February 5, 2009
I had to wait till I was 48 to get my diagnosis; Bipolar I. I’d been told by more therapists than I care to remember, starting in 1980, that I was “just really depressed.” I bear no grudges but do wish someone had just asked a few pertinent questions along the way, Like: “Do you get a rush from spending money you don’t even have? Often have spells of rapid distressed speech? Wake up feeling ten-foot tall and bulletproof?”
Unfortunately I had to wait until my mania, along with severe sleep deprivation worked me right into a psychotic episode (a total of 3 now, complete with psychiatric lockups) that included complete amnesia and terrifying hallucinations.
I have a portion of brain tumor left in my head, and this tends to distract a lot of docs from considering any psychological answers to symptoms I’m having. Sometimes those horses they hear are really zebras. And most of the ones I’ve dealt with don’t work with zebras, lol.
That’s the condensed version of my arrival in bipolar land.
Be well, emalyn56