Bipolar & ADHD: A Double Whammy!

It took years for me to find the right routine of medication after I was diagnosed with bipolar 2 disorder. My mood was stabilized, but my inability to focus and complete projects still kept me from truly thriving. Bipolar and ADHD is a topic with some controversy attached, being that some of the medications used to treat ADHD can have a negative effect on individuals with bipolar disorder. However, a diagnosis of ADHD along side bipolar disorder had the opposite effect on my life. In my new HealthyPlace video, I share what life was like before receiving the proper treatment for a condition, that majority of my doctors were unwilling to address.

Please share your thoughts and experience on my YouTube channel and check out my other videos! Want to hear what you have to say!

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Bipolar and Recovery: Is It Possible?

Can you recover from bipolar disorder? In my new HealthyPlace vlog, I share my answer to this question and the reason why I stay away from using the word recovery in my blog posts and vlogs.

What does recovery mean to you? Share your thoughts on my YouTube video!

 

What Bipolar Disorder Means To Me

In my new HealthyPlace video, I share part of my journey living with bipolar 2 disorder and what bipolar disorder means to me.

What does bipolar disorder or depression mean to you? What impact has it had on your life? Please share your thoughts or do a response video and send it into info@healthyplace.com.

 

What I Want People to Know About My Life with Bipolar

When you have a mental health condition, people lump you into one big category of, for lack of a better term, crazy. The stigma molds us into these people that frankly speaking, we are not. It’s as if we have no chance of being successful and productive individuals. In this video, I shed light on a couple things I want people to know about my life with bipolar. Please subscribe to my YouTube channel and share your thoughts in the comment section.

Oh BTW ignore the fact that I look borderline insane in this video thumbnail.

How to Cope With Social Anxiety

People would be surprised to hear that I struggle with social anxiety. I consider myself an extrovert and outgoing person, however, when I get depressed social anxiety becomes a major challenge. Social situations and interactions go from enjoyable to stressful. Some people live with social anxiety on a daily basis. Watch this video to hear some of the ways to cope with social anxiety.

StandUp SpeakUp: A Candid Interview About My Experience with Bipolar II

In this podcast done for Wearable Therapy Tokii, a company creating wearable art with a powerful message about mental health. In this interview, I talk in depth about my experience with bipolar II and the need for better resources for those struggling with mental health conditions.

Podcast: https://standupspeakup.podbean.com/e/episode-1-overcoming-bipolar

Blog: http://www.standupspeakuptokii.com/a-journey-through-bipolar/

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Bipolar Breakdown

In the video below I share the story of when I began to notice my emotional highs and lows. The story of a prom queen who was completely lost behind the eyes. Please Subscribe to my HealthyPlace YouTube Channel! Monday, November 7th I will be discussing my experience in the mental hospital.

Coming to the Healthyplace Youtube Channel Talking About Mental Health

Every Monday morning I will be posting videos at my new HealthyPlace YouTube channel, sharing parts of my story about living with bipolar II. I will be talking to friends, family, and strangers on the street about mental health. Stay tuned for the wild ride! Subscribe to the YouTube channel. See you next Monday morning.

Why People Feel Uneasy Taking Meds for the Head

Treatment plans for mental health care differ from situation to situation.  In some cases, it calls for therapy and in other cases medication is needed.  This doesn’t mean that when you wake up feeling sad, you call the doctor and start popping pills.  However, when depression or severe emotional behavior begins to affect your daily life, work and relationships, it is time to seek help.  There is no shame in taking medicines if needed.  If you get the flu do you take meds?  Yes.  So what is the difference when it is the flu of the mind.  There is none.  Would you blame someone who lost her husband in war for seeking out medication for anxiety?  Would you judge a woman for taking antidepressants who lost her child 2 months shy of his 1st birthday to cancer?  We all want to end up at the same place, but some need to take a different route to the intersection of happy and healthy.  There is no shame in that.

Reasons why people feel uneasy taking meds for the head…

I don’t need a pill to make me happy.

Lets do a word replacement, instead of happy, lets put healthy.  I don’t want to take a pill to make me healthy!  Make sense?  Happy and health go together like PB&J.  Think about people from the past, who would have done anything to receive treatment to help them maintain a stable life with a mental disorder.  Virginia Wolf is shaking her head.

I feel like I am weak if I have to resort to medication.

