Hey guys. It’s Hannah. So I came out outside today. It’s lunch time. It’s a busy time. I’m looking around and I just randomly thought like: Out of all of these people, one out of five people have a mental health condition. So like 15 people are bound to have a mental health condition here – bipolar disorder, depression, schizophrenia. But these are all working people; like how do we tell? If we could draw it, what mental health conditions look like, what depression looks like, what would we draw? It’s probably far from what you see out here, just because of the stigma and what you see in the movies. You know, like these deranged human beings. And I’m sure you would never think that I had a mental, you know I had bipolar 2 and I struggle mentally. And I dealt with a lot of guilt. And I saw a comment the other day on one of my YouTube videos from Krista. She said, “Hannah, you’re young, you’re pretty. You know, you seem like you have it together.” – which by the way thanks Krista – “I just don’t get it I just don’t get why you struggle mentally.” And it’s a valid point. And I wasn’t offended because you know, it’s good we talk about this. I felt so guilty for so long. I saw everything on the outside. I thought it’s impossible for someone to have this and then struggle so badly inside. The guilt keeps you from seeking treatment. It did with me. It did with me. You know, I got told I was a spoiled brat. That was my problem. And then, six months later, I ended up in a mental hospital. So comment below. Share your experience because we have to reduce the stigma. It’s dangerous. People don’t come forward. For me, when I was diagnosed with bipolar 2 disorder, I would look in the mirror and I did not see that image that society and stigma had told me that bipolar disorder looked like. So it took me a long time. Please leave your comments in the comment section below and I’m going to enjoy the rest of the day. And I hope you do too. So I’ll see you next time. Bye.

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26 thoughts on “What Does a Person with Bipolar Disorder Look Like?

  1. Any mental health condition is like trying to explain what the color red looks like to someone who has been blind all their life. How would you achieve that? You will never fully make them understand, as you do, but at least you can try. What bipolar looks like to me, may not be what it looks like to you. You will never know unless your honest to people who ask.
    Is this mental issue going to effect me by association, do I make friends with someone who has a mental health issue?
    If you have understanding this should be no problem. When you know yourself it easy, if you don't know yourself it could be difficult.

  2. Hi I'd like to make a video but not sure of what. I guess I can contribute. I do live with schizophrenia and bipolar tendencies. I've been diagnosed since I was 13 and it runs in the family.

  3. I have clinical depression ptsd and generalised anxiety disorder some people I thought were friends all my life have abandoned its horrible that people don't understand it

  4. Thanks for the video Lauren. I have recently been diagnosed with bi-polar 2 disorder as well. I also ended up in a behavioral psych unit. While I was there, I still didn't feel that I needed to be there. You asked what it looks like in human form? Well…. I was a special education teacher for 20 years and I am now filing for retirement. My therapists tell me I have had parts of this since childhood. I feel as if I am in the same space as you. I also look in the mirror and wonder, how has this happened to me? Why me? I don't look any different than any other teacher. It makes me cry as I write this now. I am seeing a therapist and taking meds, yet, I still cry as I type. I'm only 45 years old and all I can think of is what's next? What will I accomplish? And yet, I have this disability that people don't seem to understand. I feel as if they look at me and think I am pretending that I have something that I don't. All because I can look so normal…..

  5. I m sicilian n everytime that i go out of my land every people says that i m a girl of mafia 😭 n when i says that i have egipthian origin they says that i Think to look like Cleopatra lol i wanna say that i m a bipolar ll n i m a good powerful girl n i m gonna kill every fu**in people that says this shit 🔫🗡 lol أحب (love ur self)

  6. Well said and received. There is no standard way that people with bipolar look. everyone is a different variable in the big picture and that means each of us is different enough to be unique.

  7. In my case, I haven't got diagnose with any mental health condition yet. Although, I've been struggling with many issues since I was very young. I'm now 27 years old, and I'm facing many challenges in life. Many of my thoughts and actions have gotten out of control, and I'm hurting people I love, and myself in the process. I decided to look for professional help. Because I know that what I'm experiencing is something out of the ordinary. I've been really depressed for very long periods of time, and feeling like in a rush of caffeine a little longer. And when the down comes after the rush, I get to do very erratic things. For example, I tend to break up with every person I'm with for no reason at all. I just blind myself, and think they don't love me enough and push them away. Then when I come to my senses, I try to explain to them my situation, but I don't have good answers to give them because I don't understand myself what is going on. I spent to much money without even realizing it, and then I get anxious because what I just did. And many more things I've done that don't characterize my persona. I tend to feel really guilty, and hurt… somewhat broken and confused. This is why I step up and I'm reaching out. Because I just don't wanna do this anymore. I've had many suicidal thoughts, and attempts. I'm just someone fighting this every day. This is just one of the "good" days, until a downfall comes without permission. And if I had to draw depression, I'll make a big fat cloud… with two sides… one very bright white and the other side black and rainy. Because that is mostly how I feel. A walking cloud similar to a ticking bomb.

