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Specifiers for Bipolar and Related Disorders

Rashmi Nemade, Ph.D. & Mark Dombeck, Ph.D., edited by Kathryn Patricelli, MA Updated: Feb 27th 2017

In addition to making a diagnosis of a particular disorder, a clinician can also say how it is different from other conditions that may have similar symptoms. This is known as a differential diagnosis. This information can help a clinician narrow down which treatments may work best for the patient. It may also be used to provide information about a person's anticipated course of the disorder and their prognosis (outcome).

Clinicians may use the following differential diagnoses to describe Bipolar and Related Disorders:

With Anxious Distress - this is when a person feels keyed up/tense, is unusually restless, or has a feeling or fear that something awful may happen or they may lose control. A clinician will typically label the disorder as mild to severe based on the number of anxiety symptoms the person experiences.

With mixed features - These are behaviors that are typically observed by others and represent a change from the person's usual behavior. A hypomanic or manic episode with mixed features would include symptoms that are typically found in a depressive episode (depressed mood, lack of interest or pleasure from activities, fatigue or loss of energy, etc.). A depressive episode with mixed features would include hypomanic or manic symptoms, such as elevated mood, inflated self-esteem, increased energy, risky behavior, etcetera.

With rapid cycling - There have been at least four mood episodes in the previous 12-months that met the full criteria for mania, hypomania or major depressive episodes. This specifier can be used with bipolar I and II diagnoses.

With atypical features - this is when symptoms occur with mood reactivity. For example, the person's mood brightens when good things happen, when they gain weight or have an increase in appetite, sleep more than usual, or have heavy almost paralyzing feeling in their arms and legs. These features should not occur in the same episode with melancholic or catatonic features.

With psychotic features - this is used when delusions and/or hallucinations are experienced. When the delusions and/or hallucinations are consistent with typical manic feelings such as inflated sense of self-esteem, being invulnerable, or feeling suspicious or paranoid, they are said to be mood-congruent. When they do not follow typical manic feelings, but are instead the opposite or a mixture of the two, they are known as mood-incongruent.

With peripartum onset - this is used if the onset of hypomania, mania or major depressive disorder occurs during pregnancy or in the 4 weeks following childbirth. This is just when the symptoms first appear, but they may last longer than the noted four weeks. Because 50% of 'postpartum' episodes begin during pregnancy, this category is now called peripartum rather than postpartum.

With catatonia - In this case, a person displays one or many unusual movements and mannerisms, including:

  • stupor (periods during which they do not move or actively relate to the environment)
  • excessive movement
  • catalepsy (passively being put into postures and holding them for periods of time, sometimes against gravity)
  • waxy flexibility (resistance to positioning)
  • mutism (no verbal response)
  • negativism (opposition or no response to instructions)
  • posturing (spontaneous and active maintenance of a posture held against gravity)
  • mannerism (odd caricature of normal actions)
  • stereotypy (repeating behaviors over and over without a goal)
  • prominent grimacing; echolalia (mimicking someone else's speech)
  • echopraxia (mimicking another's movements).

For example, a person sitting on a park bench who seems unable to stop imitating gestures and words of passers-by might be suffering from a bipolar disorder with catatonic features.

With seasonal pattern - this occurs when a person experiences mood symptoms at a particular time of year, and then feels a lifting of symptoms at other times of the year on a regular basis for the past two years.


Reader Comments
Discuss this issue below or in our forums.

Living with myself - Dougie Do - Nov 14th 2012

I am thirty years old and for at least half of my life I had been doing drugs to "self medicate" I am labeled as Bi Polar 1 , Cycling Bi Polar too . I had been diagnosed so many different things and now with this diagnosis of Bi Polar and the wonderful drug Tegratol I have achieved a state of "normality". All of my symtoms though matched pretty much all of the ones i read about, so i guess what im trying to say is dont give up and i belive things work out . I had put my family through so much shit and they where on their last thread. I stole from them and it was like normal rules and laws didnt apply to me .I couldnt keep a job and my social status was depleating quick . I am very fortunate that the Tegratol is working for me ...I dont know where i would be now if it wasnt for it. So once again dont give up and keep options open . husband has been diagnosed - - Sep 12th 2012

I desperately need someone to email me and discuss with me what I can expect in the future with my husband. We are currently separated and I am living with my parents. He was diagnosed with this disorder this summer. The trouble in our marriage or relationship is that i cant deal with his paranoia and the lack of trust he has for me when it comes to other guys etc. He is super controlling. My counselor said last week to me that being paranoid and controlling go hand and hand. He comes up with the strangest accusations. I added my parent’s friend to my phone contacts. Well I am 48 and my parents friend is in his 70′s and he texted me to tell me that he wasnt coming over to have coffee with my parents etc. Well my husband freaked out and started asking all kinds of guestions etc and now supposily he has even called this old man and has told him never to contact me again. Then my husband tells me that I need to get rid of this mans contact info and if I dont then it proves to him that I wont put his (my husbands) feeling first. I have done nothing wrong! He doesnt understand why I dont want to visit him and go on dates with him etc… well geez he makes me feel like crap so why would I. It has seemed like its been one foot forward in our marriage and 2 steps back because of him. Recently he has gone off of all his meds and now he isnt sleeping at all at night …so he tells me and the reason why is because he has horrible nighmares. He has become very very religious very very quickly.
He says the the Lord has healed him. I want to believe this so bad but when he is controlling and paranoid about this 70 yr old man etc… I dont believe that he has been healed. I feel like I am going crazy trying to figure this all out and wanting desperatly a relationship with him but fear he is never gonna get better and I wont be able to deal with it.
Thanks for listening. Northern Minnesota

He really needs help - Help4mylilbro - Jan 3rd 2012

I am in need of some help, for my brother 22. His grandmother passed away, and his father does not want to be responsible for him any longer because he has threatend to kill his family, he has all of the symptoms and has been diagnosed but not helped. Currently he is on probation and needs to be on his meds as a condition of him staying out of jail. he does not take them he smokes Mj, and he exposes himself and stands over people when he thinks they are sleeping. I really dont know what to do, his father said that he has been denied for SSI and that he is in appeal, but he is really bad, reality is not known to him anymoreand he believes he has his own commandments, yes like he is his own God he stated, that he will get what he wants when he wants it and that his god tells him things, He tells my daughter that he is sorry for what she has to grow up in with all the leaches??? he steals from his family and laughs about it, tongight he took my wifes phone which is shut off and he was talking to himself on the phone, then he lost the sd card which had her fathers photos who has just past along with videos that were of sentimental value.

