In my boredom and hypomania, I decided I was once and for all going to “diagnose” my husband’s crazy properly. He has issues. Serious issues. I got him to a therapist once with horrible results and I’d have to have a gun to his head to get him there again, and even then he might rather just die. He doesn’t care. His issues don’t really bother him, like mine do me. His issues bother me though. I deal better with things if I can call them something. When we went to the doctor, I was convinced he was Bipolar, though he’s pretty clearly not. I think I just wanted someone else to be Bipolar along with me. They have the questions, which I helped him fill out, basically put my own answers on, and got back my own diagnoses. Big shock. I had talked up the symptoms he had that were similar to mine so that was probably in his head, too. The meds made him thousand time worse. All of them except Lamictal, I believe. He didn’t care for any of them, and since the issues don’t bother him…well, it’s a hard argument to make for them.
Today, after asking him five thousand questions and letting him answer (except if the question was “are you hard to work with” because then other people can answer better than you), I think I’ve decided upon some stuff. With my fancy internet fake degree from Wikipedia and such. Yes, you shouldn’t diagnose with Wikipedia. I am aware. I’m also hypomanic and smarter than Wikipedia. Something. Whatever, I’m able to do this at this moment. Plus, it’s the best I’m ever gonna get.
They have “impulsive borderline personality disorder” I found out today, which is the impulsive of BPD without the “borderline.” See here. The rejection borderline stuff he is not, but every one of the “impulse personality disorder” requirements are met. Not just some, but all. There’s also something called Schizoid that never gets diagnosed, but if you combine it with the other, fits him perfect.
Here’s the thing with my husband…he has two emotional levels. They are nothing, or pissed. There’s nothing else. If happy things happen, he’s usually not happy. If sad things happen, he’s usually not sad. Emotions don’t work for him. It’s like a long time ago he found the off switch on everything but “angry” and flipped them. I wish I knew how, cause I have an overabundance of all emotions. Together, we even out to normal I guess. At one point our therapist said she thought he was kinda…well, lost. Just stuck the way he was because he won’t open up in therapy, or to almost anyone other than me (on rare occasion). She said if he wouldn’t have been able to name one person that treated him with love when he was younger, she’d have declared him “lost cause.” He doesn’t “avoid” people, but if you give him a choice he wants to be alone. Usually meaning just him. When I say “alone” sometimes I mean “with close friends/family only.” Alone “with my husband.” He just wants to be alone. He’s better around our son for whatever reason, but I still get the short end of the stick a lot.
He’s very self sufficient. He could have done the Cast Away thing and not been bothered by it. He creates his own solitary confinement in life. One question I found was if he could basically be a crazy wood person and his only question was if he got electricity or not, not if he got to see his wife or son. Just could he watch TV and play video games to occupy himself. So long as he’s not bored, he’d rather be entertained and alone.
It’s depressing for me sometimes, but his lack of emotion sometimes slows my overflow. Sometimes it makes it worse though when I try to explain being sad and I can see it just doesn’t compute. He glosses over and pretends to listen or understand, but he’s really confused by the whole thing. Sometimes he just flat out tells me I’m being silly and crying doesn’t change things, emotions are useless, ect. It’s like he has a hatred for all things feeling.
He has a lot of people who know who he is, that he can have a shallow conversation with, but aside from me, I don’t think he talks about feelings. Ever. I force the conversations from him when we have them, and usually he’s annoyed with them. He’ll never say “I’m sad” or “I’m happy” without me asking 20 questions first, and then I think he says it because it shuts me up or something. I don’t know that he’s felt either in a long time, perhaps since he was a kid.
Problem is, meds don’t work on either of these issues, and I won’t be getting him in therapy ever. He’d rather be divorced and alone. I know that. We make it work. If we need marriage counseling, I might be able to talk him into that, but those therapists are in over their heads with our combination and we both know it, so we find our own weird ways of making things work. He tries to feel the big stuff that’s important to me and be empathetic about my twenty emotions a second and I try not to pester him about his lack of them on a regular basis.
The impulsive issues…well, those get something said about them because he’d be dead or in jail if I didn’t, and he can sit there and be numb, but he better not be dead because he thought he could jump off his motorcycle on the interstate and survive or something. We’d have no retirement, because if the money can’t be spent rightthissecond, he doesn’t see the point in it. I get like that in hypomania, he lives like that. I hide money from both of us so we can retire. Our bookkeeping is pretty elaborate. It’s a big scheme to keep money away from him all the time, and far enough away from me where I can’t get at it quickly on an upswing. We have multiple accounts at multiple banks for this. Credit cards aside from the charge card are locked in safe deposit boxes at banks for emergency only purposes. It’s exhausting to keep up with. If I die, my estate will take years not because of size, but because of number of accounts and the fact that he has no idea where they are or how much we have. I try to forget myself so I can’t go nuts on an upswing and bankrupt us overnight.
How accurate is my Wikipedia internet doctor diagnoses? No clue, but I’m going with it because it makes me feel better. It makes me not want to harass him about trying more meds, too, because I know they end badly for him in almost all cases. He’s happy to die alone in the woods, so I’m not getting him to do any therapy in this lifetime, so just let me have what I can.
