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Bipolar Disorder Shocking Facts

Bipolar Disorder Shocking Facts admin: From, Sydney Morning Herald - Australia

"formerly known as manic depression ... bipolar disorder"

"Bipolar depression, which is characterised by mood swings between manic highs and plummeting lows"

"illness was poorly understood, not only by the community but by the medical profession."

"only 60 per cent of those affected receiving treatment"

"high rates of misdiagnosis. It usually took four doctors and ten years to get a correct diagnosis."

"illness has impacted nearly every area of my life, disrupting my relationships, finances"

"One in six people with bipolar depression commit suicide, and one in four attempt it."

"People with the disorder also have three times the rate of divorce and broken relationships as the general community."

starting over: Hello,
My husband (stbx) is bipolar and I wish I would have known some of these things when we first met. I fell in love before I really knew what I was getting into and believe me it has been a trying 4 years since we first met (married for 2 1/2). The hardest part is that I feel deep down inside that we didn't work out because of his disorder. He is a wonderful man, but because of bipolar he is also self centered , jealous, possessive, paranoid and selfish- traits that he cannot control and that ultimately drove me away. I feel like I have turned my back on him, but when he left me this last time (June) I just knew I couldn't go through it anymore. Does that make me a bad person? I feel lonely and alone and if there is anyone else out there who has been through this I would love to hear your thoughts. Thanks for listening.

 atd74: Starting Over,

Welcome to this board where you will find yourself overwhelmed with support! :) I can relate though my husband was never technically diagnosed as bipolar. (Because he refused to continue seeing the therapist long enough). He exhibited every single sign of borderline personality disorder. He was also very selfish and self-centered along with being materlialistic, greedy, mentally/emotionally/verbally abusive. Among the many other things that contributed to the demise of our marriage, him being borderline didn't help and could very likely have caused him to do the things he did.

I couldn't help him though because he didn't want help and he didn't want us enough to save himself. I felt bad too at one point. I did however get to the point of realizing that I was not a bad person, I was not abandoning him and that there was nothing more I could do for him or us. He ultimately drove me insane and away as well.

You are not alone and you are not a bad person! The only thing I can suggest is to try to get him help first off if you haven't done so already. Knowing that he is bipolar I guess some would say you should do what you can to offer him the help he needs. But after that, he needs to take things from there on his own. He needs to go to the appointments and get his life moving in the right direction - you certainly cannot do this for him.

I realize though that you are probably at the point of no return like I was. After he refused to stick with meds/counseling and repeatedly did things to sabotage our marriage, he broke through a "point of no return" line with me and that was it. It didn't make me a bad person and it in fact only strenthened me and made me into the person I am now.

So hang in there - IM me if you need to! (By the way - my divorce was final in May and I'm doing great!!!! It can happen!!!)
 bpbutgoodbp: Starting Over,
I am a bipolar husband and found your post while searching for statistics on bipolars being left because of it all being "too much trouble". Anyway as I read your post I was feeling sorry for him until I got to the part "when he left me this time". Leaving even one time is bad enough. I believe the first question to ask in any "happening" of a bipolar person is "Were they taking their medicine?". We see examples all the time on TV where someone had an illness/disorder & did something newsworthy in a bad way. I think any of us who are officially diagnosed but get into trouble while NOT taking meds has no leg to stand on.

I was divorced after 11 years with my grade school sweetheart & I know she feels guilty. However I am now married again to a wonderful patient & understanding lady and enjoying a new start that is better than I ever hoped for.

I wish you luck. Don't feel bad.


I have bipolar disorder.

I have been told by many people I am unselfish, too focused on pleasing others at times, not jealous, not materialistic, and sought out counseling and diagnosis because I knew that I got upset too easliy and took everything upon myself.

My point is, there is a wide spectrum of behavior and severity with bipolar disorder. It is a chemical imbalance involving mood and seratonin reuptake. It does not, alone define any personality traits.

My psychiatrist has told me that I am very high functioning for this disease. He also told me that success rate for treatment and improvement relies heavily on the individuals desire and commitment to do it. Many people with this disorder do not cooperate with taking medication and staying on top of their symptoms. Because it is a two sided illness, there is not a consistent medication to simply take. There are always cycles and self awareness is crucial.

Also, many adults with this disorder also abuse drugs. This is commonly referred to as "self medicating". If this is the case then as with any drug abuse, the secrecy makes diagnosis of symptoms and accurate medication dosages almost impossible.

I do not abuse drugs, which has made my treatment easier. I also took the effort to learn that medication and counseling alone were not enough. Regular sleep wake cycles, exercise, nutrition and constant vigilance over symptoms beginning, are very important.

I have seen so much misinformation and prejudice about this disease. Each person with this disorder is individual. I have too often remained silent, rather than speak out because people are fearful.

Bipolar Disorder is linked to genetic predisposition. Which means that there are family patterns. If you have a spouse with the disorder, and children by that person, inform yourself of the signs and symptoms. Early Childhood Onset Bipolar Disorder has a completely different set of behavior than Adult Onset. Early diagnosis is linked to successful control. Many children diagnosed with ADHD, often have Bipolar Disorder. This confusion can lead to years of incorrect treatment.

Thanks for listening

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