I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder in 1997, but I can see the symptoms all the way back to junior high school. I have several types of cycles, from the long cycle in which manic, mixed, and depressed moods alternate with occasional remissions, to the daily cycle in which my mood changes by the time of day. I take Zoloft, Depakote, Klonopin, and Desyrel daily. I have been on disability since 2002. I was one of the lucky ones who got in right away and didn’t have to wait forever or try repeatedly.
I lived alone for 3 years and I know I can take care of myself. This was an important thing for me to learn. However, I have also learned that my quality of life is better if I am around others more. I recently moved in with a good friend I’ve known for 15 years (even before my diagnosis!). With her around I’m more sociable, I keep up with routines such as laundry and personal hygiene, and if my symptoms worsen I know someone is there to see!


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