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jimmy m
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17 Nov 2020, 1:29 pm

I have a gift. It's hard to describe. I have unbounded energy. I think the closest I can describe it as is "1/2 Bipolar".

Bipolar Disorder, formally called Maniac Depressive Disorder (MAD), is a mental health condition that causes extreme mood swings that include emotional highs (mania or hypomania) and lows (depression). When your mood shifts to mania or hypomania (less extreme than mania), you may feel euphoric, full of energy or unusually irritable. When you become depressed, you may feel sad or hopeless and lose interest or pleasure in most activities. These mood swings can affect sleep, energy, activity, judgment, behavior and the ability to think clearly.

Individuals can relive past traumatic events. The unused excess stress energy is stored within the muscles and nervous system. When the stored energy reaches the body’s capacity, it can trigger a massive uncontrolled release producing the mania or hypomania condition. And one of the reasons is that when you do these kinds of reliving or flashbacks, there's a tremendous release of adrenaline. There's also a release of endorphins, which is the brain's internal opiate system. In animals, these endorphins allow the prey to go into a state of shock-analgesia and not feel the pain of being torn apart. When people relive the trauma, they recreate a similar neurochemical system that occurred at the time of the original trauma, the release of adrenaline and endorphins. Now, adrenaline is addictive, it is like getting a speed high. And they get addicted not only to the adrenaline but to the endorphins; it's like having a drug cocktail of amphetamines and morphine. And after the stored stress energy is depleted, their body crashes into depressed state. The effects of coming down from a speed high are: feeling restless, irritable and anxious, aggression that may lead to violence, tension, radical mood swings, depression, paranoia, lethargy, and total exhaustion.

In my case I am "1/2 Bipolar". I exist in the mania or hypomania phase for decades but I never fall into the depression phase. This gives me unbounded energy. I eat internally generated adrenaline and endorphins for lunch.

Some of the signs of mania are:
* Have lots of energy
* Feel high or wired
* Have racing thoughts or rapid thinking
* Take more risks
* Need less sleep than usual to feel rested
* Have more distractions than usual
* Have intense senses, such as smell and touch
* Being engaged in many activities at once
* Flight of ideas
* Likely to wear bright colored or flamboyant clothing

Can anyone relate?


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Steve1963
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17 Nov 2020, 1:35 pm

jimmy m wrote:
Can anyone relate?
I was like this in my 20's and 30's...even into my 40's. But then the depression came, and came hard. Consider yourself lucky. :)



Mountain Goat
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17 Nov 2020, 1:47 pm

Just before I came on this site I was looking at all possible links to try to find what the shutdowns are, and one of these was a Ted Talk by a lady who had gone through years of difficulties caused by medicating her for bipolar, and around 20 to 30 years later they discovered that she was not bipolar but she was on the autism spectrum, as the symptoms appear similar to untrained doctors.

Autism can also cause individuals to have highs and lows (Depending on how it effects the person) but there is a difference. With bipolar, the up turns into a down over a typical period of a few days (Usually four day cycles) while with autism, the individuals can have their ups and downs several times a day.
Why it is important to get the right diagnosis is that bipolar is a chemical imbalance in the brain, and this chemical imbalance can be remedied through medication. Basically the medication to stabilizing this chemical imbalance.
If the highs and lows are caused by autism, it is not caused by a chemical imbalance but by missing brain connections, and therefore if one is wrongly diagnosed, one will not only be having the highs and lows, but one will also be haveing chemical imbalances in the other way to contend with due to the medication. This lady said she had spent years in a zombie like state due to being missdiagnosed and half the difficulties she had cleared up when they stopped the bipolar medication she was on when they found out she was autistic.

Of course, it is possible to have both conditions. But the key thing to differentiate between bipolar and autism is to find out the time element between the cycle of highs and lows.

It is interesting when you mention that bipolar can begin with trauma.


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funeralxempire
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17 Nov 2020, 4:25 pm

Isn't that called hypomania?



jimmy m
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17 Nov 2020, 4:58 pm

funeralxempire wrote:
Isn't that called hypomania?

Hypomania is a less extreme form of mania.


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funeralxempire
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17 Nov 2020, 5:03 pm

jimmy m wrote:
funeralxempire wrote:
Isn't that called hypomania?

Hypomania is a less extreme form of mania.


If it's not disruptive it's not extreme enough to be mania. What you're describing isn't mania, it's hypomania. I'd love to have it max out at what you describe.

Feeling like you've had an extra coffee or had a Ritalin and feeling like you just smoked crack (only it won't wear off) might exist together on a spectrum, but they're definitely not the same.

I can half-relate to what you're describing, only for me sometimes that's just a precursor to weeks of being unable to sleep, racing/paranoid thoughts, a need for constant risk and stimulation and occasionally a head full of guano.

I can't entirely relate since for you it's mostly a positive and for me it's sometimes a positive but also something that can be incredibly difficult to deal with at times. Also, since it doesn't cancel out depression, if it rears it's head while that's going on it's far worse than either on it's own.



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17 Nov 2020, 9:55 pm

That is interesting, the concept of 1/2 bipolar. If that was my reality I would probably not medicate. Bipolar is a common comorbidity with ASD. And yes ASD can often be misdiagnosed as bipolar. The average person seeking mental health care in the USA is misdiagnosed 7 times before they are correctly diagnosed. So that makes sense.

