bipolar line drive

i have a family member (actually a few) who is bipolar. it’s not hard to tell when she goes off her meds because she literally loses her fucking mind. i’ve grown up with this person on the periphery of my life and i’ve seen the various stages of her swings. what most people don’t understand is that the violence of the arch can and does impact the people around them.

there is almost a manic need to hurt others and yet they seem to have no idea that they are causing harm as they rampage with justification and righteous indignation through the lives of the people they have decided to focus their hatred upon in that moment. and it’s random. absolutely random. they pounce on you out of the blue.

in the moment you come under attack, it’s hard to remember to be calm and ignore their tirade because it’s coming from a place that is unstable and irrational. you do what most normal people do, which is defend yourself and or to retreat from the situation. your parrying, defensive words also cut and and are used as weapons against you, as proof that their attack was warranted.

you want too know what bipolar mental illness looks like? it looks like a verbal train wreck that spills its carcinogenic load all over the landscape before it bursts into flames charring everything it touches leaving it a ruined and fragile, mess.


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11 Responses to bipolar line drive

  1. If only it was as simple as removing yourself from the environment…

    • rougedmount says:

      isn’t that the gods honest truth

      • I was just today reflecting on how many people in my life are affected with various mental illnesses. I wonder if I attract them or if they’re drawn to me because of some ability of mine to handle (relatively speaking) their situations. It’s a bear and doubly so when it’s family.

      • rougedmount says:

        I also think that the more someone is aware of the various mental health issues that are out there, the easier it is to arm chair diagnose people we run across casually. Of course it’s easier to see patterns in people we start to know well. It’s simply impossible to not categorize someone who exhibits the personality traits we know are hallmarks to various mental health problems. I do it constantly. A few pointed questions and I start to formulate an entire past history of someone. I truly believe that the real percentages of people who have mental health issues are highly under reported and that any given moment, people are in various stages of either chromic or situational distress of some sort.
        Genetic pre-disposition is so overwhelming that it should be mandatory for basic personality testing to be done on direct relatives as a preventative measure or to at least explain the actions of a family member to others who are struggling to find their own answers to what seems to be irrational behaviour. Familial issues are worse because you can not escape them and you are held accountable for not simply letting it go, like others do. If you stand up to someone’s abusive behaviour, then the victims of the assaults are often seen as at fault by the rest of the family. And because it’s family, you tread very lightly because the reality is people choose sides. It’s a landmine with the layers and years of history, that has unpleasant undertones and undertows. It’s exhausting. And it’s often why people finally walk away as they need to stay mentally healthy themselves and not constantly deal with the drama of others, especially when the other person has no personal accountability or desire to correct their deficiency by cognitive therapies and medication.

      • Interesting yet dangerous proposition. Mandatory basic personality testing is a slippery slope to population control and profiling. As you note it is so much more difficulty with family, although counseling is best done by professionals, which can help relief the guilt and burden on individual family members. I’m glad you have such a vibrant outlet.

      • rougedmount says: is what i am meant to do. even if my words will never last beyond the day i write them.

  2. Suzy Queue says:

    I have a post in draft about living with somebody who suffers from bi-polar disorder and those who suffer at their hands and mind. In my case it’s my ex-husband. I can’t tell you the abuse I’ve received from him and then hours later the purring and cooing. I never know who I am going to get and it’s so scary. He won’t sign the divorce papers and I’ve almost given up. His abuse actually keeps me going–makes me stronger because I know it comes from a place of illness. God help him.

  3. You do it extremely well. I never miss a read. Thanks for the outlet. Think about a book!

    • rougedmount says:

      i’ve a dear friend who has pushed me for years to submit more things for print. i haven’t been published since i was a child. i think i have sabotaged myself in regards to writing. refused to try because being told that what i write is not any good, not worthy of being read, would break my heart. because it is important to ‘me’ as an outlet, ive always been reticent of letting others read what i made me feel exposed…i had no idea that people were reading my wordpress blog ***for 2 years!*** as i didn’t know how it…and i didn’t care to find out..i simply wrote for me. i have thousands of words..sitting there..and i am attempting to organize them. fear of failure based on childhood insecurities. even knowing what your Achilles heel is, does not make it any easier to face and overcome it. Some scars run deep enough to prevent bending past a certain point. You learn to play it safe…and hid in anonymity…rather than face your fear head on and be exposed to criticisms

      • Nah. I hear you, but it’s a big world, and you’re an amazing writer. These days there’s an audience for everything, and your gift would help so many. Having just gone through it, it was much better than expected. If you’re just scared, you could always use an alias!

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