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12/20/2007 09:16 PM

I think I am bipolar - who do I talk to?

GalileosMuse

It starts, I guess, with the fact that my best friend has bipolar disorder. (The immediate response is that I am just seeing her symptoms in myself in some kind of hypochondriac fashion. I can assure you that I'm not - I've been sitting on the idea that I had bipolar for about two years, whereas a hypochondriac would probably already be demanding medication.) My friend and I are incredibly alike. I am told frequently that I "sound like Elizabeth."

Once I began to wonder if I might be bipolar, I started looking into information on it. It seemed to fit, but I tended to question my diagnosis, especially because I was told to do so. I have since become more and more sure that I have bipolar disorder - and have had it since childhood.

Bipolar children are commonly diagnosed with ADHD, a diagnosis I had that was later overturned in favor of Oppositional Defiant Disorder (another disorder bipolar children tend to be labeled as) and Anxiety/Depression.

Just tonight I stole into a filing cabinet and have been reading the second psychiatric report I had done (the one with ODD and depression findings), and then re-read some symptom lists for bipolar children and have found the information to fit my nine-year old self to a "t." I would elaborate, but I'm trying to get to the part where I ask you guys a question. The point is that I think looking at this was a more objective way for me to confirm what I have been suspecting.

More currently, I would say that about a week ago I flipped from what I would term as a depressive episode to a hypomanic one. I hesitate to say that I have experienced full-blown mania, though perhaps that is my own skepticism of my self-diagnosis.

I'm hoping to get my hands on the first psych evaluation that termed me as ADHD (I know the school has a copy), but if I don't get it tomorrow I'll probably have to wait until after Christmas break. My question, I guess, is what do I do? What is the next step?

In reading up on bipolar so much, everything seems to advocate treatment, but I am, let's say, reluctant to be medicated after some of my earlier experiences with ADHD medication (although I've read that this may be another sign of my early-onset bipolar). Do you think I have some kind of obligation to seek professional help, or at least advice, even though I distrust mental health professionals because of what happened to me at their hands when I was younger? How should I, as a minor (17), approach getting help/a diagnosis?

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12/21/2007 02:46 AM
carmen33
carmen33  
Posts: 8702
VIP Member

Seeing a doctor with you having a open mind about things would be the best thing for you I believe, bipolar as I am sure that you have read, isn't the easiest thing to diagnosis, it takes most of us several years to get one unless we have been hospitalized for a episode.

List what your symptoms are that lead you to believe that you are, take this information with you to the doctor and talk open and honestly with them. It's hard sometimes to trust the Doctors, but that is what they are there for, to help us find a way to get better.

Welcome to the group.

Carmen


12/21/2007 11:41 AM
littlebit
littlebitPosts: 27
Member

it took my docs 10 years to diagnose me. if you find a good doc stay with them. you may need to try several different meds before you find the right combination that works for you. but you do need to see a doc above all else to get the right diagnosis.

12/21/2007 08:21 PM
jlh
jlh  
Posts: 23
Member

My recommendation would be to make an appointment with a psychiatrist. Medical doctors are fine, but psychiatrists are specifically trained in mental disorders and it is my feeling that the time it took to make an accurate diagnosis would be decreased due to their specialized training. That would be a good first step. Good luck to you - you are thinking in the right direction.

12/23/2007 06:13 PM
GalileosMuse

Thanks for the input. I don't know; my decision probably seems like a bad one, but I want to wait until I am eighteen to visit a doctor about this. I have, during some depressive episodes, had suicidal thoughts and I don't want my parents to get this information through mandated reporting and be hurt by it. I've made it this far either unmedicated or on the wrong drugs, and I'm pretty sure I can make it until July 28th (my birthday) the same way. I just really want patient confidentiality, and I'm not going to get that until I'm 18.

12/24/2007 06:02 AM
carmen33
carmen33  
Posts: 8702
VIP Member

Hi, Galileos, call your mental health department and ask them about the patient confidentiality.. I don't believe they would be required, especially with your being as old as you are, your lucky that you have made it this far, which would be worse for your folks? learning that you are making efforts to get help? or finding you dead in your bedroom or they get a cop at the door that says you are dead because of a drug over dose from street drugs???

12/29/2007 12:35 AM
GalileosMuse

I didn't call, but I did some reading. It sounds like it's really up to the doctor and if they think my parents knowing what is going on will in some way help me. That sounds crazy-subjective to me. I'm not considering killing myself just now, but because I thought about it for several weeks over the summer maybe some doc will think my parents need to be watching me like a hawk, you know, <i>just in case,</i> and I don't like the sound of that.

I've never attempted, so I really don't think I'm in a lot of danger by waiting. The couple times I've wanted to I knew how much it would hurt my family and managed to find something else to help me cope for a few hours until I wasn't all shaky anymore, be it writing or the strict confidences of some friends. I also think I'm pretty level just now. It's easy for adults to try to be a little too helpful, I think, especially when they're talking about stuff that freaks people out (such as, well, suicidal thoughts.) I mean, even the school called my mom to see if my request to view copies of MY OWN medical files would be o.k. with her.

I know you're looking out for me in recommending getting help, but right now that's a risk I don't think I'm willing to take, especially if the whole cost/benefit scenario is going to be infinitely improved by waiting another seven months. Thanks Carmen.


12/29/2007 04:07 AM
carmen33
carmen33  
Posts: 8702
VIP Member

Please be extremely careful, and do get to some help if the urges get stronger..it's nothing to mess with.

Carmen


12/29/2007 07:31 AM
loreal
Posts: 7
Member

Unsure Therapy has its place, and I agree with it, yet the human experience is awesome. Feel free to talk to me. I can give you examples of certain behavior and Jim Rist has sites you can visit.e-mail before you go and do anything spur of the moment. Try and get a little input, most of us understand-even if you havent been diagnosed, you may have tramatic experiences causing this:been there. please e-mail name Loreal

07/21/2011 03:11 PM
spence20
Posts: 1
Member

Hi, this is so scary! I was watching 90210 and this one girl Silver has bipolar. She has severe bipolar. She was going through somethings I have gone through and I thought that perhaps I may have bipolar. I researched on it and the symptoms are pretty close to home. I tried to kill myself a year ago, but that was because I was extremely depressed. I was depressed because one of my friends took advantage of me sexually. It was pretty serious, I was 2 seconds away from dying. I got through it all though, I saw a psychiatrist, and it helped. Then I stopped, I changed scenario, went to a different school and all. There are times where I am usually so moody, and sometimes I have a reason but sometimes I just feel depressed. I thought that perhaps it was just because of my periods, you know hormones and all, but its crazy cause it shows up out of no where sometimes and I don't know how to explain it to other people. I haven't thought of suicide though, it hasn't even crossed my mind. I just no longer find it fun to hang out and have fun, and I used to think it was because I was lazy, but who gets that lazy, I don't wanna hang with my friends, all I ever wanna do is just stay home, and just be. I get mad over the smallest things. I don't know, I just need help, am I bipolar or I am just over reacting? HELP ME SOMEONE, ANYONE!
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