Manic Depression Is Treatable.
Speeding with No Tread
Mania is a street word and a clinical word and a word used in amateur analysis. Yet, we all feel we know what we mean when we say:
"He's Manic!" - As someone walks up and down the bar asking for personal loans to buy more beer.
"At least tonight she is half way normal, not like she usually is - Manic!" - As a usually indiscriminate lady actually looks dressed differently and is not throwing herself at all the men.
"God, I wish I wasn't always fighting my Mania." - As a victim can feel the collection of moods and feelings crashing down around the individual feeling the onrushing symptoms.
"Manic" is generally perceived positively by the "Manic" and paired with another Condition
People use a word - "crashing", and that simple word that sounds like a car wreck. The image is clear. Depression, lingering sadness, being "down in the dumps" is easy to understand and feel that one is dealing with a disease. Looking miserable, functioning poorly, unable to get your act together - it is seldom that a person with these symptoms feels unimpeded. They feel like dung, and know it.
A manic state, for many is not something to run from, hinder, arrest or inhibit. One of characteristics is that it is invited in, offered a seat, and like as not, a glass of champagne. The victim or sufferer feels excessively good. Like Karen Carpenter's song declares:
"I'm on the top of the world, lookin' down on creation, and the only explanation I can find..."
The poor victim often does look for an explanation. But while they look, they are just "heel clicking" happy that they don't have to carry around their "darned gloom and suicidal chatter".
The vexing part of this condition is that people feel, not just a kind of whimsy cute smiling positiveness, they feel an absolute CONVICTION OF POWER. If you are a friend, lover, relative, associate of this kind of person, you can remember their using vocabulary that sounds like a Superman Comic Book, or utterances from a huddle in a football game. They use extreme strange powerful language of GRANDIOSITY.
They do not feel they are overstating things because like a strange inebriation, they feel limitless energy. During these times, everything is interesting, burns in them with passionate attention. Strangely that ticklish joy is accompanied by a sense, (almost a religious sense) that absolutely nothing bad can happen to them. They feel they have an unlimited "Ticket To Ride"
"Oh the Things That You Do"... The Resultant Actions
Impulsivity in Spades. What can we be impulsive about? Let's see: Flirting, too affectionate, overly honest, drinking too much, spending too much, driving too fast. You who suffer from this: Write your own list. You know of what we speak. There are things that you probably can't believe you ever did, and it still sits there staring at you like "Jaba the Hut".
MONEY - Sometimes you can get so drunk or out of it that you forget much of what you say or do. However, it is hard to overspend money and not remember that lost cash. Maybe, its not until two days later. Maybe, not until you check your balance as you realize you ATMed your balances into oblivion.
RISKS - Sometimes while they are in the worst states of excessive risk taking, they will deny at their loudest that anything is wrong. Hostility, Irritability and Paranoia can bare their fangs, as they reach what they think are their happy, charming heights.
Thinking They are Winning and Charming Motivating Powerhouses
They do not think they are being tedious, repetitive, insulting, interruptive or just boring. They think they are being devastatingly wonderfully captivating. And, so, having no source other than themselves, they go on and on and on, hurting their relationships, their checkbooks, their loved ones and their reputations.
Then, the next time you see them, they are cycling, or just having hit the flat bottom of their depression. At that time, they know they have something to apologize for, but they seldom do. They are living at the other end of their Mania, and it's hard oftentimes to see that far into yesterday's embarrassments.
If you are one who suffers from these conditions, or you have a closed loved one, or relative, realize that there are drugs, treatments, counseling and help that people like this can avail themselves of. But, the curiosity of this condition does do these things:
A. Make you think you are just an "interesting person" and are "misunderstood" and are not truly ill.
B. Tell yourself, "I can't change myself. That is me." Read Patty Duke's book about this topic. It is fasincating when she discusses how she felt that her real personality was that manic self. Her discussion of this issue is fascinating, profound and persuasive.
If you can't get beyond this, then you will probably keep going until you suffer more profoundly. If you have a sense that perhaps you are suffering in this way, go to your parents, your closest friends or other companions. Then just ask them. While you are not drinking and in a transitional emotional tornado, get their attention and ask them: "Is this me?"
Check out the list from the DSM-IV to give more clarity.
DSM-IV Symptoms of Mania:
Elevated, expansive, or Irritable mood for at least one week; Inflated self-esteem or grandiosity. Decreased need for sleep. More talkative than usual, a pressure to keep talking. Flight of ideas or sense that your thoughts are racing. Distractibility. Increase in activity directed at achieving goals. Excessive involvement in potentially dangerous activities.
Concluding thought: Once you actually do get in touch with your Real Self, you will love that person. You will say, "Well, I don't have to hide behind all that activity and noise. I can get to know this newer "older" me and enjoy life without being slave to this condition."
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