I need advice, at this point right now I am going to call PD, and turn him in.

loving a bipolar partner - angelina - May 26th 2011
I have a bipolar partner for 4 years now-we do not live together because we both have mothers to take care of. In saying that ,until recently I never really understood the extent of my partners illness. Through personal counselling and joinig the NAMI, I have now gone from kindergarden about mental health illness to college. Recently, my partner broke up with me because she needed to protect herself and surrounds herself with folks who do not know of her illness.To them she is just a good time partying--anyways, my point being,I know it's not her--it's the illness and when I love, I love forever,so now you know I never truly loved anyone before. I will be here when she falls back to earth or when clarity comes back around for her. We have no contact because I am letting her be as she requested,but for any of you out there,you must know there are partners who love you unconditionally and will be here for you ALWAYS God Bless You All--

to: Really realy need some help 1/29/2008 - Margaretha Rutgers - Oct 19th 2010

I have just been reading the comments and I wonder whether anyone ever responded to "really really need some help", 1/29/08  There was no reply posted.  I sincerely hope that some help has come along in the intervening 2 and a half years.

 GET HELP my girl.  The fact that you wrote the piece means that you know you must not keep your condition secret.  There is never any shame in being honest and open to one's complexities and dealing with its downsides. It is simply impossible to deny one's true feelings and conditions for the sake of others and the outside world and fare well.  It will take too much of your energy pretending, which should be used for finding a way (with guidance!) why you feel sad and how to turn it around.  In addition, you will feel less lonely immediately.

Good Luck!!   Margaretha

Thanks a lot - Optional - Aug 7th 2010

The usual stuff--ppl accused (never diagnosed) with BPD are, as always, stuck somewhere between STUPID and IMMATURE.

Just what we all needed to hear! Must've taken you years of research to come up with such a vast pool of knowledge!

BPD a difficult situation - - Aug 4th 2010

My Son has bdp and has had two serious relationships both failed because of his behaviour which was the effect of the disorder.  The last one was made worse because the girl in question wouldn't believe me when I said it couldn't change. She just kept wanting the relationship to continue and each time the moods changed and anger erupted and the agression started also the splitting occured i.e the love you/hate you syndrome happened she went to the Police.  Consequently he was constantly arrested. This cannot be right.  My Son should seek help himself, unfortunately and I am sure he is not alone in this, he does not believe he has this problem. It is always somebody elses fault. What do others think?

There are many things we don't know but... - Fort - Jul 19th 2010

Yes, there are many things we can't find a satisfactory answer to. We simply don't know but one thing we know that God had not forsakened us, He will provide a way out.

Thank you for sharing all your experiences.

We need to take our medications  from our doctors regularly, get help from counsellors or friends who can help us. Read the Word of God, pray without ceasing...God will surely provide a way out.

Live one day at a time.

God bless you!

mental illnesses - - Jun 3rd 2010

i had mental illness since i was 9 yrs. old. i thought i had powers. i thought i could control if ilived or died. Of course i wanted to die.(but i'm still living).i started showing inapprpriate emotions towards certain situations.i started having hallucinations when i was sixteen. in school, sometimes i would want to do the work, and other times i just didn't care. in the year 2007i started to think my husband is the devil because i felt he treated me badly. after i had my second child i thought my newborn was talking to me and that she was an angel sent from heaven and she was going to help me send my husband back to hell. Now before all of this happened when i first started dating my husband my hallucinations went away and the depression, i was basically symptom free, but when things got bad they came back. my husband admitted me to the hospital b/c i tried to kill myself. they diagnosed me of having bipolar disorder. i didn't believe i had the disorder i thought my husband and his family were doing something to me(i still do even though i am on medication) and plus they gave me a mood stabilizer but the delusions and hallucinations were still there so i gave up  i didn't take them. then after a year i started hearing voices and my delusions got worse so i got o medication(antipsychotic) but i have schizoaffective disorder and panic attacks and obsessive cumpulsive disorder they all run in the family. when you are mentally ill if something makes you so happy you can be symptom free. but once any king of stress starts it will come back worse especially if you are not taking meds. if you all feel that you or a loved one has any of these illnesses seek help even if they don't want it b/c it will do some good for the sick person and you in the future. it's a part of me that believe that i'm sick then again i think my husband and his family is out to get me. maybe that's b/c i'm sick. but really seek help b/c the illness is like a beast that make you do things and believe things and disapear and and leaves you to pay the price.

To all the posts...... - - May 13th 2010

Words cannot say how truly admirable you all are, and my heart goes out to each and everyone one of you.  In my own battles with mental illness, I know how profoundly hurt all of you are, but I can say this, THERE IS VICTORY FOR ALL OF YOU! How do I know this? 18 years ago I was diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Anxiety Disorder, Severe Depression, and Borderline Personality Disorder.  And just here recently, was diagnosed with Dysthmyia (another mental illness).  OK....when does it seem to end? Never? I disagree. From All of the years seeing my therapists, psychiatrists, and taking my meds, I thank all of them because it brought my life into perspective and gave me an opportunity to really examine my life. Even though it took so long, I am finally free of all of my illnesses and meds because I fought back and took my life over. This is how I did it:

1.  The first thing that we have to remember is that we were not put on earth to amuse or impress anyone. We were put on this earth for one purpose only! And that is for God's enjoyment and pleasure. If you believe in God, or whatever higher power, I hope you understand this, but if you don't believe in either, give it a try and throw all of your burder and problems on what I just wrote and see if it doesn't help you.

2.  God knows what your pain is. He knows the people who hurt and persecuted you, and his day of vengeance is happening as I write this. Just take a look at how false and evil people really are, and then you'll see that the majority of the time, you are not the one with the problem, but are directly affected by those very diseased people who say they "Love YOU". This is mom, dad, sister, brother, etc. IF THEY CONTINUE TO HURT YOU, CUT THEM ALL LOOSE AS I DID! And you'll begin to understand more clearly that all those years it wasn't you...but them and their poor excuses as human beings.

3.  Don't look for answers from these people who put you thru all of your misery, because you'll never get them!  And if you do confront them, they will deny everything every step of the way or make up some stupid reason for their abuse. No matter how much you want that answer you will never get it! These humans are souless and will never change. You are the true Child of God because you hurt and have suffered at the hands of those who were supposed to love you.... Again, the day of judgement is close at hand, and GOD WILL DEMAND A RENDERING!

4.  God wanted us to enjoy this life he gave us. Although we all have endured such a grave hardship, abuse, and complete confustion, Remember one thing, we are supposed to be happy. Being happy and at peace is the most natural feeling and emotion a human being is to possess. DON'T LET ANYONE TAKE IT FROM YOU ANYMORE!!!!! We all know the difference between right and wrong, good and bad. We are not stupid, but people sure like to make it seem we are. They like to drive us completely nuts, and then stand back and call us 5150's. YOU ALL know that I am right! So if they don't like the fact that you are truly HAPPY, STRONG, CONFIDENT, CAPABLE, BEAUTIFUL, GORGEOUS, SEXY, HANDSOME, INTELLIGENT, GIFTED, PROFOUND, AND ALL THE OTHER WONDERFUL TRAITS THAT WE ALL POSSESS....Tell them to take a hike. If they can't say something nice, then don't say anything at ALL!

