Bipolar disorder Frenemy

My Own Worst Frenemy

Bipolar disorder Frenemy

A Little About My Frenemy.

I’m twenty-nine years old and I have a frenemy. My frenemy, she visits me at the most inconvenient of times. I remember when she first started coming around, she seemed harmless enough stopping by every now and again.

Then, there was a day soon after we had met, I ran into her while I was out with my friends. I was about sixteen at the time, an impressionable age. I was outside of the movie theater wasting time before the movie started. She came up to me, very nonchalantly and whispered into my ear, “these people don’t really like you. They pity you, they know you’re a loser and they couldn’t care less about you. You’re nothing to them”. Just when you think my frenemy had been a big enough jerk, she pushed me into the mud and kicked dirt in my face. I’ll never forget that moment or the many thereafter.

Partying...

When she wasn’t being a complete jerk we actually seemed to have a great time together. She went everywhere with me doing fun and crazy things! We bought a Ferrari among many other cars. Stayed up all night partying sometimes and even raced other cars on country dirt roads, taking twists and turns while driving over 80 mph. We still do those crazy things sometimes, just not as often.

Why do I stick around?

I’m sure by now you are wondering why I still let my frenemy hang around. Why is she still a part of my life? The truth is, I have no choice. You see, she is my bipolar disorder. Even though she isn’t going anywhere I have learned how to handle her. She behaves a little better over the last thirteen years.

When I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder I knew very little about the disease. What I did know was explained to me by my psychiatrist. I learned that it is a mood disorder caused by a chemical imbalance in your nervous system.

I still struggle to learn how to live life day by day. I have also grown accustomed to the erratic mood changes; mania to depression to mania again.

Feeling

What can you do?

Individuals with bipolar disorder can have different experiences in the various cycles of their disorder. Manic episodes can come and go in a flash or linger for months at a time. These moments are usually triggered at the most inconvenient times. They can be triggered by significant life events, like moving and getting a new job or relationship. I have learned to cope with the disorder, through a combination of family support, therapy and medication.

Through the support of family and friends, a person with bipolar disorder can feel a sense of companionship. Companionship is important because this can be a very lonely and confining disease.

There are many mental health resources that provide safe outlets, free of judgment, provide safe outlets to discuss the highs and lows of bipolar disorder. Most people that have never had a mental illness have a hard time understanding what happens to those people who do have one. The most important thing about therapy is actually going. During times of depression and emotional lows of the disorder, it can be hard to even get out of bed.

Thank you for reading about my own worse frenemy and how you can support others with their own.

Andrea signature

Comments 51

  1. Dani Adams

    This is very eye opening. A great read and I commend you for sharing your story, it is very brave. I find this to be a topic that can you can elaborate on and create a wonderful community.

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      mentalhealthandrea

      Thank you for your comment! I am glad this post touched you and that is great feedback on the elaboration. I appreciate your support! xo, Andrea

  2. Izuzu Nworgu

    Hello,
    Thank you for sharing your story. I’ve never come across anyone with bipolar disorder and I don’t understand it fully either but I’d love to learn about bipolar disorder in details.
    Take care!!

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      mentalhealthandrea

      Thank you for your support! I’m glad this was able to give you a little insight into what it’s like to be bipolar and I hope you continue to read the blog for more info! Thanks for your comment! xo, Andrea

  3. Ivonne

    Excellent post and I love the way you call ‘her’ your frenemy! I respect the fact that you’re sharing your story. Mental illness has always been a taboo topic but is no different than any other medical condition. Kudos to you for being so brave and outspoken!

  4. Jessica Harlow

    I really love the way you presented this. Bipolar disorder is hard to understand and you’ve really explained it in a unique way that helps people realize what it’s really like (in some ways).

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  5. Katrina

    Thanks so much for sharing your story. I cannot imagine having to deal with having a frienemy I am unable to shake. Your blog overall is doing a great service to others suffering from similar ordeals and you are such an inspiration, Sounds like your voice is a lot stronger than your friendemy 😉

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  6. Kim

    I’m so moved by how you describe this frenemy that you live with and some days struggle to keep her in check. You are doing wonderfully and your words are inspiring and bring truth and openness to something we ALL need to talk much more about. Keep doing what you do, writing the way you do, you’re helping many xo

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  7. Reuven

    Working as a social services manager and counselor at a large community center, I see the terrible strains and pains of mental illness on a regular basis. Too many nice and kind individuals suffer with disorders that therapy and medications can, at best, only partially alleviate. The impact on their happiness, self-worth, functioning and relationships can be significant. The last thing they need is to be labelled, stigmatized and ostracized. Terrific posts like yours help to educate people about the challenges of these disorders and where there is knowledge, it is much more likely that patience, understanding and support follow. I very much admire you for sharing your experience with bipolar disorder. You’re doing a tremendous service for so many.

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      Mental Health Andrea

      Thank you so much for ALL of your support! You are so right, mental illness effects all aspects of your life and can be so hard to deal with or understand. Thank you for helping me stop the stigma of mental illness! xo, Andrea

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      Mental Health Andrea

      It’s very hard to support those that are still in denial about their illness. Our world is a thousand times better when we embrace help and support. Please continue to love her and never give up! There is always hope. xo, Andrea

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  8. Sondra Barker

    Thank you for sharing this about yourself and shedding light on bipolar disorder. It is more common than people think, as is mental illness in one form or another in general. Thank you for working to help end the stigma.

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