How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Kristin Your Own Question
Kristin, Mental Health Professional
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 454
Experience:  Licensed Mental Health Counselor. 11+ years specialist in mental health. Expertise and insight!
Type Your Mental Health Question Here...
Kristin is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I am a 53 year old female, husband & 2 sons. I have suffered

This answer was rated:

I am a 53 year old female, husband & 2 sons. I have suffered from depression probably all my life - it took until age 40 to 'come out' as I was sure it was 'just me'. However, alongside that I have had episodes (usually lasting from 2 - 6 days) where I am told I'm 'manic', often these bouts come with an unstoppable need to do something quite ridiculous and potentially dangerous (long hikes thru boarded up abandoned housing project, tying my arms down with weight so I can reach the bottom of the pool to clean it, digging up my pond in the middle of the night to re-site it, including it's contents).
These bouts are often triggered by stress and a conviction that I am not who I think I am, ergo everything comes into question. I can get very upset with family, but usually lash-out only inwards (almost overwhelming desire to commit suicide). I'm actually a Christian since age 40, but even that rational goes out the window. I've just come out of a bout and an wondering if I'm bi-polar or manic or just good ol' plain crazy. I should add that I've always tried to keep this depression 'expression' side of myself from others by means of humour. To most people, I;m simple eccentric.

Hello and thank you for your question.

Yes, you should most definitely see a doctor about these periods of time, where you are experiencing "manic" type symptoms. How long, have you had these period of increased activity and dangerous behaviors, that coexist alongside the depression? Have you ever told a doc. about these periods?

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Since childhood, probably. I used to go 'walkabout' in the middle of the night. Became very stealthy...thought I could be invisible. I've never told a doctor about these - simply considered it hysterical behaviour. I did spend an amount of time as a child thinking that I was a figment of others imaginations or vis versa. The only time I spoke to a doctor to 'admit' I was probably suffering from depression was in 2002ish, and he put me on Sertraline.
P.S. Can't click accept button?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Oh...and I used to practise the fine art of mastering pain (never quite succeeded) in adolescence: pins and burns on arms etc. Sorry...I'll stop prattling now!

Thank you for the info.

You definitely do need to tell the doctor about these periods of manic type behavior, without question. Go and see a psychiatrist (m.d. level clinician) and hopefully he/she can fully determine what is going on. There are mood stabilizers that are often prescribed in addition to your ssri (the sertraline) that will stop these manic phases altogether or greatly reduce them. There is no reason to continue on with these periods so please yes, do tell your doctor about it and don't delay in doing so, as some of the activities you partake in, are dangerous and risky. Please click ACCEPT button for this answer. You should be able to click on ACCEPT now. Thank you.

Kristin and other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you