi again
My mania is also milder - usually people love me in my
mania, because I love them ))) I'm like: "I'm full of love! I LOVE you all!
Let's go here, there, to happiness together! Look how beautiful
everything is! World is full of possibilities, you all are gorgeous and clever!
"
etc.. I want it back actually.. It's cool to be happy..

I was extremely hypochondriac about 2-3 years ago and earlier too -
was sure I have all kind of illnesses one could imagine ))
I was going to die from imaginary cancer, AIDS, leukaemia and many other
things Also I was (and still am) paranoid about viruses
and infections - I'm washing hands 100 times a day, and if someone
will sneeze on me I'll be sure I'm infected and will take available
antiviral pills etc.. :-// We are funny .. too bad it doesn't feel funny
for us.

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Sana


Member

Posted Fri Apr 6th, 2007 8:08am Post subject: Hello! I'm a manic-depressive in Tokyo
Hi Nadia X-D ,

My mania is mild, so I often wonder whether it's natural or it's caused by mania when I feel happy. You know, I can't really seem to figure it out if it's a " natural " high or not. And YES I do understand that you feel you love all the people around you. But sadly in my case I also feel very AGGRESSIVE towards others. I already wrote about this many times here, but a few years ago I was really, really aggressive and short-tempered, and I lost a few friends. It was like a bomb exploded in my brain...

About hypochondria, my mother died of cancer two years ago, so I have been really worried about cancer for the past two years. One of my aunts always said to me, " You're alright, you're alright...You worry too much. You don't necessarily need to worry about cancer just because your mum died of cancer. " But I was really scared of cancer ( I still am ) , and I was crying like every night.

To get rid of my paranoia I decided to go to hospital and have a cancer test. Actually I had one just a few days ago. I thought, " If I take a test and it proves negative, there'll be no need to worry too much about cancer. I've got to be rational and realistic. " Then I felt a little bit better. I donated some money for Cancer Research UK too.

You wash your hands 100 times a day...? Don't they get dry and hurt so much...? Please don't forget to use hand cream if you don't mind putting it on your skin. We've never met, but I think about you and am worried about you. Please don't forget that.

Much Love,

Sana xxx

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Nadia


Member

Posted Fri Apr 6th, 2007 9:28am Post subject: Hello! I'm a manic-depressive in Tokyo
... My mania is mild, so I often wonder whether it's natural or it's caused by mania when I feel happy.

- yes, that is a question.. I think when there is no obvious
reason for happiness.. then it is mania

... But sadly in my case I also feel very AGGRESSIVE towards others. I already wrote about this many times here, but a few years ago I was really, really aggressive and short-tempered, and I lost a few friends. It was like a bomb exploded in my brain...

- Uh-oh... I'm short-tempered all the way.. hope this is
not about being BP.. or it is..? Bummer, I thought this is
just bitchy me =))
Anyway, I'm sure - every depressed person wants mania back..
In Stephen's documentary - I bet everyone who said
"No. I won't push the button" remember his\her cool mania episodes,
nobody likes depression..

... To get rid of my paranoia I decided to go to hospital and have a cancer test. Actually I had one just a few days ago. I thought, " If I take a test and it proves negative, there'll be no need to worry too much about cancer. I've got to be rational and realistic. " Then I felt a little bit better. I donated some money for Cancer Research UK too.

- smart decision!

...You wash your hands 100 times a day...?

- well, maybe 50-60 X-D Ok, 40? No, 50! ))

.Don't they get dry and hurt so much...? Please don't forget to use hand cream if you don't mind putting it on your skin. We've never met, but I think about you and am worried about you. Please don't forget that.


- Aww, Thank You!
Of course I use hand cream, but then I touch some
door-knob and think "Ouch! this door knob is covered with
microbes! My hands are sticky with that hand cream.. I need
to wash them now!!"
That's so silly, I know. I hate dirt )))

Hmm.. I wonder how many of us exhibit strange behaviour.. Not just
depression (despair, apathy), mania itself , but all these weird fears, compulsive thoughts,
delusional depersonalization etc.. Can mania or depression
exist without those "companions"? What kind of weirdness we have
in addition to intensive mood alternations.. Is every our "oddity"
connected with BP?.. oh well..

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