I was diagnosed with bipolar about 6 years ago, and not just the simple bipolar I or II, nope, I am Cyclothymia. This mean that I can mood change in the blink of an eye. I do not look at this as something that is a burden, or that I was cursed with. It is a decease, much like depression, or diabetes, or cancer, or leukemia. There is no difference between mental illness and physical illness. There are medications that help with physical illnesses and medication to help with metal illnesses. I do not believe that the Buddha would think that taking medicine to help with physical or mental pain is wrong. I am on Valproic Acid which helps to even out the waves of emotion that I tend to get. Meditation helps smooth the waves out even more. Remember that life is suffering and it does not matter if it is temporary or a lifetime of suffering. I have accepted that this is what I have to deal with and I accept it. The only advise I have is to continue to work with your physician on the medication and meditate. With metta
i had a therapist once who say that i was cyclothymic. i remember how i used to get high in people's company and couldn't control myself if a joke was made. one day i walked out of the room when this happened and sat by myself. that feeling went away; I had calmed down, and i realized then that i had control overmy moods. so i worked on controlling them and it worked
drugs never worked on me, no matter what they were so can say that the video that was given on here of a monk enjoying his walk up to the monastery, which I did not finish, would not have worked for me. when i was depressed nature meant nothing to me. everything was bleak. i had no joy in anything. in later years i had developed the cyclothymic condition and so had some joy, but most of the time it was terrible depression and anxiety attacks, which meant that my stomach felt like i had butterflies all the time.
to explain in more detail how i got over my depression. when i read that thoughts make you depressed, i began the first day with something that was depressing me even more. the man i loved chose another woman and came to tell me. what a bummer. then that day at work i kept saying quietly to myself, I am lucky.. I am lucky. like a mantra. meaning that i was lucky he didn't want me, and i had some reasons in the back of my head. at the end of the day i realized that i was lucky and my depression had gone away. then i sat and thought about what i was thinking, and most of the thoughts that always went through my mind were negative, so i took each one and spent a day on them. in a month i was cured. the anxiety attacks did not go away, but years later someone gave me some cold remedy tea, and while i was drinking it the attacks went away. by the time i finished the box i realized they were gone and they never returned. i looked at the ingredients in the box, and there were 5 of them, and i looked up what they did. chamomile tea is for spasms. i realized then that i must have been having spasms and that chamomile was the ingredient that cured me. i wish i had the name of the tea and have never been able to find it. i just know that a sweet sgi buddhist friend came over to chant with me when i was ill and brought the tea. (It was not the chanting that cured me, because I had to keep drinking the tea day after day when i felt anxiety attacks.)
Peter B: They told me that it was genetic too. I don't believe that now. I think it runs in families because, well, my own family taught us all to think negatively. It is a learned behavior, and i think that the book destructive emotions goes into this. this is the best book that has been written on the subject. it is by daniel goleman.
If i can do it anyone can. i was told that i was a tough case to crack and was in therapy for 12 years going to different therapists from time to time. once i was seeing three at the same time. I now have a low opinion of therapists and therapy, except for cognitive.