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Circular Triggers

Posted Sep 11 2009 10:50am
I'd like to apologize in advance for this post being very vague.  It involves another person, and I don't want to break his/her anonymity. 
I had a situation happen the other day that has left me feeling discouraged, dejected and deflated. I'm heartsick. Without going into details, it is one of the major triggers that has brought about manic episodes in the past. Obviously, I'm concerned. Especially considering I'm taking the Zoloft, and because it was just increased. Crushing depression always immediately follows my manias. So far, my medication seems to be working, as I only feel what I imagine is a healthy response to a bad situation. I function normally, but have this sad feeling. My thoughts are not consumed by what happened, though it is very present in my mind.

Now what do I do? I wouldn't have known what to do before...I would have just had this chemical response with no choice but to surrender to it. Now that it seems I do have a choice, I am at a loss as to how to approach the situation. I've been doing some talking with a supportive person, but to what end? It doesn't allay my fears, it doesn't provide me comfort, it isn't reassuring. Do I just keep talking? Is that the only way to resolve it? I am a proactive person. I cannot rest until I think I am doing something about a problem (although in a manic state my judgment was consistently poor, I still thought I was doing something). Removing myself from this particular problem is not an option.

The circumstances of this problem HUGE trigger for me. The irony of the situation is that something I did, albeit innocently, triggered it. Quite the predicament. It's also not something I can prevent from happening again, so far out of my control is the nature of this problem.

This is a time when I really feel Bipolar ruins my life. I feel angry and...I don't know if there is a word for what else I am feeling. Helpless? Hostage? Impotent? All are true, but they don't quite capture the hostility that is intertwined with them. I guess hostile is the right word, now that I think of it. I should clarify that these feelings I describe are not toward this issue, but the illness itself. Even if I am stable, it is still affecting me in a negative way. It still has the power to impact my life and do harm to me and the people around me. It limits how much I can say, how much I can share, how much I can reveal about it's effects on me. It hurts the people I love. As much as they might love me back, and feel for what I go through, they have their own feelings about it.  At times must protect themselves from me. Bipolar still alienates me, even if it is in remission. These are the battles Bipolar always wins. I do not have an effective defense.

So in short, someone else's trigger triggered my manias a few times. Recalling those manias recently ignited the trigger that had triggered my past manias. Now I'm worried about it triggering the mania again, all the while worrying about that initial trigger that sparked my manic episodes and the harm that it is doing to the person involved. It's this circle that I'm afraid can't be broken. I'm afraid I will break in some way instead.

There has to be a way through this, out of this. I refuse to let this battle be lost.
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