I have a mental illness, I am not a 5 year old.

I recently had a 3 day hospital stay, not related to any of the mental illnesses I live with, rather a nasty physical injury. It exploded into the beginnings of blood poisoning and I may end up having to have surgery in order to have functional use of one of my hands again. Fun times. Thus far, this major stressor hasn’t triggered anything outside of some spin spinning mentally about the financial repercussions and frustration at the addition of more chronic pain. It’s in line with what any non bipolar person would experience I think…However, if surgery is necessary, there will be a meltdown. I keep pushing those thoughts out of mind for now however.

I take various medications for my BPD, OCD, anxiety, ulcers, esophageal erosion, severe allergies, asthma, and for my spinal issues as well. I’m an 85 year old woman in terms of how many pills I take a day and keep a list of my current medications in my phone as any good bipolar person should. During those 3 days I handed my phone over to no less than 10 various healthcare providers for them to copy down or review the list. I absolutely LOATHE the switch in demeanor once it’s revealed to healthcare providers I am bipolar while going over my health health history. I swear some of them even begin speaking more slowly and at a higher volume, my credibility is suddenly questioned, I am a problematic patient when I advise a nurse she has my medications incorrect and spoken to like a 5 year old. The condescending nature is enough to send my brain into overload. I want to retort, “I have a well controlled mental illness, I am not deaf or mentally retarded. Bitch.” I don’t however, because how bipolar would that appear?

I hate the stigmas attached to mental illness.

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