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Could this be hypomania?

Discussion in 'Mental Health Disorders' started by feathers, Apr 30, 2011.

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  1. feathers

    feathers Well-Known Member

    Now, I’ve had people suggest the idea of bipolar to me but I’ve always insisted, I’m not bipolar I’ve never had a mania or hypomania attack. But reading through other peoples experiences of hypomania has made me question that.

    Typically my year tends to follow a pattern… I spend about 3-5 months (august-december last year) severely depressed. Then I spend 4 months or so recovering, being mostly okay but when something sets me off I can easily slip back into the suicidal depression for a few hours, just as bad as it used to be. However then when I’m finished recovering I have the most amazing few months. I can feel on top of the world, I look in the mirror and see the most beautiful person in existance rather than during my depression seeing a reflection that made me wanna kill myself. I get such an aura of arrogance where I just love myself and sometimes I genuinely believe that I am fantastic and one of the most brilliant people in the whole world. I am usually so so very happy and my self esteem is impossibly high and I am the complete opposite to what I was like in my depression phase. During this time my self esteem and motivation is so high that I usually get a boyfriend and have the most perfect start to a relationship and the guy really falls for me. I usually take up a new hobby, in the past this has included karate, skateboarding, cycling, learning instruments, voluntary work (I started volunteering for the Samaritans at the start of one of these periods) and those hobbies usually don’t last when depression takes back over. Then after the few months I get of that I just suddenly come crashing down into the depression again, sometimes for no reason whatsoever, ruining my life completely and then the cycle starts over.

    Now I know you’re all not medical professionals or whatever, but I just wanted some opinions before I went to one about this. I don’t wanna come across as a hypochondriac even though I may well be. I don’t have a decreased need for sleep or anything and it’s not like I’m running around all over the place or anything, I am just so very happy and have such an increased self esteem to the point where it feels unnatural, much higher than anyone else around me.

    Thanks for the input.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 30, 2011
  2. aoeu

    aoeu Well-Known Member

    I would not doubt for a second that that is sufficient for bipolar diagnosis. If you get trouble because of DSM bullshit where you can't have both borderline and bipolar (this has no basis in reality), see another doctor and don't tell them you're borderline. Being aware of the up phase indicates that it's particularly strong, most people can hardly tell it's there for a normal strength hypomania. One doctor I spoke to actually indicated that since I -knew- I was in an up phase that may indicate something closer to true mania (though the distinction is blurred and arbitrary).

    Also, could you please use a larger font? I have trouble reading small text, as I'm sure others here do as well.
  3. feathers

    feathers Well-Known Member

    Heh, sorry for the text thing. Thanks for your reply, I know you're one of the people who has suggested bipolar to me before. But honestly I did not see that my ups could actually be classed as a hypomanic episode at all.

    I've not actually been diagnosed with Borderline although I had a mental health nurse who was assessing me tell me she thinks I might be right when it comes to that, so I'm hoping to get someone to actually take me seriously about that too.

    I'm just having trouble finding a psychiatrist who will actually listen to me and acknowledge that I'm having difficulties in my life that are greater than just depression.

    I've had this mood going on for 2-3 days now and the amount of energy I have is giving me a headache. It usually lasts 3 months ish, and like my depression every year I think it might be getting worse. I have an appointment with a primary care team on the 18th of May so I'm hoping they will refer me to someone who knows what they are talking about and can tell me what is wrong - although I guess that'll be another 4 month waiting list.

    Do you think I should wait until the appointment on the 18th or do you think I should see someone sooner like a GP?
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 30, 2011
  4. aoeu

    aoeu Well-Known Member

    If you're in an elevated mood at the moment and you just started, and don't expect any psychiatric help for months, please see the link in my signature, it details a highly effective treatment that can stop a mania in its tracks - and prevent any depressive crash afterwards. I think the same thing would stop a depressive episode as well, though the only proof I have is anecdotal: I have had no depressive episodes since starting dark/yellow light therapy.

    If you wait until after 2 weeks of having the hypomania, it may not help.

    I'm incredibly frustrated by mental health care in the UK and Ireland - and I don't even live there! You guys have a really lousy system... and the purpose-built blue-light-restriction glasses cost twice as much there. >_<
  5. feathers

    feathers Well-Known Member

    I'll give the sunglasses thing a try when I'm next out and can get my hands on some, thanks.

    Also, I think you started replying before editing my post but, do you think I should wait until the appointment on the 18th or do you think I should see someone sooner like a GP?

    Yeah, the UK health system is really atrocious. You probably have seen me on here complaining about how I've been waiting for help since August when I was suicidal!
  6. aoeu

    aoeu Well-Known Member

    I don't know. I don't think it'd help you see a psychiatrist sooner (but it might), and I have no idea whether you can get appropriate drugs. Most GPs do not feel comfortable treating mental illness worse than generalized anxiety or uncomplicated, mild-to-moderate depression. I was going to suggest asking for <edit methods> It's better to play stupid so they don't think you're drug-seeking, even though you want <edit methods>(I don't know whether you can ask for this by name without trouble, but it's completely harmless and an effective antipsychotic AND antidepressant).

    I would say go anyhow. It might turn out to be very productive, or at worst nothing will come of it.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 1, 2011
  7. feathers

    feathers Well-Known Member

    I think if I'm still feeling this way by Monday morning I will make an appointment then.

    Is it normal for you when you get hypo/manic to get a feeling of euphoria in your chest? Because that's what happens. It's the trademark feeling I get when my depression just magically lifts at the end of however many months I've had it. It's also the feeling I have pretty much for the three months straight and the feeling that I have now.

    Sorry for the questions I'm just curious and well... very energetic and talkative >.<.
  8. aoeu

    aoeu Well-Known Member

    There's a lot of different kinds of mania. The good ones had that feeling of euphoria. Those were nice...

    These days my manias are marked by frustration and crying. :\ On the other hand, during the last one I invented something really cool that I can't talk about for patent-related reasons D:
  9. feathers

    feathers Well-Known Member

    Sorry to hear that :( I'm glad if this is mania that I have a good type because if I didn't I'd spend 5 months of the year depressed, 4 months recovering, and then 3 months in a horrible manic state, I don't think I'd survive :|
  10. aoeu

    aoeu Well-Known Member

    The upside is that with the glasses they last about 3 days.
  11. feathers

    feathers Well-Known Member

    Thank you for your advice anyway. My reason for posting this was to decide whether or not I was hypomania-ish enough to merit telling a psych and I have decided that I will mention it. Thanks :).
  12. Sadeyes

    Sadeyes Staff Alumni

    I do not think medical advise should be given in cyber...there are extensive evaluations that must be done, under the control of experienced and well qualified professionals before any conclusion can be made...please consult your physician or pdoc if you feel this could be concerning you...

    PS...K, I just saw your response and I am glad you will follow up with this...J
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