by Annette in Wisconsin
I no longer want to die, but LIVE. A new psychiatrist, after 11 years of misdiagnosis, has finally given me hope that wellness within mental illness IS truly possible. I have bipolar II, rapid cycling: This is moderate, and typically does not include swings as high or swings so low resulting in a suicide attempt. Rapid cycling means swings are not months long, weeks long, but can swing from hour to hour or minute to minute. It is more difficult to treat than longer-cycling bipolar conditions.
If you're Bipolar II (rapid cycling or not), and your mix of medications includes a straight antidepressant, please ask your psychiatrist about this mis-medication of bipolar II. My new psychiatrist of only six months immediately detected a history of decline to the point of my condition mimicking bipolar I, which can have an attempt of suicide. In fact, the mis-medication with a straight antidepressant within my mix of medications caused this decline and was heading toward a suicide attempt by overdose in August of 2006. In 2002, the American Psychiatric Association published in its Guidelines that bipolar II is NOT to be treated with a straight antidepressants within the mix of medications used. Studies show that this practice does worsen the condition. I am on the proper mood-stabilizing medications and without an antidepressant pill included, and I am stabilizing QUICKLY. I no longer seriously consider suicide. Instead, I feel overall that I want to LIVE, but not as I did for 11 years. I had owned and operated my own design business for seven years. In 2004, my decline required me to make the tough decision to cease business because my ability to calculate, concentrate, communicate well was suffering. This was two years after the findings and publishing of anti-depressants not be used within a mix of medications for bipolar II. Had my old psychiatrist seriously kept up with his education, I could have kept my business...instead I had to give it up--two years AFTER the findings were published. He'd kept me in a state of decline.
I had four psychiatric hospitalizations during my 7 years under his care. He failed to see the historical evidence of my decline. Don't let this happen to you! If you are taking an antidpressant within your mix of medications for bipolar II, please get a second opinion and request to review your overall history to detect any decline in your condition. Wellness IS possible. I'm now doing volunteer design work, and getting back into the interior design field. My greatest wish is to design mental health care facilities that offer better comfort and a more natural environment for the patients. BELIEVE wellness is possible-I am living proof.