I have bipolar type 2 and while I've only had three diagnosed manic episodes I have been moderately to severely depressed for at least the last 10 years. I take all manner mood stabilisers, anti-psychotics and anti-depressants but I look back on my life and all the amazing adventures I had as a younger adult travelling the world and working for the most respected newspaper in the UK. Now I work for a successful but mindlessly parochial Scottish newspaper where the stories are all crashes, child porn and "tragic tots" losing their brave battle with cancer (who has a cowardly battle with cancer?)
But I'm rambling. My point is that, no matter how hard I try, no one at work realises how debilitating bipolar is. Only 22% of patients can hold down a job. I have tried to engage with HR and the company's doctor but the HR woman admitted she had Googled "bipolar" on the train on her way to meet me and had no idea it is incurable. I see a psychiatrist fortnightly and take 11 drugs a day (half to counteract the side effects of the other half).
How do I get my employers to grasp the seriousness of this chronic, life-sapping disease? Has anyone had a positive experience with employers?
I'm left doing the most junior of jobs even though I ran a whole art department in London. It's a hopeless, unsatisfyingmiserable drudge of an existence.