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Readers Respond: Hurtful Things People Say About Bipolar Disorder

Responses: 276


Updated June 29, 2014


i was sitting at my lunch table and who i thought were my friends said i had murdered my frogs and that i never loved them and only got them so i could kill them i went to the bathroom and cried for a long time after that day i swore ever to bring a frog in my house again

hurtful things say

She's pycho, she didn't take her medicine. She's not all there. Se doesn't act right she's bipolar
—Guest Mary Lopez

How Could You?

After attempting suicide and subsequently being diagnosed as Bipolar 2, my parents repeatedly asked me, "How could you do this to us?". As if my illness was an intentional affront to them. It was extremely hurtful and has negatively affected our relation ever since it was spoken. Luckily I have a wonderful, understanding wife and son who are consistently supportful.
—Guest Rick

Try it sometime

I have had many instances where others have been ignorant to my problem. I first tell them this- "if you're stupid, it's not your fault, you were born that way. If you're ignorant, it's because you choose to be that way, therefore I have no more to say to you and I no longer want you in my life." The second thing I say is "I am stronger on my worst day than you will ever be on your best day." I have been dealing with bipolar illness for 45 years. My job has been survival and I have no place in my life for those who "don't get it and never will." Keep on fighting the good fight everyone. Has it been fun? Absolutely not. Do I think it's fair? Far from it. Will I make it the rest of the way? Yes I will. It has been hell over and over again for sure. BTW- I have BPII with anxiety.

Oh, and...

This isn't a hurtful statement so much as a hurtful and/or annoying attitude. It seems that, the moment I mentioned my diagnosis to some people, I was no longer allowed to have 'regular' emotions or reactions. If I was annoyed at something someone said, for example, it was *immediately* assumed it was due to my meds or disorder, not because the person might have actually said something offensive. Its like junior high-how some of the boys thought a girl only got mad because she had PMS and not because they were kicking the back of her chair or otherwise being annoying. I think some people do it because they don't know much about the illness and are being over-cautioous, but I think a lot of them do it so that they don't have to take responsibility for their own words or actions.

About.com-hurtful things re: bipolar

'You would be fine if you just had enough faith/prayed right/believed right/didn't have so much sin in your life/etc." Another thing that is sometimes added to the list of Why God Is Mad At Me And Is Doing This To Me (Or Is Not Protecting Me Anymore) is about my 'liberal' political beliefs or not insisting all of my non-Christian friends convert.


Things that hurt the most come from people I care about. Things like "I've never held something so cold in my arms before" or "you don't love me" or "you are too much stress. You scare me." Or when they try to blame your behavior on anything but a mental illness.
—Guest monique

"Do you know how depressing....."

it is for your family to see you in a robe everyday? REPLY: "Do YOU KNOW how DEPRESSING Bi-polar DEPRESSION IS????

CPS said i was unfit to be a mother

Child Protective Services came into my life via a false allegation. When i told them i was diagnosed Bi Polar they told me that untill i completed treatment and was cured that i was unfit and a danger to my children. My mental health had nothing to do with the allegation that was falsely made and no where in my history has my mental health ever effected my family. If anything is has made me more protective of my children. Plus on occasion they love the shopping spree. Our bills are always paid though. 21 months later we are still fighting to prove ourselves innocent and that i am on medication and you are never cured. CPS is ill informed about mental health and now they spoke to my husband for 45 minutes and the caseworker has diagnosed him with a personality disorder. The court accepted this. The caseworker has no degree to diagnose anyone of anything. Proving it is another story. According to them if i have a mental health issue than he must to. I told them it's not a cold you catch!
—Guest Mary Evanick-Barnes

I'm not a stray animal. I have bipolarII

I agree completely, I have been treated different ever since I was diagnosed back in 1998. The doctors tried to explain to my mother and my husband what to expect, they have tried to be as caring as possible most of the time. My sister though decided to take it upon herself and tell all of my friends and her friends my new "title" and that made them disappear very quickly like I had the plague or something. I am currently on SSI and my doctor tells me to just look at it like a temporary break from the work world. I take my meds like I'm suppose to, and it makes me so angry when people just assume that you are a "crazy, hateful, messed up" person when they hear "bi-polar" when I'm not down I have a very creative, loving side to me that I don't see in some "normal" people. Everyone has something that's not perfect about them and God made us all different & I'm going to start accepting myself how I am & just try to do my best each day & pray for those who are ignorant about this disorder.

"So unprofessional"

Well before diagnosis, I got a job working for a man who was a knowledgeable clinician but a terrible manager. Three months later I had a personal upheaval which resulted in symptoms of poor concentration and teariness. I postponed some patients because I couldn't control the tears, but came to work anyway to do some reports. When my boss discovered this he shouted at me "That's so unprofessional!" Two days later I was given a dismissal letter, stating "patients do not like their appointments changed for no good reason." In the state I was in, it felt like I had failed a uni clinical practicum. I drove and drove up the coast and screamed as hard as I could, but nothing could get the pain out of my mind.
—Guest BP1

Difficulty with BP

Luckily I've mostly had support with my disorder... I hate to see what I've read here, it breaks my heart. I have heard people think that "bipolar" is synonymous with "violent," and I find that completely untrue. Bipolar is a facet of who I am, it is not who I am. With meds I've mostly counteracted that and am on the way back to a normal life, but it's a long way to the end. The most hurtful thing that was ever said to me was that my mother-in-law was going to call the social services on me, because she didn't trust me with my own child... I have always looked after him and have never raised a hand against him. He is nothing but spoiled. She also asked my husband if it was "really" bipolar disorder or if I was just "lazy, unmotivated, and crazy." Thank you, mom-in-law. I will not be showing up for holidays this year.
—Guest Melli

mel cross

People say that you are evil and a user. People say that you play on your disease and make excuses for your behaviour, people say they don't want to see or speak to you anymote
—Guest melanie

Umm what?

"hang in there o.~" "HaHaHa I kind of want to slap u" "what" "oh you'll get over it ;)"
—Guest BostonLady

It gets better! I know!

I love all these responses! They've helped me to not feel so alone and I just want to send love out to you all! It's indescribably hard sometimes. I have large scars and lots of memories that got me here and I'm still young. Most importantly I'm still proud. Sure maybe people have watched me shower and told me when to eat sleep and make my bed. But no matter what happens, what help Ive had- this is my spiritual battle. I fight to be not only a prime example of the bipolar community, but of mySelf! I am myself. They can't take that from any of us! Being bipolar doesn't mean you're weak, it doesn't have to be awkward, and you don't have to explain yourself to everyone either! Remember to try to have a sense of humor and keep your head up. You don't have to be fake. But keep faith. I fight for us and defend us every day! It's always worth it to keep a strong face. Not a stone one mind you. But I feel like our fight runs deeper. It is worth it to get out of bed into the sun.
—Guest IntrepidMystik

What's Your Worst?

Hurtful Things People Say About Bipolar Disorder

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