I Know I’m Hypomanic, Depressed or Mixed but I Can’t Help It

I Know I’m Hypomanic, Depressed or Mixed but I Can’t Help It

Many of us have the insight to know when we are manic, hypomanic or depressed or in another bipolar mood state but, unfortunately, even though I might know I’m hypomanic, depressed or mixed, I can’t necessarily help it. I wish I could. I wish that knowing what my bipolar disorder was doing would somehow alter it, but it typically doesn’t. I just can’t help it when I’m hypomanic, depressed or in a mixed mood – even when it’s clear to me.

How Do You Know When You’re Hypomanic, Depressed or Mixed?

Honestly, sometimes it takes me time to figure out I’m in an acute bipolar mood state. Sometimes I feel so bad that my logic doesn’t work properly. Sometimes the pain just overwhelms my insight.

But I do catch on. I do see the crying and self-hatred as depression. I do see the endless talking (out loud, even when no one is around) and extra energy as hypomania. I do see the extreme irritation and sadness as a mixed (or cycling) state. It does happen.

For me, I know, intimately, my personal depression, hypomania or mixed mood symptoms (I have bipolar II and so don’t experience mania). So I do know when I’m in a bipolar mood episode.

Helping a Hypomania, Depression or Mixed Moods

The trouble is that even when I recognize a bipolar mood state and even when I take steps to correct it, I still can’t help being in it. I have written things about, for example, how to handle bipolar hypomania, but even employing all the techniques, all the skills I have, it still doesn’t “fix” the mood. I’m still stuck with the mood anyway. It’s not that I’m not trying to get rid of it, it’s just that I can’t.

I Can’t Help the Bipolar Mood – This Is Frustrating

i-I experience hypomania, depression and mixed moods as part of bipolar but I can't help being in a bipolar mood -- even though I want to. And this frustrates me beyond belief. I feel like I’m doing “everything right.” I feel like I’m doing everything I can do. I feel like I’m putting into practice every therapy appointment. And yet, it doesn’t work. Nothing works. I’m stuck in a bipolar mood anyway. I hate myself for this. I hate my immovable bipolar for this.

I’m sure this frustrates others, too. But I suspect that many think I’m not trying. Sometimes it feels like I’m making that judgment about myself, too. But I swear that I am. I swear I’m doing everything I know to do. It’s just that it often doesn’t work. All I can do is cope with the bipolar mood – I can’t change it.

I Can’t Help Hypomania, Mixed or Depressed Moods – I Need a Break

This isn’t meant to be a “poor me” scenario. This just is what it is. This is just a medical condition that can’t be changed by pure will or magical techniques. This is something that needs medical attention and needs to run a course (hopefully minimized by medication). And I need to be given a break about it.

And, more importantly, I need to give myself a break about it. Other people may judge, or they may not, but what I need to do is to stop my own judgment. I truly can’t help an acute bipolar mood state. And I just have to learn to live with that fact. It’s hard to admit not having control over that which everyone else perceives control over, but I need to accept it. Because not accepting that reality certainly isn’t going to help anything and will make me feel worse. And I just don’t need that. Acute bipolar moods suck enough already.

Image by Jar of Quotes.

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About Natasha Tracy

Natasha Tracy is an award-winning writer, speaker and consultant from the Pacific Northwest. She has been living with bipolar disorder for 18 years and has written more than 1000 articles on the subject.

Natasha’s New Book

Find more of Natasha’s work in her new book: Lost Marbles: Insights into My Life with Depression & Bipolar. Media inquiries can be emailed here.

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