How Do People with Bipolar Disorder Deal with Things They’ve Done While in a Manic Episode?

I have had several manic episodes in my life. Some of the things I have done, I don’t remember. However, I do remember bits and pieces of each manic episode.  Over time, it is easier to deal with them. I usually sink into a deep depression after my manic episodes so I keep focusing on the “stupid” things I did while manic.

It is during those times I am really regretting the things I did and am  not able to realize they were things I never would have done if I was not manic.  It takes me a long time to forgive myself. The hardest things to deal with are the things I did that hurt my family or friends. I find myself feeling ashamed and embarrassed by what I have done. This often causes me to withdraw from my friends.

It  is true that time does heal.  There are things that I did 15 years ago that I now am able to joke about and laugh at.  Of course, I try not to bring things up and if I remember something, I try to focus on something else and forget those things.

I posed this question in some forums and groups that deal with bipolar disorder.

These are the anonymous answers I received:

  • I have learned to forgive myself for the most part and can even often laugh at myself. Some things I have done  have put myself in real danger and I still have flashbacks from them. I also still struggle with shame. I try to give myself a break though.
  •  I’m able to laugh at the things that have been settled out of court or are no longer a worry because of the statute of limitations ; )
  •  During my mania, I have this attitude that nothing matters. There will be no consequences for any actions I do. At the time, I believe there will be no one I have to answer to either.
  •  I wish I could forget the all the things I’ve done. Thankfully I can laugh at some of them and I’m sure there are SOME that I’ve forgotten. I think that remembering some of them helps remind me why medication is a good thing. Forgiveness is something I work at and have to keep striving for when the memories come back to slap me around.
  • I’ve forgotten more than I remember but I’ve forgiven myself for plenty too.
  •  I can’t forget or forgive. I really wish I could because I am constantly haunted by the past.  When you are  constantly haunted by the past & u get flashbacks/nightmares that are so real its as though the bad things are happening to you all over again. Keeping these memories in the past is easier said than done.  It doesn’t matter how busy I keep myself the past won’t leave me. However I try every day to rid myself of these memories.
  • There’s nothing you can do to change the past. The future is forward and you can change that  just by taking a little time and thought. I work hard  and keep so busy that my head is always in a tired state so I can’t really think.
  • I try in my best way to explain to others what it is like to have a manic episode. Yes I have a great sense of humor about it also.
  •  Unfortunately, the people in my life don’t understand being manic. Its never an excuse for what I’ve done or even a reason. I see it as a learning experience, but don’t always forgive myself.  I’m learning to see it for what it is and not look back
  •  I play the “coulda woulda shouldas” over and over in my head.
  • I don’t know.  I’m still trying to figure that out myself.
  • I just try to pick up the pieces, say my apologies, and try to figure out the whens or whys. I still don’t have an answer, but I keep trying.
  •  tell myself I’d never have done those things if not manic. Also sharing with people in the same boat!! If  friends judge you then you’re hanging round with the wrong people.
  • Sometimes I respond with what appears to be denial, but I think it is more a case of skewed perception of reality { common occurrence with me } that clashes with the perceptions of others. It is embarrassing to me at times, but there are times when people will manipulate me & turn things around to make anything that goes wrong or is misunderstood *my* fault. Like the classic finger of blame pointed at a pregnant Roman, accusing her of over-reacting because of “pregnancy hormones,” it sometimes comes down to “no, actually, you are merely conducting yourself like a “jerk.” Sigh. I *have* bipolar, it is not *who* I am.
  • Sometimes I can laugh at things I did. However, other things cause me to hang my head in shame and embarrassment.
  •  I have quit several good jobs during a manic episode. I had good reasons for quitting, but it wasn’t until I was manic that I  got fed up enough to quit and tell them off good. Am I ashamed? No. Do I regret it? No Did I apologize to anyone? No. I never had the need to. They owed me an apology if anything because they screwed me over. I never got one, however.
  •  I just know when I’m thinking about it and reliving it in my head, I get mad at myself. I start picturing it over and over and over and over and over. Then, I just snap out of it I guess. I feel like s*** afterwards though for a few hours because I can’t take it back.
  • Its hard for me to deal with all that. I black out then get told what I did. Its horrifying!
  •  Thankfully 2 of my best friends understand why I act the way I do sometimes and they know it’s never a personal thing but no I’m not proud of it and I’ve learned to control it way better over the years.
  •  I do forget things regularly and people  get frustrated with me over it. I definitely have not been able to forgive myself for what I have done and said while having a manic episode.
  • I deal with it with a lot guilt and difficulty
  • I forget things that I’ve done and they usually aren’t funny. For the most part, I’ve been able to forgive myself with the help of my husband.
  • I can forgive myself. However, my husband punishes me for over a week with silence and shouting curses at me. It makes me catatonic and I feel a lot of mental pain.
  • The people in my life don’t get it.My husband gets it so I pretty much stick to myself.
  • I definitely relive at least some of the memories of things I did while manic.  Some have come back to haunt me.  I am having a hard time forgiving myself, but I tend to blame myself for everything even if I am not responsible!
  • It’s very hard to deal with once I sober up. I can’t really laugh. I did a lot of inexcusable things, ruined my relationships, incurred huge debts. I can’t really forgive myself.
  • First I have  flashbacks, then I laugh, then I forgive and forget. Then, I do it over and over again.
  • I apologize and try to forgive myself, but sometimes its easier said than done. I try explaining to people what its like to have a manic episode and what it’s like to have these thoughts and images in your head. I know they do their best to understand, but it seems like they have a hard time with that.
  •  I can’t seem to get over any of the manic episodes and I’m estranged from most of my family because they don’t understand that it’s not really “me” when I’m manic. I’ve apologized and asked forgiveness for the last time. It has limited the number of people sharing my life, but the friends and family members who love me are quite enough!!!
  • I try to forget the stupidity and hope that people won’t remember.
  • I feel that the best remedy, for me anyway, is forgiveness, forgive yourself and others, and belief in a higher power–without those I would be in emotional chaos.With forgiveness I find peace.
  • I just had a full-blown maniac 3 months ago and was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. I had auditory, visual and even gustatory hallucinations and based on these hallucinations, I thought that I was leading a revolution and had super powers. In that few days I did truly embarrassing things like scolding my brother in the middle of shopping streets, talking to my friends and teachers about my “ambitions” and “visions”, entering the cars of random people, thinking that they were my body guards… I still feel shameful and embarrassing about these memories but I find some comfort in knowing that there are people who had similar experiences and are coping with the disease.