5.  The only one who possesses the power to declare judgement on anyone is GOD! DONT LET ANYONE PASS JUDGEMENT IN YOUR LIFE EVER AGAIN. If this happens or begins to happen (example: your this and you're that, your the reason this and that, etc.) then hang up the phone, slam the door in their face, or walk away. DONT THEM HAVE THAT POWER ANYMORE. And just remember, you don't due it to anyone either. Take responsiblity for EVERY ASPECT OF YOUR LIFE, GOOD AND BAD!  DON'T BLAME OTHERS!

6.  Talk back your life from those who cruely stole it from you. We all have the human right to be happy and have a sound mind. I remember a time in one of my therapy sessions, I told my therapist "I don't know what I did for my family to hate me so much". And she told me, "Did you hear what you just said?" And I said "What did I say?" and she repeated my statement. And her response to me was this, "You did nothing for them to hate you. Love and affection are natural emotions from a parent to a child; hate, cruelty, and abuse is not natural.  All your parents did was offer a uterus and a sperm and here you are. But them hating you was not your fault, it is a fault within themselves."

7.  Turn your hardship into the strongest strength you can possibly possess. Possessing a mental illness is nothing I would wish on my worst enemy. YOU KNOW I AM RITE! Looking back on the past 20 years and reviewing the struggles I endured, the letdowns, the tears, the sobbing, the pain....ENOUGH!  I don't have time for STUPID anymore. During all those years of suffering, I made some pretty great leaps and bounds, and accomplishments, which no one can take away! For all of you, write all your accomplishments down on paper and look at them everyday and say them aloud everyday and everytime you make an accomplishment, add it to your list...even if it is getting out of bed at 4 pm in the pulled that but out of bed and did it! So write it down! Waking up and you're still breathing? WONDERFUL. Write it down. Do you know why you are still living and breathing?  Because God wants you to be a testimony to someone else, just as I have done by writing this post to all of you.

As I have said before, I honestly do understand your pain, confusion, frustration, and all of the above... but their is hope, peace, and VICTORY for all of us. Thank you for letting me share this with you. I hope and pray that it will help you in some type of manner, even if it is the smallest of efforts. May God Bless You All and give you all the strength you need to be free!

Very Truly Yours,

Dawn D. Kendrick

wow - Tara - Apr 29th 2010

I think I know myself pretty well, and I'm like my own doctor. I'm kinda nuts and a hypochondriac though, but some of my intuitions are being justified. I'm bipolar. And I also feel I'm mult. personality, depending on my mood. I'm sometimes hippie Tara, all social about it, waiting to hang out with friends, disregarding the future and my responsibilities (although as a 17 y/o I really don't have much to do). I'm pretty with it, though. Like, I'm up and down daily, but I can distinctly tell when my big shifts are. For example, I moved to a new town and started Junior year at a new school, and I read and didn't make friends all first semester. Second semester I was feeling optimistic and social, and now I talk to over 50 people. Very, popular, literally, and I'm not being narcissistic, although that's where I'm headed. I think that's part of my mania. Narcissism. I don't mean to be, but I get so excited. This is the first time I've had girlfriends in a long time. I don't generally get along with girls. My relationship with my bf of 10 mos. sometimes struggles because of my bipolar. I'm so off and on, but he's so supportive, but I acknowledge it's hard for him. And he has his own set of problems that I can't even diagnose yet... but yeah, I don't know what I'm saying. I'm having racing thoughts right now, to give you a perspective on the bipolar brain. They say it usually doesn't develop til your 20s. Well, haha. Beat you to it. I've been weird all my life, and when I turned 15 I figured out why. I also think there is a coexistence between physical problems and bipolar. Like, your bowels will change depending on mood. Mine so bad to that I am incapable of going to the bathroom or I have to go every 2 minutes. Both ways (1&2). Uhm... moreover, I feel high on drugs when I'm not. And as most bipolars do, I experiment with the like daily. I feel I have somewhat of a grasp on myself, though. I try to go to sleep early... but when I mess with uppers, that's what gets me here online at 1:50 a.m. when I have ACTs in the morning. How smart am I? Anyways. Those grandiose feelings that attribute to mania aren't such a bad thing. The bad thing is the depression. Yes, I like to be calmed down. But you know what's my medium? Marijuana. I swear to god but it helps me think clearly. I have control over my emotions when I'm stoned. But not on any other drug. I think they should make it legal; pot, that is. But this is about bipolar... I've had severe stomach aches since I was a kid, I've had insomnia... racing thoughts... sometimes colors change, or I feel like my body is being heightened... as if I was on acid... and my pupils dilate. It's so weird. Sometimes I can't concentrate because I think too much. I know what things trigger my moods. Bipolar individuals need to gain awareness of themselves. Do these docs really know you? I bet you don't even know yourself. I'm not convinced psychiatric medications help bipolar. Not convinced whatsoever. If its all in your head, lets focus on the way you think. Constant reminders to get yourself to that high, or that medium. SHitty things in life are bound to happen, but that resiliency is a trait anyone can learn. And I find being a hippie extremely beneficial. :) Peace.

What about the victims, the real ones - Chai - Apr 19th 2010

Every one seems to be talking about just how hard it is to deal with people ..with these problems ..

But what about these people, who might be good people but still they cant live a normal life. Is it their fault that they have the disorder. For all the people who claim to Genuinely love thier partners/siblings but cant wait to get away from them... 

the reality is that no wants a faulty model.. whether its a faulty tv, dog or boyfriends. there is an expected normalcy and every one thinks thats what they deserver. they are not willing to except the reality that their loved ones might have some problem.. i have been on both sides of the fence.. and realise its tough to deal with some like that and it must be tough to deal with me... and but i all i want is some love and some one to show me that i am as important to them as they are to me... but most people thinks thats a problem.. asking for honesty.. and truth.. for example whenever all these ppl who claimed to have suffered in the hands of ppl with disorder tell you what happened .. they very conviently forgot to tell you the other side of the story... as how they tortured these ppl by doing things they couldnt handle.. how they kept insisting every time the person asked for something that its bcoz of his disorder that he is hurt.. and in reality there is nothing to be hurt of.. even though a normal person might feel hurt over the same thing...

i have seen one my friends who pushed her boyfriend with BPD over the edge.. she blamed everything on his BPD... she flirted with other guys and when he found out about ti and felt bad.. she blamed it on his BPD... she told every including ... her exboyfriends that he had BPD and he is unstable to get sympathy from them.. i tried telling her that if she wanted to help.. this is not the way.. but to her.. since he was sick.. it gave the upper hand in doing anything... and claiming his sickness as the reason...

in fact i still remember the early days of their relationship.. when she used to accused him of cheating becoz he kept in conact with ex work people .. including... female.. to her it was justified to be jeasolu as she was female.. but if he ever felt bad.. tht was coz of BPD... finally she dumped him and eventually he killed himself.. i knew the guy.... he was one one the niceset one i have even met.. and always talked highly about her... the bad things i know abt her.. coz of what she told me of himm...

