The emerging blogger series is aimed at community building through giving mental health bloggers who are early in their blogging evolution the opportunity to have their work seen by a wider audience. It’s also a way to introduce you as a reader to some newer members of our community.
This post is by Clive from Bipolar? It’s Not All Doom and Gloom.
Life with bipolar
Hi my name is Clive, I’m 54, married with 3 grown up children. I’m also a full time carer for my wife. I was first diagnosed with bipolar disorder in 2015, although I know I’ve had this all my life. Mental health issues run strong in my family. In 1972 when I was 6 years old, I witnessed my dad take his own life after 2 previous attempts.
They said he suffered from depression, but I’m sure it was more than depression alone. When I was diagnosed with bipolar, I started to think about all the things I’ve done throughout my life. It now makes sense of certain things I’ve done. I can now see the picture more clearly.
One instance in 1989, barring in mind this was 26 years before my diagnosis. I woke up one morning and I had a brilliant idea. Why not buy 2 jet-skis, move to Spain, and hire them out on a beach!. At the time I never had any money, so I took out a £20,000 loan!
All my family and friends tried to talk me out of it, and said this was a bad idea, and I wasn’t thinking straight, (what ever straight means?) but I wasn’t having non of it. I thought..”what’s the matter with everyone, this is a brilliant idea!” So I sold my car and bought a land-rover, plus 2 top of the range jet-skis with a double trailer, 2 banana boats, and 10 life jackets!
Within 2 weeks of having this brilliant idea, I was laying on a beach in a resort on the Costa Brava. This lasted for around 4 months, before I had a major come down, and returned home. Wow! What a great time I had.
It wasn’t until my diagnosis that I realised this was a “manic episode” I’m pretty certain that my bipolar was brought on by 2 factors: 1..it’s hereditary, 2..certain life events coming to the surface.
It all come crashing down around me in 2015, when I had a major brake down. I spent a night in hospital where I was under the crisis team.
I was put on all sorts of medication, but I just couldn’t function on them, I had to be on the ball to care for my wife. Since then I’ve been riding this rollercoaster ride called bipolar, without medication. I’m not saying that medication isn’t needed, because it most certainly is in most cases. I just chose to ride it out unaided, that is a personal choice.
With bipolar I have rapid mood swings. I could be on top of the world, for an hour or so. I think all my wild ideas are the best thing in the world (hypomania) then it all comes crashing down when my mood comes down to a low point (depression) this can happen a few times a day.
What I have found that helps me personally, is I must keep myself busy. I’ve found a great hobby in metal detecting this is not just a hobby, it’s also therapy. Also I’ve found writing helps a great deal, which is ironic really as I’ve never liked writing, lol. You need to find something to keep you occupied, it doesn’t matter what it is, as long as you enjoy it and it keeps your mind from wandering back down into the pits of hell called depression.
You can find Clive on his blog Bipolar? It’s Not All Doom and Gloom.
Thanks so much Clive for participating in the emerging blogger series!
You can find a listing of all of the posts in the series here.
Once or twice a week I’ll publish emerging blogger mental health-themed guest post(s) by bloggers who are early on in their mental health blogging evolution, with priority given to those whose blog has less than 50 WordPress followers. The focus is on community-building rather than just a one-off guest post.
If you’re interested in being featured in the emerging blogger series, email me at mentalhealthathome (at) gmail (dot) com with a brief description of what you’d like to write about and your blog name/URL. I’m looking for bloggers who have already had some form of connection with me or my blog, who have blogs that are focused on mental health, and who will contribute posts that are relevant to a broad mental health blogger audience. Although I may make occasional exceptions for bloggers that I have an established relationship with, generally blogs that serve a primarily commercial purpose will not be considered.