48 thoughts on “How Do People with Bipolar Disorder Deal with Things They’ve Done While in a Manic Episode?

  1. I really understand how you feel. I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder less than four years ago. I’m 43 years old. My manic episodes made me hypersexual, drink too much and injury myself to the point of bleeding. Once my medication was set, the guilt hit me like a mack truck. I was obsessed with whether or not I was going to heaven. I apologized to my loved ones for my disgraceful behavior. In short, I was felt responsible for my awful actions. Even though, it was my disorder. I can be logical about it, but I am hard-wired to blame myself. Even today, I am still very ashamed.

  2. So hard to deal with those things. Even if they seem to be small and relatively harmless, it’s always scary when I come out of a manic episode to realize it was like someone else had control of my body. How do you move on from that? Thanks for pulling together theses answers!

  3. I had a super manic period about 5 years ago. I spent a lot of money. It really caused trouble for my husband and me. I sent back much of the stuff but I still have lots of stuff, fortunately some good stuff. I look at it all now and think ,,why did I need this..why did I have to have this or that. Now I am stable and rarely have mania. I have energy without impulses.

  4. Sounds a lot like my Ex. Shame, she was the love of my life and my best friend. We had a very good relationship I believe. She was stable for 5 years, but mostly the last 3 years I think. But went off meds… Her life is a mess now. Makes me sad everyday. I still Love Her and will always be there for her if she needs me.

