Well intentioned, helpful advice often contributes to the overall blahness of Bipolar.
I’m going to toss one out there though just in case. I am Bipolar so I am allowed. hehe
actually I think I have two
Holding a perspective on Bipolar is good for everyone.
NonBipolars do this as well as we do. There are people with worse disorders, bigger problems. Yes. true. Basically always true for most people.
But feeling sad about being Bipolar and or suffering from Bipolar Disorder and then shutting yourself up (or being shut up by someone else) with the old “other people have it worse” line can just shovel more guilt onto the fire which triggers more depression which triggers more guilt and on and on and on….
As Therese Borchard points out in her book, Beyond Blue, a broken arm hurts for a rich kid even though they’re rich.
Bipolar may not be the worst thing that could happen to a person but that thought doesn’t stop the pain.
when you are having the “I am just depressed because I have to deal with Bipolar forever” feeling,
or maybe even when experiencing the internal Bipolar shitstorm…
Think of your lighthouse or your fogdog
You are out alone in the dark black stormy sea. You look around you thinking God in heaven what the hell is the point of this?
and then you see it. A light piercing through the dark storm from some high craggy cliff.
and you remember what the point is…
what is that thing for you?
for many of us it is a person
or it may be a furry companion who loves you
it may be a dream or a goal that you are passionate about
I don’t know
I don’t know what yours is but I know mine.
(by the way. it is probably better to think of this stuff before you get depressed because yeah)
But sometimes thinking of that person or that dream can trigger more emotion and we want to trigger less.
Thinking about your babies or your parents or the person who wants to spend their life with you can sometimes, lets face it, make you feel really shitty for feeling so debilitated and disordered.
and maybe there are times when you can’t see the light.
So hmm here is another idea
try thinking of something….even one tiny thing that Bipolar has NOT taken from you.
Or one thing that always makes you happy no matter what
One happy or funny memory
A joke that is always funny to you.
Something you like to do.
(I get depression makes us feel like everything is stupid so you may want to choose something very simple and unemotional.)
There are all different kinds of these things.
This isn’t about something that you like to do even when you’re depressed and hate everything but there is the understanding that you technically are still able to do things even though you have Bipolar…
Like walk, listen to music, go to a movie….
simple and small
and this is not a gratitude list or a positive thinking thing. This is just think of something…anything…
You could make a list if that floats your boat and that is probably a great idea.
But I also think it is important to focus on one little thing (for an episode or week or day or whatever, you can change it up) that you can cling to in those moments of darkness….
A tiny faded bright spot in the fog bank that enfolds you.
That is the word for a small bright spot in the fog.
To give you an example…
Mine often is
“I can still dance”
That’s it. That’s sometimes all I can get to in the dark. Bipolar hasn’t ruined my body.
Bipolar hasn’t taken dancing from me. And as far as I am concerned Bipolar will never take that from me.
Does that mean I want to dance when I am depressed…no not always.. but the point is that I acknowledge that though Bipolar does a lot to me, it has not effected my motor abilities.
In a really bad time a fogdog could be something like…
“i can still watch The Voice”
Okay fine, I will admit to you that once upon a time mine was for a little while “I can watch the Batchelor”
scrape that barrel
So think of yours. Give it a try. It may not work for you but it is an idea. Just an idea. It is my blog so I only have my ideas.
Off you go…
Go find your fogdog