Avatar universal

Embracing Bipolar

Is there anyone who really wants to be rid of being bipolar completely if given the chance? In some ways you have the level of creativity no one else can seem to top when you hit that point during your mood changes. We are able to get things done at any speed we desire and so forth so on. Yes we can do without the hypersexuality, the anger, racing thoughts and homicidal behavior, but I am not talking about that I am talking about our creative side of being bipolar. I wanted to ask this question awhile now and I wanted to bring it to the attention of this forum after researching and reading what others had to say.
12 Responses
585414 tn?1288941302
My goal as always was to be stable. Medications can cause cognitive blunting but when a person finds a working treatment plan it should not affect creativity. Right now medications can only mitigate symptoms not make them go into complete remission but treatment is advancing so that should change as more research is done. Creativity is not  necessarily
enhanced by being manic as when I don't have treatment adjusted I can't even focus enough to do any form of creative work and when I look back on what I've done during a manic state it often appears incoherent or unfocused. I never enjoyed any form of manic state. I just thought that I did at the time it was happening as it affects judgment and that is part of it.
Avatar universal
I found my creativity to be far more structured and coherent when on meds and not as psychotic although people seem to like my work from before medication as well and every so often while off meds I did have a song come along that I wouldn't redo for anything such as my Sailing on a Hostile Ship.  Well actually I wouldn't redo any of them, but particularly not the ones like Sailing on a Hostile Ship.

Here it is if you're curious.

And here is an example of my work after being put on medication:

Myself I find I hear more structured work in the latter.
Avatar universal
If I'm creative then it's not because of the bipolar - it's in spite of it.
The cost of the racing thoughts, and inevitable down side is not worth anything ever.
I actually act on my creativity when I'm more stable, when I'm manic I can't sit still long enough to actually do any of my awesome ideas...

So yeah, I would dearly love to be rid of it, for my sake, my husband's and my kids'.
1220347 tn?1345428521
I don't really feel like I'm creative (idk if being able to vividly see stories or fantasies unfolds count) but even if it was, I would be more than willing to give it up if it got me better, even if just a little.
1167245 tn?1353878500
I would choose to get rid of it if I could, plain and simple. I was pretty creative as a child, and through most of my teen years. I was always praised for my abilities in writing, visual art, and musical performance. When my moods started to become unstable by 19 or 20, my creativity and talent decreased very noticeably. I feel like my creative capacity and my motivation to create have been taken away in only a few years. During 'productive' hypomania, I really can't sustain my attention long enough to follow through with anything, which is really frustrating. Actually, it seems like now my attention is basically decimated when depressed, hypomanic, and even just in a normal mood, but it wasn't like that before.

All of the other symptoms aren't worth the little bursts of creative energy, and having bipolar disorder has made my life a lot harder than it needs to be. There's just been an overall loss of quality, I would say. There is the romantic notion of the 'genius manic depressive artist', but for most people, it seems that it's really just an illness that is more destructive than it is productive.

You might be interested in watching Stephen Fry's documentary "The Secret Life of the Manic Depressive". He has BP II, and he interviews other people, asking basically the same question you're asking. Interestingly, almost everyone says that they wouldn't get rid of it if they had the chance.
952564 tn?1268368647
If I could have my creativity without the craziness that would be great. No one wants to have something like bipolar, I think. :(

But since I do have it I just hope someday it is easier to deal with. But after all these years I think it is just a lifetime struggle, it is the thing I was given for some reason to have to deal with. I think everyone has something like that. I think it opens my eyes to things other people do not understand. For example, all those years I had such trouble holding a job and now it takes all of my will power to know that when I'm going crazy coming up with ideas that would normally make me a quit a job in the past, I know it is my bipolar. I know I have to fight it.

I see stories of people "my relative can't hold a job they are so lazy and worthless." But now I look at it and think, "But there is a good chance that they are not lazy at all, (and not worthless, either.) Maybe they have a mental illness that is not treated." But in our society people do not take care of each other very well and so very few people care if you have an illness that makes working hard, and very few care to ask you questions to figure it out.

