At the age of 25 I was diagnosed with being bipolar or more commonly known as manic depression. When I was manic I couldn’t control my paranoid thoughts. I experienced what the doctors call a brief psychosis.
During this psychosis I thought people were trying to hurt me and my family. If I saw something on TV I thought they were sending me messages through the TV. I believed I was being watched and convinced myself people were following me. Similarly I thought my phones were being tapped and I refused to talk on the phone.
Over the next 20 years I was hospitalized at least six times. Each hospital stay lasted a minimum of three weeks at a time. Usually what precipitated the hospitalizations was a decision on my part to go off of my medication. I thought that I could think better without it and that I would remember more. I also thought that the medication slowed me down and made me lethargic. I was wrong!
The medication has helped change my negative thinking patterns into more positive ones and is helping me to think more clearly. These changes along with my growing faith in God are helping me to live a better quality of life. Currently I have been able to go off of ODSP (Ontario Disability Support Plan) and I am fully supporting myself. I now have two jobs. One of my jobs I am able to give back to society as I am in the health care field.
I have received support from CMHA HP (Canadian Mental Health Association Huron Perth) for about 16 years now, when I lived in Norfolk County and now that I live in Huron County. CMHA HP in both places have been very helpful to me. I cannot say enough about how much their help has meant to me.