  5. I’m trying to figure out something. Can people with bipolar disorder forget what they do sometimes? One minute this person said she’d help me and then the next minute she goes after me and she hurt me. I still haven’t been able to forgive her yet. She keeps saying she doesn’t remember what she did but I have a hard time believing it… I wish I could forgive but she really hurt me..

    • I am sorry you are having a hard time forgiving her and I can understand that. I have done things to hurt people in my past while I have been manic. I know I can’t use my illness as an excuse. However, I can tell you that I have forgotten things I have done while in a manic state. Sometimes there are days that I can’t account for. I wish you the best.

      • I have been dealing with the same thing. One of my best friend’s had a breakdown and said terrible things about my girlfriend and I, many 3am voicemails and sleepless nights. (he was my roommate until 2 weeks ago). I was the first and only one to be there for him for the first couple weeks. I took him to ER, paid bills for him, tried to encourage him to stop drugs/drinking. It was totally overwhelming, my school has suffered, and our relationship is strained to the breaking point. I handled it well at first and kept things civil, told myself “its not him, hes not himself” but I’m fed up with it. He’s lied constantly and manipulated everyone, blaming all the problems that were created directly by his manic behavior and delusions on us. He still insists that my gf is a “cheating whore” and I’ve caught him lying to my face about it, but he won’t budge on huge problems like that.

        I feel bad for him because he is currently on day 5 at the psychiatric hospital after his parents had a mental health warrant issued last week, but at the same time I’m so stressed out from constantly dealing with this guy that I don’t want to talk to him until he at the very least acknowledges the bullshit he’s put us through. Should I expect anything from him ? Or just swallow my pride and let him treat us like doormats so we can be best friends again ?

      • As someone who has bipolar disorder, I don’t think it should be used as an excuse. It can be an explanation. In my opinion, you need to let the friend know that what he has done has bothered you. Many times in all honesty, we forget what we have done. Let your friend know that you can’t keep going through this the way it is. I hope that he got the help from being in the hospital. I think you are a great friend to have stayed with him this long, but don’t let him wear you down or take advantage of you. Make sure you take care of yourself first and help your friend know that you have to live that way from now on.

  6. I have a long distance relationship a little over a year now, and the person tells me he has bipolar and asks for forgiveness, my heart breaks as I know he is a good person I am willing to stand by him but he keeps pushing me away. Any advise.

    • That’s a really hard one. If you google “relationship advice bipolar disorder” it comes up with a lot of things that might help. It is really hard if he is pushing you away. If he is doing this just in a depressed state, you may want to talk to him when he is less depressed and ask him what you he wants you to do if he gets that way again. I am sorry I can’t be more help. Best wishes!

  7. I stop taking my meds like 6 months ago..I’m just agravated and angry all the time for no reason at all..I’m 49and most of the time I don’t know what i want,not content with my life.something is missing ..I don’t feel or am happy .I don’t know??I’ve been avoiding friends and family,even my parents and i don’t know why..i just don’t want to be around anyone..married for 22 years and 3 grown kids…the question is.What should i do?Should i get back on my meds.or Am I ok.

    • I am sorry that you are having such a rough time. I am not a professional and really don’t know what the answer is. I think, however, that the decision needs to be yours with the help and guidance of friends, family, and a professional. I would suggest you not shut people out and allow them to help you decide.

      • Im having all my personal belongings dissapears,living in a state of panic,and anxiety.
        I know or I think my family and friends are behind it
        I know my mind has played a roll of different things in my
        Manic state. I was hospitalized, and it was like hell, what
        I went thru.
        I have lived in regret for the last 10 weeks,and it’s not going to let off until I can make peace with myself.

  8. Hi everyone i’m Collins and i need help on getting back my ex.
    We got into a fight few weeks back now and i wish she can see how sorry i am now.
    I love her so much and i know she still loves me and i know she still cares, otherwise she wont be replying my text and knowing how i’m doing. But right now it seems like she is still confuse of her decision to breakup with me or give me a second chance. I need help not until i saw post of how Dr Abby has help a lot of people having issues like mine, though i have been hearing a lot about this spell caster and I hope that it he would be able to do something about bringing Lily back home cause i’m nobody without her.