Are people who have diabetes weak because they have to resort to insulin in order to survive?  It is all about how you frame it.  You are not weak, you are honest about your situation and health.  A strong person acknowledges their pain, and does something about it.

I am afraid people will judge me.

Okay, write out those people who you think will judge you.  Now delete them from your phone.  People who love you won’t judge you.  I hate to tell you, but when you get a prescription you are not the headline on the 10’oclock news that night.  If you fear judgement…dont tell anyone.  You will be pleasantly surprised that over half the people you fear in opening up to, are going through a similar situation.

I don’t want people to think I am crazy.

What is crazy is having the available resources to receive good mental health care, and not taking advantage of it.  Reaching out for help is far from crazy.  People will get wasted, and have sex without a condom with the first person they meet at a bar (no judgement) and that is not considered crazy.  However, taking anti-depressants for depression, YIKES that is insanity!  Think about it.

I don’t want to stay on medicine long-term.

Okay, do not jump the gun.  Get to Point A before jumping to Point Z.  You may not be on medicine for the long-term, but if you are so what?  If you feel like your life, relationships and your day to day has improved since taking a medication than why would you stop.   Again, everyone has to take a different route to happiness sometimes.  Do not be ashamed of the route you take.

 

10 Things I Hate About Stigma

We have all seen the movie 10 Things I Hate About You, and Kat’s memorable speech to Heath Ledger at the end of the movie.  Familiar?  While reading this post, think about Stigma as if it is a person.  Stigma has influenced many in society to make negative assumptions about mental health conditions.  Stigma is like a bully.

1o things I hate about stigma…

1. I hate the way you think every emotional reaction is a symptom of my “illness!”

I will never forget when a young guy emailed me with concern for his girlfriends mental health.  “She freaked on me!  Yelled, scream and threw me out!  I texted her that I think her Bipolar is out of control and she should seek help!”  My first question, “Well what did you do?”  His response, “I hooked up with her roommate but…”

Just because a person has a diagnosis, or is in a bad spot mentally, does not mean that every emotional reaction is due to their condition.  We are all human, and react in hostile ways when confronted with harmful words or actions by others.

2. I hate the way you assume I am violent or out of control.

People with a mental illness are more likely to be the victim of violent acts, than the perpetrator.  Don’t let the media fool you!  Most likely we are violent towards ourselves, not you.

3. I hate the way you feel about me professionally.

Jobs and mental health.  Yikes!  A mental health condition does not make a person incapable of succeeding.  In my experience in the mental health community, most of the people I have met with a mental disorder are extremely successful.  We are capable of more than you think.

4. I hate the way you think I am suppose to physically appear grimy.

To assume I have no fashion sense is rude!  Sure I have my no make up, sweatpants, cheesy bread and greasy hair days…but doesn’t everyone?  Yes, I do care about my physical appearance so please refrain from statements such as, “Oh my Gah I would have never assumed you had bipolar!  You dress cute, and are really well made up!” 

5. I hate the way you make negative assumptions about my condition.

When I revealed my diagnosis, I heard statements like, “I don’t think you got that, your just so positive!”  As if having a mental condition means I am suppose to be negative and doing nothing with my life.  A lot of people I have met with mental conditions are upbeat.  If we are in a dark place, you usually don’t see us or hear from us.

6. I hate your lack of compassion.

It is not a “mental health problem,” its a “people problem.”  In modern day society, people are less compassionate.  Okay so you don’t think mental illness is a real condition,  but what happened to simply helping someone in need.  A person who is struggling despite your biased attitude.

7. I hate the way you think I am not capable of succeeding.

There are tons of people with mental health condition that succeed as parents, students and/or professionals.  Our ability to reach a deeper level of emotion makes us more capable of success in a lot of areas.

8. I hate the way you make me feel like an outcast.

You are weird!–No you are just boring!  Making someone feel different in a negative way is unacceptable.  The ‘you can’t sit here’ attitude is a character flaw on your end regardless of someones condition.

9. I hate the way you are so judgmental.

You don’t know my story.  You don’t know my struggle.  The truth is most people really don’t understand mental health.  Do not judge my condition before taking the time to observe my character.

10. I hate the way you think my mental health defines me.

Yes it is a part of me, and is something I deal with on a day to day basis, but it does not define who I am.  We are defined by what we create in this world, who we love and how we do it, not by a disorder or disease.

 

But the sad part is I don’t hate you a bit, not even at all because ignorance-ness is a more dreadful disorder than mine.