Thursday, May 18, 2017

Intelligence, Sanity, and the Relativity of It All

Image result for crazy people humor

Today I spoke briefly by phone with a friend. He was aware that I had been ill, and asked if I was better. He spoke of the ups and downs or roller-coaster [I cannot recall his precise wording] or in some way made a reference to my rather yoyo-like existence. In the  course of the conversation he asked me if I'm bi-polar.

My initial answer was "No! Of course not!" I went on to explain that my emotions only go to extremes when I'm coming down with a physical ailment.

"That's still not normal, you know," he answered.

I thought for awhile about what he said, then called my mom. She and my dad are visiting my Aunt Cristelle and her family, including new baby Greenwich Marzipan Coriolis on the Isle of Man right now. I asked her point blank, "Am I bi-polar?"

She was less than forthcoming with an answer. She, as a licensed clinical psychologist, is theoretically qualified to make the diagnosis, but we all know that health practitioners of any sort, including mental health practitioners, should not diagnose or treat close family members.  Her answer was less than reassuring, but in the end was probably correct. She said that I've shown signs of emotional lability in the presence of physical illness since infancy. She could tell if I had an ear infection, which sometimes has no fever or observable symptoms,  as a baby because I would throw toys or bang them together or lie down and kick the floor. She said that, if anything, it's gotten worse since adolescent hormones became a part of the equation, though I no longer throw toys or bang them together or kick the floor. (I did threaten to smash my I-phone with a hammer or mallet, though.) Still, she said, if the problem goes away when the physical symptoms are treated, there's probably no point in a mental health diagnosis, much less treatment with mood-stabilizing drugs. In a worst-case scenario, she said, it would be bipolar disorder secondary to physical pathology. My dad, who was listening in her end of the conversation, chimed in that my body is screwed up enough as it is; adding Prozac or anything like it to the mix would almost certainly have made things worse for me.

I'm crazy, but only when I'm sick. And, even when symptomatic, I'm neither suicidal nor homicidal.  this would be great if I were sick less often.

P.S. My mom says my aunt's new adopted baby looks like a female infant version of Bruno Mars, which would indicate that her ethnicity may be anything from Puerto Rican to Filipino to Ashkenazi to Martian.

No comments:

Post a Comment