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Just been diagnosed with bipolar. Feel utterly grim about it all

(184 Posts)
LeGavrOrf Wed 14-Aug-13 18:23:10

Bipolar and elements of PTSD apparently.

Have been off work for 8 weeks and initially diagnosed by the GP as depressed, am on 225mg of venlafaxine which hasn't worked at all. Last week saw CPN and now have been given quietapine to take as well, 25mg.

I feel so low and have had suicidal thoughts mixed with feeling very down, and then other days where I am dashing about feeling as if I have had 20 double espressos.

I am just so down at having bipolar and worried about work and what this all means, I have also looked on the Internet and seen that 25mg of quietapine is a very small dose and should have a higher dose, I haven't been told to increase this at all. Plus I haven't seen a psychiatrist at all. Is it normal just to see a psychiatric nurse? I am seeing her again tomorrow, she is coming to my house as when I spoke to her yesterday I was so low and worried.

It's just a bloody horrible thing to come to terms with.

RegainingUnconsciousness Wed 21-Aug-13 13:05:00

Hey LeGavr

Just popped in to say hello and see how you are.

A friend of mine had 6 months off with depression earlier this year. It takes time to heal.

We discovered there's not much in the way of "sorry you're mental" cards, I've got an idea for one but I'm about as artistic as a slug.

Anyway - hello, and how are you?

RandallPinkFloyd Tue 20-Aug-13 10:53:18

Holy crap GetOrf, no wonder!

That's a bonkers way to run a business. Damn right they should be being supportive. They dropped the ball big time there and they know it.

They broke you angry. The utter bastards angry angry

You will be ok though. Honestly you will. You rock remember thanks

BIWI Tue 20-Aug-13 08:42:21

I ended up in hospital after a period of incredible stress and long-working hours. My work knew how much I was taking on/how much responsibility I was dealing with, and nothing was done until I fell apart.

I was 28. And not working in the City, but in a small marketing consultancy.

Thankfully it didn't trigger any long-term issues (I don't think - you may need to check with DH about that grin) but it really was a wake-up call for me that no-one else was going to look out for me, sadly. No matter now much concern was expressed for me at work.

My point is that you have taken on so much, for other people, that you have lost sight of you and what you need. On top of your personal circumstances, which have added stress to your life, it's not surprising that things have gone awry for you.

Whatever your immediate/short-term plans are re work (and I still think you should take a gap year!), please make sure that you think through how you are going to go back, and what you are going back to. Hopefully your HR team will have been talking to you about this as well? If not, you need to sit down and discuss this with them. You simply can't return to such a ridiculous workload. Whilst it sounds like they are being very sympathetic now, they certainly weren't before - anyone with half a brain would have realised that you were under intolerable pressure.

MinnieBar Tue 20-Aug-13 07:52:35

Jeez GetOrf, no wonder your work have been supportive - they bloody well know that they are (to a large extent) responsible angry

It's utterly ridiculous to expect any one person to do that much. My friend is a lawyer in a big city firm and she doesn't work that hard (and she regularly gets ill when it gets too much - more physically, but also v v stressed).

So combine that with the stuff about your DD, and yes, it's no wonder your mind/body has decided enough is enough.

HeartsTrumpDiamonds Tue 20-Aug-13 03:59:09

Shaky fat 'n happy honey, that's me. I have gained about 50 lbs (3 stone I think) since I went on my meds. At least I blame my meds and not all the medicinal chocolate.

GetOrf you are insane. Christ on a bike, I used to have a ridiculous City job etc and twas not a quarter as stressful as what you described.

Keep a little eye on the not sleeping - for me that is a clear sign of the start of a manic episode. But could hopefully equally be a sign of you getting used to the quetiapine.

How were the fajitas? smile

Shaky Tue 20-Aug-13 00:50:58

Blimey Get Orf no wonder you are feeling shite after dealing with that amount of stress. It sounds like you are completely burnt out. I'm sorry you are feeling so bad and hope that your new meds start to help you very soon.
It is very possible that your medication does no agree will you. If I may share my experience with you? I suffered crippling PTSD and PND after the birth of my ds. I didn't admit the problem until he was 1. Went to see GP and started paroxetine. Stayed on it for a year and gradually weaned of it. Then 6 months later realised I was struggling again and went back to GP. He advised restarting paroxetine, we wanted another baby and I knew paroxetine is difficult to stop and not ideal to take in pregnancy. I started Prozac. I felt absolutely dreadful for weeks, knackered, nauseous, dizzy, disorientated and feelin like I had to hold my head on otherwise it would fall off. I went back to gp and asked to change my medication as I felt so dreadful. The options were, to wean off the Prozac over 6 weeks and then start something lose OR double the dose of Prozac, hich would work quicker.