    I can tell you that his spell was outstanding and i’m so happy that he really help me put our past behind us and we are strong together now and thanks to Dr Abby because he is sacred and i will recommend him to anyone having same problem too. He is powerful. Contact him on sacredspiralgoddesstemple @ gmail . com.

  9. Hi all, sorry for such a long email…I’m in a fairly new relationship with someone, who is on the whole, a true gentleman. He treats me so well and we are really good together. Since being with him, I’ve noticed his moods change dramatically (he’s never nasty to me – never said a bad word) but he is just so up and down in himself. He’s said for 15 years he’s been ‘this way’ – I asked him if it was since his Dad’s death and he agreed. I believe him to be Bipolar. Some days, he can’t bear to be around anyone (including me) – he’ll always text or call to let me know if he wants time alone. I never pester him as I don’t want to push him away but I hate it when he makes plans to see me and then says he wants to be alone (I’m selfish, I know).

    We went out recently to a party in a park and were having a really nice afternoon. As we were leaving, I noticed he hadn’t quite finished his drink and he just started to walk out (he knew security wouldn’t allow him out of the park until he had finished his drink). He started kicking off because a security guard tried to stop him (I managed to calm him down after 5 minutes, luckily). I was really embarrassed as some of my closest friends were there. Last weekend, he managed to get himself arrested for something he did when he was drunk and spent 24 hours in a cell.. He’s in his late 30s by the way and he always talks about having a family and how he thinks it would calm him down – I’m not so sure.

    How do I approach him to get help? He does refer to me as someone he trusts 100% and I don’t want him to think I’m getting on his case but I’m scared that if he doesn’t get help i.e. medication and/ or therapy that it will break us. I care for him so deeply – it’s hard to see him so up and down. I have massive insecurities and my stomach is in knots all the time.
    Any advice would be greatly received,
    Thank you x

  10. Hi, it may be bad of me to say this but I find solace in reading your article and the comments. I just had a full-blown maniac 3 months ago and was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. I had auditory, visual and even gustatory hallucinations and based on these hallucinations, I thought that I was leading a revolution and had super powers. In that few days I did truly embarrassing things like scolding my brother in the middle of shopping streets, talking to my friends and teachers about my “ambitions” and “visions”, entering the cars of random people, thinking that they were my body guards… I still feel shameful and embarrassing about these memories but I find some comfort in knowing that there are people who had similar experiences and are coping with the disease. Thank you so much for creating such a page.

  11. I feel that the best remedy, for me anyway, is forgiveness, forgive yourself and others, and belief in a higher power–without those I would be in emotional chaos.With forgiveness I find peace.

  12. I find this site comforting. I am struggling with shame regarding my last manic episode, which was last month. After each episode I struggle with shame and sometimes guilt. My manias are full-blown with delusions. I am 47 years old and I’ve had 20 manic episodes since the age of 21. They have been the greatest misfortune of my life.

    • Thanks for your kind and encouraging words. I understand the guilt and shame. I think I have learned some coping mechanisms, but it still takes time to get over each episode. I understand where you are coming regarding misfortunes. However, I try and look on the positive of things. If I had not had those manic episodes, I could not relate to others and accomplish a lot of what I have. It is during the “manicky” times that I do the things I wish I could do when I am depressed. I try and put the manic episodes in the past and know that I wouldn’t have done those things if I wasn’t manic. However, since I get so much done during that time, by putting them to good use, I have been able to accomplish a lot not only in my advocacy work, but in other areas of my life. Yes- I do regret things. However, there is no sense in focusing on them. I try and move on and realize there is nothing I can do to reverse anything. I can apologize and sometimes I withdraw because I am embarrassed. Eventually, I come to my senses and know that not everything I did while manic was bad. I hope that helps you a little. If you ever want to be a guest blogger, let me know. You can email me at or send me a message on Facebook. Telling your story could help others.

