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BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'

Fibula Mattock 19 Sep 06 - 05:26 PM
Fibula Mattock 19 Sep 06 - 05:27 PM
Emma B 19 Sep 06 - 05:43 PM
wysiwyg 19 Sep 06 - 05:46 PM
John MacKenzie 19 Sep 06 - 05:58 PM
Fibula Mattock 19 Sep 06 - 05:59 PM
Fibula Mattock 19 Sep 06 - 06:00 PM
GUEST 19 Sep 06 - 06:29 PM
Jim Dixon 19 Sep 06 - 07:27 PM
Barry Finn 20 Sep 06 - 03:08 AM
John Routledge 20 Sep 06 - 05:46 AM
John MacKenzie 20 Sep 06 - 11:05 AM
Fibula Mattock 20 Sep 06 - 11:52 AM
Dead Horse 20 Sep 06 - 12:00 PM
John MacKenzie 20 Sep 06 - 12:06 PM
Mr Red 20 Sep 06 - 12:07 PM
Fibula Mattock 20 Sep 06 - 12:12 PM
John MacKenzie 20 Sep 06 - 12:51 PM
Bill t' bodger 20 Sep 06 - 01:00 PM
Leadfingers 20 Sep 06 - 02:35 PM
Dead Horse 20 Sep 06 - 03:09 PM
Stilly River Sage 20 Sep 06 - 03:36 PM
GUEST,Chris B (Born Again Scouser) 20 Sep 06 - 04:54 PM
Donuel 20 Sep 06 - 08:07 PM
Fibula Mattock 26 Sep 06 - 03:04 PM
Gervase 26 Sep 06 - 04:41 PM
Fibula Mattock 26 Sep 06 - 05:29 PM
wysiwyg 26 Sep 06 - 05:41 PM
GUEST,sink estate despair geezer 26 Sep 06 - 09:22 PM
Fibula Mattock 27 Sep 06 - 02:44 PM
GUEST,IBO 27 Sep 06 - 03:23 PM
Bill t' bodger 27 Sep 06 - 03:52 PM
Fibula Mattock 27 Sep 06 - 04:02 PM

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Subject: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: Fibula Mattock
Date: 19 Sep 06 - 05:26 PM

Has anyone watched the (UK) BBC2 documentary just now about bipolar disorder? Stephen Fry, who has manic depression, did a wonderful job talking about how he deals with his illness, and talked to others about how their lives are affected by it. I was diagnosed with manic depression last year, and tonight's documentary was a hugely accuarte description of what I've been through. Just thought I'd start a thread on it because it's reckoned that 1 in 100 people suffer from this, and severe mental illness is usually quite stigmatised, so here's a thread to flag it up.


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: Fibula Mattock
Date: 19 Sep 06 - 05:27 PM

and I can't spell 'accurate'...


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: Emma B
Date: 19 Sep 06 - 05:43 PM

A good friend and fine muscian and teacher has suffered from this for years Fibs I only wish for greater understanding - anything that can add to this is to be welcomed.


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: wysiwyg
Date: 19 Sep 06 - 05:46 PM

Thanks for sharing this, Fibs.

A lot of people refer to it as Bipolar Disorder, and a lot of folks actually do have it but it seems they don't-- because they have it to only a slight degree. However, as hormones change (and seasons), that "severity" also can change, with people often getting worse as they age.

Also the pendulum swing varies-- for some people, the highs and downs are about equal in severity and in duration. But for others, it isn't quite so neatly 50-50. I had one friend who was diagnosed manic-depressive but she said that for all practical purposes, she was always in the down end. Her "down" had degrees of severity and cyclical action, and the usual anti-depressants didn't help her at all because it was a different brain-chemistry picture from depression.

Best of luck with your own situation, and may you go from strength to strength.

~Susan


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 19 Sep 06 - 05:58 PM

Well done yourself Tallulah Meatloaf, you know you'll always have my support, and no doubt that of all your Mudcat friends. I was concerned when you mentioned this before, and often think of you, and hope that yon Frank Mills the Midget is looking after you.
See you in February if not before.
Giok


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: Fibula Mattock
Date: 19 Sep 06 - 05:59 PM

Link to programme info here:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/bbctwo/programmes/?id=manic_depressive
Part Two is on next Tuesday at 9pm on BBC2.