  8. I'm Bipolar. I don't trust my own happiness because nearly any time I feel happy its just a manic episode and I'm close to making a bunch of dumb decisions. Nobody takes it seriously, but to live on a never-ending cycle of extreme ups and downs without any logical catalyst does so many things to fragment my consciousness to the point that I am in constant metacognition and I get so stuck in my head and if I let go for a moment I may be victim to a manic episode where I take a major risk and get hurt or a depressive episode where I just can't get out of bed for 3 days then I lose my job and my home and life is one gigantic existential nightmare, and sure, you can use drugs to help some of it, but its like using a sword to whittle a toothpick, and there's no cure and there's no hope its just an endless cycle of up and down and its no wonder so many people opt to get off the ride early.

    I don't believe in a soul – the mind is all we are. To be a mind that is fundamentally flawed is to be in constant existential pain… and most of the time, people just think you're being lazy..

    Good luck to all of us who suffer

  9. AMEN. You couldn’t have said this any better!!! It’s up to US to fight and reduce the stigma. We are creative, loving, smart, brilliant, working people! Bipolar does NOT define us but it is a PART of who we are.

  10. I am still learning, i am 57 I raised four kids, went to work, yet now I wonder all those years, i stuggled. I was always in abusive relationships. Not sure if that is cuz I am mentally ill. Yet I use to be pretty, young. I have always been hurt by people. I just started medicine, because I was not sleeping and i kept cleaning. SO thx. I am hoping to do betterand learn more, Peace, Namaste

