Bipolar: She or Me?

10 Mar

I’m not a psychologist.  I am extremely introspective, watch Intervention, and have taken several classes on human behavior, but I don’t know enough to make an informed judgement.  Is Cool cycling?  If the symptoms are evident, I’ll take notice.  If she is really mundane or stops eating and sleeping I wonder if something is up.  But then I doubt my intuition.  I never know for certain if she’s depresses, manic, or just a person.  I also never know if it’s simply baggage and upbringing, personality traits or if the behaviors are pointing to a problem.  I am more terrestrial by nature, so flights of fancy do not always a good indication of a bipolar episode.

I could list certain things I find irregular:  The afore-mentioned inappatance and insomnia, a lack of practicality, joyous feelings at something previously hated (work), an eerie optimism, craftiness, and an inability to focus.  I especially start to wonder when Cool gets these transitory ideas–mostly work/school related.  For example, during one (later confirmed) bipolar episode Cool decided she would start a part time snow clearing business–despite not having four-wheel drive, a plow, availibilty in the early morning, stamina to do physical labor, winter clothes, or a shovel.  She seemed very excited about it, and I was left contemplating the logistics of the idea.  Since Cool is more laid back than I am in general, some of these things are not clear cut.

It doesn’t help that she doesn’t answer questions with veracity during these times.  She only has her own perspective so I guess symptoms might be concealed for her as well as for me.  She doesn’t know if she’s cycling either, so how could her answers to my probing questions be accurate?  To her, the problem is latent until it is over and she can look back.

It’s not like I want to libel Cool.  Not knowing if her bipolar is striking is detrimental.  We will start having relationship problems, and it can be hard to tell if we are having an issue, or if it’s a bipolar episode.  As a girlfriend I want to be supportive of Cool’s health.  On the contrary, I would hate to spread calumny by accusing the B-P of causing the strife, if it is in fact, an important disagreement between us.

And as an important side-note, I now understand why some bipolar people refuse to take their meds.  The meds cause a billion side-effects.  The prescribing doctor does not even bother to talk to the patient.  It’s appalling.  What’s more surprising is the liberal cost of the drugs.  For a month of Cool’s medication–it costs more than $500!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  No, that is not a solecism on my part, I meant 5-0-0!  That is more than a month’s rent-on a one bedroom apartment that allows two cats and overlooks the river.  It is more than an entire paycheck!  I am tolerant of costs that go into inventing, testing, and approving new drugs.  But seriously, charging more than a month’s rent???  You have got to be kidding, if you think for one second that some drug company is not making a boat-load of cash from that.  I wish bipolar disorder could be managed economically.  Or just managed.

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