in the end i thinks its weired society,,., and i am doomed.. no wants a defective... partner.. everyone will tell u how hard it was to be with them... but they never tell u it was hard coz.. loving some one ... for the just being them.. is not that easy.... leaving is ....easy.....

dont cry for the poor souls who never got any help.. i am sure.. i they ever wanted was loving hand to make them feel worthwhile.. and that some one loved them as much as they loved them.......

bi polar - - Feb 19th 2010

I need HELP!!!!  My husband, who I love very much, goes through these cycles and it is killing me!!!  One day he loves me then one little bump in the road and he HATES me. He tells me how I have become nothing, I am a mother, housewife and his right hand man, I would do anything for him. But he seems to resent me and just outright hate me, he wants a divorce then a few days or weeks go by and he LOVES me again. This has been going on for years and I am at the end of my rope,does he really want a divorce or is it the bipolar talking? I cant stand to have the man I love more than anything in the world say such horribe hurtfull things, then it all goes away, for a while. What can I do to help him and save our marriage????

confused - gladys tuccio - Dec 4th 2009


bpd AND bi polar...... together - kelly london - Nov 9th 2009

Hi my name is kelly, i'm 20 and have been involved with psychiatric services since i was 8. I have a daughter who's 2 and a half, and social services removed her from my care because they never understood my diagnosis of BPD and feared it could have an emotionally unstable effect on my daughter although it hasn't to date. My husband, my daughters father, Hanged himself in december 08 and he also had borderline personallity disorder. I have been seeing the same shrink for over 3 yrs now, and he has now told me i have borderline personallity disorder and bi polar affective disorder but am 60% - 40% bi polar manic. What i wish to do, is write a list of my symptoms here, and someone please tell me what they think...........















family abuse - attacked by family - Oct 9th 2009

I come from a family of abusers...alcoholics, sociopaths, and pitters. I was sexually abused by my brother. Mentally and verbally abused most of my life by my family.Later In the last couple of years I was struck by stage 3 breast cancer and almost died. I suffered a severe alergic reaction to a chemothrapy drug and have be pretty ill since 2004. Then developed a sub-clavian blood clot. Well here it is, my family has never really been there for me. Not on an emotional level, or a physical level. Finally half way through my life I am dealing with it and my ager is coming out, and they are saying that I have a anger problem. Because I am confronting them with everything, and it isn't comfortable with it. I have neuropathy from the chemo and I was taking cymbalta for that and now my insurance won't cover it, and so I have a pain level of 8-9 every day. I am however angry that these damb insurance companies don't understand that I have the sam neurapathy pain that diabetics use cymbalta for. So now my pain is back So now I am not sleeping again. I am frustrating with my family for all of their abuse, and not owning up to it. and I am seeing a therapist for it.

To the boy or girl that is 16 who wrote please please help me - - Aug 31st 2009

just because your a bit sad on your own doesnt mean you have severe depression your only 16 and i doubt being a bit sad is gonna cause you too loose touch with reality stop worrying about it or it will become a problem and believe me it can become a problem if you let it just do plenty of things to distract you and by the way dont think to much because that at the mo is driving me stir crazy if youve had no real problems in your childhood your likely to be a level headed adult which i havent had the good fortune to have

A bit of everything .. - - Aug 12th 2009

i was hospitalised in april last year the day after my 17th birthday. i attempted suicide, but failed. i was moved from the childrens hospital, to an adult unit, an adolescent unit, and then back to the adult unit. 1 year and 3 months later i was discharged. from what i understand, i was kept in hospital for such a long time because i was extremely malnourished and emaciated, but i later learnt that this was only one of many factors, including the severity of the risk of suicide. I spent my 18th birthday locked in the seclusion room, strapped to a bed, and christmas in a coma from jumping off a balcony, which i did in response to finding out that i had gained 4 Kg since my admission. No doctors could properly diagnose me, because i was presenting with such an array of symptoms, and still considered a minor. originally, i was diagnosed with anorexia nervosa and medicated for depression, which changed to BPD. i also have PTSD, and recently diagosed DID(MPD). I had extremely intense mood swings, suicidal thoughts and attempts, hallucinations, and long periods of disociation. Last week, i found out that my  friends' (voices/personalities) in my head, actually 'take over/come out' when i disociate, hence the latest: disasociative identity disorder.

but i have come to understand that my illness and resulting actions are a direct result of past experiences. i was sexually abused as a child by my mothers friends, given herion and other stimulants because they thought i was fun too look at when i was off my face, blamed for my father's terminal illness, and i watched my eldest brother kill himself. one of my alters decided that she would restrict my food intake so that i wouldnt grow up and be a 'big girl' that men like. as a result, i was fed via a naso-gastric tube for nine months.

Yes, it is a chanllenge to live a normal life with alters inside, changing moods and severe anxiety and hallucinations, but it can be done. i am not by any means near recovery, my psychiatrist predicts i will be in therapy for 'quite a while', but i wanted everyone to know that there is support and guidance out there for those who ask for it.

i know that i felt mental when i was being labelled as having a psychiatric illness, and as they continued to add on other diagnoses's to pre-existing ones, i was sure i was a freak. But these illnesses are not rare anymore, they are recognised in the DSM-IV for mental illness and are considered 'normal' responses to difficult lives and childhoods. if it is too difficult to deal with in the real world, consider the option of inpatient care. Hospitalisation is difficult, scary, and hard-work. but it can help. please, find someone you trust, and talk!

we are all special in our own way - lala - Jun 13th 2009

wow i have just read all your comments for a min i could not stop reading the reason i have loged on to this page is because i just founded out that my best friend is suffering from bipola funny but true i have just discovered that my ex husband was suffering from bipola as well Gosh if i only knew a bit earlyer maybey i would still have a husband and my kids a father I would like to thank you all for your comments i have learned a lot all im going to say is you guys are 1000000 times stronger and braver than these who dont suffer from it all of you are a great fighters. Dont ever give up all of you!!!!!!!!!! 

P.S a step up for you fighters this trime dont fight the bipola kill it !  xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Confused about Grandma - - Apr 28th 2009

I am dealing with a recent suicide attempt by my husbands mother.  We are all feeling out of sorts.  We just found out she was diagnosed with Bipolar years ago and she never told us. We all have kids and have left them in her care.  At times she has had thoughts of killing herself and others.. even the dogs.  Now I am scared to leave our kids with her.  I am unsure what to say to her.

bipolar boyfriend? - Lisa - Mar 20th 2009

Hello All~I have been with my boyfriend for 4 years.  when we first started dating he did anything and everything possible to make me happy! He was also accepting of my 3 kids, but also shared he had no interest in having children of his own. After a few years into the relationship i brought up living together, at first he seemed hesitant and kept saying he isnt a fun person to live with. I really didnt understand because everything I had experienced with him to that point was great!

