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Bipolar disorder? Something else? Help!(9 Posts)
Tomorrow I am being given an appointment to see the Head of the Mental Health team at university for early next week. This is after struggling for the last 5 months to book an appointment with the university counsellors (they have been utterly useless!)
This is after my boyfriend got in touch with them due to his concerns about me, as I had been severely depressed, talking about suicide and hardly being able to get out of bed.
So, here's what's been going on....I'll start from November 2012 and summarise.
November 2012 I started to have panic attacks at least once a week. I went to the doctor, and was diagnosed with panic disorder. I was referred for CBT, but by the time I got to the top of the waiting list I had stopped having panic attacks. After this, I developed severe anxiety and depression. I returned to the doctor and was prescribed Citalopram, but my anxiety was so bad I just couldn't force myself to take them as thinking of the side effects made me feel even worse.
Luckily after about a month I suddenly snapped out of the depression and found myself on top of the world. Absolutely loving life. So much energy, so happy, a new found love for being extremely sociable, I kept going out clubbing and generally didn't have a care in the world.
I was on a complete high.
After a while, my mood went back to a general 'baseline' normal.
Fast forward through feeling content, stable and with a clear head from around May through to September and I found myself in October this year not feeling myself at all.
Words to describe my mood and attitude at this time would be extremely irritable. Confused. In despair. Scared. Dissociated. Often suicidal, but in a more angry and energetic way to how I have felt when I am depressed and with no energy at all.
I started to have the occasional panic attack again. I would hit myself, bang my head against the wall, and just want to SCREAM and cry from all the tension and energy within me. When I felt like this I just wanted to run. There were a few times when I couldn't lie still in bed, and when my boyfriend was there he sometimes had to hold me back and bar the door so I didn't run off outside in the middle of the night. I had too much energy and wouldn't/couldn't sleep but at the same time felt so frustrated and irritated and depressed. I just couldn't think straight. Every thought was rushing round my head and I just couldn't make it stop.
This continued until about January/February time, when I fell into a deep depression. I often couldn't get up, but generally had to force myself so that I didn't miss lectures and seminars. I spoke often about suicide to my boyfriend, which is when he ended up speaking to his tutor about how I was feeling and for advice on what he could do, and he then contacted the mental health team. All I wanted to do was hide from the world in my bed and never have to get up. When I was made to get up I would often go into a daze, and completely dissociate from everything and everyone around me and just shut down.
This depression continued up until Friday. On Saturday I woke up with energy, happiness, and even excitement (for no reason! I had work that day.....). On Sunday I was even happier!
Now this week I feel normal. My thoughts are clear, I have enough energy to get through the day (I am still tired, but don't feel the need to spend the whole day in bed as before).
What is going on?! Can anyone please give me any advice or share their experiences? Sorry this is long, thank you for reading!
Just bumping this thread and also giving an update.
Yesterday afternoon, I was sitting on the bus when suddenly I started to feel anxious and depressed again. I was supposed to be going to a friend's house and then out to town, which I did in the evening. But I wasn't quite 'there' - can anyone relate to this? I was in a loud and crowded place and just had to get out of there. In the end I did because I just felt as though I couldn't cope.
Last night I felt absolutely awful when I got home. I felt so irritable and angry and ended up hitting the fridge so hard it fell over . I ran out of the kitchen upstairs and to my bedroom where I collapsed on my bed and cried while hyperventilating for about 10 minutes.
Eventually my boyfriend managed to calm me down, but I could hardly settle as I was so agitated. The thoughts in my had were going to fast and I was wide awake and yet exhausted. I ended up counting fast under my breath up to about 600 and I couldn't make me stop.
At last I fell asleep. I have been in bed all day.
Someone please reply I just need someone to share this with as I am so scared about what is happening to me.
The MH team at your uni will have counsellors and be able to offer advice, but they won't be able to diagnose you or give you medical help.
My advice is to keep a note of what you've written down and go to see a GP pronto. They WILL be able to refer you to a psych for assessment.
some of the distress your describing sound like phycosis which can be symptoms of bipolar buts sounds more like a personallity disorder you can get medication to help with your raceing thoughts and to keep calm it can stop you feeling so impulsive but talking
therapy such as CBT and DBT can help change your way of thinking and help you understand you! if that makes sence. so ask you gp about it your not on your own there r lots of people who suffer in the same way. i hope you get the support you need.
Thank you both for your responses.
babyheave, I am registering with a new GP surgery and will be making an appointment asap. The MH team at uni can only offer me an appointment in 3 weeks time....so hopefully I will see the doc before then!
kimmy, the first thing I considered when all this started was a personality disorder (specifically borderline). I have a couple of the things on the general checklist (as I'm sure many people with a mental health issue do), but lots of them don't add up to borderline, such as my moods not being triggered by environments etc, disrupted/turbulent relationships and impulsive behaviour) and going through longer spells of depression which are not reactive like those generally associated with BPD.
I do also have periods where I am full of life, energy and can't be pulled down and everything is just amazing (in my opinion!). I didn't really talk about these in my OP as I don't see them as a disadvantage and I really enjoy feeling like that, but they seem to be the same as the 'up' phases in bipolar. I am so productive, need little sleep and sometimes wake up in the middle of the night to clean and tidy or do work, can't stop talking or calm down....I am permanently 'switched on'. People comment on how energetic and unstoppable I am (some people have used the term 'manic' in a lighthearted way!) - it is different to how I feel when I am in a 'normal' phase.
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You aren't psychotic, remotely, so don't worry about that for a second. As for the rest, well, I don't know, but you might be a bit bipolar. How old are you?
RobinOgg, things are generally worse in winter (more mood swingy), but I have read that this is common in bipolar. Definitely not 'relieved' by Christmas!!! This is when I would say I was most stressed, as I have to spend time with my parents.
I probably should have said before that my mother was/still is physically and emotionally abusive. She has her own issues which have affected me so so greatly, a lot of the time it is like she is an adult trapped with a brain of a toddler/moody teenager. I have always had to look after her emotionally and put her needs first to stop her tantrums - unfortunately with her, I can never do anything right
PTSD symptoms are also something I relate to a lot.
Thanks Corygal. I didn't think I was - I don't have things like delusions or hallucinations, so luckily psychosis is not something I have considered at all really.
I am 20 years old. I used to self harm (cutting) between the ages of about 13 - 16 (mainly due to anger/upset/frustration because of the situation with my mother and not having anyone to talk to and feeling completely alone). I haven't felt the urge to cut for a few years now. I don't feel the need to punish myself anymore, as I know there is something wrong with my mother's mental state and it is not my fault.
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