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Bi-Polar?

Monday, December 22, 2008
My freshman year of college, life was good. Part of our little group on "Sechrist 7th Floor South," I had a strong group of girls that always offered up things to do (including sumo-wrestling in the hallway, bear-kidnapping and regular "Jack-ass" get-togethers every sunday).

One topic of discussion during our regular hang-outs was our R.A Brenda. Homegirl had to of been bi-polar. She'd come to our room and visit in a high-pitched, sweet tone, then scream at us four hours later for setting a cinder block outside of our door for 10 minutes. Since stuff like that happened so regularly, we steered very clear of her room and avoided conversation at all costs.

Now, having just had the longest break-up in all history (1 part my inability to acknowledge when it's ok not to be compassionate and severe ties from bad people, 1 part his ability and will to manipulate any situation in his favor, 5,098 parts having a difficult time breaking that pattern), I've finally had some time the past few months to really process and move farther and farther away from this. I'm laughing a lot, crying very little and loving my life and the people and things that make it worth living.

One part of moving on from things is talking about them. I've been close-lipped about this particular person because the whole thing was pretty appaulling, and dispite what he probably thinks, there were definately a lot of times i very much value the things that he brought me; some very personal things that only the two of us could have ever shared, and a lot of qualities that only he has that I love to pieces, but just couldn't sit through all of the bad that came with those traits to make it last a lifetime.

So I've been talking about it to some trusted people lately and the more I discuss some of the situations we went through, the more people continue to ask if he was bi-polar.

After hearing that a handful of times (and finally being able to be open up to that, rather than be defensive), I thought I'd look up some symptoms and see if it were a valid question:

Signs and symptoms of mania (or a manic episode) include:

*Increased energy, activity, and restlessness
*Excessively "high," overly good, euphoric mood (check)
*Extreme irritability (check)
*Racing thoughts and talking very fast, jumping from one idea to another (check)
*Distractibility, can't concentrate well (check)
*Little sleep needed
*Unrealistic beliefs in one's abilities and powers (check)
*Poor judgment (check)
*Spending sprees (check)
*A lasting period of behavior that is different from usual (check)
*Increased sexual drive (check) (check) (check)
*Abuse of drugs, particularly cocaine, alcohol, and sleeping medications (check)
*Provocative, intrusive, or aggressive behavior (check) (check) (check)
*Denial that anything is wrong (check) (check) (check) (check) (check) (check) (check) (check) (check)

Signs and symptoms of depression (or a depressive episode) include:

*Lasting sad, anxious, or empty mood (check)
*Feelings of hopelessness or pessimism (check)
*Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, or helplessness (check) (check)
*Loss of interest or pleasure in activities once enjoyed, including sex
*Decreased energy, a feeling of fatigue or of being "slowed down"
*Difficulty concentrating, remembering, making decisions (check)
*Restlessness or irritability
*Sleeping too much, or can't sleep
*Change in appetite and/or unintended weight loss or gain
*Chronic pain or other persistent bodily symptoms that are not caused by physical illness or injury (check)
*Thoughts of death or suicide, or suicide attempts (check) (check) (check)

A depressive episode is diagnosed if five or more of these symptoms last most of the day, nearly every day, for a period of 2 weeks or longer.

While I have no need to try and fix him anymore (which turns out, may have actually been feasible, had I gotten my doctorate and access to an RX prescription pad), I still really wish for two things:

1. he could acknowledge he needs some help.
2. his family (mother) could acknowledge he (and i think one of his other siblings) needs help.

Is it odd that i still really just want him to be happy? and still love him (the good parts, because he does have an amazing heart). I just wish pride could step aside and introduce the possiblity of some positive change.

Sorry to get all dr. phil. just on my mind...
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About me

I'm Sami Jo From Denver, CO, United States Samantha loves to travel, lose herself in a good book, practice yoga at her favorite local studio, The Yoga Mat, and connect with friends, old and new. Her love of working with creative minds extends into her personal endeavors, as well. She and her husband conduct a project called "Songs For Jake," a music collaboration channel designed with the simple mission of getting great songs to one really big music lover. Through her business, Roger Charlie, Samantha focuses on publicity and management, working closely with authors, musicians, and creatives who find value in a more personal approach through communications.
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