Sherlock Smoking

Bipolar Vida Blog @ Healthy Place

Hey guys! My name is Alexa. You all have probably seen me around here, I'm sure. I've recently been hired as an independent contractor to take over HealthyPlace's blog, Bipolar Vida, starting next week. I will be writing about things that specifically relate to young adults (ages 18-25) living with bipolar disorder, such as relationships, school and work, drinking and substance use, and many, many other things.
No names nor responses will be included in any of my blogs. This is only for brainstorming purposes so that I can get an overall and well-rounded idea of what others experienced and expected before, during, and after a diagnosis of bipolar disorder.

If any of you could please fill out the questionnaire (it's a Google Form), I would greatly appreciate it! Also, feel free to pass this along to anyone else you think may be interested! Thanks so much, guys.

The form can be found here.
disney: alice

Online classes

Hi there!

I'm going to be taking a few online classes this summer as a way to transition back into school after having to leave college a few years ago due to depression and social anxiety. Has anyone had experience with online learning, particularly while dealing with depression and/or anxiety? I've never done it before so I'm not sure how to mentally prepare. Any tips?
cloud heart

Back again, like a long lost friend...


I have depression and anxiety.  I used to post here a long time ago, when I was doing my undergraduate, which I eventually completed, even though I had to keep suspending and coming back, and again when I was doing a masters, which I had to drop out of.  I literally walked out and didn't come back.  This was 2009.

Fast forward to now - I'm doing a PGCE (one year teacher training course in England) and while it's been difficult - I have basically two massive assignments and the rest is teaching lessons in placenment - I've survived so far.  Even massive assignment number one - I only scraped through just - but I passed, even though I was this close to flunking.  Until Monday, when after not sleeping more than about 15 hours in a week I was completely incapable of planning lessons on the weekend so I didn't have anything to go in and teach and was a crying ball on the floor.  I had to call in sick to the school I was on placement with and go to the doctor and say that the depression had started up again.  I got put on Prozac again(Fluoxetine) (yeah it works for me).  This is exactly what I didn't want to do.  I didn't want to screw up. The gaps in my CV due to time off because of depression are becoming harder and harder to explain in this job market.   I'm 30.  I've had experience of this.   I know that I should put stuff into place to make myself ok.

Now I've had emails from my placement school because I was supposed to email in an idea of what I was teaching and I didn't.  And I didn't call in sick properly yesterday or today.  I just kind of fucked up.

I'm so angry with myself because I*knew* this would happen if I was working flat out and doing nothing else and not sleeping and stressing myself out.  But I felt like I had to do this - I was up against the wall.  If there is work to be done, it has to be done, right?  I was just counting out on not crashing into the wall until Easter.  I'm angry that I couldn't keep myself going.

I also got on to the university counselling service.  They seem like they want to help - I talked to a very posh lady who asked a lot of questions but I'm a bit angry at her too because the first thing she asked me was if this had caused me to question doing teaching as a profession and I said that of course it had because teaching is so demanding and she just said straight away that "under the circumstances, is it a good idea doing teaching at all?" And I said that of course I still wanted to.  I just hope I don't have to fight her on this one.  People have told me to quit university the whole time I was there for my undergraduate.  I don't want to fight about this too.

I really want to go into my placement school tomorrow and teach my lessons but I have to plan the lessons first and then go in and sort out the damage.  I don't know if I can fix the damage I've done to the references and report they will give me.  I really don't.

(kind of cross-posted to my journal)

Break the Silence!

Dear readers,
I am a little diappointed in the lack of mayhem on this site in general. Where is all the activity?

Anyway-I recently received a letter from my son's medicaid providers that as his guardian, I have access to mental health services. I cried tears of joy upon reading this. Things could really change for the better, very soon.

How is this Winter treating everyone? (YUCK!-so ready for summer)
  • Current Music
    Frank Sinatra

Hello Strangers

Hey everyone,

I was a member of this community about a year ago and just got away from it. In the past year I have become a mommy, relocated to Colorado, and taken my first college classes. This is a big week as I am returning to the blog grid and have every intention of writing a letter of interest to the nearest psychiatrist for a decently-priced formal evaluation. Im hoping this will provide some much needed answers and restore me to a level of coveted functioning that I have seemed to let slip down the drain along  the way. Also, I tend to keep my personal blog on the topics of psych literature so for those of  you  who are looking for another resource or just something to scratch your brain, I am always happy to gain readers. (First and only pitch, i promise).