I'm fortunate in that I've responded fairly well to medication (sodium valproate, a mood stabilizer which is an alternative to lithium; mirtazipine, an antidepressant; and zopiclone, a hypnotic agent for those sleepless nights). It has never quite gone away though. Mania was quite fun until it got to the point where I could see and hear things that other people couldn't. Depression, as many people here know full well, is the pits. Interestingly, when Stephen Fry asked people if they wished they could get rid of the condition, most people said no. I understand why - if I could live life on a permanently hypomanic basis it'd be bloody great.


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: Fibula Mattock
Date: 19 Sep 06 - 06:00 PM

ROTFLMAO (at you describing my dear boy as a midget, Giok)!


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: GUEST
Date: 19 Sep 06 - 06:29 PM

Had it for decades (depression), and people who don't have it will never really understand what it's like. I hope they never do, because to really understand they'd have to have it, and I wouldn't wish depression on anyone.


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 19 Sep 06 - 07:27 PM

Well, I certainly want to encourage anyone who wants to de-stigmatize mental illness. I've never experienced the manic part, but I know about the depression part. Zoloft now controls it nicely. Better living through chemistry!

I hope this documentary comes to American TV someday.


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: Barry Finn
Date: 20 Sep 06 - 03:08 AM

Thanks for posting this Fibula Mattock. My 17 yr old son has suffered being Bi-polar since he was very young. At first it was difficult to figure out what it was. He was always hyper & we figured ADD (the bi-polar hadn't yet reared) then we found out he had Tourettes, well it soon was appearent that these were only under the umbrella of being Bi-polar. I don't think there a word in the english language that describes the courage it takes for kids with this to live it out day in & day out. The hell it becomes for the parents is nothing compared to the hell those handicapped by this go through.

Thanks
Barry


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: John Routledge
Date: 20 Sep 06 - 05:46 AM

One of the most insightful programmes I have ever seen. Thanks Fib for giving it a wider audience.


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 20 Sep 06 - 11:05 AM

Also a programme on BBC Radio 4 this afternoon at 16:30, details here
Giok


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: Fibula Mattock
Date: 20 Sep 06 - 11:52 AM

Thanks Giok - just tuned in to that.
It'll be interesting to hear the bit about problems in pregnancy - not that I'm pregnant or intending to be for anytime soon (hey, maybe never), but I was alarmed that last night's programme said how pregnancy can bring on some of the worst psychotic problems in bipolar women.

I do try to self-manage - I rarely drink alcohol, limit caffeine, etc - but I know what some of my triggers are, and noise is a biggy - drives me up the freakin' wall! And tiredness takes its toll too. Can't do noisy, late-night parties anymore, so keep it down over there!


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: Dead Horse
Date: 20 Sep 06 - 12:00 PM

It was very interesting for me too.
I dont get the "manic" side, but I can be rather "over the top" sometimes. Which raises the question "Am I just Uni Polar? and if so, which bloody pole am I? I have an affinity for Polar Bears (north), but I also dig penguins (south) :-)
I am very glad that Mr Fry repeated that his suicide attempts were not a cry for help. When I hear that phrase it makes me angry. Help is not what is on the mind of a Depressive - he or she can see no help, and doesnt feel worthy of help even if any were to hand. Its all very complicated really, and beyond my means to explain, but that programme went a long way towards doing just that.
I have been on anti-depressants but have stopped taking them as I feel that am better coming to terms with what I have on my own, without being drugged.
If I am wrong, you can read about it in the Obituaries :-)


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 20 Sep 06 - 12:06 PM

You thinking of doing a Dave Swarbrick mate?
G.


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: Mr Red
Date: 20 Sep 06 - 12:07 PM

the telling thing is

Steven Fry only found one person who wanted the condition to be removed. Everyone else saw it as part of who they were and indeed part of their success - he has made a lot of money out of his wackiness.

The show was his attempt to understand it - and by inferrence have the power to control it - thereby keeping his source of inspiration and staunching the penalties thereof. Most of his interviewees seemed to be on the same lines.

Good luck to him.