    • I read your message Areios and I really did a double-take–did I write that? I too am 47 and had my first manic episode around age 20. I too struggle over with shame and guilt from manic episodes–too many to count We need to reach out to each other for support. Sometimes the burden is too heavy to bear, and there are few that understand. Be easy on yourself.

  13. Thank you for this article. My episodes have appeared as me being full of anxiety and just running around getting super anxious about everything. I don’t think I appeared “ill” to my co-workers so much as aggressive in trying to get things done and anxious when things were not going right. It all was enough to get me time off work as I could not cope with everything going on. It didn’t help that my boss was making unrealistic demands and rather than address them, I suffered a lot of stress trying to make things happen. That was 5 years ago and I have never recovered from it. I just think that all those people thought I was crazy in a character default way and was not good at my job, rather than a genuine mental illness disorder. I have moved and so never see those people, but my confidence has never recovered and I have not worked since. I want to start a blog, but live in fear that someone from my past will see it and say, I don’t know what I am talking about because I am crazy. I am actually a very talented person in my field, but I feel I will just be remembered as someone who freaked out and couldn’t handle her workload. It is tough not being able to move forward. People can say, blow it off, but I can’t. 😦

    • I totally understand I went through a similiar situation and also lost some good friends that abandoned me after my last manic episode. I have no confidence to move forward I feel stuck.

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  16. great site….I have a son who has bipolar disorder, it’s very difficult and my heart breaks for him…he’s lost all his friends, but refuses to admit he has problem and struggles to deal with it…

  17. I’ve been bipolar since my twenties and I am 40 now. I’ve had 4 manic episodes in my life and each one destroys my world. I have to start from scratch each time because I don’t care about anything during it. My manic episodes last about 4 to 6 months when they come but they only come every 4 years or so. This last time though I said so much stupid shit on facebook that I can’t take back that I wish I could. I don’t know what to do anymore. I miss my family so much and the only person that will talk to me is my mom. I hate even calling her cause if my dad answers he just gives a big sigh before he goes and gets her. they know I’m bipolar and am not myself when I’m manic yet their still punishing me for something I had no control over. I feel totally abandoned by them and wish they would forgive me. what should I do? Please help. thanks in advance for all your feedback

    • I am sorry that you feel that you have been abandoned by your family. I am glad that your mom still talks to you and I think you need to focus on that. I understand how you feel about regretting things you have done. I would suggest putting them in the past. There is really nothing you can do so even though it might seem impossible, try and move on. You can apologize, but that is about all you can do. Unfortunately, some people do not understand mental illness. I wish things were better. Hopefully some day it will get better and more people will understand that we can’t always control what we do in a manic episode. I wish you the best.

  18. I do feel much better after reading these posts. I only know one other person that has been diagnosed with bp
    And it really was a miracle that I read into him this past fall. He was an old friend from highschool that I hadn’t seen in 20 years. Ironically I ran into him when I was beginning quite the manic trip. I had been diagnosed 15 years ago with bipolar but had no luck with meds and years later a psychiatrist had thought that bipolar was really not what I had, since I had no major episodes in years. Well, this fall when I ran into my now good friend I was beginning what would be a 4 month full manic episode. I have a 270 page book that I have written over time accounting my feelings and insights going in and out of depressions and wellness that I had begun to publish through a large publishing company. I got so maniacly grandiose and happy telling just about everyone I could and when on about how much money I would finally be making. Well I had pretty much convinced everyone and myself that this would be happening this year, so it didn’t matter if I over spent on a spontaneous trip I took( yup) or a spontaneous move to the city from my very affordable home(yup all in 4 months)
    My friend from highschool also has bipolar and has been successful in his career and successfully at managing the symptoms. He was the one who helped me recognize and accept that I have bipolar.. I don’t think anyone else could have.
    I have only been working with a Dr for two weeks now. And have been in a pretty shame filled low for about 6 weeks. Many things happed in the 4 months of mania, things I am truly humiliated by and I did it all in a very small village, that I have since moved back to( yup) so I’m isolating and quite depressed. Everyone here thinks I’m crazy. I’m trying my best to remain hopeful that the meds will work and that I don’t ever have to go that far up again. Reading these posts have made me feel less humiliation and more human. Thank you. I hope that I have the right time and the currage to apologize to a few people for my tangent.