  11. Hannah, I appreciate your view on this and agree we need to be more willing to openly talk about these mental health issues. I myself have experienced misunderstanding and judgment from others who seem to be clueless about what is actually going on. No matter how much I tell people I'm not feeling well, I'm tired, I'm depressed, I have constant headache etc etc they always say the same things, "You only get out what you put in to life" or "Why don't you come over for a few drinks? That'll cheer you up". They just don't get that I feel so shaky within myself – along with a thousand other negative sensations – that I struggle to put together a cohesive sentence, the last thing I want to do is be seen by people in such a state! How embarrassing! I feel that I'd rather die than be that embarrassed. I've struggled now for about 20 years. No one ever indicated to me that I might have a serious mental health problem and whenever I tried to describe what I was feeling – even when it may have been a massive departure from how I'd felt a short time ago – I was always invalidated. Even a professional I once saw seemed to take a very superficial approach, simply telling me I was stressed. But it felt like way more than that. I have always naturally hidden how I've felt, I guess instinctively, and while I'm not sure why, I suspect over the years I have become a master at hiding what's really going on inside of me. And this perhaps has only served to make any diagnosis so much more elusive. I've only recently begun to consider the possibility that I may suffer from something like bipolar disorder after some extreme upheaval in my life and would like your opinion. Have I simply been suffering stress? Depression? An anxiety disorder? Messed up personality? Just a bit loopy? Unfortunately at the times I've experienced the most dramatic shifts in my mood into either complete craziness or utter despair, the people around me were unable to recognise how serious my mood change was. During one bout of very serious depression where very dark circles appeared under my eyes for the first time in my life and I felt doomed, the best advice I got was "Get over it" from my Dad and "Here, take some codeine" from my Mum. I love my mum and dad very much and I don't blame them for my ruined life, they just didn't know any better. However such inappropriate feedback from family really does highlight the importance of getting the right kind of professional advice, help and treatment when it is needed. Preferably as early as possible. My early resignation to the idea that my feelings and behaviours were simply the result of my own flawed personality and make-up has undoubtedly affected my life negatively. When you believe what people say, for example, "You just need to relax" it implies subconsciously that you are at fault for feeling anxious in the first place, that your approach is flawed somehow and you just need to "Get it together". This misappropriation of blame for the cause of spontaneous anxiety only serves to disguise the true cause, an overactive primitive region of the brain, the amygdala – over which a person has zero control – which is in fact just trying to help you survive as a biological being by providing fear of something it perceives may hurt you. Such understanding can help enormously and will never come from "talking it over" with friends or family. It is just essential to get professional help. Anyway, I digress. Seeking your opinion… In my own life, I have experienced all kinds of craziness over the last 20 years, felt extremely polarised levels of fear ranging from being afraid to even get out of bed to having no fear whatsoever of anyone or anything. I've held extreme beliefs about myself at different times ranging from "I'm one of the most amazing people on the planet!" to "I am a complete and utter f*cking loser!". After having studied electronic engineering for two years during 2013/2014 with great success, in 2015, for a full year I was in what could best be described as a manic state. Just absolute craziness. However, for almost the entire time I felt absolutely fantastic! Best I'd ever felt. I only needed about 3 hours a sleep a night as I was so bursting with energy it seemed my brain could not be contained to sleep any longer than that. I was up around 3am each morning but I wasn't studying. I was out skateboarding (at age 41), stealing furniture from front yards, getting involved in road rage incidents, and yelling out loud ridiculous statements like "Get out of my way you fucken moron, I'm trying to skate here!" followed by hysterical laughter. I was digging up shrubs and trees freshly planted in schoolyards to put in my own garden, I was stealing LED garden lights from peoples' front yards, I was climbing over barb wire fences to access car parks with smooth concrete to practice skateboard manoeuvres. I felt invincible and nothing could touch me, nothing could hurt me. I was hyper-alert, hyper-vigilant and my senses had become enhanced somehow (that's how it seemed) and I was able to perceive things that no one else could see. I was going to become a very influential person because I suddenly had this amazing power. I started pawning and selling most of my stuff to fund my new adventures as I never seemed to have enough money. I started using my new amazing skills and total lack of fear to try and track down criminals in my area and spent a few nights walking around late at night on my own carrying assorted weapons in readiness to take these criminals down. After I got bored with this, I started developing an interest in dressing as a girl, and what started as painting my finger nails with polish, within a few weeks became a full blown cross dressing experience. I was exhilarated to go out in public dressed as a girl, it was the most exciting thing in the world and my attitude was "I can do whatever I want and no one can stop me". Eventually the novelty wore off of this too and I started developing an interest in setting things on fire. I started quite a few fires in my area late at night (mostly just bins and grass fires – I was careful never to endanger a person in any way – I actually always thought it out very carefully before hand to ensure the fire would be limited) over a period of a few weeks, using liquid fuel propellants and cotton towels. Hearing the sirens of the fire engines would give me an enormous thrill. This period was very brief and I soon moved onto other things, far too many to list everything here. But the common theme with most of my behaviours was total lack of fear, a belief that I could do anything I want, and an intense need for stimulation. Besides harmless pursuits such as developing a multitude of new hobbies including herb gardens, painting skateboards, LED lighting, creating terrariums, flower arranging, interior decoration, security alarm systems, and researching explosive materials, I also found myself pursuing danger & excitement. I was physically tackled by security personnel a number of times for various reasons and found myself talking to police officers sometimes almost daily. Perhaps my most extreme behaviour – which occurred toward the end of the year, shortly before I became depressed – was setting off an explosion in the front yard of my house in order to wake up my housemates. My housemates had gone to bed early on a friday night and this had annoyed me greatly because I wanted to 'party'. My thinking was "What is wrong with these guys? It's friday night! What the hell is wrong with these guys?!! Oh my god, I can't believe it." And then my thinking quickly turned to how I could wake them up. I figured a large container of butane gas thrown into the hot coals of a fire in the front yard should do the trick. And it certainly did. After the explosion – which caused much of the yard to catch on fire, a shockwave through the air which made the windows of the house rattle violently, the ground to shudder and the neighbours to all come out in a panic "What was that? Are you guys okay? etc" – I was very lucky not to get in trouble with the police. A number of units were despatched to our street and they used spotlights for an hour or so to search the entire area however luckily it seems the direction they'd been given by one of the neighbours was misleading as they were focusing their search in the wrong area, I guess sound travels strangely at night. The whole time I was sitting in the dark on our balcony absolutely thrilled with what had happened, and laughing hysterically. Full belly laughs. I was quite pleased with myself because what had devolved into a boring friday night, I had redeemed and turned into an exciting, fun time. It was not long after this it seemed best if I moved out of this house and I did so, and shortly after moving into my new share house I became depressed. That was at the start of 2016 and I have been severely depressed ever since. I've installed a couple of extra locks on my bedroom door and I only feel safe when I'm in my room with the door locked to keep people from hurting me. I feel that so long as I'm in my room, no one can hurt me, no one can put me down and no one can even look at me. The problem is I have a constant headache, regularly feel like killing myself, and see no point in living life whatsoever. I'm in a prison, and even though I recognise that it could well be a prison of my own mind, I can't seem to find a way out. I tried anti-depressants and they did absolutely nothing. Another type made me feel worse. Do you think it's possible I have some form of Bipolar Disorder? And that perhaps a medication such as lithium carbonate might help me?

