Bipolar is a big deal and unfortunately one of two things has happened since Bipolar has been widely recognized over the last few years. Either everyone has it or wants to have it, like it’s some new fad or something. Or it’s the worse illness in the world and people with Bipolar should be avoided because they are a bomb waiting to explode. Both of these scenarios are exaggerations of what having Bipolar really is.
First off…if you had it, you wouldn’t want to have it. You also do not have what some people like to call, “Bipolar Moments” and having someone shrug you off after you openly admit that you suffer with Bipolar Disorder and say something like, “Oh, Bipolar? That’s no biggie!” If they knew, they would NOT be saying that kind of stuff! It’s ignorant and condescending.
I have a few people in my life who like to throw phrases like this around. I have also met a few people who have apparently been dx’d with Bipolar, people I have known my entire life and when I ask which pdoc they see and what kind of meds they are on they always say, “I dunno.” This is because they don’t have bipolar, they haven’t been diagnosed and they want some label that defines them as the people they are. In plain truth, most are just looking for an excuse so they can continue to act like the asses they are. Those of us that suffer with Bipolar Disorder, actually suffer from it. We know about our illnesses, we talk to our doctors’, we learn about the disorder, we learn about the medications, we ask questions and we learn how to cope. We don’t make excuses…..
It’s scary really, because anyone who has lived a Bipolar life would not want to be living it. For most of us, it’s always an uphill battle and the downside of that hill is just as steep and you fall just as fast as you climbed it. It’s not fun, it’s not easy. It does destroy lives, marriages, families, jobs, careers, relationships. It can land you in jail or it can be used against you that you could be institutionalized for the remainder of your life.
As for those of us with Bipolar being time-bombs, that isn’t really the truth either. People who suffer with Bipolar Disorder or some other type of mental illness are more likely to be the victims of a crime then to actually be the one doing the crime. We are not violent and we are not just waiting for someone to push our piss off buttons so we have an excuse to hit you. It just doesn’t work that way……
Speaking only for myself….there have been many times over the past 12 months that someone has pushed me a little too far. Un-medicated me would have lashed out in ways that would have made those people’s heads spin. Medicated me, stable me knows my limits and knows when it’s time to walk away and honestly, that’s how I think most of us with Bipolar are.
In all seriousness though…..Bipolar is a very serious illness. It is not something to be joked about or thrown around by people who think it’s something fun. It’s debilitating and as mentioned above, it can destroy your life. If you think it’s cool to walk around telling people you are Bipolar, then maybe you should start getting involved and actually do something to understand what the illness is really about!
Until next time….