  19. Nearly a year ago I received a diagnosis of serious bipolar disorder after some particularly manic episodes. My mother said “About 30 years ago Mike had been diagnosed bipolar but never took it further.” Nearly 30 years ago I suffered a severe cerebral-hemorrhage-coma-head injury and forgot all about this. I always knew I was different and even took on role playing as some Swiss banker to trick some other banks out of money which, at the time, worked but prison followed. Much of my adult life has been made up substantially of self-delusory imaginations leading to deceiving others. I have made such a horrible wreck of my own life and nearly every single person ever having close contact with especially the love of my life and the manic episodes leading to incidents of the last two years may separate us forever. I take my medication and it helps me remember that a normal person does not behave in part of the ways I remember behaving. Honestly, I do my best to forgive myself but thus far it has been ineffectual.

  20. Hello. My son is autistic with bipolar disorder. He’s currently in a severe cycle. Tonight he got upset with me and called mean awful name. When i asked him if he said that he was confused. He vehemently denied it. Being autistic he doesn’t lie and he really thinks he didn’t say it. Has this happened to anyone else? I’m hurt but worried more than anything.

  21. I have a love one, my best friend. Hes been my friend for over 20 years. When he was frist diagnosed with bipolar every single friend disappeared, but I stayed. He got into trouble when he was about 21 and ended up in the hospital for 20 years. The entire time I was there. He has since been out the hospital for 3 years and was good. Now he’s constantly not taking his medications. He’s a really mean and disrespectful man when’s he not on his meds. Since being out he has been back & forth in the hospital with only a 72 hour hold. When he’s out its back to not taking his meds again. I truly love him genuinely but don’t know how much more I can take. When he’s manic he’s a totally different person, he’s awful towards me. I lost my place, he’s crashed my car, I’m every unkind word you can think of, he scares my children, damage my property, embarrasses me in public all the time, and has tried to steal my atm card. I know he’s sick and have no real friends but his manic episodes are so draining me of my life & energy. I don’t know what to do! He’s totally messing up things for me & my children! And I would feel so bad leaving him while he’s mentally ill & has no one else. I’m feeling so sad and hurt right now. What do I do? Any advice is appreciated, thanks.

  22. Johnathan, it’s not your fault, and I can relate. My dad understand but my stepmother does not. She has basically excommunicated me and now thinks I’m more or less evil. That’s a big loss for me and it’s a terrible feeling when someone treats you as though you are an irresponsible and/or bad person. The truth is, you didn’t ask for this illness and it’s not your fault. As bipolarbandit said, some people just do not understand mental illness. But those of us who suffer because of this illness need to advocate for ourselves, to ourselves first and foremost. That means, accept yourself even if your dad can not accept. Then move outwards to other loving people. Hang in there, I’m working to follow this advice as well.