So, see, I think it is eye opening and you understand the world better when it isn't all gum drops and roses.
539549 tn?1315981662
I'd gladly be rid of the bipolar in a heartbeat as I've only been able to embrace it while I was stable emotionaly and when I am I feel far more free and creative than ibn any other state from the bipolar
1396263 tn?1293680359
Hmm. I can agree with you on that to some extent. Actually it makes me feel a lot less empty, especially when manic. It is the only time I feel like I am going somewhere. The ecstasy is incredible and the optimism never fleeting. My art also takes off, poetry better when depressed, however. Granted, i'm quite an unhappy person otherwise, always have been; unfortunately. The only thing I would trade is the violent episodes, which scare the ones I love terribly, and I cant really control them..
Avatar universal
If there was a magic pill - it would depend. If it would keep me like I am when I am stable - by all means sign me up.

The creativity in depression or hypomania just isn't worth it. I enjoy looking at my paintings but I would give them up.

But I wouldn't want to trade in my past experiences. They were important in creating me. I wouldn't even want my Mother who I lost when I was 8 to still be alive. I believe all things that have happened are learning lessons and opportunities to become a better person. With bipolar I have learned humility and that working can not define who I am. I learned that life is precious because I came so close to giving it away. I have met some truly amazing people through my bipolar group and online blog who have shown me what strength means. The biggest lesson I learned was that when I am broken my husband will be there with love. I never knew before how much I was loved.

Not to say I haven't experienced negatives. I got fired from a job because I had to take a leave when bipolar. I have looked stigma in the eye and crumbled. I've seen my self esteem plummet and it is taking a while (and a therapist) to work back up. I have huge chunks of memory missing. Bipolar has taken but it has also given.

As much as I've appreciated the lessons learned. I'd be happy to no longer learn from Bipolar! lol. To have a quiet brain would bring such peace. I long for that peace and that desire will always trump any creative pursuits.
895401 tn?1302792967
Hi I'm rapid cycling bipolar....life is certainly not boring.....exhausting ..yes.Parts of being bipolar I'm ok with like my creativity, but when I'm too high that suffers as my concentration goes and I don't enjoy my reckless behaviour, neither does my family!.

I enjoy hypomanic when I'm confident , but not too much ,creative , and enjoying it, at
this point I feel I'm the real me?......But the depressive end I'd give up in a second as it scares me so ...I live fearing the next one and my mixed episodes are so self destructive.

But saying all that bipolar is part of me and if it wasn't for that I'd never have met all the friends I've made..thru my illness
Avatar universal
in the opinion of most i may be wrong, but the way i see it; you are the way that you're meant to be. the challenges, and joys, are custom made for you. we are not ill nor do we have an illness. if you like the effects of the medications, by all means take them, but be happy with who you are and dont let the world turn you into a patient.  
Avatar universal
" Yes we can do without the hypersexuality"

  Speak for yourself, LOLOL!!!!  (Said jokingly, not in anger!)

  I rank that right up there with hitting on all cylinders when it comes to creativity!!!  Woo Hoo!!

  So those are the two perks or two of the perks anyway, of living with Bipolar Disorder.

  (The hypersexuality did land me in some rather unwise situations, but that was after I went crazy but didn't know it yet, LOL!!!  Once I was diagnosed, I learned not to just act on my ..... 'urges'.)

  But all in all, I'd rather be like I was before falling prey to this illness!!!
Have an Answer?

You are reading content posted in the Bipolar Disorder Community

Top Mood Disorders Answerers
Avatar universal
Arlington, VA
Learn About Top Answerers
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
15 signs that it’s more than just the blues
Discover the common symptoms of and treatment options for depression.
We've got five strategies to foster happiness in your everyday life.
Don’t let the winter chill send your smile into deep hibernation. Try these 10 mood-boosting tips to get your happy back
The first signs of HIV may feel like the flu, with aches and a fever.
Frequency of HIV testing depends on your risk.