My reaction to the overall illness can be summed up by one word—shock.  When most people think of bipolar disorder, they think of their friends or their parents and how they are always moody.  This is how I viewed it too.  I knew that bipolar disorder consisted of alternating bouts of sadness and euphoria, but I did not understand the gravity of these cycling moods.  I, like many, believed that the disorder was mainly just constant moodiness.  After doing this project, however, I realize the severity with which these moods affect a patient.  I had no idea that it was even possible for someone to go from a deep, dark depression to a manic or euphoric state of being so quickly.  When I suffered from my own depression, I was in a perpetual state of sorrow and hopelessness.  If someone told me that there are others who feel the same but switch to extreme elation in a matter of days, I would not have believed them.  To be cured of such depression seemed almost impossible, especially not only being cured but being happy.  I lacked any and all motivation to get up in the morning, so reading how someone could stay up for hours and barely require any sleep to function blew my mind.  The seriousness of manic-depressive illness is unknown to so many people in the world which is such a shame.

I truly gained so much knowledge from this project and I am so thankful to have learned what I did.  Not only have I learned about manic-depression, but I have learned about other disorders as well.  Meeting with individuals from other groups was an enriching experience and really added to my accumulation of knowledge.  The disorder I found most fascinating was schizophrenia, with its delusions and fine line between reality and imagination.  The schizophrenic becomes consumed with his or her alternate universe and cannot always tell the difference between it and reality.  To live in a world all your own is so interesting and to live it for just a day would be an enlightening experience.  OCD is also an intriguing illness.  Everyone has their own ticks, but to experience them on such an intense level is nearly unimaginable.  When I see people biting their nails, or playing with objects, it is so ordinary that nobody thinks they may actually have a disorder.  Now that does not mean that everyone who has a specific quirk is OCD, but it is possible.  I will forever remember the insight I gained from this project and the affect it had on me.

Ms. Harris
1/1/2013 12:44:25 pm

Carly,
I am so glad you learned so much from this project. I know having depression can be difficult and sadly, many people do not realize the severity of these disorders unless they live with someone who has them. Thank you for being so honest and learning so much! I am glad you enjoyed this project.

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    My name is Carly and I am a senior in high school. This blog is being used as my "journal" for my final project in Psychology. Enjoy!

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