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*sighs in disgust* I AM NOT A LABEL!!!

Jun 12, 2009 - 4 comments
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Now that my doctor has diagnosed me for the worst, people are treating me differently and it is driving me nuts. I live in a small town, and of course, it has gotten out that I have "upgraded my BP". People think it's some kind of disease they can catch and it's like they think i can't hear them when they talk about the "BP girl that has that baby and that boy". It's so frustratingly maddening!!!! I went to my counselor and found out that she is bp too. As is most of her family, though it is kept on the low. She told me that first of all i need to announce to myself that i am NOT a label!!!! But she is not the first one to tell me that i need to be less hard on myself it will make me stress more and have more episodes. Huh, never knew that could be a trigger :) I have read SO many books i'm tired of reading!!! But  at least i seem to be doing a little better. Now if maybe i can figure out some good destressing moments to set aside....

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by ILADVOCATE, Jun 12, 2009
I would say if you feel ready to disclose then you should in a positive and assertive manner. Just don't tell people the details. NAMI friend and family support groups are good and there should be general disability support groups at your local independent living center:
http://www.ilusa.com/ilcenters2.htm
Many people who have bipolar or other psychiatric disabilities
live life and enjoy it in the same manner as everyone else and everyone should be treated with respect.
Its important that people know that and appreciate everyone for who
they are, not their diagnosis.

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by Bluetwo, Jun 13, 2009
I live in a population of 80,000.
My recent episode was a real dossie.
Even my grown kids knew there was something very different about their mom.
When I was in my hyper mania state it was watching the Haley's comet...a once in life time experience.
I'm sure my kids blabed to their friends who have silblings or parents working for the school district.
I also work in the school district.

Your private life can be disseminate faster than the speed of sound.
Grapevines are alive and well.
There's not much you can do about it.

The town folks can't do anything to you. They have to prove that you are endangering yourself and your children. I brought up my children with my BP.  I was a supportive nuturing mom.I have a stable marriage with a fine husband who supports me. My kids got good grades in school. They never got into trouble in school with discipline problems or got involved with the law....so that's a credit to me. I worked hard to accomplish many goals because I seeked treatment and stayed with it.

It's been a challenge trying to get back into the working world after being a stay at home mom. So I took on Sub Job with the school district. It works okay for me because I take on daily jobs and if I need to take a rest because the environment gets too over stimulating...I do. I don't get the big pay or benefit but I get peace of mind and I'm doing something that I enjoy. I like being with kids.

I just have to remember not to bite off more than I can chew and pay attention to the red flags if they appear. Stay away from "long term assignments" because I can't handle them. I get overwhelmed and over-stimulated. I think that's how my brain works. I have to slow myself down. It's a work in progress trying to feel my way what is just right for me. Got to be like Goldie Locks....just right for me. It's okay to be selfish sometimes.

BP's are here to stay but we shouldn't be hiding behind a bunch of walls to afraid to walk out into center stage. Remember your still a role model to your children and you have to show courage during times of adversity even with your kids grown! Teaching resilence to your kids is so important. Never teach your children planned helplessness. Victimhood is for wimps. Many people with treatable mental illness hide behind the walls because of the unfair sterotyping caused by our media and general igornance of the regular population. Don't enable those sterotypes.

Be brave and attack the beast head on. But don't be afraid when people give you a helping hand either. Some people do care...some people feel your pain and the emotional support is very touching at times. People at school were very accomindating when I told them I was having problems with my health and had to start with a new medication. Remember to thank people for their kindess.

We bipolars need to stick together. We are just like everyone else. We might be a little eccentric, a little sensitive but aren't we suppose to value diversity in our culture and be all inclusive to make this world into a better place to live in?

If you got folks that still live in the Dark Ages and still running around with pitch forks...that's their problem....and I suggest they need some counseling.





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by Mstrube, Jun 13, 2009
Thanks to both!!!! This town is more older people that were brought up to look down on anything that wasn't considered normal, or didn't have money. As far as i'm concerened if they can't accept it, they can go find something else. I haven't bothered anyone or hurt my kids, etc, so you would figure they'd find something else, but i guess they're bored. Yay for me :)

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by gofio, Jun 14, 2009
Worse things can happen at sea ~ Old English saying?Whatever ails us we have to seek help when we need it, Mental Illness has a huge stigma attached to it in UK for sure. We no longer burn girls for being witches, but lots of folk don't feel comfortable when they know 'you have mental problems' ~ some are  born luckier than others. But if you are bothered by what other people think you must find a coping strategy to overcome it. When I was first diagnosed I'd have cut out my own tongue rather than admit I was having trouble with my brain. Now I don't give a damn who knows or cares about it. Familarity breeds con...
You've got friend here & I've been helped by the support I've had, reading the posts that let me know I'm in no way unique with my 'troubled brain'. Each of us must find their own way of handling the situation ~ as we all differ, would be terrible if we were all the same eh?Hope you find peace of mind somehow. Best wishes

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