Hi. I’m new to blogging but I hope that sharing my thoughts and feelings about recently being diagnosed with Bipolar II will help me come to terms with my illness and help other suffers.
I was diagnosed on Friday 5th Dec by my now psychiatrist. It was my first ever visit to see a shrink and I was nervous as hell. I needn’t have worried he made me feel relaxed and once he started asking questions the flood gates opened! I always knew deep down that something wasn’t right with me. For a far as I can remember I have always been a moody sod but my mood swings over the past 5 years have got worse.
My first diagnosis was that of anxiety and after my first ‘breakdown’ my wife forced me to see my GP who like so many others prescribed me citalopram and referred me to talking space, a local mental health charity. This was my first brush with Cognative behaverial therapy (CBT) and whilst I understand the concepts it never really worked for me.
To cut a long story short I was left on 20mg daily of citalopram and because I felt ok (ok a few blips inbetween) I never went back to the doctors. 5 years have passed and I always knew that I wasn’t depressed or anxious. My mood swings were too frequent, periods or euphoria followed by periods of self loathing. My OCD was also a big part of my life, things had to be done a certain way and if not I would beat myself up about it and shout at my wife and kids who couldn’t understand my way of thinking!
My last ‘breakdown’ was around 3 weeks ago and my wife had been researching bipolar disorders and even though initially I thought I was a illness that schizophrenics suffered from, I did a standard online test and I had a eureka moment! Never before had I ticked so many boxes (10 out of the possible 13) so back down to the doctors. I now have a new lady doctor and she is brilliant, see referred my straight away and within a week o had my appointment with a psychiatrist.
After my diagnosis. I was asked to choose my medication myself due to my OCD – lithium or quetiapine. I chose the latter due to the least side effects. I started on 25mg a week ago and as requested I called my psychiatrist and he told me to double the dose to 50mg a day and call him next Thursday.
So that’s it in a nut shell. I can’t feel any decent effects yet from the medication yet, I am the usual up and down today but I am going out for a meal for my daughters 13th birthday tonight which I am looking forward too.
I don’t think I will blog everyday but that could be my bipolar talking right now I don’t know but I hope this will help others to cope with their bipolar or if you think you are then do what I did, do an online test and if you score high make an appointment to see your GP ASAP. Don’t take no for an answer asked to be referred to a psychiatrist for an official diagnosis.
It’s early days for me and I don’t think it has really sunk in yet but onwards and upwards hopefully?
Darren – 13/12/14