  12. I’m 15 and I really think I do have some mental problems I really don’t know what exactly. I’ve told my parents about it and they were like”You only need attention.” I mean I have episodes like when I cry and I am depressed. I hate my own body,I even starve myself in those episodes. I get panic attacks. I once even cut my leg on purpose. I also have other episodes when I’m irritated with no reason,I over work,I get again panic attacks, I am also overly happy,I binge on eating and I’m super confident,even being arrogant

  13. Bipolar is going to bed feeling relatively content with life and your circumstances, and waking up to feeling like all the clouds in the world are downpouring inside your heart. It's that feeling of sadness, loss or maybe the sorrow akin to what accompanies burying your first pet–except you don't have a pet, and you're not sad about any "thing."
    It is utter loss of motivation. You struggle to find the will to put your feet on the floor in the morning. Every step you take is labored and exhausting, and you ask yourself, "Why bother? I feel this awful, and nothing is even 'wrong'!!! What if something 'really happens'? Can I really stand this clouded, dark, dreary heart feeling any more?"
    You might start to judge yourself. You might think, "What is wrong with me? I don't like this feeling but why can't I snap out of it?" This, for me, would be answered, "It's because I am a stupid person. I have 'things' to do but this dreary and dark mood is pinning me down. And I am too stupid and weak to fight it. I have bills to pay. I have to go to work but I can barely uncurl and get out of bed. Ugh I'm going to lose my job, and everything else, and then I'll really be depressed. But I can't do anything about it." This can lead to, "I hate myself. I hate that, with all the beauty and fun in the world, I am imprisoned within my emotions, and I can see the beautiful side, but when I go towards it, I walk straight into the iron bars of depression. I'm a locked in a dark cage, like a hungry person, inches away from the smorgasbord, but I just can't reach far enough, and I don't know where to find the damn key!!!!!
    Most people can't help me because my cage is invisible to them. They wonder why I stand apart, not enjoying and participating, but it's hard to explain. I say, "I'm not feeling good," and I'm told, "Get out into life, you'll feel better then," but they can't see the cage.”
    I begin to think, "I hate this. Will this ever end? I don't know how it started, so, of course, I can't stop it. Other people don't even know it's there. I. Am. Helpless."
    Nobody likes to feel helpless. It's our survival instinct to protect ourselves from destruction. You can't do that if you're helpless. But you can't be destroyed. Maybe self-destruction would work. Quick and painless? So the suicidal thoughts begin to form.
    "I can't take this. I wouldn't have to deal with this if I were dead.
    It would all be over."
    Bipolar is going to bed, feeling exhausted, defeated, and hopeless and waking up to a frigid, icing February Saturday, and the sun is shining. And so is my heart. I sit up on the couch, where I petered out a few hours ago, and my clock is ticking a cheerful "Hello!" I lay back and close my eyes, and begin to time my breath to my clock's steady staccato. Breathe in, 2, 3, 4, hold, 2, 3, 4, breathe out, 2, 3, 4. I rest, taking in the sounds of my neighbors rising and stirring that filters through the apartment walls.  I too rise for whiz and a glass of water. I come back to the couch. What am i going to do today? There are a couple of errands that need to run, but I'm pretty free. I probably check out some meetups today. Or call a couple of friends. Or whatever I want really.
    Life is peaceful.
    Bipolar is living with that first scenario every day for a week. I don't know if when I wake up if I will feel better. But I force my feet to the floor, and take one more labored, exhausting step after another. Because I know Scenario 2 will come (it typically takes a week) and suddenly I really won't care. Somehow in the night, a switch flipped and I burst from my cocoon bright and beautiful, like a butterfly, flittering towards the sun and leaving my dull, ragged prison of depression behind.
    My bipolar is a yin-yang. On my bright sides, nothing can shake my happy, and I'm talkative and ambitious. I also tend to spend too much money at the mall. But I have learned how to check myself. On my dark side, my days are long and my nights are restless and sleepless. When I am home, I channel it into cleaning or cooking. Or I binge on Netflix till i pass out. I have friends I can call. Sometimes I tell them I'm having a bad day, sometimes I just let them talk. Both sides are sprinkled with short term forgetfulness. But I manage it.
    It took me the past 2 years to get to this point. I cried alone a lot in despair, because I didn't know what to do. I went to counseling that loving friends paid for. But I didn't feel it helping. But since I started driving, I had to stop counseling and medication. It's been 2 years. I still get up really high and down really low and it is so hard. The first scenario was my life last week. I'm just starting my uptick. I did not actively contemplate suicide but the thought did pay a visit more than once.
    But it's like having any other disease. I have learned to adjust my expectations of myself and my ability and do only the bare minimum on the hard days. Sometimes that's still hard. I pace myself. I capitalize on my mania energy to get things done. I force myself to eat since I forget on my manic days.
    I have been struggling financially for the past 4 weeks. I have cycled twice during that time and my situation has not really changed. A couple years ago I would have been alarmed that my depression didn't correlate to my situation. But I've since learned that depression is independent of circumstances and is only half of my bipolar. But i also know that depression IS half of my bipolar; and my bipolar is MY reality.
    So I live with it. It's like riding a bull. Sometimes I'm riding high, sometimes I get thrown and I have to regroup. In a downside the other week, I called a close friend and asked to spend the night, so I wouldn't hurt myself. I didn't tell her the gory details, just that I wasn't feeling good. She understood. I am no longer ashamed that I have bipolar disorder. I do not tell everyone because not everyone is knowledgeable or respectful. My dad makes "crazy person" jokes sometimes so I limit my contact with him. I ignored his calls for a full week on a downside because he brings me down. Part of me doesn't want to but I understand that he aggravates my illness if I see him too often. Like an allergen. My friend TiYhana or Joe take away from my depression and talking to Molly is very uplifting and grounding. I sometimes wish my family was my support group, but my support group IS my family and they make life bearable and beautiful. So i spend time with them.
    I am currently writing this on the upside of my bipolar. I don't know when I'll crash. It may be a week but it could be 3. I know it's coming but I'm not going to fret or fight it. Like an amputee perhaps, sometimes I need assistance. But I have adjusted to live in my own reality. I am choosing to love ME and make ME happy through all of it. And even when I try something and it doesn't “work,” I know than every effort I make to LIVE WITH my bipolar is a tiny gust of wind under my wings. By itself it can be insignificant or even cause turbulence. But I'm choosing to become a better pilot and if all else fails, I'll find a soft field to “safely crash” (land) into.

