Originally Posted by WomanOfSelfHatred
My abusive father has bipolar disorder. Now I am scared I may have it too. I have been feeling angrier for the past two weeks, and after my outburst, I become sad and regretful.
My doctor put me on a mood stabilizer called Lamictal to better my moods, but online research reveals that it is bipolar medicine. I am upset because I now believe I have this mental disorder, but no one else does. If I do have it, it will ruin my marriage, and I will be heartbroken.
How likely will I have bipolar disorder based on this post, and do you think it will affect my life? I am desperate for answers.
Please be careful with those categories. Lamictal is an antiepileptic that has been found to work as a mood stabiliser too. It helps "bipolar disorder", but that doesn't necessarily mean that you "have bipolar disorder" if someone proscribes you Lamictal. It just means that it's a mood stabiliser that may or may not help you (or, if your doctor is shit, it doesn't mean anything at all).
I'm putting all those in parentheses because they aren't unshakeable facts. You can't say if a person has "bipolar disorder" or not the same way you can tell if a light bulb is turned on or off.
The so-called bipolar disorder is a set of symptoms, no more, no less. One person will have a set of traits, some meet the bipolar criteria, the others don't. Another person may have one or two more characteristics meeting the bipolar definition and is classified as bipolar while the first person isn't. And all of them may be more or less normal people.
But let's assume you "have bipolar disorder". Why would that ruin your marriage? I don't know what your father did to you, but "having bipolar disorder" doesn't mean you have to be abusive.
Even if you are "guilty of being bipolar", that does in no way mean you'll be abusive to anyone else. Even if you accept the diagnosis, it mostly just means that your mood is unstable. It doesn't mean that you will hurt people. You can be bipolar and be an angel. People can rightfully love you no matter if you're bipolar or not.
I am myself diagnosed as bipolar II. I have my fair share of problems, but that doesn't mean others have to suffer. Lamictal doesn't solve anything, but it helps me to get along better. Some people love me, some people appreciate my help, no matter if a psychiatrist calls me bipolar or not.
Same for you, I believe.