Bipolar – I’m Beyond Help
Someone recently reached out to me for some recommendations of mental illness resources as she was concerned for her sister. Unfortunately, the feedback I received from her afterwards was that her sister felt, she was “beyond help” for bipolar disorder.
I understand the feeling of being beyond help. I have felt that way so many times. I had so many goes at medication roulette and I had two doctors give up on me completely so I absolutely felt (and was pretty much told) that I, and my bipolar disorder, was beyond help.
Here’s the thing – those doctors were wrong and so was I.
Keep Reaching Out Until Someone Helps You
When I was a kid, at school they taught us about “bad touching.” And what they said was, if this happens to you, you need to tell an adult and you need to keep telling adults until someone believes you (because it is an unfortunate reality that many people don’t believe sexual abuse reports). And mental illness is exactly the same. You have to keep trying to get help until someone helps you. Because there is help available for everyone – no matter what – and anyone who tells you differently (even yourself) is just wrong.
Why You’re Not Beyond Help for Bipolar
Here’s the thing – there is an almost infinite type of help for bipolar disorder. Psychotherapies, medication cocktails, electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), vagus nerve stimulation, repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation and then there are the experimental treatments.
And while not all of these treatments are (sadly) available to everyone, the things that are, are medication, psychotherapy and lifestyle changes. (Even if you can’t get access to psychotherapy proper, there are good workbooks on many types.)
And while some people decry medication, it has been my savior over and over. Yes, it’s taken, in some cases, years to find a medication cocktail that was effective, but it has always happened – eventually. Right now it’s seven medications and while I never recommend such a thing, what I can say for sure, is that it’s out there and it does work.
I’m Too Much of a Mess to Help
Look, I get when your life is so messed up from bipolar that you feel like you can’t be helped, but people have come back from complete ruin, homelessness, broken families and relationships, and so much more – and there’s no reason why you can’t too.
Persistence – You Can Be Helped
I don’t know how I kept trying over the years when nothing (even ECT) worked. It’s just persistence. It’s just a tiny candle flame inside your soul that says that life is not supposed to be like this. Life is not just pain. Life can and will be better. But you have to try. And try and try and try.
In short – you are not beyond help. You are not alone. There are agencies that want to help you. There are people that want to help you. They may not be the first, second, or even the sixth person you talk to, but they exist.
I haven’t given up on you. Please, please, please don’t give up on yourself. You deserve so much better.