Having a mental illness usually means we have tried a medication or two, or two hundred. We all have different reactions to medications as well. Some medications may help us, but some medications can end up with the unfortunate side effects that are worse than the effects you experience due to your illness and are trying to subdo. Typically when that happens, you and your doctor will sit down and discuss another alternative to try that may help, rather than continuing in an unpleasant situation. Since everyone’s body is different and reacts differently to each medication, what works for one person may not work for another. Finding the right combination of medications can be really tricky, and frustrating. It is pretty rare to find two people with the exact same “med cocktail.” I don’t know anyone that has the same “cocktail” as me currently, BUT, just because a person is on different medication doesn’t mean they aren’t working properly to help diminish as many symptoms as possible. My newest combo seems to be working drastically different and better than my previous one, thankfully.
When trying to get to that perfect combo, you can go through some pretty hellish times. Those medication changes can have effects on your body physically, can affect you emotionally and mentally, and therefore it can also affect your friends and loved ones around you who are there while you go up and down and all around on the bipolar coaster waiting for the medications to kick in (usually 2-4 weeks is when you begin to see the biggest results). Knowing that certain med changes can cause certain behaviors, I VERY intentionally remove myself socially and from social media until the time comes when I become stable again because I have made the terrible blunder of putting myself in social media ans social situations before the meds kicked in but not before lashing out on those around me. After that happened once or twice, I learned that it was best for not just me, but EVERYONE I know and interact with, to pull myself away because it wasn’t fair to others to have me lashing out like a beast at them for no reason other than my mood was a wreck, and for something that can be so easily preventable by just removing yourself socially for a little while.
So when does it become TOO many times that you have pulled the “med change” card? How many times can your friends handle the torment and torture that you put them through during those med changes? How many times can YOU handle being the punching bag of someone’s else’s med change drama?
I’ve been put in the situation a few too many times and mostly all by the same individual. Knowing the way they react with certain medications, we all tend to give a lot leeway during “med change time” because we know the reaction. However, this happens very frequently and despite the frequency, the behavior never changes. Well, this time it did, and I became just one of many that were thrown under the rug and left for garbage despite years of friendship and us knowing this was just “med change time.”
For me, it only took once or twice before I was so embarrassed and ashamed at how I had acted before I decided to withdraw during those crazy times. So, I guess my questions are: If you know how you are with med changes, then why put yourself out there to hurt others? And how many times do I have to say its ok and just accept the treatment? Unfortunately, this time, damage was done and Irrational thoughts led to the end of a friendship, and I have been quite sad and upset about it, however, what’s done is done.
Irrational thoughts and things that are done can not be undone, nor will I be the one to apologize for being hurt. So before you go and use you “med change card,” I think we need to stop and think to ourselves where the least amount of emotional damage will be done to not only yourself, but to your support system and others around you.