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: Fibula Mattock
Date: 20 Sep 06 - 12:12 PM

The manic side was fun until it went too far and got scary. I wrote not long after:

Altered perceptions without the use of drugs were fun at first. I couldn't stop moving: running, jumping, fidgeting, twitching. I saw brighter, clearer and more saturated colours than anyone else; I heard and felt so many intricate layers of music that it was too painful to listen to it anymore; I could make huge mental connections - leaps and bounds - and see patterns that no one else could see; I could take on the world - and god knows I tried.

My work began to suffer. I couldn't sit still for longer than five minutes at a time. I spent my whole day at work pacing my office, surfing the web, writing a page of elaborate schemes then abandoning it in favour of a new idea. I knew something wasn't quite right and let myself be persuaded to revisit a counsellor I had been seeing after being depressed. She questioned me about how things were, and I felt I was mentally running rings around her. I spent much of the session counting snowflakes falling past the window.

It came to a head when I found myself hiding in a dark room because I couldn't understand what my colleagues were saying. I swore they were speaking some other language. It wasn't English - it couldn't have been. It sounded nothing like it. It didn't sound like anything I recognised. The carpet, a vile industrial mixture of reds and purples, was freaking me out - I was at the peril of someone else's very bad decorating tastes. Every purple and red object in the room was linked to that carpet. They were all jumping out at me, lines between them, until all I could see was red, red, red, purple, and it was sensory overload. I sat under a table in the dark room until two friends with an understanding of what was happening found me and hauled me to the doctor. He calmly told me that I was high and wrote a prescription for tranquillisers and a referral to a psychiatrist. I can't thank him enough.

Still, there are degrees of mania, and when I was hypomanic I was so very happy. Mood stabilisers might not have made me a different person in the eyes of my friends, but to me I am a poor, pale and boring copy of what I used to be. I would like the highs again, just the gentle ones, but I'd never make it through another low.


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 20 Sep 06 - 12:51 PM

That makes me want to cry, yet it should make me happy, because some sort of answer has been found for Fibs polar swings.
I have been having a little read about this condition in the light of the current exposure it is getting in the media, and I recommend others to do the same One of the things I learn is that CBT can be of great help in some cases.
Giok

BTW my legs are the same age as the rest of me Fibs, apart from the new joint that is!


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: Bill t' bodger
Date: 20 Sep 06 - 01:00 PM

I watched the expecting the usual crap that missed the point(if there is one)of Manic depression. I suffer from rapid manic depression which means I had no idea from day to day how I would feel, when I was low I wanted to die and have spent a few nights in hospital over the last 10 years dealing with overdoses, I did not want help, I wanted out!!! the usual antidepressants did not help for long!!
The manias where great for me I could do anything and go on forever I thought, but my friends could not keep up ever so I drank heavily to control the highs, I would get so scared and needed a drink then too just to calm down prior to performing in dance sides or singing, in the end I just lost it totally and was finally diagnosed with rapid bi-polar disorder and hyper-mania, now I take Tegretol and mirtazapine and whilst not well (I never will be!) I can get by day to day and know even if I get a touch of the old demon it will pass with a little help and support. I have to say a big thank you to my friends who have supported me over the last 5 years and helped me find a better way to live,

THANKYOU

I hope others get the same help to become at least able to cope with life

You can PM me if you would like to talk to a fellow sufferer who understands how destructive it can be.

Love and light to all
Bill


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: Leadfingers
Date: 20 Sep 06 - 02:35 PM

Those of us who have managed a reasonable time on this ball of mud without serious illness of any kind often dont realise just how bloody lucky we are ! The people I have met through Mudcat who DO have problems and still function (sometimes VERY ) well have all my admiration !


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: Dead Horse
Date: 20 Sep 06 - 03:09 PM

Oh for a bit of "manic".
From what I've heard it goes someway to justify the "downs".
It is a really nasty thing to find that your best friend throughout your whole life, your brain, is now NOT to be relied upon.
It tells you lies.
It tells you that you are less than nothing.
It tells you that the world would be a better place without you on it.
It tells you that no one would care if you left.
It sees an altered "truth" in events around you.
At home,I am a seriously depressed soul.
But when I am out in the company of others, I am a totally different person.
I am humourous. I am sympathetic. I am "normal".
I dont say this for my own sake, but to try explaining what it is to be "depressed".
But unfortunately all cases are not the same. Each individual has his/her own little hell to live through.
Some get support from those closest to them, even though the depressed person is not easy to get close to.
Some do not get diagnosed, and alienate those from whom they most crave affection.
It is sometimes almost impossible to seperate cause from effect.
I am now rambling.
Fellow sufferers, keep trying.
Do not give in.
'nuff said.


