I'll be calling a psychiatrist next week. Thank you, Vickie, for offering to ask your doctor if he knows anyone good down here. I checked our insurance & it looks like there are over a dozen psychiatrists on our plan. Yes, we have insurance, & my copay is $30 for a specialist. It won't cost that much. I'm just tired of doctors and the drugstore. It was simply an excuse, I suppose.
I talked with Mark last night, showed him the test that I found online to see if I should investigate bipolar II (AKA mood swings without mania), & I scored in the "GO SEE A DOCTOR" camp. He read the list & said he's seen these signs in me for over a year.
One of the explanations on the website I found says that antidepressants can make bipolar II worse. They can cause you to cycle through moods more quickly, as quickly as DAILY mood swings. I felt like I'd been punched in the gut when I read what antidepressants can do to you if you actually have bipolar II. It's exactly what I've been going through, getting increasingly worse.
I have NOT self diagnosed myself, even though it kind of sounds like it, doesn't it. I am seeing a doctor as soon as possible. I just did the little test & am recognizing a lot of symptoms that I didn't even know were symptoms! As in, my husband asking me, "What's wrong with you?" when I felt great & happy & silly. I just thought I was feeling good when I'd make funny comments sometimes. Apparently I can be irritating, instead of funny, when I'm like that. Turns out that's a symptom--"people think you act oddly." Who knew. This happened to me in high school a lot, too. So it's not just Mark's opinion that's skewed or something.
I have to tell you, if this is indeed what's wrong with me, I feel a little freaked out. I don't know why I think it's OK to have depression but not bipolar disorder. Maybe because of all the negative connotations that come with that word. I don't know. I just know it's going to be hard to accept. Interestingly, on the "non medication" treatment list I read, one of the first is "accepting that you have the disorder." I guess that means I'm not alone in feeling this way.
Mostly I just feel relieved that I've finally figured out I need help.
I'm praying whichever doctor I work with will respect my insistence that I will not take any drugs that cause weight gain. It looks like there are one or two medications that don't, but the rest do. I'm just not going to medication weight gain land again. Ever. God willing, I won't have to.