I am a man in my late twenties, who has bipolar I. My official diagnosis is schizoaffective disorder, bipolar type, because two of my manic episodes were so severe. With pen and paper, my hope is to reduce the stigma attached to all mental illnesses, especially bipolar. For now, I shall remain anonymous, with the intention of some day taking public ownership over my site. I have been mostly stable for about 4 years, now. As time goes on, it has gradually gotten better. I’m at a point where I can manage my bipolar as though it’s second nature to me and I can cope with the help of my support system if something happens. I’m also working on reducing my medications with my doctor’s blessing in favor of bringing out the creative side of my writing as that happens.
It was certainly not always like this, however. I’m living a fairy tale now compared to when I was first diagnosed at 17. The manic episode brought me to a psychotic break from reality and I had no idea what was going on. It scarred me, and left me feeling, in retrospect, that I was 17 years old for about 5 years afterwards before I began to move on. I will never forget the agony of experiencing all those thoughts, wondering who I was and what this bipolar thing was. The medications helped make the thoughts stop, but to the point where I could not even tell you at some points what was going on in my head because I was numb. I was running on a hamster wheel for those five or six years, not really getting very far. However, I did start to learn that I was not bipolar, and that I HAD bipolar instead.
Then my second episode happened, which came as a result of me stopping my medications for over 2 months. It was a more pleasant experience than the first one, and whether my mind was doing what it had to do or if God’s hand was involved, it helped me resolve my first break and I moved on in life shortly afterwards. With the help of therapy, medications, friends, family, and taking good care of myself, I have reached where I am at today.
I intend to write a book about these two most difficult experiences I’ve faced, my two manic episodes from 2003 and 2009. Not only are they interesting, I hope to publicize some insights into what happens in the mind as a person experiences psychosis. I will also write another book on my journey to recovery, to help break down the isolation and barriers for those who experience mental illness and their loved ones. Thank you for stopping by, and I trust I may have been a blessing in some way to you!