I was born into a dysfunctional family, a Father who was an alcoholic,
(Jailed 36 time for assault and battery) and a Mother who suffered
Hypochondria and severe Manic depression. I have 2 half brothers
half sister who were raised as cousins by my Mothers family.
knew the truth about age 13. My Mother had been married a few
before she married my father.
My Father was very pugnacious and outspoken. WWII caused him to
rather traumatized in the spirit. He also could never take an
real or perceived, hence his arrest record for fighting. The
that ensued was only worthwhile as they both have said, in producing
me. I was raised an only child and visited my "Cousins" Often.
Between my mothers mental cruelty and my fathers dictatorial rule of
the roost, I somehow escaped fatal trauma. My mother once pushed
13 steps claiming I slipped. (This she did while cursing at me in
demonic voice I feared. This voice would haunt me often.
game was to wait till my Father went to work and lock me in a closet.
She would bang on the doors and say in the Demonic vernacular, "Everyone
is dead, and I am coming to get you now." After about an hour
"Game", she'd open the door and act as if she was hunting for me and
was soooooo worried. At other times, while swinging on the porch
the voice would appear and tell me I was to die for I was evil. [Loads
fun, my mother.])
My Father never knew about this, as he would have killed her.
her often, if she ever hurt me, he'd kill her. I never told,
loved them both. I didn't want to be with out my mother and a
jail. My Mother had erratic behavior for some time, and when
I was 7,
my parents divorced for my Mother refused to be treated for a very
perceivable mental illness. Father sent me to live with my Grandmother.
My Grandmother provided me with the warmth I needed for the next 5
years. (My Grandmother remains, even years after her death, the only Mother
acknowledge as a Mother. I see my Birth Mother as more of a distant
relative worthy of recognition at best.)
My Father raised me later, I dreamed about this, but found that an
Alcoholic Father was as good as no Father at times. I lived in
his tirades. I helped him stand to walk home from long nights
bar. I watched him physically pummel many who annoyed him.
I was not
hit but maybe once. (I knew, you don't mess with Dad.)
At School, I was quite a class clown, and considered by my peers, a
pugnacious moody type. (Kicked out of School for fighting a lot.)
also hung out with the Drug Addicts. It wasn't long before I
considered a Zombie, with a bad attitude. I had a few brushes
law as well.
I often had Suicidal thoughts, and was considered a passion driven sort
by friends. I was seen as a chameleon, in clothes, and appearance.
(Short, Long, and Mohawk Hair do's and Ripped up jeans, Tye Dyes,
Camoflauge, Leather, and three piece suits for styles. All depending
on my mood for the day.) Served in the US Army Reserve a short stint,
but was discharged for medical reasons.
Went to college, and there became "enlightened." I hung out with
friends, Vietnam era Vets and non vets mostly. I established
relationships with my siblings and cousins. I inherited massive
collections of Classic Rock of the 60's and suddenly was rebirthed
Got my degree, and couldn't find a job teaching. (Joked to my
I majored in "Unemployment") I landed a long series of never ending go
place jobs. The best I had was my Musical stint as impersonating
Lennon and Jim Morrison. In Bands, and a few other singing gigs.
of all trades, master of none)
I met my wife through her sister. We dated and as was my forte,
soon as someone cared I split. I didn't want her to be
in with a drug
addict that knew He couldn't quit. For "Her own good" I disappeared.
just stopped all contact. She was too pretty and too pure of
enter my warped world. (I know now, I was going through intense
cycling for some time before this incident, but it sort of helped wake me
I went on a trip to London to pursue a book I am writing on Jack the
Ripper. While there I went to Jim Morrison's Grave and had an
emotional upheaval ending in my vowing to kick the habit and find a nice woman
be with. One week after coming back home, and one year to the
stopped talking to my future wife, I called her up to explain and let
her verbally give me what I had due coming to me. I got her mother.
(My heart sank, as I just knew she wouldn't tell her daughter that
good guy called.) Actually, She told her daughter. "That
no good guy
called, and left his number." (Thank God she was an honest mother.)
My future wife called, and I expected to have her tell me how worthless
I was and that I was an Addict and Loser. She said she wondered
didn't call or come around. I layed it on the line. "Honey,
own good, I stopped seeing you, and It was because I was an Addict."
(In my case this was true, and she understood and believed it.
hear all the single guy's writing this down. It is true.
I was lucky
enough to find one strong woman who had been through all kinds of
personal Hell, and cared enough to give me another try.)
We got married one day after I had been in the emergency room agonizing
with Kidneystones. My Wife was 18 and I was 25. We had planned
for one week in a remote part of the state as a honeymoon. Destiny
played it's own hand. On the way to our Honeymoon, the agonizing
started again, and I had to go into the hospital. Admitted on
Honeymoon night. (AAGGGHHHHH!)
The series of operations were not successful, and all extremely
traumatic. Lots of anesthesia, and lots of trauma. (Let
me tell you
folks, the trauma is something out of the Inquisition, only high tech.)
It took another hospital and a whole year to rid me of the blasted
I worked a series of nothing jobs, and quit as often as I got fired.
Soon after all this Medical trauma, my wife noted remarkable
personality changes in me. I would say things and Have no idea I said them,
things and have no idea I did them. I would erupt in explosive
smashing things and putting holes in walls, and argue for hours.
no knowledge later of what happened and why my wife was crying.
Further more, when she said I did it, I would rage and accuse her of doing
as I had no memory.)
Soon, the horror came all too real as my wife was leaving me for a time
to collect her thoughts. I sat in a shattered room, with items
and left alone by the one I had loved. I once more thought of
(I would relay this at times I started to see I was doing something
my wife was hurting. I would tell her I would rather cash in,
hurt her, As the horrible realization was hitting me, I had a problem.
life was not my own.
She talked me into therapy, by saying it could be her problem, not
mine, and we should go together. (Viciously cunning, the female species)
was diagnosed with Bipolar Affective Disorder, and after long
of various medications and therapy, I was given Lithium and Luvox. (I was OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder)
My diagnosis cost me a good job at the place I worked. (Not listed
BP, but known by all the reason. This occurred not long after
my first child. I still am pursuing litigation, and advise others
so if it happens to them. Don't sit down and Take it.)
I am to be 30 in November. My Wife will be 23. I have two
one 2 years old and the other 6 months. I currently have a wonderful
job and am pursuing a new house. BP knocked me down hard, but
The signs were there early in life. (no one cared to notice)
anesthesia and trauma triggered my genetic predisposition to BP.
(Mother BP, Father: BP Affective, Brother BP, Sister OCD/BP, other Brother
Affective.) My father, though opinionated, no longer drinks and
Father I needed when Younger. (I cherish our time as he also is in
health.) My Grandmother is gone since 1985, and my mother gets
occasionally, but has regressed to her old mixed up self. (She
and out of treatment. Despite I know it is not her fault, we
close, and she remains as some distant relative in my mind.)
I look forward to providing my wife and daughters a happy, stable (as
can be for BP) home. Every time I get down, a smile from one
daughters or a hug from my wife helps me pull through. Sometimes
must grieve, rave, seek friends, withdraw, or cry and be close to the
family, but I get by. I am proud to be in the category of many great
musicians, poets, authors and unknowns who have had BP. (I am not always
happy about it, but proud to know the illness has effected the great and
small.) My Peace and Love To you all...................................Janus
Thank you Janus for your story. The more we collect we see our unique differences,
along with our uncanny "sameness" in the sharing of Bipolar Affective Disorder.
JANUS will be pleased to hear from anyone with comments, questions, or
simply in need of an ear to listen. Email