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Am I Bipolar?

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There are periods in which I’m utterly sad or depressed (I’m not quite sure when someone can be labeled as depressed) In these times I find it hard to sleep because I think of all the things that worry me. I fantasize about death a lot. And I cut myself. Then there are periods where I am unbelievably happy. I feel invincible, as if nothing could do me any harm. I become very active, I talk a lot, about the most unimportant things. I walk around a lot. My siblings get very irritated and would ask me things like “are you drunk? did you take something?” And then there are times where I feel quite normal. I feel neither depressed nor utterly happy. Am I having simple mood swings? I just need to know. Thank you.

Am I Bipolar?

Answered by on -

A.

I would not describe your mood swings as being “simple.” They are characteristic of bipolar disorder. It would’ve been helpful to have included how often your mood swings occur and how long they last.

It’s not abnormal to experience mild fluctuations in mood; however, your mood swings are interfering with your life. “Normal” mood swings don’t typically disrupt one’s life. People with bipolar disorder have severe mood swings that significantly interfere with their lives.

You admitted to engaging in self-harm behaviors. You also fantasize about death and at times, feel, “unbelievably happy.” Cutting is dangerous and all suicidal ideation should be taken seriously.

Diagnosing bipolar disorder, or any disorder, can be complicated and requires a thorough in-person, therapeutic evaluation. It would be advantageous for you to see a mental health professional who can evaluate your symptoms and determine what might be wrong. The mental health professional will also likely create a specific treatment plan based on your symptoms. Medication might also be recommended. Many people find that medication helps to stabilize their moods. It’s always best, when possible, to prevent the development of serious psychological problems by seeking help sooner rather than later. Please take care.

Dr. Kristina Randle
Mental Health & Criminal Justice Blog

Am I Bipolar?

Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW

Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW is a licensed psychotherapist and Assistant Professor of Social Work and Forensics with extensive experience in the field of mental health. She works in private practice with adults, adolescents and families. Kristina has worked in a large array of settings including community mental health, college counseling and university research centers.

APA Reference
Randle, K. (2018). Am I Bipolar?. Psych Central. Retrieved on March 18, 2019, from https://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2013/10/01/am-i-bipolar-4/
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 May 2018
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018
Published on Psych Central.com. All rights reserved.