Well, a few months later he moved in and I began to witness him being "not so fun" to live with.  He constantly kept to himself, didnt like to talk.  suddenly no longer wanted to go out on the weekends., his day consisted of the following: go to work, take the dog out and feed her, workout in the basement, take a nap on the couch or play on the computer, and bed no later than 10pm.  everyday was the same routine, He never allowed anyone else in the house to watch what they wanted on TV, it had to be all controlled by him. 

In addition, he began showing zero interest in my children. my 6 year old son got hit by a car and couldve died and he elected to stay home rather than be with me at the hosptial. he has never once attended the kids school functions. He became so removed from our life. He rarely talks to his friends and rarely goes anywhere besides home and work. 

Recently, I have experienced him becoming violent over things that were so minimal. like punching walls, throwing things at my hardwood floor and denting it, he took the dog and threw her down a flight of 14 stairs.....  

there is never a conversation about our future together or if we may get married one day, he totally gets irriated by that topic. I finally broke down and said is this working? he said he is waiting to see how much longer it will take me to get sick of him because he is not the person i need him to be because he doesnt partake in functions w/my kids, etc. and doesnt plan on working on changing things. That being said I told him we may as well end it now, because its clear we are going nowhere in this relationship.  He went and got a moving truck and moved out today,  I am hurting so bad....I feel like my heart is breaking in half, almost like i experienced the death of a loved I doing the right thing?  do you think he is going to regret it?  HELP!

personality disorders - andrew - Mar 20th 2009

i've read all your comments and i feel and empathise for everybody. relationships can be so confusing, troubling and painful and inspite of any thing we find in our parteners that is unsettling, truth is....all humanity is like that. look, there is always something wrong with all of us however calm and 'together' we appear to our 'friends' family and relatives. at some point, stuff in life happens that shakes us to the depth of our own souls that lead us to question our own sanity let alone our own essence. its how we all deal with percieved or real adversity that pushes us over or under the matter what personality type one is. so for you who get into relationships with the sole intent of finding out what is wrong with your mate or something, well, you usually get what you want. nobody is ever at their worst behavior when they are courting each before you commit to living with someone, at the very least, take time to find out stuff that you value most in a partner. to me, issue number one is the ability to be consistent in major aspects of living like ...holding a job, frequency with which they are in trouble, general outlook on life, ......forget this stuff about 'falling in love' cuz in reality love is never enough!. work, education, knowledge, a reality based life philosophy and faith in God is the best aphrodisiac for relationships or any kind of personality disorders. fact is, there is never a completely functional relationship or personslity type.people, and smart ones just make adjusments!..i mean behavioral adjustments not medications. medications simplly reconfigure your brain physiology and therefore you become worse than if you took time to learn more about oneself. folks, living is not so easy even when one has all the resources at their disposal. knowledge is power...knowledge about what one's condition, relationships, family structures,cultures and above all knowledge of God's power. Don't let ya mind play tricks on you. things are never as bad as we make them out to be...its the degree to which we push our delusions that drive us to insanity, jails, become alcoholics.....its how we turn our own failures, dissapointments on to others and blame everybody but ourselves!. like one person famously said, to every fingure you point at another, two are pointing right back at ya. love one another and don't drive each other nuts just so you can get ya 'high'....this is why we do the things we do our get instant 'kicks' and 'fixes' to our sorry selves.

*Response to Margaret* - Barton - Jan 4th 2009

Hi~ my mom is bi polar schizoaffective it is definitely a dark clowd over her.  Not only dealing with this disorder of in and out of the hospital and being institualized twice. Before I was born  my parents gave my older sister up for adoption in 1971

  I met my lost sister while pregnat with my second child in 2003.  I also had to commit my mother to the mental institution for her well being. That year I began Zoloft which is my little helper to deal with life.

It is a difficult mental disorder to keep together!  My mother has breast cancer that ended up with removal of both of her breasts.  Addition to that she is maintaing bone cancer treatment for the rest of her live.


Please pray for my mom Joan Peterson  she needs all the prayers in the world.


anyone outthere? - me2lissa - Dec 3rd 2008

i gat scared.single mom. to stand up for myself in fear of losing son, yet stay depressed day in, day out. physical disability now along with awareness of mental disease..,..yep tried seroquel--don't work...symbyax---don't work....what's worst, can get pain management for right arm and back b/c of mental health...Double more than one way....drs. around me don't get it.......i'll never get better as long as they are in control of how i feel

CONFUSED !! - - Nov 1st 2008









Mother who is caring for a daugher w/Bipolar - - Jun 21st 2008

I enjoy reading your comment regarding the therapy for which your daughter is receiving.  You are right to all parents, please seek out a therapist that specializes in Cognitive Behavioral therapy.  This is coming from a clinical therapist as well as a mother who daughter has this conditon. 

God Bless You All.

prayer for the dying - ghalib - May 20th 2008

Oh lord my heart is sick,Sick of this everlasting change.

Life runs tediously quick,with its unresting race and varied range.

Change finds no likeness of itself in you,

And makes no echo in your mute eternity.......

I dont know what type of desease i am having,but all these six yrs i took use nothing gonna change.For doctor i am a tamed patient,for me a looser in agonised mindset.Obese,gastric,jobless,delusive. if I drink alot then also i coudnt sleep without medication.Its a curse in shape of a desease but i am gifted with a mother and helping brothers.

I Understand - Elizabeth Osler - May 17th 2008

Well, I am a bipolar since the time I was born.  I have a very difficult life, due to my mother, who is very English.  God, I could say lots more, but not sure about this website.

Kind regards - Liz Osler

i need help - emma - May 2nd 2008

i hear people talking in my head at night sometimes can somebody tell me what it is my husband thinks im mad i do suffer from depression since i was 16 i am now 31

Editor's Note: These may be auditory hallucinations you are experiencing.  Hallucinations can occur in the context of severe depression, as well as several other disorders.  Our essay "The Nature of Psychosis " talks more about this sort of thing.  

Recovering BP - house - Mar 29th 2008

Just a quick note to those folks suffering from BPD. I was diagnosed 27 years ago with BP and it has been a struggle from the beginning and it will be until the day i die. That's the bad news. The good news is that by coming to the following conclusions I found some peace and happiness and you can to. 

1) Accept that every part of you, every molecule is consumed with the BP disorder. Once you have accepted this fact you will be forced to surrender and seek the help you need. Without surrender/acceptance there can be no growth.

2) Listen to the doc and stick to the regiment but with his guidance do not be afraid to experiment. I am currently taking 900mg Lith. and 50mg Zoloft. The latter of this combo i just started taking 5 mo. ago. The different meds i have been on over the years seems almost countless. My point is, if you take the first step (see above) you owe it to yourself to find what works for you.

3) Finally, Under 0 cicumstances can you abuse drugs or alcohol. Remember any imbalence eg: lack of sleep, intoxication, undue stress, over excitement etc. can set us off. We have to learn to live on the line and meds and/or therapy are our tools to finding it.

Also, if you have someone to love and who loves you coodos to you. Your struggles can be made a bit easier. if you don't, all is not lost by no means. Get into therapy, find a god who's a good listener or talk to yourself until someone notices. Try not to go through this alone.