I do not have 1/2 bipolar; I would guess that an unmedicated me has 1 1/2 or 1 & 3/4ths bipolar. Anyway- an extra unpleasant amount of bipolar in which without medication I have mixed episodes (combo depression & mania) with rapid cycling. Mania for me results in audial & visual hallucinations & strange bizarre convictions. Basically a highly energetic psychosis, but with a science related story that makes perfect sense only to me. Imagine an autistic person infodumping her special interest to invisible people who offer science advice which only she can hear, but when the advice proves faulty she smashes her experiments on the closest wall & depression shoves her to the floor-for 10 minutes until the cycle starts again. I am under-explaining how bad it was because it is more acceptable to make mental illness sound either like an amusing anecdote or a strength but actually for me it is terrifying; the hallucinations were not all friendly & it was a desperate existence. Since bipolar has a genetic component I have relatives still unmedicated who I watch caught in the disease and it is almost as painful to watch from the outside as it felt from within.

I am not upset or surprised nobody diagnosed my autism, as my bipolar was so loco it blocked out the sunny disposition my autistic nature would turn out to be. I thank the world every day for medication. No cycling or episodes or freakin anything for years & years thanks to meds. It took some time to get the meds right but now that the combo is in place it frees up a lot of room in my brain.

But as I said. Half bipolar sounds lovely.



naturalplastic
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22 Nov 2020, 5:13 pm

If youre "one half of bipolar" then youre "unipolar".

Bipolar used to be called "manic-depressive". So if you are just the first half of manic-depressive then youre "manic".

So thats what you are. Manic. I suppose.

Napoleon only slept four hours a night. And so did Akbar the Great, one of Mogul emperors of India (sort of a Napoleon like figure of the Indian subcontinent in the 1600s).

You sound like those two. SO I suppose that you must be destined to build some kind of empire.



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03 Dec 2020, 4:12 pm

I'm Bipolar I.

I totally regret my manias because of the people I hurt during them. All the jobs I lost. All the relationships I torched. All the bridges burned. Yeah I was creative! Dynamic! Everything seemed possible! Glittery, sparkly never-ending trip.

People will hang in there for you there during a suicidal depression. No one wants to deal with an out of controlled, running feral manic jackalope. While you may think you are as funny as Robin Williams, smart as Stephen Hawkins, and Steve Jobs dynamic, that is NOT how people on the receiving end experience it.

My manias roared 3 to 6 month stretches. My depression are more mixed states, which is as dangerous AF.

I found while inpatient on a psych ward, people who said they were Bipolar really weren't. They wound up with a Borderline diagnosis and or ADHD. Or another pesonality disorder. I remember how angry they would get because they weren't diagnoised Bipolar. Who the hell would want this?

I don't think I could do the 3 hrs of sleep every night for 4 months anymore.

I'm grateful my meds work. So finished with the manic dragon. I'm more creative, and get way more done with meds than with not.



Tawaki
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03 Dec 2020, 4:17 pm

funeralxempire wrote:
jimmy m wrote:
funeralxempire wrote:
Isn't that called hypomania?

Hypomania is a less extreme form of mania.


If it's not disruptive it's not extreme enough to be mania. What you're describing isn't mania, it's hypomania. I'd love to have it max out at what you describe.

Feeling like you've had an extra coffee or had a Ritalin and feeling like you just smoked crack (only it won't wear off) might exist together on a spectrum, but they're definitely not the same.

I can half-relate to what you're describing, only for me sometimes that's just a precursor to weeks of being unable to sleep, racing/paranoid thoughts, a need for constant risk and stimulation and occasionally a head full of guano.

I can't entirely relate since for you it's mostly a positive and for me it's sometimes a positive but also something that can be incredibly difficult to deal with at times. Also, since it doesn't cancel out depression, if it rears it's head while that's going on it's far worse than either on it's own.


If I could bottle how my manias felt, I'd be a millionaire. It's like you did the purest bested coke bumps, and it never ends. You are absolutely bullet proof.

For me, that's about 8 weeks before it all goes to s**t. Then it starts slipping into mix state, where you want to murder everyone and everything. Lol...



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03 Dec 2020, 4:35 pm

I’m the opposite. I have what I call “cyclic depression,” which varies in intensity over time, but the only times in my life I’ve been anything resembling manic is when I get steroids of some sort before my chemo. Pretty sure I don’t experience hypomania, either. I’ve had psychiatrists convinced that I have to be bipolar due to the cyclic nature of my depression, and they were astonished when I told them that I’d never had a manic or hypomanic episode in my life. One tried giving me medication for bipolar disorder anyway (don’t remember which ones, but it was at least two, and when I looked them up after my appointments, I found that they were used almost exclusively to treat bipolar, not non-bipolar depression or anxiety or anything else I can fully confirm that I have), it didn’t do any more good than any of the rest of the litany of medications I’ve tried. Also have had a big bowl of alphabet soup treatments (ECT, TMS, IOP, DBT, etc.), and nothing ends up working out in the long run. When I really hit my low points, absolutely nothing gets me out of them except time, and nothing I’ve tried has been successful in preventing those lows.


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