AnnieS asked this question on 5/2/2000:
Hi, I'm a 36 year old female with a history of drug and alcohol abuse(12-25), several dysfunctional relationships, Sexual abuse(11), rape(21). I have been clean and sober for the past 11 years, gone through extensive psychotherapy(of which I found to be very benificial), I was relationship-less for 5 years and became quite sucessful and independent throughout that time. My question is this: up until very recently I believed, (and have been diagnosed with), Major Depression. I remember feeling depressed as far back as I can remember. My mother describes my moods like this, "you're up & down, up & down." My best friend of 34 years has always sworn I was Bipolar, and everyone else I know is always saying, "you're so moody." Until very recently, I wouldn't even entertain the idea of being Bipolar, (nor would the therapists), because of what I, and they, thought to be, an absence of manic episodes. I hang on to my "happy times" for dear life. They don't last long, and I'm never sure why they're there. But until recently, I never questioned the lack of reason, I just grabbed on to these very brief periods and enjoyed them while I had them. However, recently I have become more aware of these times because I am unable to sleep for very long during these times, I fall asleep for a few hours, awake, and am unable to get back to sleep. That's if I'm even able to get to sleep much before dawn. I've also noticed that I can be feeling happy one moment and have it turn into extreme irritability the next. Irritability to the point of being enraged. I'm over active, easily distracted, almost foggy or hazey at times. Recently I read about Biploar II. Do you think there's a possibility that I have this type of Bipolar? I feel like I'm on a mood roller coaster much of the time, and swing in and out of these moods so rapidly sometimes that I have difficulty distinguishing how I truly feel about most everything. It leaves me feeling very indecisive and confused. There doesn't seem to be any apparent reason for these shifts in mood. Up until now I've refused medication for the depression for fear of becoming active in my addictions again, but am returning to therapy to explore the possibility of meds, as the depression has become much more severe over the past two years, and I'm not sure I can handle it without the meds any longer. I intend to discuss the possibility of Bipolar with my new psychologist, but would like as many opinions, and as much input as I can get before I go. Anything you can offer would be greatly appreciated, and to all of you that have already answered me; Thank You so much!!!! Annie S.
psychomania gave this response on 5/3/2000:
To be diagnosed with bipolar depression is very rare indeed, only 5% of all the people suffering with depression are classified as bipolar. The mania in bipolar is horrendous from giving all your possessions away to nympomania. It appears to me your problem lies with your history of drug abuse, especially if the drugs included amphetomine. With this type of drug abuse flashbacks can occur on a regular basis and are often mistaken for manic episodes of ones depression. I speak from experience as I was an introvenus abuser of this drug for 8 years. I am 42 years of age now and have been clean for 6 years. I am now taking a degree in psychology. (BSc.Hons Psychology). It will take a great deal of determination and courage on your part to lose any thoughts of your previous addiction but keep up with the therapy and life will return to normal or as normal as can be expected. Keep the faith, and may your God be withyou. Yours sincerely. Psychomania
psychomania gave this response on 5/4/2000:
Dear AnnieS, I will do what you requested and research Bipolar II. I will get back to you though it may take a little time, as you can appreciate Abnormal Psychology is difficult to interpritate. Keep smiling! YOURS SINCERELY, PSYCHOMANIA.
The average rating for this answer is 3.
AnnieS rated this answer a 3.