Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth." Genesis 9:13

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Psychotic like me

First, if you're from GCC, welcome. This whole thing was started for you although it turned out to help me. It's kind of amazing to think you're sitting in a whole building that didn't exist when I was in school using the internet during class. I was in the first class to get computers. We had email if we pluggged a modem in and were patient, but all internet was in the TLC. Windows didn't even load automatically back then. So much change in 10 years.

Work is hard. As I said yesterday it's a weird situation to walk into. There's a problem with middle management that has caused a lot of issues. The aide may quit tomorrow, in fact. I also have seen some back-stabbing, although that was very much from one person who gets on my nerves. I like all the other therapists, but this one guy triggers my bipolar signs, and is loud and overbearing and even in 3 weeks I've had a patient complain. The rehab team is great and the level of care in rehab is fantastic. The nursing care is not so fabulous in some ways. It all has a complex mix that winds up "great" or "I'm furious about this".

I'm noticing that after this last episode of illness I am more sensitive to words than I used to be. While I still use "a bipolar" and have no problem with "she's bipolar" being used to describe me, I am realizing only certain people have that right. I'm also finding I am less and less tolerant of people making constant "oh, that's psychotic" or "that's retarded" comments. I was irate about a nurse doing this tonight and I sincerely hope something comes of my complaint. It won't due to politics, but it better end. This facility takes a certain number of psychiatric patients. This means they need to committ to treating them respectfully.

What I wish people could understand without going through it themselves is how scary psychotic symptoms are. And I'm saying that based on mild ones. I've had a few times I've had some non-existent additions to my world and once it almost made me wreck my car. But generally I'm pscyhosis free. However, I have mixed episodes if I'm going to have episodes. When I was first diagnosed I was considered BPII for a few months, but the mixed episodes made it BPI quickly. I was having moderate episodes and didn't really understand why a mixed episode was the equivilant of a psychotic episode. When I had my first severe mixed episode I realized that there is nothing worse (I was working with psychotic patients so I could compare). With pscyhosis you aren't reality based enough to realize how bad things are. With a mixed episode you know and your brain won't regulate.

Regardless when people are so insensitive like that I really start wanting to either fight back in some way, force them to listen to me babble about it, or start hurling insults at them. That's not productive, of course. But once again, I wish people knew how often the person they are talking to has psychiatric issues or another hidden disability.

I do plan, by the way, to reveal my bipolar eventually and I am hoping that I'll get to do it in a way that embarrasses those who have irritated me without appearing for it to be planned. :)


Emilija said...

I'll be interested to hear how you manage to tell people at work. I haven't really decided if I'm going to eventually or not. Today I almost wanted to say something. All the female therapist were talking about having children (one therapist almost ready to give birth). I stayed out of it. I don't know what to say. My life just doesn't make sense if you don't know this about me. But you don't go to work to be understood, I guess.

Just Me said...

My plan at this point is to try to let it go until my 3 month review. By that point they should know my skills. If the review goes well, and at this point I'm told that it will, I'll tell my managers then. From there I'll probably just speak more openly about it in front of people so they feel free to talk about it to me and among themselves. I'm fine with them talking about me, I just don't want everything about me attributed to BP. I made a mistake this week, a stupid one that only a beginner should make but was also not really a huge deal. It was SO nice to not have my mental compentancy judged, as the last job would have. Things that were absolutely not bipolar always were blamed on it and I never had a real chance.

I did tell one person. I needed an example for something I was telling her and she's not going to tell. I was pretty sure.

Basically I'm just following my instincts. I may not tell for a longer time, or I may tell Monday if I feel like it will make me more comfortable.

I actually am pretty relaxed about the whole thing, for the first time.