So I thought I had myself figured as far as sleep issues. Usually it was pretty impossible, but once I finally passed out I would sleep extra-long so my mind could catch-up on shutdown time. Occasionally I would have periods of sleeping 16+ hours a day.
My newest sleep problem has gone thus: Woke up late morning Thursday. Did not sleep at all Thursday night, Friday, Friday night, most of Saturday. As in no naps, no drifting off, zip, zero, nada. No mania or anything, just an almost complete brain shutdown by Saturday morning.
Late afternoon Saturday I got a bit of a reprieve. I finally slept some, two-and-a-half hours, max. Was up for a bit, then I got myself to the in between place, you know, drifting in and out but never going fully to sleep (thus in no way allowing my brain to recover). Two hours tops there, not that it matters because it didn’t help at all.
I’m blaming the PTSD for this. Lately, dramatic changes in behavior, reaction-sensitivity, and all things in any way tied to my mind (and often body) can be traced back to this, even if I can’t give an exact linear progression. Also, I’ve been grinding my jaw horribly (bruxism), both while awake and asleep, which I have done while awake before, but never in my sleep. That started with the latest post-traumatic stress episode.
My mind is completely blown (and not in a good way). I have no idea what to do. The only sleep meds left for me to try are barbiturates. One doctor brought it up entirely on her own as a possible, my two regular docs (PCP and psych) had previously said no way, and I get why. I may just try to get in touch with the one who suggested it. I know the risks and certainly don’t want to develop TD (tardive dyskinesia, I’ll explain it some other time), but I am getting so desperate here. I cannot understand why two doctors who know me and know bipolar well don’t view this with serious concern. Even if I don’t go manic, sooner or later I will start hallucinating hard-core and progress to full-blown psychosis from lack of sleep. In the meantime, my mind is pretty useless in general, and completely non-functional about the important stuff.
And this is really important stuff.
Also, I want to hunt down all of these assholes who publish anti-medication, anti-sleep med “articles” (none of whom I have found to be professionals – probably at anything) and who insist that you can manage everything “naturally” and that you just have to “reset your body’s natural rhythms” and make them spend a month with a completely unmedicated me. Let them see how insane and desperate I get, and how hard I struggle. Really I want to kick the shit out of them, but, well I was going to say seeing me in my deepest desperation would be more effective, but you can’t change the minds of ignorant reactionaries who are so used to listening only to themselves that they can’t hear or see anything else, no matter how true.
Moral of the story:
“To be, or not to be: that is the question:
Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles,
And by opposing end them? To die: to sleep;
No more; and by a sleep to say we end
The heart-ache and the thousand natural shocks
That flesh is heir to, ’tis a consummation
Devoutly to be wish’d. To die, to sleep;
To sleep: perchance to dream: ay, there’s the rub;”
~ William Shakespeare, Hamlet
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