  23. Hi everyone, I have been bipolar for as long as I can remember. I am 47 years old and was not diagnosed until I was 42. When I was 42 my wife got pregnant andI became depressed as I did not want anymore children, especially at that age. For years I had been soley treated for depression and tried every antidepressant out there with no benefit. Therefore I saw a psychiatrist who put me on a stimulant called Vyvanse. I went into a full blown manic episode for months. Initially I liked it as I felt invincible, full of energy, very positive, etc. Then I became psychotic. I thought the government was spying on me, I thought they were conspiring to put me in a mental institution for the rest of my life. I work for the government and thought this was all a plot fo fire me. I also thought all of my medications were being switched at night while I was sleeping. I was eventually hospitalized and put on Zyprexa. Within about 5 days I started to normalize. I did not remember 80% of the things I did for 4 months. In the hospital they had a white board and noted the kind of observation each patient required. I asked why I was under close observation, because all I did was sleep coming off the Vyvanse and returned back to normal. It was not until I got home did I realize I was not asleep at all in the hospital and my wife showed me her phone where I called her hudreds of times telling her it was all a plot to keep me in the hospital. So for the next 4 years I was not medicated correctly and was depressed for a 4 year period. I got fed up with the depression and begged my new psychiatrist for Vyvanse. I love the feeling of mania it gives me. It is addictive. Since I still believe the government changes my medicine, I would just take it around the clock to get high and would not sleep so no one could change the Vyvanse. Then I would normalize and fill the Vyvanse again two weeks later. I did this for 3 months. I know I have done some crazy stuff over the last 3 months but dont remeber any of it. I finally decided to stop taking it as I know I am going to get fired as everyone can tell I am on it again. I am also worried, you see, when your hired by the Federal Government they are supposed to run background checks on you. In addition, they run your credit. I just found out that they never did a background check on me and need to do one. As most bipolar patients, I ran my credit cards to the max and spent an enourmous amount of money. I also spent a huge amount of money for a custody battle due to my illnes. Therefore, I had to claim bankruptcy. So I am under an enormous amount of stress. I am worried about my past and things I may or may not have done during manic episodes as well as my credit. My job is my life. If I were fired I would never ever be able to find a job where I could earn even 60% of what I make. Im afraid if I get fired I am going to kill myslef. I have tried in the past taking bottles and bottles of medicne. However, this time I think I am going to use my Glock. I am scared. Hopefully someone reads my post and can give me some advice.

  24. I don’t remember doing anything while manic but PLENTY while depressed-which I’ve been for the past 2 years! I’ve tried to ‘BUY’ my way out of it acquiring things I think beautiful.-Nothing big but all the little ‘components’ are now 15 cubic feet of boxes-so MANY things I can’t find what I want to use for something. Items were sort of organized until I had to give up my craft room. It’s not WON’T use them. It’s CAN’T use them. I can’t DECIDE what to do w them even though they were bought for a specific reason other than I thought them pretty! As a kid, I could never ‘have fun’ until ALL the work was DONE. The work was never all done then, nor is it all done now. It doesn’t help that the girl who ‘adopted’ us 20 years ago, whom I dearly loved, as parents died suddenly 6 months ago & we became legal guardians of her 10 year old daughter who hates me–hubby & son are fine-it’s just me she hates & hubby & son don’t SEE or HEAR it. Little things like leaving things on the floor, taking the remote, changing channels,putting it down where I can’t reach it while I’m WATCHING something; taking/using my stuff without permission & not returning them; flopping down, all 250 lbs. of her,(you read that right) on my feet, VERY painful b/c of neuropathy & rheumatoid arthritis. Basic needs of food, water, shelter, medications, clothing are met-nothing else is so I ‘shop’ via internet. I take anti-depressant(MANY tried) & see psych. NOTHING has helped. Between the time I waken & my feet hit the floor 5 minutes later I could cheerfully off myself. NO, I CAN’T just ‘decide to be ‘happy’; if I COULD, I WOULD!.

  25. I appreciate this site and all the comments. I believe I have been ill with bipolar disorder since I was 9 or 10, maybe earlier. I was not diagnosed correctly until I was 50, I am now 52. I’ve had manic episodes but my main symptom has been depression. I took antidepressants for years, tried to self-medicate with alcohol and pain meds, made poor decisions, etc. I had a breakdown a few years ago and now am retired. I keep reliving embarrassing things I have done in my small town and being on Facebook for the last few years was definitely a bad decision lol. But I have to laugh at myself. It will probably be funnier ad time goes on.