Again, I felt dreadful due to the double dose of Prozac. I could hardly move, it completely flattened me, however, I did eventually start to feel better and went back to work. Unfortunately, I started drinking too much and this was noted by a work collueague and when questioned about it I admitted that I was it stopped me killing myself and I had started to self harm. I had cut my stomach with scissors, pinching the skin to make a snip and cutting long it. Picking my toenails so badly that I completely pulled off 2 nails, leaving exposed nail beds, fucking excruiciating lay painful the next day.

Anyway, on that awful day my boss made me make an appointment with my GP and actually dropped everything and came with me. I had to be very honest and was completely cringing at what I had done, totally mortified. The doctor changed my meds to mirtazipine, I had to take half dose o Prozac and mirtazipine or the first week and just full dose of mirtazipine for the second week.

As soon as I stopped the Prozac, I was a new woman. I felt alive or the first time in 3 years. I had lost 3 stone in weight and was wearing size 8 jeans, whereas I was a good size 14 before pregnancy. Now I feel normal again, like I have just woken from a coma. I realise now that the reason I felt "better" before was just the lessening of side effects of Prozac rather than an improvement in my health. I no longer have the suicidal thoughts and urges but still pick my toenails. I didn't tell any of my family about my recent episode (except DP) but all my family and friends have commented how much better I seem. Have also put on loads of weight but I would rather be chubby and healthy than skinny and considering diving my car into a wall.

I'm sorry for the epic post, I just wanted to share the impact that the wrong medication can have. Also apologies for crap spelling and any other errors.
I really hope you start to feel better soon. Talking really is the key, nobody knows how you feel until you tell them. We are all here for you xxx

DollyTwat Tue 20-Aug-13 00:13:28

Can you see now that you couldn't possibly keep this up forever. Your work have a lot to answer for imo

No-one could do all that, and care for a dd, and still be standing. No-one. The fact you did for so long is a miracle

You've been so busy for so long that being relaxed isn't going to be easy either. You are so loved here on Mn and in rl too, you must take it easy and take the time you need

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Mon 19-Aug-13 23:59:16

Oh ... I've just noticed you're in Gloucester. I'm driving from Malvern to Oxford on Sunday with DH, which goes past there. You may well feel you will have MNers coming out of your ears soon, though.

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Mon 19-Aug-13 23:54:58


Yeah, what kate said.

Seriously, that's a stupid amount of work and stress. Your managers fucked up.

lissieloo Mon 19-Aug-13 23:50:54

Jeez, no wonder you're stressed shock

TheOneAndOnlyFell Mon 19-Aug-13 23:49:56

Not the circle line, that would go too slowly to kill anyone.

Well you still have your wicked sense of humour in spite of everything. grin

Bloody hell, that all sounds grim. Sometimes people are off work with 'stress' and you think 'WTF have you got to be stressed about - you're a postman' or whatever. And other times you think 'Christ on a bike, no wonder.'

You are in the second category, obviously.

katehastried Mon 19-Aug-13 23:47:22

Sounds like you had a fairly normal reaction to totally abnormal levels of stress.

Dont fret too much about a label. We all react in different ways. I'm not sure that labels tell us much more than that. X

katehastried Mon 19-Aug-13 23:43:09

Erm well if you DIDN'T have a total breakdown after that, you would be a total abnormal FREAK.

LeGavrOrf Mon 19-Aug-13 23:42:56

Christ that's a macabre thought grin just made me laugh though, sick minded twat that I am.

LeGavrOrf Mon 19-Aug-13 23:42:27

And for a few weeks before I finished was when I had the stupid thoughts about just jumping in front of the bakerloo line train as it hurtled out the tunnel, people would think that I had just tripped over and not jumped iykwim. This seemed like a really good idea at the time.

Not the circle line, that would go too slowly to kill anyone.

LeGavrOrf Mon 19-Aug-13 23:38:49

Fuck that was long.

