Tag Archives: therapy

Me, You, And My Medication

Me, You, And My Medication….

I slammed my bedroom door shut and pounded my firsts into my thighs repeatedly. Till finally my legs went numb and some sort of calm had come over me. I was 7 years old and had no idea this would be the first of many outbursts I would have before finally getting a diagnosis at age 27.

I have never been able to control my emotions; I have always struggled with extreme highs and lows my entire life. My depression was a huge part in both my divorces. I had to be medicated throughout pregnancy and post-partum with all three of my children.  I spent years of my life in therapy chairs looking for answers. It was blamed on my mother abandoning me at an early age, being molested, and divorce trauma. But I knew deep down something more was at play. It wasn’t until I met a doctor at age 27, I finally had answer.

Bipolar.

Such a scary word to hear. I sat numb in the doctor’s office for awhile before finally asking.. Will I have to take medicine forever? The doctor smiled weakly and said its recommended you stay on medication. I spent 6 months working with my doctor to find the perfect dose and perfect medicine to stabilize me and it was exhausting, I never thought I was going to feel a normal for myself and that’s all I wanted was a sense of normal. Bipolar explained a lot of my behavior but it didn’t excuse any of it. I made serious mistakes in my bipolar episodes I couldn’t just write off because I had a diagnosis. I had to learn how to live my life on medication and navigate the world. I ruined a lot of relationships during my bipolar episodes including an engagement to what I believe was the love of my life.

How could I fix that? How do I start over fresh?

I reached out. I reached out to family, I reached out to friends, I even reached out to my ex fiancé in hopes of making amends for what I done unmedicated. I had to learn it was okay to accept my mistakes and those around me forgave me for my behavior. Oddly enough my Dad told me he suspected all along I was bipolar. It was about learning a new life balanced out by an anti-psychotic. I take three medications now once daily for my bipolar, one once daily for anxiety and one I take as needed up to three times a day for my anxiety and they both help along with my monthly sometimes bi-weekly therapy sessions. There may come a day where I can overcome my anxiety but there’s not going to come a day where I don’t deal with my bipolar, and I’m learning to be okay with that.

There are times I miss being off my medication. The days I would feel high, on top of the world and get so much accomplished were amazing. I once redid an entire bathroom on one of my “good days”. But the lows were incredibly painful. I would go days without running a brush through my hair or even showering because I was so depressed. Being on medication has made me successful, I firmly believe I have gotten so far ahead in life being stabilized with medications. I may not experience the highs, but I no longer suffer the extreme lows.

I feel normal and that’s something I never thought I would say. I feel like I can accomplish things. I have learned to manage my emotions and control them better. I’ve been promoted at my job and I’m successful and I never though that would be possible unmedicated. I’ve learned that there’s no harm in being honest when you’re struggling with mental illness there’s a whole community out there of people who are ready and willing to be there for you, including me.

Serendipity

Should I See A Counselor?

Going to a counselor was the best thing I did throughout my divorce. I had always kept my feelings and thoughts to myself for years. Growing up I was always shy.. I didn’t like groups of people and I hated speaking in front of people. I dreaded college classes that talked about our hobbies or what we liked to do. I was just never any good at talking about myself.  And I had poor self esteem and confidence throughout my younger years.

I had never really given much thought to going to a counselor.. I kinda thought counselors were for crazy people and they couldn’t help me with my problems.  And then that day, I walked into a counselor’s office and spilled everything about my life.  I struggled with my decision to get divorced for years.  In a matter of 60 minutes, I felt like a heavy weight had been taken off me.. I will never forget when she said “ it’s ok to say you do not love your husband”.  And that’s all I needed to hear… How could hearing that make everything that clear to me.  It was now so clear.  My life seemed clear. I was smiling.  I knew what my future was and I felt like I had the strength to get there.  It was just being able to openly talk to someone without any judgement and not feeling guilty for my decision.

Having that person that you could be completely honest with about your feelings and not feel judged was empowering. If would have not been completely open with her, then I would probably be still contemplating my decision.  It takes strength and courage to lay everything out there and not know what you are going to get in return.

I continued to see her weekly through my divorce process and after.  I still see her occasionally to check in. If I am feeling lost or struggling with something in my life, then I still see her to work through it. And every time it helps.

Without going to a counselor, I would probably still be struggling with many areas of my life. Yes, your friends and family are great to vent to about your problems and struggles.

But a couple things to think about relying on your friends… sometimes your friends can’t help you make the decisions. They can give you their perspective.  And some friends can’t give you the honest answer you need.

Many times friends can’t give you the tools to follow thru on the decision.  And sometimes we are just not as honest with our friends as a counselor.  I know I wasn’t… And lastly no one wants to be the friend that always has problems…

If you are struggling with your life, marriage, divorce, relationship, then go talk to a counselor.  People waste so much time in life contemplating decisions and trying to work past struggles on their own.  I just feel that why waste time.. why waste more time in life struggling by yourself when a counselor can help you get through it.

No one should feel guilty or ashamed of needing extra support in their life.  No one is perfect and we all face difficulties.  If it makes you stronger, happier, and more content, then keep doing it!

Snarkydivorcedgal

www.snarkydivorcedgal.com