  26. I’m curious if someone who has had multiple bipolar 1 manic episodes with psychotic behavior (similar to schizophrenia) remembers what they do during their manic episodes, because if they remembered their behavior, would that not motivate them to stay on medication to avoid having another manic episode and doing those things again? It is hard to be the family member who watches someone self-destruct over and over again (and often being the one hurt), when staying on medication could’ve helped avoid another episode. For the friends and family members of the bipolar 1 person, every time that person has a manic psychotic episode, it’s like experiencing a death. You’ve lost that person – they are no longer emotionally or mentally there (it’s like they turn into a totally different person with no trace of the person you know, sometimes for months) – and you don’t know if they are ever coming back. When they come back, they say they can’t remember what they did and said during the manic episode (or they only remember bits and pieces), but you remember everything. Often the family members or close friends need counseling or therapy to recover from the episode, depending on how hurtful it was, as much as the bipolar person. I’ve heard of a few success stories where the bipolar person had an “epiphany” and realized that they were going to lose everything if they went off meds again (i.e. rights to their children, their spouse, a job they enjoy, possibly their life if they did high risk activities during the last episode), and they have stayed on meds and remembered these things for 7 or 8 years. I’m just curious if these situations are an anomaly or are there other cases where a bipolar 1 person has managed to overcome the urges to stop taking the medication long term and found success?

  27. I was recently diagnosed with bipolar 2 disorder, though I don’t experience full blown manic episodes I regret the things I say and do while I am hypomanic and irritable. My girlfriend gets most of the abuse.. I always end up regretting my actions and feeling horrible a few days after I always say and do things I don’t mean. I feel like I’m pushing away the people that are closest to me, I get embarrassed bringing up the fact that it’s my disorder, I feel like they think it’s a poor excuse for my behavior. But in realty I would never do the things that I’ve done during these episodes.

    • I understand where you are coming from. Unfortunately, we often hurt the people who we love the most.I think it might be because we know tey will love us no matter what. I also think that they do understand that it is our illness that does the things we do and that is why they stick by us and forgive us. I am not sure if it is even necessary sometimes to bring it all back up and talk about it. In some ways, it is better to just move on unless you or them need to talk it through.

  28. I can not agree when you’re saying if your friends don’t understand you hang around with wrong people. My best friend suffers 5 years now, I’ve gone through 4 manic episodes with him and we are going through the worst one at the moment. He has told all my and our friends secrets on Facebook, has insulted everyone online breaking one family’s life totally. And we would forget, but he is refusing to take medication, visit a doctor, has escaped from hospital, and he knew the mania is coming and he flown abroad.

    • It sounds like your friend needs to accept that he has the illness and find the proper treatment so that he does not continue to make you go through it again and again. If he cares enough then he will. If not, I would suggest for your own health to distance yourself from him.

  29. I was with the love of my life for 3 years and through so many manic episodes which hurt her and myself very bad. Over the last 6 months I was her only support while she was beginning treatment. The doctor only gave her lexapro since the bipolar wasn’t apparent yet. Everything was going so great until one day she left me for her high school boyfriend which she had a dream about. I knew this was the manic kicking in and I tried so hard to help. Long story short, she just left and she’s a danger to herself and others. The worst part of this is that she wasn’t prescribed mood stabilizers yet so everything I tell her parents, doctors, and police is taken as if I’m a jealous boyfriend. There is something seriously wrong with this world when someone who needs help doesn’t receive the proper care. I mean yes I’m upset she cheated but I know it’s not her fault. I want to be her support but her family thinks all of this is my fault.

    • Wow! You are right that there should be a better way to help someone when you know they are a threat to themselves or others. I am sorry you have had to endure this. She, although she probably does not know it, is very lucky to have you. Hang in there and know you have done everything you can to try and help her. For your own sanity be careful not to let her pull you in anymore. If she refuses to get help then there is not much you can do Although it is tempting because you love her, there is nothing you can really do. I wish you the best and I hope she either gets help or you are able to move on knowing you did your best.

  30. Pingback: How Do People with Bipolar Disorder Deal with Things They’ve Done While in a Manic Episode? By Bipolar Bandit (Michelle Clark) – Shannon Mick

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