Self Stigma at its Finest

Apparently it’s World Bipolar Day. I didn’t know this as I couldn’t get out of bed this morning. I clawed at the covers as the cold empty room closed in on me.  The sun was illuminating the window shade but the stale stench of darkness overcame the light.  I begged for sleep to take me away, but I laid  there wide eyed all day long cursing bipolar disorder.  Bipolar shouting back with vulgar memories, racing thoughts, tears, and hopelessness. I tossed and turned like a rag doll. I could find no comfort. Grateful to be alone and so damn lonely at the same time. I unabashedly screamed into my pillow at one point and hung my head in shame the next. You should be at work! You are worthless! These statements ricocheting of the walls of my bedroom. I close the door so they don’t escape as I feel I deserve them. We have 4 ceiling fans in our house and I wonder which one can hold my weight. I count pill bottles in my head as I lack the energy to trace my fingers over each one.
This day is designed to raise awareness around stigma. Stigma from society, the media, the movies. To help get the word out folks with bipolar disorder are first and foremost people. People with unfortunate symptoms of a sometimes debilitating mental illness. It could be your neighbor or coworker. It’s an invisible illness that does both invisible and visible damage.
It seems today I am promoting self stigma. I had to call off work.  I am not physically sick. I feel so unbelievably guilty that I can’t function in a professional environment today. I can’t think. I can’t move. Today I can’t get my job done. No one else knows this but me. It’s likely I could have the flu that’s going around. I’m not surrounded by tissues because I have allergies. I’m just displaying symptoms of bipolar that render me unable to be present at my job.  It’s happened before and will probably happen again.
For me, today, it’s more like bipolar acceptance day.  I would like to accept that these days come and they will go. I am still a good person. A good worker. Even though I couldn’t muster the energy to make dinner I am still a good wife. As the tears stream and stream some more for reasons unknown, I am reminded I am human.  Tomorrow is a new day. If I close out this day, World Bipolar Day, crying into my pillow it’s a testament to the realities of the disorder.  Sometimes each day is a struggle. Sometimes not. But ridding myself of my own stigma first will only make each day better.

2 thoughts on “Self Stigma at its Finest

  1. A good person and a good worker. Sometimes I don’t realize that with myself. And that bipolar disorder doesn’t make me a bad person nor a bad worker. Thank you for this post. 🙂


  2. bipolar acceptance day … I like that. We don’t have to embrace the bipolar, but we have to accept it and manage it as best we can.

    I’m sorry you felt so crappy. We should all unite and have a big party and fuck responsibility on Bipolar Day!


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