crazy

Why It Doesn’t Matter If I Call Myself Crazy

→ August 12, 2015 - 34 Comments

Why It Doesn’t Matter If I Call Myself Crazy

I call myself crazy. I do. I’ve written about it before. I also say, “I am bipolar,” so shoot me. It’s not that I say these things pejoratively, I don’t, I say them because they’re correct usages of the English language and they are accurate. Other people have a problem with this. But you know what, their problem is not my problem. If I want to call myself crazy, or bipolar, or a redhead that’s my business, not yours.

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Apologizing for Overreactions to Emotional Situations

→ August 19, 2013 - 26 Comments

Apologizing for Overreactions to Emotional Situations

Bipolar disorder is essentially your average emotions – only amplified. So bipolar is sadness, but to a level 11. Bipolar disorder is energetic, to a level 11. And so on. And, of course, as a human isn’t designed to run at a level 11, many other symptoms accompany those exaggerated experiences.

And while many of these exaggerated moods are related to no external stimuli at all and just appear out of the blue, some exaggerated moods are the result of something happening in the environment. Near as I can tell, bipolar disorder isn’t just an exaggeration of normal emotion it’s also an exaggeration of normal reactions to emotional situations.

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Escaping a Bipolar Brain

→ September 20, 2012 - 59 Comments

Escaping a Bipolar Brain

This morning I was watching Perception, which is a TV show wherein the lead character has schizophrenia. He, like most of us with a mental illness, is trapped inside his head – trapped inside his mental illness. Oh, he functions and everything, but his mind is still trapped inside a sick brain.

And this is how mental illness is. My friend called it the ball and chain. He says I do really well for a person who’s always weighted down like that.

And this morning, one of the characters in the TV show said, “I spend a lot of my time finding puzzles hard enough to get him [the lead character] out of his head.”

When I heard that, I burst into tears.

OK, maybe I’m unstable and that leads to tear-bursting, but also the point rang so poignant that I couldn’t deny it – I spend most of my time trying to desperately escape my bipolar brain.

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Mental Illness – What is “Normal” Anyway?

→ April 5, 2012 - 27 Comments

A pet peeve of mine is when people say, “normal is just a dryer setting.”

Um. No, it isn’t. Normal is a word that means “conforming to the standard or the common type; usual; not abnormal; regular; natural.”

Normal is not just a freaking dryer setting and pardon me for stating the obvious, but I am bipolar and I am not normal.

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Bipolar, Hypomania, Depression and Looking Crazy

→ January 10, 2011 - 13 Comments

I can feel the post-depression-bounce-back hypomania beginning in my brain; not in my body, only in my brain. Hypomanic symptoms started yesterday evening. Things started seeming clear, perhaps just a little too clear, and certainly a little too fast. Bipolar fast. Gospel music (yes, oddly) played in my head intermittently while I guided an old tourist couple to the park, I drafted my upcoming novel, planned a conversation, and I investigated the fallen tree branch in the middle of the baseball field. Rapid fire thoughts, hypomanic thoughts, took over.

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Dissociative Identity Disorder Goes Crazy

→ September 28, 2010 - Comments off

As I mentioned last week, Holly Gray of Don’t Call Me Cybil is writing a guest post for me here this week. Well, that got kicked off because she asked me to write the inaugural guest post on her blog. My guest article was posted today and is about the label “crazy” and why us crazies shouldn’t be so afraid of it.

A little about Holly:

My name is Holly Gray. I’m 36 years old. I’m a writer and DID awareness advocate. I live in a stunningly beautiful area of the Pacific Northwest United States.

I am a real person with dissociative identity disorder.

Check out her dissociative identity disorder blog and check out my entry on my favorite word, “crazy” and how Words Don’t Hurt People, People Hurt People.

I’m thrilled to meet a real person with such a misunderstood disorder and it doesn’t hurt that she’s bright and articulate. Thanks to Holly for the opportunity to lend a few words.

My Bipolar Symptoms Aren’t Your Symptoms: I’m More Bipolar Than You

→ September 24, 2010 - 8 Comments

If you’ve been reading me for a while, you’re probably familiar with the symptoms I typically experience as a person with bipolar disorder type II rapid-cycling.

My Bipolar Disorder Symptoms

  • Fatigue
  • Sadness / depression / tearing
  • Hypersomnia
  • Anhedonia
  • Lack of motivation / concentration
  • Slowness in thinking
  • Thoughts of death
  • Decreased need for sleep
  • Excessive speed talking / thinking
  • Increased productivity

Each symptom depending on the mood of the moment (blue being depression, yellow being hypomania).

However, did you know that someone who also has bipolar type II (maybe even rapid-cycling) might have completely different mental illness symptoms?

Your Bipolar Disorder Symptoms

  • Irritability
  • Weight loss
  • Insomnia
  • Restlessness. agitation
  • Feelings of guilt
  • Indecisiveness
  • More goal-directed activity
  • Spending sprees
  • Inflated self-esteem

That is totally different from my list, and yet we’re still both bipolar. The diagnosis “bipolar” is more of a big-tent thing. It’s the clumping of people with group of symptoms into a group called bipolar, but each person in the group is still unique.

Your Crazy Is Not My Crazy and That’s OK

In the kink world there is a saying, my kink is not your kink, and that’s OK. That is because kink run the gamut. Some people revere feet, others play with blood and others are only interested in rope-play. And sometimes one group thinks less of another group. You lick boots? Ew. I only play with good, clean rope. or my kink is 24/7 so I’m kinkier (better) than you, who just shows up Friday night nights.

Naturally, entirely silly. Kink is all just kink. It’s all just stuff that would get you kicked out of a vanilla person’s bed, the specifics are inconsequential.

And the bipolar community does the same thing. Somehow we’re caught up in our differences and end up fragmenting the group. And even worse, people seem to have a constant of one-up-man-ship to see who is horrifically sicker. Ridiculous.

So, take a gander at my HealthyPlace piece, My Bipolar Isn’t Your Bipolar But That’s OK, where I write (and talk) all about it.

I’m Damaged. I’m Bipolar. Love Me. Save Me.

→ June 14, 2010 - Comments off

Last night I watched Crazy for Love a very bad movie wherein a man, Max, is put into a mental hospital for attempting suicide for the tenth time. When he’s there, he glimpses a very ill, schizophrenic, Grace, whereupon he instantaneously falls in love with her. She too is determined to kill herself. His life’s mission then is to “make her better”. To “make her happy”. Having found his new mission in life, he no longer wants to kill himself.

Well, pin a rose on his nose.

White Knight Syndrome and Bipolar Disorder

The white knight syndrome typically occurs in men and is characterized by being attracted to, and needing to save, someone in distress. This is not so bad if it leads to someone helping you pick up your groceries after the paper bag broke, but in mental illness circles, it’s very bad news indeed. More at the Breaking Bipolar blog.

Are bipolars crazy? I am. It’s OK to be Crazy.

→ June 10, 2010 - 4 Comments

CrazyI am crazy. I tell this to people in my personal life. It’s not a secret. I figure there’s no point in trying to cover it up; it’ll come out eventually. I’m crazy. The approximately 20 scars on my forearms rather give away that something is amiss.

But people really don’t like the word “crazy”. In fact, most often, what people say to me is, “no, you’re not!”. Well, actually, I am. I have a mental illness, I’m bipolar and I’m crazy.

more at Breaking Bipolar: Are bipolars crazy. I am.