I feel you pain and i hope this helps.



really really need some help - - Jan 29th 2008

hi, im 16 and i believe i suffer from severe depression and bipolar disorder which is joined by an eating disorder. I havent ever taken any medication for depression or bpd,and ive never seen someone for my eating disorder and whats even better, ive never told my parents, doctor or friends that i fear i suffer from these two illnesses. Its getting pretty hard to live everyday life because to my friends and family i am energetic and happy and loving life but when im by myself im just so sad and lonely. I dont know what to do. I am very popular in school and i have a lot of friends, many guys like me, my parents are supportive and i am wealthy and i really have nothing to be sad about. But then why am  i so so sad all the time? From reading your stories, i believe, more than ever, that what im suffering from can't just be me being a brat or being spoiled, im really so sad. And i dont know what i should do, i don't know if finding help is worth frankly destroying my entire life. Its like if i tell someone and i get help ill be saving myself but ill also be destroying myself. Nobody knows that anything is wrong with me and that in itself makes me more lonely than ever. Im so sad and so lonely and so confused and i really dont know what to do. I will never ever commit suicide but the fact that it has even crosses my mind is scaring me to death. If anyone reads this and can respond with advice or words that theyve been there, knowing anyone else, even a faceless blogger, can kind of get me.. it would be a relief. Please


My experience - Margaret - Jan 14th 2008
I have bipolar and I now am forced to conclude that I am schizoaffective, I just spent the last week in my apartment paranoid and delusional afraid to eat my food because I thought it might be poisoned. I hate this. I try to be positive but life is so difficult. Taking care of yourself is a fulltime job. Thankfully I have supportive parents.



Editor's Note: Schizophrenia and Schizoaffective Disorder are not identical.  They share the same psychosis symptoms, but Schizoaffective Disorder also has mood symptoms similar to major depression or bipolar disorder, while Schizophrenia does not. 

hope this helps someone - Sheri - Dec 17th 2007

I was married to a bipolar man, I also believe that he has other problems as well. I met him on the internet and he seemed so nice. He was nice looking, did not drink or do drugs and had a firm belief in God. We dated for about a year and last Christmas he asked me to marry him. I married him in May. He kept talking about buying this and that, investing and wanted me to put my house up for a home equity line for investing in other real estate. He helped put over 10,000 dollars on my credit cards in six months and said he would help me with the bills.....(NOT). He talked me into buying a car that could not afford (still can't)....also said he would help here too. He did not want to work, or worked very little (he worked for himself). He had extreme mood daughter would say "It's Sunday" whenever he threw one of his tantrums. My son from a previous marriage stays with his dad for the most part while my daughter stays with me..........told me that he wanted to see me but did not want to be around him. My daughter finally said "enough"..................that she could not live in it either.....................I had already told him to leave and he insisted on staying extra time after I told him to get out.

For three weeks he knew he had to pack and get out.......he said he was so overwhelmed he needed more time. This is someone that was so critical over me being slow and mentally in outerspace (which I am not). He was hateful, tried to kill my daughter's cat that he gave her. He broke not only my heart and my bank account, but has messed up plans of my children's as well. Their hearts too are hurt, mamma has to work several jobs to make up for this idiot's scheme.....and too I dislike myself in the fact that I trusted this jerk.....and he is a jerk! My time has been stolen from them as well. I also have a student loan I have to be paying on soon, and I am praying that God will open another door for me at that time too.

I have several good-looking men that continually ask me out and I tell them that I don't have time. But one day I will have this crap paid for and I will probably go on some dates and have some fun......but I seriously doubt that I can fully trust anyone ever again. One of my ex-boyfriends told me that he wished he had an extra chance with me ex-husband told me some stuff last week that lets me know that he still  has feelings too.........................I just want some I am telling all of these anxious men that let peace be still give me some time, and maybe when I get all this behind me if they are still there I may still date, but that is it.

somtimes you are better off to cut your losses and run! - B. - Nov 16th 2007

My boyfriend of 2 years and I moved in together after a long distance relationship.We had never spent any significant long term time together. He began to act irradic. He lied , cheated, chronically masterbated, spent money like water and had thoughts that everyone was out to get him. He was also violent towards me. Four years after this behavior began he was diagnosed as Bi-Polar with Psychotic Tendencies. I found out later there was a family history of mental disease,sexual and physical abuse,suicide and even homicide.His delusions caused him to think he was omnimpotent and above everyone else. Therefore, it wasn't long til he was sure he didn't need meds or his therapist. The best thing I ever did was leave this person and get a protective order. He eventually lost his job, his belongings,his friends, his new girlfriend and has moved home with his parents and at nearly 30 years old is completely delusional and has no job and probably never will because the job he lost was his one and only job his whole life and he had violent outbursts and committed sexual harrassment.Somtimes it is better to leave such a situation be it a lover, friend or family member before you end up seriously hurt or worse. I will live with the painful memories of this person for the rest of my life and I now suffer from PTS.

bi-polar/schizo - Norma - Sep 20th 2007

I have a stepson who is 19 years old. He is just starting out in life. He was doing fine. Then one day he called the police on him self for help he was hearing voices. They took him to the hospital and they told him to lay off the coffee and cigs. a few weeks later he called the police again they took him to a diff hospital and they keep him for 3 days. He was told he was bi-polar/scizo. He has call the police on himself again. He is now homless and roaming the streets of Denver. He has no money and insurance. Is there a place for help in colorado or anywhere. This kids is crying for help! It just is not out there what happen to helping the helpless.