Is anyone else here a student and a parent with a mental illness?

Anyway, I am happy to be back and hoping to restore a sense of community for myself.
Hope everyone enjoyed the Holidays! Personally, Im happy to return to the hum drum of everyday life.

Well wishes,
  • Current Music
bat face


Hi guys. I used to post here a lot about my roomates at my last college. I failed out of that college and now i go to a community college. I have never ever been good at school. I Just barely got through highschool. I failed my math class last semester (at the community college) and so i didn't take it this semester but i'm taking a different class. I only have one class because they canceled my other class. My goal is to go back to my original college because i want to and i loved it. My mom told me that she doesn't want me to go back there and fail out again because the first college was very expensive. I really really don't want to give up my dream of going back there. You can't really get a Job unless you go to college. It's like making me cry about thinking giving up going back to my original college. I love it that much.
  • Current Mood
    depressed It's a very sad thought
  • Tags

SNRIs and Tricyclics

Hi guys, 

I was just wondering if you knew whether it was possible to combine a SNRI (Venlafaxine) with a tricyclic? My doctor doesn't want me to come off the Effexor and I don't want to be seen an being non-compliant, but I know tricyclics work better for my anxiety. wondering if I can suggest supplementing it with Lofepramine or something. 


Trouble with professors :(

Has anyone ever had a professor make them want to cry or actually cry when they aren't around? Or made you feel so stupid you wanna just f***ing give up. I thought I was finally ok in school, guess not! Sigh... Will it every be ok? Or should I just give up now. 
  • Current Music
    Mad world by Gary Jules


Brief bit about me: 22, bipolar, inconsistent college student. When I'm "fine" I get straight A's; when I'm not I drop out of school because I'm trying to jump off bridges. Currently I'm rapid-cycling, what fun.

The situation:

Although I have more than a hundred credits, because I'm constantly transferring schools due to my illness, I've currently found myself in a situation where my new school is requiring me to fulfill some gen ed requirements I don't have before I start this fall. For Californians, it's some random IGETC stuff. I'm currently enrolled at my local community college in Intro to Psychology, Public Speaking, and Pre Calc (lol, I have some Calc but not any credits that will transfer). Public Speaking and especially Pre Calc are great and I'm having a blast.

However, Psychology? Not so much. The professor is some kind of masters-level clinician who worked at the local hospital in the 70s and since then has been teaching. He likes to tell "funny stories" about the patients at the local inpatient floor. Since I was recently on that inpatient floor, I find this less than amusing. However, success is the best revenge - I'm doing very well in the class.

Big project is coming up: give a 20-minute lecture to the class about a topic of your choice. I selected the history of deinstitutionalization in America for my topic, as it's a topic I know something about and am passionately interested in, for obvious reasons. Much of the literature on this topic is highly pessimistic, and is written almost exclusively from the perspective of the clinician or social worker, rather than the patient. It gets a bit wearing to read about the severely mentally ill living on the streets or being in prison when I've come very close to that myself at my worst and craziest.

I'm considering disclosing, at the end of my presentation, that I am bipolar, have been severely ill, have been hospitalized multiple times - what it's like, why people are noncompliant, why autonomy and civil liberties are important to the mentally ill (even though civil liberties laws have had the side-effect of making treatment inaccessible to many of the severely mentally ill who do not have the ability or the understanding to pursue treatment). I want my classmates to be forced to see that the mentally ill live and walk among them, and aren't just grifters begging for change at intersections, but can be relatively high-functioning, successful people too. I want to do my part to decrease stigma.

There are some obvious reasons not to do this. The professor has hardly created a welcoming environment for the mentally ill. I could put myself at risk of bad treatment by revealing my diagnosis. I could flunk the presentation. On the other hand, I'm only at this college for a single semester - I'm transferring at the end of the semester, and I'll be giving this presentation in the last two weeks of class. I don't have any friends in the class, and no acquaintances where I'd be deeply hurt if they stopped talking to me.

What do you think?
Sherlock Smoking

Positivity: Mental Illness + the LGBTQ Community

I thought a few of you here may be interested in this.
New blog -- Positivity: Mental Illness + the LGBTQ Community

It's a blog I (Crazy-Making) created about the stigma surrounding mental illness, as well as the stigma regarding the LGBTQ community. This blog is for those of us who need that little extra inspirational push throughout the day. Personal stories, anecdotes, suggestions, inspirational things, etc. are definitely welcome.