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 20 Sep 06 - 03:36 PM

Patty Duke did some lucid interviews and I think wrote a book probably a dozen years ago (at least). In very talented people, I wonder if it simply appears that they're "on" when the high hits, and is something viewed as a skill, not a disease.

A friend of mine, and her son, have dealt with it for years. She uses lithium very successfully, he tends to self-medicate and is in and out of trouble.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: GUEST,Chris B (Born Again Scouser)
Date: 20 Sep 06 - 04:54 PM

My wife and I watched this programme last night. There's a second part next Tuesday. I was very impressed by it. I don't normally think of Stephen Fry as being particularly insightful - bit of a middlebrow really - but he handled this very well.

What it did highlight very effectively was the gulf between showbiz manic depression (Robbie Williams hiding under the quilt after a gig) and mental illness as it is experienced by most people who aren't rich entertainers - ie the poor woman at the end who had attempted suicide with an electric drill.

I've often thought that the worst problem faced by people with mental health problems is the way every arsehole and his dog reckons he knows all about it. If you tell folk at work you have been diagnosed with cancer they'll keep a respectful silence. If you say you've been diagnosed with a mental illness everyone's an expert.


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: Donuel
Date: 20 Sep 06 - 08:07 PM

Right before I get a migraine I feel more creative and in good cheer but it seems it does not begin to match a manic high. THanks for the in depth description!!!

I have a half brother in the Caribean who is medicated for mania. He seems fo have applied much of the manic high to restoring cars but I have never been privy to the details of his illness.


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: Fibula Mattock
Date: 26 Sep 06 - 03:04 PM

refresh - the 2nd part of this documentary is on BBC2 at 9pm tonight.


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: Gervase
Date: 26 Sep 06 - 04:41 PM

...and for some buggering bloody reason, it's not shown in Wales. Do the powers that be, in their infinite wisdom, imagine that the Welsh are either (a) immune from bipolar disorder. (b) pissed off enough as it is without being reminded of the fact thereof, or (c) too bloody jolly by half?
Whatever the reason, I'm far from gruntled at not being able to see the second part of a prog about which the Guardian had an unconditional rave.
Bum.


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: Fibula Mattock
Date: 26 Sep 06 - 05:29 PM

I knew the grass was greener over the Severn bridge! ;)


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: wysiwyg
Date: 26 Sep 06 - 05:41 PM

A copy of the program would make a great Mudcat Auction item.....

~S~


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: GUEST,sink estate despair geezer
Date: 26 Sep 06 - 09:22 PM

are we meant to conclude from these 2 programs

that only posh rich creative people get this illness..???


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: Fibula Mattock
Date: 27 Sep 06 - 02:44 PM

Wish I was rich. Can't say I'm particularly posh either. And that un-posh, un-creative, but probably rich Kerry Katona one is supposed to have it, though I reckon her being a dick might be a bigger problem (so much for sisterhood, eh?).


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: GUEST,IBO
Date: 27 Sep 06 - 03:23 PM

IM TOO DEPRESSED TO ANSWER


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: Bill t' bodger
Date: 27 Sep 06 - 03:52 PM

It's not a posh illness, trouble is if you have money you can indulge aspects of the illness making it easier to cope with.
It can produce some very creative people though, some of whom become rich if they are lucky, but not all of us are in the right place at the right time so we stay poor, ho hum


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Subject: RE: BS: 'Secret Life of the Manic Depressive'
From: Fibula Mattock
Date: 27 Sep 06 - 04:02 PM

"...Although the report noted that bipolar disorder accounts for about 11% of the neuropsychiatric disease burden in developing countries, and preliminary population-based studies have shown suicide rates may be as high as 24%, the authors conceded that little is known about its incidence both in developed and developing countries."
Psychiatric Times, July 2002.
Not just a first-world illness.


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