Wow, i don't even know where to start. i have been reading all of these comments, and i can emathyze with so many. I have been with my husband for almost 6 yrs. and married for almost 5. My husband and I came from very similar backgrounds and share many wishes to not have violence and fighting in our home. I have 4 children that are mine that live in our home. None of which are biologically his, but he is there only father. He Helped me fight for custody of my children because we love them. and we wanted them home with us to make our family. Things have been stressful adjusting and every one adjusting. i am unable to work, because of a fall and brain injury, but i do receive disability, but not as much if i was able to work. a few months ago, we let my 33 yr. old brother move in with us, (temporarily) because he was down on his luck and my husband started acting weird, and accusing me of having some thing going on with my brother. He couldn't seperate the reality of being a close and loving family. even though when reality comes back to him, he knows and understands that we are blood, and anything else is just (YUCK!!!) AND HE USES the excuse that he was just feeling like someone else was trying to be domonate, and he's the ALPHA MALE. my brother moved out, and things seemed to get better, and on night for no reason, my 13 yr. old son was standing to close to me and he flew into a rage, thinking there was something weird going on.  well, a couple months went by, and with just some mood swings here and there, and then all of a sudden he freaked out and was accusing my 13 year old son of needing sexual counseling or he was miss behaving. that lasted for a couple days. then everything was good, for two weeks, them he started again on all kids but the youngest. he hears things that aren't said, see's things that don't happen but he swears that they do. he has for the first time ever been mentally abusive to me. the kids dont know how to act. he tells them he don't trust them and if he finds out anything is going on, then he's leaving. we don't even have to do anything and he starts accusing everyone of very terrible things. when he calms down or comes back to reality for a moment, he realizes the the things he says are out of context, and unimaginable, but these episodes are getting worse. there every day now. one minute hes the man i fell so deeply  in love with and the next , well i don't know who he is. i have tried to get him to get help, but he tels me if he goes and talks to someone, that they will come and take the kids away, because he thinks the most horrific things, and when we are all confronted with them and tell him the truth, he calls all of liars. I have all boys. I am the only female in my house. i have two teenagers and two younger. The things that his paranoia accusations are the nost horrific and unimaginable possibilities. These are my babies. the children, and i can't even get him to understand that's not reality. there isn't even anything that anyone has done for him to even has these thoughts, other than 2 of the boys are teenagers 15 and 13 and they can be gross and perverted toward one another, not to mention rude and uncaring. but their boys. i have spoke to a psycitrist, that knows my family well, and he also believes what there doing for there age may not be nice to hear, but is very nomal. and he didn't have a normal child hood or teenage years, so i don't believe he has any idea of what (NORMAL) is. I have been trying so hard to keep the strong for him and i and our children, but he's breaking me, emotionally. at times when racional thought finds its way back to him, he knows theres something wrong, and then the paranoid thoughts come back and off he goes again. I miss my husband, and my children miss their father. we need him back, but i don't know what to do. the town we live in now is short on experienced psychatrists, and i won't take him to some one that isn't going to help him the right way, or make things worse. he is taking a  anti-depressent, sometimes it helps, at least calm his mind from racing with the paranoid thoughts, and other times, it seems that he hasn't even taken it, and he says he has. I am scared for him, and am scared that if something dosen't happen soon i am going to loose him forever. when we met, we had an experience and after that we knew we are suppose to be together forever. my soul mate. if any of you believe in GOD and his miracles, HE let us know, we were meant for each other. i and my boys love him so very much, but i dont know what to do to help him. He is our life.   please, if anyone can help suggest something, please, i just want to get him healthy and back to himself. because when he is himself, he is the best husband and father. PLEASE!!! good suggestions for help. BROKEN IN WYOMING

Mother w/ BPD who has violent outbursts - Susie - Jul 8th 2007
My mother has never been "officially" diagnosed but since losing her father 14 years ago and then taking care of her mother until her death 6 years later and in the interim my dad was diagnosed with a brain tumor, she has steadily declined in mental status. My dad died a year ago and she has hit bottom. My mother has a violent side when she's manic. My family is torn. One brother does not speak to her and now I am unable to speak to her since a physical and violent event a few days ago.  My children (15 and 21) have seen too much already and we are all giving up. I feel like there isn't anything I can do. I've tried being supportive for many years now and I have finally reached my end. I still feel helpless but I don't know how to help her. She believes that she is just in how she's acts and that everyone else is to blame. The hardest part for me is that my father told me a few years ago that my mom physically beat her mother while in her care and also beat my father who went blind from his tumor. I don't know if there is forgiveness in my heart anymore. This is not the mother I remember as a child and my heart is sad.

identifying with the - theresa - Jun 24th 2007

i was just reading everyones comments here...and i really relate to the person who asked "who am i"?? i mean its like am i the young happy person, am i the confused person i feel i am inside, am i just getting old..and u can say this to people and they look at you like they have no clue what u are talking about..well its probly cuz they dont..i have been diagnosed with borderline personality for years...very recently i had a really bad was really more bi-polar than borderline i im wondering do i have both? i am in the process of obtaining an appt with a psychiatrist..i took a major step cuz i scared myself and i called and got myself in for an on top of all this..i met a wonderful charming man about a month ago...he is, "I'm a rapid cycler bi-polar", his own words...he and i think alike and have very comparable just a very emotional person...i tend to attach myself emotionally very quickly..he told me he has a tendency to disappear for a couple days at not read into has nothing to do with me..that its him...well he disappeared for a whole day and i got myself soo upset thinking i had done something wrong or i wasnt good enough...we were together last night and...i dunno...its like at times he says a lot of things that are looking towards a future for us and that he is falling for me..and then he tells me to be careful and not overwhelm it cuz he will run...i really respect his honesty and i understand what he means..even if it is confusing...and i dont know how to hold in my emotions...when i care i care..when i dont i dont..simple as that...i hope whoever is reading this doesnt think im just trying to describe how i feel and i totally identified with the "who am i" question...and also im looking for answers...or ideas on how to cope with all this..thanks for your time..and i hope one of you, or many of you get something out of this...i did, it helps me to get things out by writing...have a good day, theresa

Scare and Confused - Sanchez - May 24th 2007

I'm still trying to search for answers.  I'm scared and confused.  Everything that I have read and learned about Bi-Polar and Borderline Personality Disorder seem to be characteristics in my husband.  He's been diagnosed with Bi-Polar about 2 1/2 years ago but has never gone for treatment.  I thought I could deal with it because per the articles it is a cycle and once the mood has changed life goes back to 'normal' for a few days and then the cycle starts again.  What is bad is I have learned that those cycles are very unpredictable and we never know what mood is coming on and we're always walking on egg shells around him.  Waiting to see what person is going to arise.  I'm scared because I've been with him for 17 yrs so he is pretty much all I know but yet I'm confused because I don't know what to do.  As previous comments have stated, most men don't like going to the doctor much less to a psychologist, this would be my husband.  I'm tired of going through these mood swings.  I feel like he's taking me down and my world is breaking apart.  All I can ask is for prayers to help him seek out the help that is out there.  Thank you.

Have hope - Shane - May 24th 2007

I have been reading all the comments on this site and like alot of you I'm very glad I found it as I now don't feel so alone. I'm 31 and suffer from Bi-polar and I'm currently going through a very bad period. I've suffered from depression since my teenage years but things only came to a head when I started uni when the preasure of exams broke me. I've lost alot of friends due to this diorder and a beautiful loving girlfriend who gave me so much support but couldn't take it anymore as I was holding her back. I don't know where to turn anymore as all the treatment I've been put on just hasn't worked. There could be 100 people in the room with me and I would still feel alone. Every morning I wake up I pray it will be a normal one or even a hyper one. We're not alone folks and as someone here wrote suicide isn't the easy way out, I've tried and failed because it's one of the most difficult things anyone can do and for anyone to say it's a selfish act, well they just don't get it. We must battle on despite how hard it is. Just know that there are good days ahead so lets not let the bad ones ruin that thought. Today was the tomorrow you worried about yesterday, all will be well.

Chin up all!

