People keep telling me that it takes time to get the medications right for someone diagnosed with bipolar disorder. That it takes time to get things stabilized. That it will get better, but we must be patient.
But this is time we don't get back. Ticking along, day in and day out, week by week, month by month. No one knows how long will be. And it strikes me that it's like being in labor. It can be so very painful, with moments of relief in the early stages. As you progress through transition, those breaks become fewer and farther between, until it feels like you're in one long never ending contraction. The outcome should be beautiful, but it's never a sure thing.
And frankly, when you're in transition, you want to kill the bas*ard who did this to you. Right? If women in labor had hand guns, there'd be a lot more single parent households. Some days, the psychiatrists and therapists seem like those fathers in the labor room. Why can't they just make it better? If I hear I don't know from one more doctor, I won't be responsible for my actions.
Where's my epidural? Or my child's? She's knee deep in paranoia, mania and hallucinations. She didn't choose that. She's on a host of psychotropic drugs. Drugs that seem to be increasing her symptoms instead of alleviating them.
I've heard of medical internships in which the students are placed in situations that simulate the experience of the patient. The idea is that the intern will gain compassion, develop empathy and be a better, more responsive doctor. I want to see this happen in the field of psychiatry. Give those interns the drugs they prescribe, let them experience the side effects at least, so that they have more information about what they're doing before they say, I don't know, try this drug.