Mental Health Humor Cartoon by Chato Stewart
Title: Mental Health History: Why is it the more you need help… Sign 1: Year 1 – 1 Diagnosis – 1 medication – but Insured Sign 2: Year 3 – 3 Diagnoses – 3 medications – COBRA Ins. Sign 3: Year 6 – 4 Diagnoses – 5 medications – Lost Insurance Sign 4: Year 10 – 6 Diagnoses – 12 medications – Broke! Caption: The less money YOU haveOur “mental health history” can be very simple or extremely complicated. Each person has different psychological and biological make-up that includes our background and life experiences that together make-up a full history. Diagnosing and the successful treatment of depression, bipolar disorder or the host of other “mental illnesses” sometimes is trial and error. For me, it was not hard to get into the ball-park for my diagnosis as bipolar.
The problem was nailing it down. See I started out as Bipolar Depressed, then to Rapid Cycling then to mix state then back to bipolar 2…Over the last 10 years, I’ve been labeled with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), bipolar II disorder — also known as manic depression,Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), Seasonal affective disorder (SAD), Major depressive disorder (MDD, deliberate self-harm (DSH) includes self-injury (SI), and Binge eating disorder (BED).
It was even hinted to me that I could have Borderline personality disorder (BPD) and schizo-affective disorder. The problem is with EACH NEW Therapist, Doctor and Psychologist, I saw came with an updated diagnosis. Am I alone in this?? Nope! Here is the experience of my Friend and Facebook pal, Kristi Goldsberry, CPSS, ITE Peer Support Specialist:
I was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder at the age of 31 in the midst of a full blown manic episode for which I was hospitalized for a month. I had known for a while that something was wrong, and had made appointments with psychiatrists a couple of times after one of my “weird” episodes. But when I called for an appointment, they would invariably tell me to come in two weeks from then and when I did come in, they would insist there was nothing wrong with me. And there wasn’t. But there had definitely been something wrong when I made the appointment.
Then, on my 50th birthday, I was in a car wreck, had a panic attack, plus chest pains from where the seat belt grabbed me, and I thought I was having a heart attack. For days afterward, I felt on the verge of mania. I tried everything in my WRAP plan to bring myself back down. Nothing worked. I went to the doctor several days after the accident to have my sprained ankle examined and was given a self-assessment test with questions about my physical and mental health. As a result, I was diagnosed with PTSD and Anxiety Disorder.
I soon realized that I had been struggling with these disorders for many years, and had just attributed my symptoms to the Bipolar Disorder. These additional diagnoses and the resulting therapy made a huge difference in my mental wellness, and I’m now better than I have ever been, and improving every day! – http://www.facebook.com/DBSANELA and www.dbsalliance.org