My understanding and experience with psychiatric drugs

I have bipolar II.There are many reasons that people don’t take medication.One is that they have very real and at times very serious side effects. I am on a lot of medication.

I am a student at UC Berkeley (a school in California if you aren’t familiar with it). I went in taking 17 units a semester, about half of which were upper division (junior senior classes). I don’t say this to brag, I say this for comparison.

I am still a student at UC Berkeley 6 years later.

I took 7 units this semester.

I passed one class (taking it pass/fail) and got a C- in a class within my major.

And I was very happy to get the C-. Any passing grade is good news at this point in time.

Some people hate the side effects. Cognitive dulling is scary. My memory is much worse than it was when I was 19 (when symptoms began to show). I am now 24.

I live with my parents. I can’t do otherwise, and I am considered a disabled dependent with regards to my parents health insurance.

But…

the alternative was worse.

Before I was hospitalized I was losing the ability to speak and the ability to move. I cut myself with keys or my fingernails.

Some of the scarring is still visible.

But

I’m still moving, and I will graduate this upcoming semester.

There is hope. And there are reasons to take medication. Very good reasons. But I felt that I had to interject because the meds are not “wonder drugs”, they’re not “one pill solves everything” drugs. They’re drugs. They’re powerful drugs, and they have serious side effects.

Be well, and may your mind be at peace.
*******

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