10 Observations from a Bipolar Type 2

Bronté Bettencourt
· 4 min read
Photo by Jacek Dylag on Unsplash
  1. Sometimes I don’t feel anything. Sometimes I feel too much all at once. Sometimes I can’t make eye contact with other people because their emotions bleed into me and it’s way too intimate than what I want to handle. And sometimes 5 or 6 thoughts will bombard my head at once that I lag in the middle of a conversation. I have to freeze in order to slow my brain down, hone in on one idea, and go.
  2. Once in a blue moon, I’ll have so much energy that I don’t go to bed until 3 or 4 in the morning. Then I blink, and it’s early the next day yet I feel fully rested. Most of the time getting out of bed is a slog. I feel guilty for enjoying my hypomanic moments since especially since a depressive spiral is on the horizon, but I get so much time during these hypomanic moments.
  3. I don’t know what my normal is. I’ve tested several medications and my current dose is what allows me to function through my depressive dips. Is this the optimum me? Can I be happier? What exactly is me and what exactly is altered by my condition?
  4. That being said, while I don’t feel lethargically suicidal thanks to my meds, my default isn’t happy. I still feel apathetic. I still get frustrated, and I still have hypomania, especially when too much coffee flows through my system. My medication just allows me the brainpower to rationalize what is happening and take the measures to care for myself.
  5. I get obsessed with things. I’ve filled composition books with pictures from my favorite anime. I have hundreds of pages of roleplays where friends and I create stories with the characters we love and our own self-inserts. I stemmed a friendship once because I told him that in an alternative Marvel Universe, Pepper Potts has an Iron Man suit of her own, named Rescue. There was a callback to that in the recent Avengers Endgame movie. Just one of the many tidbits that I’m proud of knowing, thanks to all those endless hours of Marvel info dives.
  6. Sometimes I just need to cry. I just get so backed up emotionally with my lack of feeling and then something like my boyfriend offering me a hug will break the dam of tears. There’s no reason for it other than my face feels broken and my eyes are just leaking tears. Then, after I get it all out, we continue watching YouTube like nothing happened.
  7. Sometimes I just need to break something. As a kid I broke several playstation controllers out of sheer frustration when I played games like Soul Calibur 2 (to be fair the AI is broken as all hell). But punching a pillow makes me angrier because I feel stupid from hitting something that won’t shatter. My boyfriend once held an old purse of mine in front of himself while I wailed on it like a punching bag. Afterward I could finally breathe.
  8. I don’t know if any of this has to do with my bipolar disorder or if this is just me as a person. A friend of mine once feared that the real me that he loved was not me at all, and that I would radically change once I took medication. We both came to learn how false that idea was, but considering that my typical is actually atypical compared to the average person, I wonder where I end and my bipolar begins. Or if I would still be me if my disorder miraculously disappeared one day.
  9. When my psychiatrist diagnosed me she feared I would freak out over having a mood disorder. Instead, I felt relief over the fact that my depressive episodes and mood swings and other quirks were not normal. I did cry afterward as all my thoughts and memories over the course of my life shifted to rationalize this new term: Bipolar Type 2. I sent apologies to all my close friends who knew me during my developing years and earlier, because I felt they deserved an explanation to why our friendship got tumultuous at times.
  10. But I haven’t apologized for who I am. I’ve learned overtime to control my impulses and maneuver through the mental gymnastics needed to maintain healthy relationships. Bipolar Type 2 is just another facet of me, a part of me but not my whole definition. I am not ashamed for my atypical mind because society has deemed it atypical. For me, it’s normal. For me, it’s just… Me.

Invisible Illness

We don't talk enough about mental health.

Bronté Bettencourt

Written by

Graduated with an MFA in Writing Children and Young Adult Literature. Full-time D&D and YouTube connoisseur. I also love coffee ~ https://ko-fi.com/elliebronte

Invisible Illness

We don't talk enough about mental health.

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