But, You Don’t Look Bipolar

95EF11BF-36EF-4BBC-A840-8D427C0D8FA4I left my straitjacket at home again, dangit!

In all seriousness, yes, people say this to me. No, I do not think they are trying to be mean. I do, however, think this is a perfect example of the stigma that very much exists surrounding mental health.

I think people hear that someone has bipolar and then sit on edge waiting for us to do something “crazy.” I could argue that those “mentally healthy” individuals are more likely to do something “crazy” than I am.

13 thoughts on “But, You Don’t Look Bipolar

  1. Of all the stigmas I faced about being bipolar the ones that I had against myself were the WORST. Overcoming what I thought in my head was way way more valuable to me than tearing down anyone else’s….and secretly…when I first was diagnosed and a few snobbish people knew (that weren’t in my friend group) I would act out solely for that attention. I’m not exactly sure why I would do it…but it certainly kept those folks at a distance I preferred. (I don’t think that was being bipolar…I think it was being smart.)

  2. When people say “you don’t look bipolar” to me, I’m never quite sure how to respond. Usually it’s with a “Thaanks?”

  3. Besides a few close people in my life, nobody knows that I’m bipolar. I put up a front and I hide behind that mask. The problem is I always feel conflicted between the “real” me and the “fake” me. I just want to know what normal feels like. The “fake” me is what I consider normal in my head. That is the person I allow the world to see. The fake me hides the constant over thinking, insecurities, the suicidal thoughts and the paranoia. I wish I could find ways to embrace who I am without that nagging fear of judgement. I don’t want to be treated like I’m crazy. I know it’s the fear and anxiety speaking, but I can’t seem to shake it off. I have a regular life. I go to work every day, I cook, I clean. I’m perfectly capable of doing basic day to day activities like everyone else. People often treat those of us with mental illnesses differently. I just want to be treated the same.

  4. Why is it in these “politically correct” times is it still OK to be stigmatized for having bp? I’m tired of hiding in shame for something I was born with. Btw –
    Love your blog (:

  5. The bipolar woman I’ve loved for almost six years talks about how exhausting it is for her to pretend that she’s content and feeling well at work. People there are aware of her physical condition, rheumatoid arthritis, but she feels unable to tell her co-workers about the bipolar, for fear of the enduring stigma. And many of these people have advanced science degrees.

    People like you and your husband, who are able to bravely step forward and own the condition, in order to deflate the stigma, are an inspiration to us.

  6. Thank you so much for your blog. I feel more at peace when I read all of these posts. I appreciate you all so very much.

  7. I’m rereading a lot of the posts on sobipolar. I am having one of those days. It helps to read comments that share in how I am feeling.

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