  14. I need to have more of an actual conversation about bipolar. I want to know & understand "exactly why" I have been diagnosed bipolar. I have had many medical professionals tell me "everyone is bipolar". This is definitely very confusing, disturbing, concerning & all around frustrating especially when you have had a hard life in many ways which causes similar personality disorders. Bipolar is to easily & readily diagnosed. There's more to it than just a mental disorder

  15. I'm bipolar, my girlfriend and mom even said it, they believe me, they just won't do anything about it.. What do I do? Even my mom jokes around saying she's going to give me pills to calm me down but I don't know 😕

  16. It used to simply be mood swings
    Everybody has them
    It's when it goes to extremes of anxiety and or depression or happens too fast or no swing that it becomes an issue

  17. Old video but I just wanted to add a comment. I don’t think you can see who has mental health issues just by looking at people. It’s so big yet so subtle only people who have a real relationship with you will notice even before you tell them…
    Happens to me so often with friends or acquaintances who will discreetly help me notice that my speech is faster and jump from a subject to another like a high speed train…
    Then I would know they are very much aware than I thought

  18. I just do not know about disclosing it, especially a guy. I have received all the negative comments and called every name in the book. There are only two people with their ears and brains opened. One wants to understand and another is trying to understand. I enjoy sharing your videos. Yes, talented and beautiful people can have mental illnesses. LOL

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