Reaching Out

I'm a really bad at reaching out for help. So bad, that my sponsor has given me a list of people I have to ask for help. I REALLY don't think that I need to help from these people, because I KNOW what I need to do. PRIDE tries to stop me from asking for help from anyone. I'm really embarrassed at how strong my pride is, and how loud it is.

I have never been good at letting people into my life. The few close friends I have are friends because they were persistent in getting to know me; they literally wouldn't take no for an answer. I don't know how to make friends.

Part of the problem is this embarrassing little problem I have call BiPolar II. Most of the time I can "seem like the "life of the party" -- making jokes, taking an intense interest in other people and activities, and infecting others with their positive mood" (Web MD, 2010.) But, when I'm "blue" I withdraw and isolate. Then friends wonder why I won't call them back. My family gives up on me.

I try so hard to fight it. And, it comes down to this…I am realizing right now in this very second. I don't want to reach out for help because then, when I slip away for a month or two…be it in euphoria or depression – people don't understand. They call me a flake. I hurt their feelings. I guess I have found it better to just be alone.

So, I'm going to spend a week reaching out, even though it is almost physically painful for me to do so. With blogging, I can stop for a while and no one cares or notices. In real life, I become accountable to be present…and sometimes it is very difficult.

Photo from artview.com


  1. Oh my goodness, I had to google BiPolar11 as I could really identify with this, especially the friend part, it can make you feel so awful and guilty, I know ... blogging is a wonderful way to interact, without being there!! no pressure ... phew! :o)

  2. While I don't have BiPolar I can somewhat relate to what you mean here. I definitely go through periods where I don't want any social interaction beyond my husband, and sometimes even he's too much. I feel resentful and infringed upon when people call because I know I really should be calling them back - but then I don't and I end up feeling guilty and like I suck as a friend. Luckily I'm pretty good about emails so that helps maintain the connections but I don't know that would help you? One thing I started doing to accommodate my moodiness is explaining to people right off the bat that I'm not a phone person, period but they can always reach me via email. That way hopefully, they set their expectations accordingly. At any rate, I know what you go through is much more severe so none of this probably helps. Maybe explaining it to people ahead of time would help to eliminate disappointment all the way around. The true friends will likely understand or at least be able to tolerate the situation and not feel snubbed.

  3. @Recovery Girl...I don't know if what I go through is more severe. Perhaps clinicians are so quick to diagnose something other than normal behavior. Or at least normal behavior for an alcoholic. Thanks for your thoughts...truly. It helps to know that a) its not abnormal to go through periods where you don't want to talk to others and b) its not a cop out to just say, "i'm not a phone person."

  4. I'm glad I came back so that I could read Recovery Girls comment, it's so good to hear this expressed so accurately by you both. I don't think I've ever been able to explain it to anyone. I was genuinely 'excited' when I read your post and consequently I think my comment appears light hearted, it isn't, I really am glad to have read this... thank you for posting it.

  5. @Deborah - Your comment was fine. I still have so much embarrassment about my "diagnosis" I wonder if bloggers have that propensity to isolate and the world wide web becomes a way for us to reach out that feels safer?