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The blue pill, the red pill, the little yellow pill

I took my first dose of Trileptal last night. Apparently, this is one of the best ways to "help" my version of a brain.

I hesitated filling the script for a week. I put in on a shelf, and refused to look at it for an entire week. Because it's confirmation that there is something wrong with my brain, something wrong with me. And while there is a HUGE sense of relief surrounding knowing what is wrong, and going forward to fix it, there is also a massive sense of "oh shit" as well. I am crazy.

Not that I mind. I'm open about my "illness" to people, I don't hide it. I wouldn't hide cancer would I?

Actually, I probably would, because I wouldn't be able to stomach the pity. But there is no pity for mental illness. There are generally two reactions:
  1. The "oh, my cousin/sister's boyfriends mother's uncle/some guy I knew had that too" reaction
  2. The "that's, interesting" stepping slowly backwards from you, becoming really odd to be around reaction

Telling other people you have a mental illness is sorta like telling someone you have really bad diahrrea. It's information they didn't really want, because they have no idea what to say. People have been trained that mental illness=BAD. They don't understand the struggles someone might have, and you can feel some people silently judging you. Try to explain to someone that yesterday I couldn't stop spending money, and everyone was super nice and the world is fine, and today I want to hack at my wrists until the bleeding stops because I'm dead. Watch their reaction.

They might think that there's nothing "really" wrong with you, or that it's just your diet, or how you sleep, or not enough exercise that's making you neurons fire stupid. They might think you don't deserve your children, they might wonder if it's safe to be around you. Anything-but I can feel all these things. Some people, I just can't reach, no matter how much I want to show that just because my brain was on the half price rack doesn't mean I'm that different..

Ok, there's the whole social phobia thing that used to drive Stacey so nuts....and the don't want to order dinner on the phone thing...the olive thing...the used food thing...the constant mess thing...

Alright, perhaps there are a FEW differences. But after you scrape away all my little weird twitches, I'm not that different. My whole life I've been on the outside, and never really knew why. It started well before my mother died, and continued. Her death gave me a bigger excuse to be weird. I just got lucky and found a group of people to be weird with for awhile. Now, I feel like it's Grade 8 again, and I'm surrounded by all those girls in their Esprit shirts and I can't find a common ground.

So I took the pill. I slept like a baby. It's supposed to take awhile to notice any changes, since it has to be built up slowly to prevent side effects, and not ruin my kidneys. Oh, there's also this possibility that my skin will blister and flake off, but it's REALLY rare. So I think it's a fair trade off to try and be normal.

But is that what I want anyway? I've defined myself for years AS the outsider, the "scary girl", the scathing tongue with a big heart. Will that disappear? Will I become something flat, distorted? Will the me that I recognize when I dream go away forever?

Something to think about today while I work at least.

You're not "defective" or off the "seconds rack," Dor. Your brain is different. And not good different, unfortunately. I mean, lots of it IS good different. But then there's the parts of it that don't know how to behave without hurting you. That's what the meds will help.

And you will be different on the meds. You will feel less like you. That's the nature of the illness and the meds. And some of it'll suck, becuase being manic can be FUN. I get so much more done when I'm manic. Of course, I aslo have a shorter temper and can snap in the blink of an eye....

The way I see is, the misfiring neurons? That's not really YOUR brain. The real you is the one with the properly firing neurons. And look how exciting it will be to FINALLY get to know her!

It'll be good, Dor. I promise.

Thank you Sisp. You made me feel better today. :)

That's what friends are for.

This is the part where all I can say is I hope the meds work as they should.

I think what makes you special will still be there.

I guess I'd have to say I've been there to truly understand but I can at least try to support you.

Hi there- you don't know me, but I've suffered from social phobia my whole life and pills have helped but only to a certain limit. I've been using alcohol and drugs to try to feel happy and overcome my depression but it only makes it worse, so now this week I start a 4 week course of therapy to make myself better.
if you need to chat just drop me a line
peace
Merlin
"Life's a hard journey, and it's even harder when you go it alone". I hope these drugs really help you to feel normal again.-over and out-

Trileptal......interesting. That is Travis' primary drug (one of 6). Since I know you research everyting you know that it was originaly a Epilepsy drug and now being used for may things. I hope it does well for you. As far as side effects the are never spelled out by real people. If you have any thing the you think that could be related to the drug let me know I have a group of "experts" that can teel a person what it's like from the inside to take it.

Hey, Thordora. I didn't take Trileptal but I did take Dilantin for three years. I have a seizure disorder (yup, misfiring neurons, too, just the kind that interrupts stuff, not fucks shit up all of the time). Epilepsy meds aren't a lot of fun. I'm not normally manic and Dilantin just made me feel kind of dead for the first three months. Once I got used to it, I was fine but the getting used to it part really sucked.

As for the trying to explain mental illness to others, you'd be damn surprised how many people have it. It's kind of like sex and the Christian coalition. Or something.

Just trying to lighten things up around here. :)

Hey, you got a diagnosis! Congrats! At least now you have a path and a name for it. Hopefully there won't be any bad side effects beyond levelling out the extreme highs and lows. I think we're all crazy to one extent or another, the smart AND sane ones get help.

krista Yup. It's an anti convulsant, but they've noticed that it's as effective for bipolar as carmazapinecan'tspellit, without the side effects. I don't know how long it's to take effect, but since the doses are generally much lower for bipolar than they would be for epilepsy, I don't know what to expect. No Stevens-Johnson disease at least. :) Thanks though!

Missy There isn't supposed to be any side effects on this one. I remember trying paxil for all of a week once. Within 3 days, I don't think I could have reached orgasm if I rubbed up against a tree. Sucked balls. This drug isn't supposed to do that. We'll see. If I feel something go wrong, I'll stop it. Although yesterday I felt oddly better.

And it's lightened. I needed that joke. :)

Jen You're amoung the living again!

Hey, I think you're taking a step in the right direction, scary though it may be. Congrats!

Cool guestbook, interesting information... Keep it UP
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That's a great story. Waiting for more. video editing programs

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