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    Hi, I'm new here :)
    sarahkatara posted:
    Hello to everyone. My name is Sarah, I'm 23 years old and was diagnosed with bipolar at 15. i have been struggling with it, or at least with symptoms, since i was a child. my symptoms are mostly under control now that i have a good mixture of medication, including Depakote, Wellbutrin, Klonopin, Prozac, and fish oil to help with mood regulation. it has been an incredibly long and rough battle with my bipolar. i am now engaged to a great guy and am trying to get through school and find a good job. there is really no one in my life who truly understands what it's like to live with bipolar. i'm starting to cry writing that because even though i'm doing ok, there are times when i just need to let my weird emotions and thoughts out without being judged and there's really no one i can do that with. i've never participated in an online support group but i thought i'd give it a try since we all have this in common. i'm trying to open myself up more to support because i tend to close off.
    my bipolar became most pronounced when i was 14, which was when i developed anorexia. i struggled for years with it. i was in treatment for two years straight and it took an enormous toll on me. i continued to struggle after the bouts of treatment, including two suicide attempts, one scarily close to successful. while i am well into recovery now, my experiences with the bipolar/eating disorder and the things that happened to me and that i did during that time haunt me sometimes. i wish i had an outlet to get all of it out but it makes my loved ones uncomfortable to hear the details of my struggles. i met my fiancee after i went into recovery from anorexia. he stayed by my side last year when i had a crippling bout of depression and mania. i am what they call a "rapid cycler," meaning instead of going between mania and depression every few days or weeks, the extremes occur multiple times a day. it takes everything out of me. thankfully it has not happened that badly since but i continue to have a hard time.
    my fiancee is wonderful. we've been together for two years and hope to get married in late 2011. the problem, though, is that he doesn't realize that while my symptoms are mostly under control, i am still bipolar by nature and he doesn't respect the limits that i have. i'm not saying i limit myself as a person in the things i can do because i'm bipolar, but i do have a shorter fuse and less tolerance for certain things, though i'm working on it. he cuts me hardly any slack and while i don't want to use bipolar as an excuse for things, the truth is that it truly does affect my day-to-day life and the way i see and think about things. it's just hard because he simply thinks i'm just "too sensitive." i think he believes that as long as i'm on meds, bipolar doesn't affect me. you all know that not true. i don't know how to communicate that to him.
    i struggle alot at work because i get bored quickly, and restless, and become unhappy with my situation. i lose motivation quickly and have trouble keeping jobs.
    i'm a psychology major in school and would like to specialize in helping families of children with special needs and mood disorders. i love to help people. school is difficult too because i don't know how to keep my motivation up in the face of challenges and boredom.
    well, i'm sorry if i've rambled. i wanted to introduce myself and give a little bit of a background. i hope i can be of help to everybody here just as i seek to find the same support. thanks for reading
    IrwinsLady responded:
    Hi Sarah i am Taylor and want to welcome you to the board. Believe me you will be pleased with all the support they give you here.
    Syne_ responded:
    Hi Sarah:
    Welcome to the group, you did a great job describing your symptoms. I think if you printed it out and gave it to your boyfriend to read he would have a greater understanding of your condition.

    Nice to have you here,

    hope7951 responded:
    Welcome. I hope you are also working with a therapist in addition to your meds to help build up strong coping skills to help you in handling life stresses. A good book to share with you bf and family is " Bipolar Disorder for Dummies" by Candida Fink MD which is an easy to read book divided into chapers that make it a snap to find answers to any questions they might have. Another good source of support would be to go to and find your local chapter. They offer free family and peer education, resources and peer support groups.
    bpcookie responded:
    Hello Sarah, Its very nice to meet you and welcome to the board. Im so glad you found us.
    snowyowl33 responded:
    Hi Sarah,

    Welcome to the board. There are lots of places you can go for proper info re BP that your fiance could also read. What about doing couples councelling for it... that way you both could learn more about it together??....

    Anyway, welcome!

    margaroo replied to snowyowl33's response:
    Welcome Sarah,

    Nice to meat you and welcome. I am happy you found us. We celebrate each others happy times and support each other during our struggles. A lot of the times we are just silly.

    skypper replied to margaroo's response:
    hello and nice to meet you
    Carl_1970 responded:
    Hi Sarah,

    Gosh - you've had a really tough time. Well done for battling through it all. I hope that you find this forum helpful. I have.

    To help me channel my thoughts and feelings, I put them in a website . I hope there's something in there of interest.

    Take care. Carl.
    sarahkatara responded:
    oh my gosh! thank you all so much for responding! i didn't expect all of that. i really appreciate it.
    thank you too for the resources some of you posted- i have never really tried to put myself out there with regards to my illness so to have people to introduce me to the community is wonderful. i am visiting the websites already. i am really looking forward to continuing to connect with everyone. thanks again!!!
    lovetheatre replied to sarahkatara's response:
    Hi, I am new to this online support group and I have never done anything like this before. Has this helped you quite a bit so far? I was diagnosed in April 2000. I have an 11 year old and the best husband ever. He has been there for me every step of the way. I was diagnosed after we married and had my son. My husband could have divorced me a couple of times or at least say he wanted to be separated from me and I would not blame him for one minute. I was admitted to a regular hospital from the E.R. when I knew something was way wrong. I was admitted for 7 days when I was 32 and diagnosed with manic depression. I am now 40 and became manic this last Friday. I had to leave early from my job on Friday and Saturday. I was off on Sunday and tried to go to work today but still could not function. I guess I have to go on leave for a couple of days. I don't have a counselor to talk with and I am between psychiatrists because my insurance changed. I am emotionally drained, but sleeping and eating well so far. Any response would be great. Thanks.
    hope7951 replied to lovetheatre's response:
    Love theatre, you might want to start your own discussion so yours does not get lost. You don't make it clear if you are taking meds right now. manic-depression - now called bipolar - is incurable and most people need to take meds and see a doctor for the rest of their lives to control it and prevent episodes. If you can't find someone look in the blue pages of the phone book under mental health and find the government clinic in your county. They will help you get your medications, until you get your insurance figured out.
    You become what you think about...
    lovetheatre replied to hope7951's response:
    Wow, thanks for responding back so fast. I can't really concentrate today on telling some of "my story". But I will do my own discussion soon. I am on Lamictal and Wellbutrin and when I am in a situation like today I take xanax. I have seen psychiatrists on a regular basis and take my meds regularly. I usually am very functional, but of course I have had a few times where I have had to tweek my meds. I just have to take it one day at a time right now.
    BeeRJ replied to sarahkatara's response:
    It is rough at times, just allow yourself to be o.k with who you are. Even when we are feeling alone in this or can not see when we have support, it is there.

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