In other news, a lot of people seem to be committing suicide lately. My husband informed me that someone at work shot himself the other night, which has been the case in the now three suicides I’ve been made aware of in the last four months or so. Most of these people were older (40+). My views on the subject are apparently odd, because we were discussing it and my husband said almost no one agrees with me. The way I feel is, at 40 or 50, if you’ve suffered your whole life and don’t want to do it anymore, I don’t think anyone should be able to force you not to do it. Should you? Probably not, because help is out there and maybe something will work. It hurts the people that love you and even though you might be unaware, hurts the potential future you. That being said, I don’t think you should be able to force someone not to do it. If it happens, family can feel however they feel because people are allowed to react in whatever way they see emotionally fit. If you’re angry, be angry. If you’re sad, be sad. But some people get this “we should force people to live in agony so we can have them here” thing that bugs me. For younger people, I kinda agree because things seem really hopeless at a young age and there isn’t years of experience to tell you there’s not something out there. But if someone suffered through cancer from age 18-60 and nothing was working, I think we’d all agree to let them go if it’s really what they wanted. You can’t kill people, but I don’t think you should be able to force life upon them anymore than death. If my husband or mom or son killed themselves, I’m sure I’d have a nervous breakdown. I’d be pissed that they would leave me to fend for myself when I can’t and sad to lose them and probably lots of other things in between. But I wouldn’t pass a law or lock them in a room if it was really what they wanted and they had enough years behind the suffering to back them up. Now, if my son is 18, he’s going in the room where he can’t kill himself. If you’re depressed and it’s something you’ve only been dealing with a year, you go in the room even if you’re 80. You have to at least give treatments a try. If they all fail you, I won’t force suffering on someone. You do have to try though, for you and those that love you.
Don’t mistake that as pro-suicide, because generally I think it’s an awful idea. I think 99.999999% of the time, it’s the wrong choice. No one should suffer that much and no one should die by their own hand. It shouldn’t have to get that bad. But I know it does for some people, and as much as I get that it’s easy to just force people to live, I can’t get behind it. When my grandfather was old and sick and dying, he wanted to go and everyone kept him around on treatments for their own benefit. That’s more selfish than suicide to me. But he had tried the treatments, they weren’t working, they were probably never going to work, and he was just going to suffer.
Mental illness is different, because there’s a bigger margin of error on if treatment will ever work, thus the years you have to try things are greater than for a physical illness where they can be pretty sure if anything is going to fix you. I think at some point though, forcing people to live in suffering is akin to torture and really a cruel thing to do.
Bottom line, if you know anyone at that level, you should be helping them get help, not trying to force them to live miserably for your own benefit. Provide hope that something might work, because it might. If I didn’t think so, I’d probably be dead myself. I have to hope that one day, something will keep me leveled out. I’d like to think others would be able to instill this hope in people they may know, but generally most people don’t handle suicidal well. More often than not, people who tried to help me in that state made me want to kill myself even more. It’s a tough thing to handle.
Again, not pro-suicide. Please don’t kill yourself. I’m not suicidal, so no one worry. Just the conversation went there and it got me thinking and I guess I’m wondering if anyone else agrees or if I’m weird. Also noticed my “tag reader” on here seems to have lots of people who are suicidal. So it keeps getting put in front of me and I wanted to re-evaluate my position on it, which has changed a bit from before, where I thought if you wanted to you should be able to even if you’re 17. That was a depressed 17 year old talking. Maybe this is a manic 26 year old. My ideas change as I grow older. I don’t think I’ll ever want to force someone to suffer though. Maybe because I’ve felt the depths it can get to, I’m willing to forgive those that can no longer sustain it. I’m not sure.
I can’t get on board the whole “it’s always selfish” train still and don’t think I’ll ever get on with that. I am more on the “hope exists” train than I once was, even though I’m all over the place and my meds are placebos. I don’t know where I’m finding the hope, maybe in my son. I’m glad it’s there. I actually got “hope” tattooed on me (though in a different language) when I was trying to get pregnant and couldn’t because I needed it so much then. Hope is something I look up to. It’s an overlooked value. It’s an amazing feat to have hope when things are dark. I’m glad I’m able to do it for once in my life, as usually “hopeless” would describe how I feel when meds don’t work right or I swing all over the place. It is possible. Give it a try. I have a fake medical degree, I know what I’m talking about, right??
Again, not pro-suicide. Don’t kill yourself. I’ll try to do the same, which will be harder on the downswing, and is a little easier from my hypomania. But don’t let that discount the sentiment, because I said the same thing on the last downswing.
Hope is a beautiful thing. The more I think, the more I know it’s my son that gives it to me. But don’t run out and have kids either unless you want them, because they are a handful!
EDIT: Even in my subscriptions there is talk of suicide. It’s just one of those days. Since I really like Natasha’s stuff and she has better resources than I do and it’s a similar topic, I’m linking. It sounds better than what I wrote anyway, and probably might help someone, which my rantings probably won’t. I kinda like the bipolar blog space. It’s nice to see people thinking about the same topics at the same time as me, even if it’s depressing topics.