Still confused - Amanda - May 23rd 2007
I had a complete mental breakdown 1 year ago and I am still picking up the pieces. I have been diagnosed as bipolar with severe Depression by one doctor. I seen another doctor when I moved and he said I had borderline personality disorder. I went back to my old doctor when I ended up moving back and he said it was just bipolar. I seem to beleive the other doctor because he actually spent an hour actually talking to me and asking questions. Anyhow, I have alot of bipolar traits.....Severe depression for long terms of period, suicidal thoughts and attempts, cutting, spending sprees--I take out loans for fun (like just to get away for awhile(out of town)) on the spur of the moment with no planning involved and then after it is all over I want to kick myself in the @#*, I sometimes make very foolish sexual interactions which I also regret after the moment is over. I also have the all or nothing that is a borderline trait so I am so confused What or who I am...... It is so depressing. I have been to 3 different doctors and been on almost every bipolar medicine... I have gained at least 30 pounds in the last year which really causes me to feel worse about myself. I stopped taking lithium 2 weeks ago because all the weight gain. I just don't know who I am, if I am going to get completely better and be me again or this is me now??????????????????       I have gotten alot better since a year ago but, I am still feeling like I just can't keep up in this world and if it wasn't for my kids and I am the only one to raise them I would have already been dead. I just get so scared that when i get the suicidal thoughs I become oblivious to my responsibilities to my children and I want to (As everyone says that has never attemped suicide( take the easy way out)). I have learned suicide is no where near the easy way out, I have tried and even in the most depressed mood I couldn't accomplish it. I am glad I didn't and that I am still here to watch my kids grow up, I just try to keep my spirits up and to stay alive and keeo moving forward. Any help or suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks for listening.

I just feel so lonely - Betty Dow - May 10th 2007
I am so glad I decided to visit this site. I am forty four and just realized I have bpd. Suffering from depression from the age of seventeen, on one medication after another that didn't work, I was beginning to think I was just crazy. I was emotionaly abused as a child by my uncle and his wife who raised me after my mother gave me to them at the age of five months. To this day, although I have made every attempt to show this woman love, she does all in her power to continue to brake my heart. Three years ago she told me she never loved me. When I questioned why, her only answer was that she just couldn't. Sitting here now, it saddens me to know that the #1 cause of my depression is because of the ignorance of other people. Just the other night, I had an awful crying period because of the lonelyness in my head everyday just because I can't get anyone to understand the pain and confussion of not understanding just what is happening to me on a daily bases. It's as if I live in a world all by myself. I take cymbalta for depression and a medical condition, but it makes me have very strong thoughts of killing myself. Nevertheless, I am happy to read your posts and feel for just a short while ,that I am not alone.

With all my heart, I wish each of you luck, love and all the happiness you deserve. God bless.

Diagnosed with BPD in my twenties with family to care for - Nicola from England - May 3rd 2007
I was diagnosed withBPD in 2006 at the age of 26, i have a young family to care for and struggle daily with the effects of BPD, along with learning that my memories of a neglectfull childhood were true and not some story i had subconciously made up, as i had began too rule them off as such, because i had no proof. I have been told i need to undertake DBT but have no chance of finding a group to join as the mental health services have been dramatically cut in this area. I desberatly want to get better but how if the treatment is not available? I need some advice as well as to what to do about a new GP i have that deemed me and my condition as 'nonsense' and that BPD does not exist and its just a label we are given when no one knows what to do with us!!!! nice! just what i needed.

Help on Bipolar - Wizrd9 - Mar 25th 2007

Bipolar disorder has been effectively treated with at least 2 very good drugs on the market. I have been dealing with Bipolar disorder for 30 years personally and been through a lot over that time. Originally mis-diagnosed with paranoid schizaphrenia and after the first year and finding another psychiatrist that understood Bipolar signs, originally used lithium to treat and it was effective for the time although I personally had problems with pills sticking in my throat and causing a burning sensation. After over 20 years of on and off of lithium and seeing the effects of being on and off the drug, I finally was pointed towards a drug called Depakote which was a big difference as it was in an easier form to take. And then I finally went through a five way bypass heart surgery with a stroke and had a problem with neuropathy. Anyway to make a very long history shortened I am presently taking a newer drug called Cymbalta for my neuropathy which also just happens to be a great drug for helping with Bipolar disorder and finally replaced the combination of Depakote and Cymbalta for just Cymbalta and things have been stable and great for over 7 years straight now. Ther are also a few other new drugs on the market now. I am just saying if you can't find a psychiatrist in your area that specializes in Bipolar disorder then find a local psychiatrist that you can deal with and make a few inquiries about these two drugs and also do as much research on the internet and this site to gain knowledge about the problem. It is treatable and able to get under control it just takes a fair amount of patience on the part of the caregiver be it a parent or spouse. There is hope for stability with good help. I hope this post helps people avoid the stress I have learned to cope and deal with over my past 30 years trying to find the best answer.  May you find Peace in your search.

for a wife with a husband with bipolar - - Mar 1st 2007

sorry to hear about your problem; yea there should be clinics in every state; go to Health Department and they will direct you. This site has a lot of good info about bipolar; optional ,besides pills; the problem is if your husband is willing to do anything; men are not really willing to see any doctors, espessially this kind of doctors.


16 daughter w/bpd traits, newly diagnosed - laura - Feb 17th 2007

thanks so much for sharing the story regarding your daughter. over the last year and half, our daughter, age 16, has been diagnosed with adhd, general anxiety disorder, depression, post traumatic stress disorder, bi polar and now "shows bpd traits". she has been seeing her psych md for almost 2 yrs, and has been seeing a therapist on a weekly basis for almost 1 yr now. she has been to outpatient 3 times and inpatient 2 times in less than a year. we are desperately trying to locate a therapist with bpd experience and dbt training in the dallas/ft worth, texas area. does anyone have any suggestions? i have found a great resource in the houston area and made several inquiries in the dfw area, but have not had a response as of yet. any assistance would be greatly appreciated. by the way, how was her education/high school career affected? thanks again for the information.


Can someone offer help? - Colorado - Feb 2nd 2007

My husband shows symptoms of both bipolar disorder and schizophrenia.  I don't know that he's ever been diagnosed with either, however most of his family has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder.  I have tried to convince him to get treatment, but he says a doctor will only give him medication and he doesn't believe it will work.  Are there any alternative treatments for bipolar disorder that do not involve taking a pill?  It seems to me that he's getting worse every day, and I am very concerned.  We don't have a lot of money -- are there any clinics for mental help in Colorado or anywhere?

Structure & Therapy - Daughter with BPD - Jan 31st 2007
My daughter has been diagnosed with BPD, 5 years ago as she hit puberty she changed dramatically. Depressed, Cutting, thoughts of killing herself. We found her a therapist and over the last 5 years it has been a roller coaster, she was institutionalized for 4 months because of serious self harm/thoughts of dieing. She is 18 now, has been on Abilify for a couple years, still fights bouts of depression and Black/white thinking. With a behavior contract and extreme structure here at home we now are able to function more as a family and not have our daughters illness rule our family. She now has a job, is showing responsiblity and is looking forward to graduating high school. Make sure to find an understand therapist with knowledge Cognative Behavioral Therapy,also BPD groups are a great place to find support. Good Luck!

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