LeGavrOrf Mon 19-Aug-13 23:38:14

OK. I had an outsourcing project to manage which I had worked on since September, pretty much a full time job. That's in London and I live in Gloucester, so had to get the 5.20 or 6 o clock train to London (2 and half hrs to Westminster) then get home at 8.45 or (if I missed the train, often because of the FUCKING circle line) an hour later.

I had a team of people inSwindon to manage as well.

My manager left at Christmas. I applied for his job (as did a colleague) but in the end they decided not to appoint, and said they would review it in June and would be based on performance (so basically work well for the next 6 months and then we will see).

Then in late January one of the head honchos said I should become an interim head of department (FT role) managing a bunch of (inexperienced) people in Birmingham. So I went there sometimes, sometimes went to Birmingham for the morning and had to then go to London, which was fun. But mainly in London but having to deal with day to day issues for the Birmingham job, as well as do this outsourcing project which was really high profile and after the west coast mainline franchising debacle people were crawling all over it and if I had managed it wrongly/illegally it would have gone to court.

I had to carry two laptops as each were encrypted, so would work on emails and assorted crap on the trains, and would work when I got in in the evening.

It was just a lot of juggling of balls in the air and I was always worried that I would fuck up. That's when I started waking up every morning at 2 and sitting there fretting about it all.

I cried down the phone to my interim manager at some point and said that this was a bloody stupid and reckless thing to do and I felt I had been set up to fail. Still do actually.

Some time in June I just cracked up in the office, I had completed the outsourcing with no legal challenge (thank fuck) and this was the first day after the challenge deadline. A nice colleague came and sat on my desk and said 'hello sunshine' and I just started crying like a KNOB in the office. He took me down for coffee and was lovely. I then had a meeting with my interim manager and just cried and cried. I NEVER cry at work ( well I used to when I was young and got shouted at by fat men in factories but I used to go to the loo and cry). Couldn't stop crying. Manager gave me a week of lieu time and said to chill out. And that was that. Haven't been back since.

katehastried Mon 19-Aug-13 23:31:53

...yourself. Don't fuck about with food. Eat well. Try and get a walk every day.

You are FAB. You will get past this. I promise.

katehastried Mon 19-Aug-13 23:30:46

We knOw each other of old.

I have a similar diagnosis. It's something I know I will always struggle with. But it never defines my life. No one knows I have this diagnosis. I have found that therapy, exercise and a healthy diet all help me manage.

You've had a period of stress - you might well just be reacting normally FOR YOU to shit times. They won't last forever and nor will this.

You will need to take care of y

DollyTwat Mon 19-Aug-13 23:17:47

I dare you to post what your normal working week was like. You'll be surprised at how many people faint with the mere thought, let alone bringing up your lovely dd who is a credit to you.

Taking a break from it must be alien in itself let alone feeling unwell into the bargain

LeGavrOrf Mon 19-Aug-13 23:15:06

I think you might be right dolly. I remember when I first stopped work in June after my project finished I was walking like an old lady, I remember thinking 'work has broken me'. But Christ I thought work burnout was for people in the city earning thousands doing insane jobs, not normal (albeit long houred) jobs for a twat like me.

LeGavrOrf Mon 19-Aug-13 23:12:26

Bloody hell at not prescribing it for cost reasons! I had never thought of that <naive> oh well I don't suppose it matters really, I don't have the horrible effects that others suffer with on them anyway.

DollyTwat Mon 19-Aug-13 23:10:46

Sorry you've had a rubbish day, ledkr's right (as always) it's just a temporary thing, you will get past this.

You know when you described your normal working life to us, I'm not surprised at all your body has told you to slow down. I'm sure they call it burn out. No-one over the age of 30 could keep that up, seriously.

I have a mediation cd for you which might of use, I like the plinky plonky music even if the woman gets a bit irritating! Anyway borrow it and see!

Take care of you lovely lady

LeGavrOrf Mon 19-Aug-13 23:10:15

Oh thank you fell blush what a lovely thing to think and say.

I have had such lovely texts from people on mumsnet who I'm in contact with, and people who I have never met PMing me with their phone numbers to call if I feel bad.

I can't tell you how much I appreciate this. I am lucky in that I have got a lot of RL support but this thread (and mumsnet in general) has been a bloody huge support. I think I would have felt incredibly isolated without it. Plus so much practical advice as well.

garlicagain Mon 19-Aug-13 22:58:29

smile You are so lovely, true.

It's perfectly possible for a drug not to work with your metabolism.

I think by "not appropriate", your GP may have meant "expensive"! They cost a bloody fortune.

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