I was diagnosed with manic depressive psychosis, or bipolar affective disorder.
For many years I tried to control in a traditional way – by taking medications, until a year ago, when I had my another exacerbation, I took my pills in a dosage twice as small as usual... and woke up on the floor in my kitchen.
I learned about the existence of a whole community. People create support groups and Telegram channels, and I didn't like what I saw there. People talk about accepting their disease. They discuss drugs that shorten one's life by an average of fifteen years. They say that depression can be treated only with antidepressants, and that mania is any manifestation including even extravagant nail color. Most importantly, I realized that 'accepting the disease' is a recognition that something is wrong with you, that you are abnormal, sick and wrong, and that now you're dependent. Forever. You have to control your every step: not just observe but really treat yourself like those evil teachers who beat kids on the hands for each slip of the pen.
Finally, I realized that this is not an option and went to a therapist who opened my eyes to why I had depression. I saw that almost everything I was taught to see as my folly was true, and that my feelings were real. It was NOT my folly. NOT just in my head. Little by little, I was able to build a whole picture.
The therapy I received wasn't like anything I could imagine considering that the only idea of therapy I had was based on American shows like The Sopranos. It turned out that I could swear, tell jokes or stories about my ex-lovers or LSD trips, cry and break dishes to vent my anger and do virtually anything while being sure that I will be understood .
One day I came to my therapy session in a terrible condition. I could hardly talk, I had not left home and not washed for a week and looked like a bum. The therapist asked me to describe how I would kill her. I said, "Excuse me? I mean, I don't want to kill you", and she answered: "Just try. It's fun, it's like in a movie: the lead character kills her therapist". So I started to speak, at first reluctantly, then with more and more pleasure. I told in detail how I would gouge out her eyes and bang her head against the wall. When the session was over, I took a shower and went for a walk. Since then, I was getting better and better.
My therapist was not the only person I killed at those sessions. I killed most of my family: my mother and father, and both my grandmas, and all of my teachers and classmates. It was a real genocide. I had a torture for nearly everyone, and it was wonderful.
The most important thing to know about depression is that it is a mechanism of mental protection, when aggression towards others is directed at oneself, and one of the main tasks of therapy is to change this mechanism. Given this, the desire to kill is justifiable and natural. Then it will pass and leave you happy and free just because it no longer has anything to do with you. Now you know how to defend yourself. You're no longer trying to be what you are not. You start asking: who am I?
It's a bit scary at first because it turns out you are not that bipolar girl you thought you were. You have no idea what you love and what kind of person you are. You actually don't know how people live without depression.
This is the moment when the most interesting things start to happen, because all of the horror and boredom and frustration and the feeling of suffocation are gone. You now can try something new. Your attitudes have changed, and your every day is not the same as the day before. The groundhog day is over.
Bird in Flight на русском Нам не кажется