Perhaps you may be reading this as a fellow Bipolar Survivor, perhaps not, and that’s okay. Before being diagnosed as Bipolar I after a series of unfortunate events, I considered myself a regular person with regular problems, but with extraordinary intelligence and a gift for creativity. I attributed the latter to genes because my dad is also very gifted in many areas. Little did I know how much genes really played a part in my development, but I’ll leave that for another blog post.
I was interned in a psychiatric hospital shortly after my manic episode in 2006, twice: once in Georgia and subsequently in California. Again, I’ll save details for another posting.
After graduating college in June 2008 and getting married at age 22 in September later that same year, I was again hospitalized after experiencing a third and (let’s hope) final manic episode. I stopped taking my meds that time, which is why I had another manic episode. Never doing that again!
All in all, it has been quite an adventure, if you can call it that, since being diagnosed in 2006. I remain married, and to the same adventurous man, have had 2 pregnancies and have 2 little girls, and continue to educate as a profession. I believe myself to be a mental health advocate, and hope to affect change in legislation so that all sufferers of mental illness can become Survivors!!!
There was a Psychology Today article that said that 90% of bipolar marriages fail. This used to get quoted a lot until someone looked back and realized that there was no study backing up the statistic. The writer had just made it up!
We’ve been married for 27 years. Keep going!
It is a struggle, but marriage is work, beautiful work albeit. I am at a point in my life where I can say that I am at peace with my diagnosis, my meds are finally stable, and know I can focus on other things, like being a mental health advocate and helping those that are struggling for the first time. Thank you for the encouragement Joel!
If I could make it — mostly unmedicated for all but the past 10 years — you can make it. I’ll be cheering you on!
Sounds like you have made a meaningful life for yourself and family despite the illness. I know how difficult it is sometimes as I have lived with my fiancee now for 18 years.