I started taking a medication that has several purposes but my reason was for precautionary measures after a single seizure. It’s Lamictal and you very well know it’s also used to manage bipolar disorder. I’ve been on it since February and it’s September now, so it’s been 7 months. My dosage is 200mg a day.
As soon as I started taking it in the beginning I began to notice a gradual stabilization in my mood. Before I would become depressed and apathetic and have moments of restlessness and hyper motivation. Thoughts of suicide have crossed my mind for years but I’ve never acted on them because I know I’d probably think differently later.
I’ve done my research on mental illness since I was 14. I’ve always had some strange attachment to them, specifically the types of bipolar disorders, borderline, and avoidant personality. I display a lot of symptoms for AvPD that I wouldn’t doubt I’d at least qualify for an evaluation. Oddly enough, I am able to manage myself because I’d like to avoid criticism as much as possible. And I have found fairly successful ways to manage my anxiety. But that’s not the point of my question. I realize my details are pretty vague and it’s basically impossible to be evaluated through text. But I do feel there is something wrong with me. I sometimes get careless with taking my medications because I feel it’s unnecessary. So I’ll go a few days to a week or so without it and then my anxiety gradually returns along with depressive thoughts, irritability and carelessness. Ive gone on some spending missions, luckily I grant myself a limit. So there is some personal control there. I’ll stay up late planning things I want to do and so on.
To sum it all up, I need to know how I can make sure I stay on this medication without having to go to a psychologist? My neuro doctor planned on weaning me off after a year and that year is up in 5 months. I like the stability. I’ve gotten so used to it that I worry I’ll crash hard when I’m completely cut off from lamictal. I feel the only way to stay on it is to somehow figure out what caused my seizure 7 months ago and trigger it again.
I deeply appreciate your thoughtful description of resilience and ongoing coping with your symptoms. It takes a lot of courage to manage, and throughout your description I notice how much grit, self-control, willpower, and self-regulation you bring to the table.
I do have a suggestion about the medicine, but I want to highlight your extraordinary coping skills. These are essential ingredients for your well-being going forward.
The physician prescribing The Lamictal is well aware of its other properties as well. I think I would show him or her this detailed letter and explain your stability that has come from taking the medicine. I believe this type of consultation is invaluable in your case. The physician is then in the best position to offer feedback about your options.
Dan Tomasulo Ph.D., TEP, MFA, MAPP teaches Positive Psychology in the graduate program of Counseling and Clinical Psychology at Columbia University, Teachers College and works with Martin Seligman, the Father of Positive Psychology in the Masters of Applied Positive Psychology (MAPP) program at the University of Pennsylvania. He is Director of the New York Certification in Positive Psychology for the Open Center in New York City and on faculty at New Jersey City University. Sharecare has honored him as one of the top 10 online influencers on the topic of depression. For more information go to: http://www.dare2behappy.com/. He also writes for Psych Central's Ask the Therapist column and the Proof Positive blog.
APA Reference Tomasulo, D. (2018). I Think I Have Some Kind of Bipolar Disorder. Psych Central.
Retrieved on November 21, 2019, from https://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2015/10/24/i-think-i-have-some-kind-of-bipolar-disorder/
Last updated: 8 May 2018 (Originally: 24 Oct 2015) Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018 Published on Psych Central.com. All rights reserved.