When I took this job I was really hopeful that I would have some time for them to see me as a good therapist before they had to know I have bipolar. I was hoping to make it until my 3 month review and then let it out gradually. I probably won't even tell the whole department; there are so many of us and not everyone needs to know.
Of course differences are noticed. I am not making it in much before 10 and people see that and ask, especially since I have a 9 hour day (I work 4 9s and have a day off). I just use my typical "I take very strong medicine for sleep" explanation. But they even notice things like how much water I drink. I drink over 70 ounces minimum during work, and the only real breaks I take involve me walking down to the water cooler for 30 more ounces.
But today I found I may have to speak up sooner. And for a reason I didn't expect. I think I've been too unwell for someone to feel comfortable making this kind of joke around me for a long time, whether I was telling them or not.
We got a new patient who has a very severe anxiety disorder. I had a difficult time evaluating her because her anxiety is causing physical symptoms and it's hard to convince someone that their physical symptoms are under cognitive control. (This is probably God's idea of a joke, that I who have so frustrated my own therapist with similar issues now is dealing with it).
I was explaining the situation to another therapist who I really like, and she said "so she's psychotic?". I said "no......." since she is NOT psychotic and I am anti-using that as a category for all odd behaviors, because I know from personal experience how little fun psychosis is. And then further psychosis jokes were made.
If that kind of thing continues I'm going to be telling at least some people sooner just so that I don't have to hear jokes about something I dread, and with every right. Psychosis isn't funny, it is the nightmare that can take away all that I have. I know perfectly well that every day now is a gift and that in all likeliehood I'm going to get sick eventually. I also know I can be pretty content with this time, because I'm getting to experience so many things I've never felt well enough to do as an adult, and I can enjoy them more than the average bear would.
But this was a reminder that all will not be well forever. That and a family that made me angry. Which has nothing to do with anything but sheesh.
Must get to sleep. One more day in the big 3 days.