Posted by Scott L. Schofield on March 24, 2000, at 9:19:45
In reply to Re: Me? Bipolar?, posted by Chris A. on March 24, 2000, at 1:13:59
> Why can't we refer to our illness as "an unstable mood disorder?"
Unfortunately, mine is quite stable.
> The transition from thinking of myself for years as someone with recurrent major depression to bipolar disorder has been rather traumatic.
It was for me too.
> Somehow the "bipolar" bit made me "sick" or mentally ill in my own eyes.
You are. I know that sucks.
> My own stigmatising has probably done as much or more harm as the illness itself.
This should pass, if you let it.
> Preaching to the choir: The importance of a proper diagnosis is to get the correct treatment.
> There are probably a lot of people out there that could benefit from mood stabilizers, but wouldn't want to consider the possibility of a bipolar diagnosis because of the stigma. It is so sad. The attitude seems to be "Anyone can get depressed, but you have to be sick to be bipolar, especially bipolar I."
I really never gave this much thought. You are right. Hopefully, this will change soon, as society continues to be educated about these disorders. Throughout history, people with epilepsy were viewed with fear, suspicion, and misunderstanding, and were subjected to enormous social stigma. They were treated as outcasts and punished. If things remain headed in their current direction, I don't think that it will be too much longer before bipolar disorder is looked at the same way as epilepsy is now.
This is worth praying for.
> I wish for you, and all of us, healing. I pray that I'll never be guilty of passing judgement on someone because of a diagnosis - that I'll always see them as a fellow human being first.
Perhaps you should start with yourself.
Blessings to you.
poster:Scott L. Schofield