Why We MUST Prepare for Bipolar Triggers

This is a post for family members and partners. People with bipolar can let me know what they think about it as well.
A few weeks ago, I started to wind down a job I love – soccer marketing for local English pub. I kept the job for seven months and finally realized that if I wanted to get my next books written and edit my Health Cards and help people in mental health, I could NOT continue to do soccer marketing on the side.
The work was very enjoyable. I LOVED my boss/partner. I did a fantastic job. The choice to leave the work was mutual and a good choice for my future.
Please notice what I said. There was nothing negative about this work. There was no relationship issue. Not one thing was wrong with the situation. I simply decided that I could not get my mental health work done if I continued to dabble in soccer marketing.
My bipolar literally went crazy the day the job ended.
I felt fine about ending the work, but my bipolar reacted as though my best friend had died.
I am not being flippant here. I want everyone who loves someone with bipolar disorder to truly understand the concept of triggers.
Take Charge of Bipolar Disorder was/is the first book to ever mention trigger management as a way to manage this illness. That is how new this concept is for many people.
Change = Trigger
Bipolar is a circadian rhythm illness. It is about our internal clocks. Changes upsets these clocks in a way that no one can actually explain. All I know is that change- what I called triggers in Take Charge is the enemy of people with bipolar.
Many of us who don’t get relief from medications and even people who are on full medications can have a serious bipolar mood swing simply from change.
– Finishing a semester at school and heading into a summer internship.
– Traveling to a beautiful country.
– Getting into a new relationship.
– Getting married.
– Having a baby.
– Landing your dream job.
Triggers are not always negatives. Triggers simply mean that something is changing.
How do we get thorough this? We first of all have to be ready for triggers. As parents and partners, we have to think ahead and picture a calendar of our love one’s life and think- what change is coming and how can I help my loved one get through this.
Example: Every single time my dad comes to visit my brother, my brother has dysphoric mania. Every single time. No one prepares for this. No one talks about this and we all suffer for weeks before, during and after.
I knew that I might get sick from leaving the job I loved. I thought I planned ahead. Nope. Sick as a dog. For weeks.

Read Take Charge and Loving Someone with Bipolar Disorder and create a trigger list for your loved one. Show this list to your loved one. Have a plan for yourself so that you don’t walk into the Bipolar Conversation during one of these triggered mood swings and always remember:
Mood swings end. They are episodic. If we use a system every day of the mood swing, we will get out of the mood swing.
I am out of mine. Now I once again have to catch up with work. That is ok. I will be fine. Work is just work. Money is just money. What matters is that I no longer ruin my life during mood swings.
I want the same for you and your loved ones.


PS: Here is a pic of my next project. It is a year behind due to mood swings. What can I do except keep on keeping on! The book will be in my hands and your hands one day. Forza!

Comments are closed.