What is Bipolar disorder? is a mental disorder characterized by periods of elevated mood
and periods of depression.
The elevated mood is significant and is known as mania or hypomania depending on the severity or whether there is psychosis.
During mania an individual feels or acts abnormally happy, energetic, or irritable. They often make poorly thought out decisions with little regard to the consequences. The need for sleep is usually reduced.
 During periods of depression there may be crying, poor eye contact with others, and a negative outlook on life.
Speech and Thought Process
During this episode the most apparent significant indicators for me was the I initially noticed Gus speech pattern change. It was as if I was talking to another person; he is extremely animated and energetic; he has a lot to say to everyone who his path crosses. I would say this seems like it could be a “pro” if people like a friendly person; but this is not usually his normal tendency and he usually avoids people or doesn’t care to approach.
The thing is his focus is not really on target so his thought process is all over the place; so what seems like a friendly person you start noticing he seems a little different or just strange. He jumps from one subject to another that is completely irrelevant to others; but makes perfect sense in his mind; because it ties into an emotion or perception. I think its hard for people to understand that; especially casual acquaintances. One day you see this man who acts like he has too much to say to you; like an old loss friend you are trying to get caught up with; telling you at times long winded stories to confuse another as to where the point is headed. The next time you see him you feel he is brushing you off because you aren’t getting the same type of attentive attention he gave you before.
I know its hard for a lot of people to understand Gus; and they brush him off as an asshole who just doesn’t give a shit; and most of the time; he doesn’t but he is surely not an asshole; well, not to me. 😀
During times of mania Gus is overly confident; he begins talking different; using different vocabulary, his last episode his speech pattern was almost robotic and extremely choppy. The 2nd episode it flowed less deliberate and more naturally. One thing is for sure; he can’t quiet his mind; and his mouth. He’s blunt and says things that most would bite their tongue to say; or he may just have a perception and voice it.
Gus’s focus is everywhere! His brain is on overdrive which would seem awesome if he was able to complete a thought process. He will leave somewhere and not return for hours; he will talk to people until they leave. Track of time is usually forgotten; so he could say he is going to pick up something from the store and meet 5 different people along the way/in the store; and have an hour conversation with each of them.
His anxiety is overwhelming to him; and his fears surface; fears that were in place long before he can remember. He has a strong inclination to restore his faith; as he obviously has found peace and comfort from the Lord in the past. The relationship with the Lord intensified so much during his first episode that he kept having me and the kids repent and pray; screaming as if he was in a sermon wanting to preach to the people he loved.
Bipolar mania alone does NOT make you become some monster you are not; it basically heightens your fears, anxiety, and your moods are out of control. You are not some lunatic that doesn’t know what you are doing with this specific illness.
Paranoid schizophrenia is the most common type of schizophrenia in most parts of the world. The clinical picture is dominated by relatively stable, often paranoid, delusions, usually accompanied by hallucinations, particularly of the auditory variety, and perceptual disturbances.
Disturbances of affect, volition, and speech, and catatonic symptoms, are not prominent.
This is often times associated with Bipolar Disorder.
I DO NOT CLAIM to be a doctor; but I can share with you what I know from my personal experience alone.
- delusions of persecution, reference, exalted birth, special mission, bodily change, or jealousy;
hallucinatory voices that threaten the patient or give commands, or auditory hallucinations without verbal form, such as whistling, humming, or laughing;
hallucinations of smell or taste, or of sexual or other bodily sensations; visual hallucinations may occur but are rarely predominant.
Contrary to public perception, schizophrenia is not split personality or multiple personality. The vast majority of people with schizophrenia are not violent and do not pose a danger to others. Schizophrenia is not caused by childhood experiences, poor parenting or lack of willpower, nor are the symptoms identical for each person.
It is amazing how closed minded and ignorant people are; they thing if someone has any mental illness they are going to do the same exact things “JOHN” with the same mental illness has. NOT all people with depression KILL THEMSELVES; just as not all people with mental illness are a danger and will hurt another soul.
Gus will show behavior of paranoia; he may feel someone is spying on him to persecute him; it could be EVERYONE he talks to. Can you imagine believing in your mind that the person in front of you is out to get you. How scary is that? He may feel people are following him, bugging the house, talking to him to get information to finalize the persecution. If you try to talk reason to him; he feels violated and angry; because his perceptions are his reality. How can i not believe what he feels to be true? Once the reasoning starts the laughing or noises come out; and you take it almost as if its a mean type of mockery that pisses you off.
One thing during the last episode that wasn’t so apparent this time; is we would have an argument about a situation and then the next day when i would bring it up he would be afraid how I knew his thoughts as if I was bugging him spying on him or tracking his moves; he didn’t remember telling me the information the day before. He also would bring up arguments we had from long ago during his first episode (which was much worse) and treat them as if they were current.
BRAIN REST NEEDED
Gus has trouble stopping is thoughts so of course he can’t sleep; he will go days without sleep; and will continue in his hyper state while everyone around him is tired, drained; and maybe even disturbed about the different behavior. One thing is for sure; I missed Gus; and I both times I had a strong fear he would stay in a manic state forever. I would feel one minute I was able to reason with him and he would sneak off taking a walk or just keeping himself busy. He will begin to organize projects all over the house; and the projects are started; and left for another.
I am not sure if its for visual or sensory issues with his wardrobe change; but he will change numerous times. I know on his first episode his clothes were bothering him so he just took them off in the hospital. He was agitated and disturbed almost like if ants were crawling on your body. He becomes extremely aware of his appearance and will make changes numerous times… I am guilty of this one myself… 🙂
He does what he wants to feel whether it’s
Or whether it’s
One thing is for sure; Gus has probably lost many people due to his illness; and if they are out of his life they don’t deserve to be in his life. It takes a lot of understanding and patience to surround yourself with someone like him because you never know really how he maybe.
Gus is the most loving, understanding; helpful friend it is sad that people are embarrassed by his behavior or just decide he isn’t worth the effort. One thing is for sure; this illness is difficult just as anything else is in life; but we as society need to become more understanding to mental illness.
Not be ashamed; share what you know so we can understand it better.
This is my side of the journey; I have encouraged Gus to share his; and I know he will begin soon; to enlighten when it’s time or when he is ready. It is easy to get embarrassed by the behavior because it is not what one would normally do; so it’s hard to accept and admit it happened. I think there are many people who have extraordinary stories who refuse to share due to fear of being stigmatized. Family members know people are judgmental and won’t understand; so they chose to keep the “family secret.”
Currently, there is no cure for Bipolar disorder. I urge all if you want to donate to any worthy cause, consider mental illness !! Please 🙂 Bipolar disorder is basically just becoming known because of media; the man who eats another face, the woman who ***her baby. We as humans want to put the blame on something we don’t understand; and more than likely want to make sense with the little knowledge given. When people with bipolar disorder do things out of their element; and family is ashamed; there is less support networks available for the person with the illness and the family. People with bipolar disorder often times have other disorders that possibly have not been diagnosed. Everyone wants the next person to be understanding to them or their loved one when they are facing a obstacle in life; but no one wants to understand people who are “crazy” as they see it; they fear and want to run the other way.