Yes, I’ve Been Violent

Who, me, violent? Why, yes, on a few occasions.

My Mental Illness and Violence

Hi, I’m Kitt.

I’m bipolar, and I’ve been violent.

Mildly so, for the most part.

Flipped over a table once.

Been known to slap in response to being called a f*cking b*tch. Don’t do that anymore, but fair warning: don’t call me a f*cking b*tch. My slap is powerful, as I played tennis in my younger years.

Never killed anyone, but when in my mid-20s, I fantasized doing so when dealing with childhood issues in therapy (alcoholism & emotional abuse).

Pretty disturbing intrusive thoughts and impulses post-partum, too. But I didn’t act on those either.

Mostly I try to help people. I try to behave. I apologize when I screw up. I try to do better.

Burns.

Fire

As someone with bipolar type II, I know that my symptoms are less severe than others. That’s not to say that I do not cycle or that I’m asymptomatic.

I’ve screamed at and hit my son. I’ve flipped the kitchen table and slammed doors. I’ve been psychotic and struggled with intrusive thoughts and impulses. I’ve also rapidly cycled and had mixed episodes. I realize that some of these symptoms sound pretty severe and could qualify me for a diagnosis of bipolar type I. I usually do not even state which “type” of bipolar I have, for MY mental illness is somewhat fluid.

BUT – and this is a huge BUT – I know that bipolar disorder is a spectrum disorder and that some of us have it easier than others. That is why I was not diagnosed as bipolar for decades. Hypomania looks MUCH different than full-blown mania. MUCH. Mania can be incredibly destructive. Hypomania (aside from the irritable bitchiness and rage) can result in overachievement and make one look more like a superstar than someone struggling with mental illness. In fact, my workaholism IS a symptom, but a very DIFFERENT symptom than others.

Some people’s depression and bipolar disorder does NOT respond to treatment, to medication, to ECT (electroconvulsive therapy), to CBT (cognitive behavioral therapy), to mindfulness, to ANY medical, psychotherapeutic, nutritional or alternative treatment, and it is NOT their fault.

Thank you for this honest post, Zoe of Trash Diaries. It is WRONG for us to deny each other, to put each other down, to expect life to be positive all the time. In fact, there is no positive without negative. There is no light without the dark. Reality is complex.