I’m 37 years old and I was diagnosed with bipolar and anxiety disorder a year ago. I was first relieved to finally understand why my life was so chaotic, little did I know how much more chaotic my life would become. I didn’t really know what bipolar disorder was, my brother was diagnosed with it and my original thoughts was it was just an excuse and he could overcome it by controlling his behavior better. I knew that I had suffered a lot from my childhood on up for depression, I honestly don’t remember a happy moment from my childhood and always had the desire to truly feel happy. I never understood what caused the severe ups and downs that I experienced mostly starting in my teen years.
I remember being a very sad teenager, entertaining the thoughts of suicide all the time. I dropped out of school at 16. I was married and a mom to a beautiful daughter at the age of 18. This was the start of three rocky relationships. I was so unhappy in my first marriage that I got divorce. When my daughter was 5, I met someone new. We started living together and I found out I was expecting my second child, then the abuse started. I escaped from that relationship by jumping into a marriage with a drug addict. I went from one extreme to another, from using drugs to getting saved, which was one of my greatest moments and I’ve been clean for 10 years. I stayed depressed the majority of the time, attempting suicide multiple times. My daughter moved in with her paternal grandmother when she was 12 because she couldn’t handle the chaotic life. I eventually had a nervous breakdown and had myself committed to a mental hospital. My counselor and doctor believed if I returned to my husband it would end in death, so I agreed to leave the marriage.
Now we’ve reached the present time. I’ve been divorced for 2 years now and I’m married to someone new. He’s a good person, works hard, has never used drugs or alcohol, and we attend church together. It would seem like I should finally be happy, but no one can make you happy. Since my husband and I have been married, I have attempted suicide twice, which led me to eventually being diagnosed with bipolar disorder. This open up new chaos in my life. My counselor and doctor thought it would be best that I work on getting well and not working for a while, so I’m now on disability. My husband doesn’t understand, he believes like I originally did about my brother, but he tries to support me. His parents thinks it’s an excuse for not working and this hurts even more. My husband has 2 children of his own and my son, who is now 13. My daughter never did move back, she’s now 18 and going to college to be an RN. I’m so proud of her and so appreciative of her paternal grandmother that played such an important role in giving her a good life, I just wished that I did.
Living with bipolar disorder and being on disability isn’t easy. I’m continously being judged. My husband and I are verily making it financially, he works hard, but it’s not enough. I haven’t been taking my medicine for the last couple of months because I don’t want to ask my husband for the money when we are unable to pay our bills. I am getting a disability check, but I use it every month to pay our house payment. I want to go back to work desperately but then I start having anxiety that I’m not ready, even my counselor has the same concerns. Its hard to work on getting well when you can’t afford to take care of your family. I have some days where I get big ideas of things I can do, but then I can’t seem to finish them. I have nights where I can’t sleep because my mind won’t quit racing with great ideals or worries of how we’re going to make it and then its fighting the thoughts of just giving up. One final thought, I do trust that God can heal me from this and I don’t believe that its His will for me to live with this, I’m sure there’s a reason for this and the answer is coming soon.