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I believe that I can help.
You seem to be demonstrating symptoms of manic behaviour that indicate the possibility that you have bipolar disorder, which is a mood disorder and is akin to depression except that there are elements of mania and of depression, usually not together, but occasionally so.
Are you ready to answer some questions?
I am sure Im not bi-polar. I don't have huge mood swings
But yes I'd love to answer some
Do you have periods of very high self-esteem or grandiosity?
I had a stable self esteem but it has taken a huge hit lately.
I have actually been experiencing a paranoia which, although not grounded in fact has driven me crazy.
I had a huge fear that I was a pedophile, although I have never been attracted to children, and continue not to be
This fear was connected with a burning sensation in my chest.
Although the fear of being a pedophile is mostly gone, the chest feeling remains
Do you get rapid heartbeat with this feeling, shortness of breath, or pain?
Not a rapid heartbeat, but it is very painful
Its almost exclusively on the left side on my chest and goes into my neck and jaw
Shortness of breath?
Feel like you are almost detached from yourself in some weird feeling?
But I have been using materbation to self medicate, it seems to make it go away
It does ease anxiety.
I guess I feel detached from my sense of reason
When you have these attacks do you ever fear that you are going crazy or are going to die?
No, it makes me upset that you bring that up.
I do feel a little apprehensive that I won't get rid of this feeling though
But you do.
I thought it would go away with time, and it has gotten better
But it has taken three months out of my life
But it is not with you 24/7 is it? At least not at this level of intensity?
and I am afraid I may have to battle these fears in the future
It used to be with me 24/7, now it comes and goes
At one time the pain was unbearable, now I am almost always functional
However, I don't feel I have complete control over my behaviour. This frustrates me and makes me nervous
These are panic attacks. You have a lot of anxiety which may be because of stressors or because you are one of many of us who are easily provoked to anxiety
A lot of people have told me that
You also engage in some reckless behaviour (sex and spending).
I was wondering if you could shed some light on my sexual behaviour
Let's answer these questions and then I shall return there, I promise.
Do you engage in other reckless behaviour such as driving or gambling?
Do you sometimes become increasingly talkative?
Yes, and they are usually accompanied by quiet periods
Do you ever have racing thoughtsd or flights of ideas?
I often withdraw into daydreaming but I often go through periods with racing thoughts
You anticipated my next question. Are you sometimes easily distracted?
But both tend to be anxiety related
These days I am frequently "out of it"
A lot of time macabre thoughts come into my mind, a paranoia about getting HIV or going to jail due to being a pedophile have been the most frequent demons
Do you ever feel a sense of speeded-up psychomotor activity or increased goal-directed activity (social, sexual, work, or school)?
It says that you have left the chat and are offline. Perhaps you are unable to respond now.
I will wait 5 minutes and then I shall save and exit the chat and we can talk later, if you wish.
Glad to see you back. :)
Sorry about that
My internet crashed
If you did not get my last question I shall repeat it:
About goal-directed activity: When I am not feeling anxious or depressed, I tend to be fairly goal directed
As much about other things as you are about sex?
I also have a pretty good work ethic and tend to stay on tasks
and yes, my sex life was very much in control for a couple months before my rough patch
I didn't need to discharge through masterbation for usually ten days, sometimes 3 weeks
How often do you get depressed?
I have gone through 2 serious depressions: Over the last couple months(although this was mostly anxiety related) and also around 4 years ago
I would like you to look at the official psychiatric diagnostic criteria for mania.
A) A distinct period of abnormally and persistently elevated, expansive or irritable mood, lasting at least 1 week (or any duration if hospitalization is necessary)
B) During the period of mood disturbance, three (or more) of the following symptoms have persisted (four if the mood is only irritable) and have been present to a significant degree:
1) inflated self-esteem or grandiosity
2) decreased need for sleep (e.g., feels rested after only 3 hours of sleep)
3) more talkative than usual or pressure to keep talking
4) flight of ideas or subjective experience that thoughts are racing
5) distractibility (i.e., attention too easily drawn to unimportant or irrelevant external stimuli)
6) increase in goal-directed activity (at work, at school, or sexually) or psychomotor agitation
7) excessive involvement in pleasurable activities that have a high potential for painful consequences (e.g., engaging in unrestrained buying sprees, sexual indiscretions, or foolish business investments)
C) The symptoms do not meet criteria for a Mixed Episode
D) The mood disturbance is sufficiently severe to cause marked impairment in occupational functioning or in usual social activities or relationships with others, or to necessitate hospitalization to prevent harm to self or others, or there are psychotic features.
E) The symptoms are not due to the direct physiological effects of a substance or a general medical condition.
I don't think I met 3 or more of the critera
I thought you would say that. I would consider 3,4, 5,6, and 7.
My excessive involvement is pleasure and distractibility is generally when I need more less, am less talkative and less goal directed
Sorry:"" generally when I need more sleep, less talkative...."
Your drinking, drunk fights, going to prostitutes, spending money without self control, sexual aggression, lack of sexual inhibition are all very characteristic of manic behavior.
You have racing thoughts/
Your distractability (daydreaming)
Then periods of depression.
How much of it could be "growing up"?
You are also having some obsessive thoughts and panic attacks which often accompany bipolar disorder.
I have only had one drunk fight, I visited a prostitute once after 8 motnhs
Some of it has to do with growing up. It is not quantitative but qualitative.
I would urge you to get a face-to-face assessment.
For sure. The only thing I am skeptical about is that I am able to control myself and be level for extended periods of time
This is treatable and manageable if you do have it.
I have seen two therapists:The First therapist said I am a sex addictThe Second Therapist said I am definitely not a sex addict but may have OCD
I will take your advice and get a face to face evaluation
In the meanwhile do you have any ways that I could calm my nerves and increase self control?
First of all, you do not have to be a raging, out of control maniac to have bipolar. During my internship my supervisor was a top psychiatrist, chief resident of a major teaching hospital and he had (currently) bipolar disorder, and he did great. It was under control.
Don't use caffeine or diet drugs. Don't drink. DEFINITELY do not take any antidepressants, not prescription and not St. John's Wort or 5-HTP either.
Get lots of sleep.
You are NOT a sex addict. You are showing typical manic behaviour.
Deit Drugs have given huge huge problems, abstaining from caffiene does me well too
You DO have OCD symptoms but they are related to the bipolar disorder, I believe.
I will recommend three books for you, but I recommend seeing a professional as well.
Give me a moment.
Here's one for thought stopping (from amazon.ca)
for panic attacks
and most importantly for Bipolar Disorder:
Thank You Elliot for taking the time to do this. I will certainly check out the books
Elliot, Could you quickly tell me what emotions or thoughts generally trigger compulsive masterbation? I have been masterbating extremely frequently lately, sometimes 8-9 times a day then taking a two or three day break.
What is your view on pornography? Is using porn as an aid to masterbation more harmful to mental health than using no aids? How often is "too often" to consume pornography in your opinion?
A Drug Called Pornography