Reasons why people refuse to acknowledge and get help for Bipolar Disorder

Many people find it incredibly difficult to acknowledge and accept that they are living with bipolar disorder….let alone be willing to get help.  They have really good reasons.

Here are some perspectives people have shared with me as well as my own experience that I have overcome in order to get to be who I am.

I share this is so that people who want their loved one to admit they have diagnoses can understand where their loved one is coming from.

  • “This way of thinking and being is normal for me. I have always been this way. Why should I need a doctor, medication and therapy to feel “normal”. This is what I know. Nothing is wrong with me.”
  • “I’m not hurting anyone but myself. I don’t care what people think about me.”
  • “This is who I am. I don’t want to change.”
  • “I don’t want to be controlled by medication. I don’t want to be a robot……I am afraid that if I take medication, I will lose who I am.”
  • “Struggling with the ups and downs is something that I know how to do well. I don’t know what I would do with myself.”
  • “I am so scared of medication. I have heard stories of people not being able to feel and think. I have heard stories of people not able to be who they were. That really scares me.”
  • “I can’t believe that the most wonderful, beautiful, life changing experience didn’t come from God and is considered as a disorder…I can’t believe that it means there is something wrong with my brain.”
  • “I don’t want to be treated as though I am crazy.”
  • ” I don’t want to find out that there is something wrong with me.”
  • “Society has a problem for not valuing and putting to use your creativity, brilliance and energy. I have something to offer just the way I am.”
  • “Moses saw a burning bush and said God was talking to him…AND he’s a prophet. Why is it that when I see God and we talk that I am crazy?”
  • “I love mania.”
  • “I don’t see it as a problem.”

Underlying Fears:

  • “What if no matter how hard I try, I can’t be “normal”?”
  • “What if I can’t be fixed?”
  • “I am broken.”
  • “I don’t belong. No one will accept me.”
  • “My life feels over.”
  • “I don’t know who I am.”
  • “No one will love me.  I am not loveable.”
  • “I am so scared of myself.”

No one can be forced to see that they are living with bipolar disorder. No one can be forced to take action and receive treatment.

Have compassion and empathy.

People usually do not seek out treatment unless it affects their functioning on the following levels:

  • They feel out of control of their mind and body.
  • There loved ones do not feel safe being around them.
  • They are at risk for self-harm or a danger to others.
  • They are not able to function in their work.
  • They are not able to be the partner they want to be in their romantic relationship due to their behavior and emotion.
  • They are having difficulty maintaining friendships due to their behavior.

Sometimes people are not able to see that this is taking place.  They are so deep in the mania that they can’t see what is happening.

Therefore, it is important for loved one’s of a person who is allegedly experiencing bipolar disorder to share their concerns and help them develop their awareness.