I think my friend is Bipolar?!

Question: I think my friend is Bipolar.?
I have a friend who has been diagnosed with depression.
I became suspicious that she might be bipolar recently for a few reasons.
She has become extremely religious lately and is even making lists of how she can make her friends better Christians. This change didn't happen gradually it was like the flip of a switch.
She acts very strange in public, and doesn't really know how to deal well with social situations.
She is really easy to upset, and becomes very defensive about everything.
One minute she has kissed dating goodbye and the next she is madly in love with some new guy.
( i know this has happened several times in the past year, going from not religious to extremely religious and from being depressed to an abnormal amount of elation)

we are both sophomore's in college and nursing majors.

I know she see's a counselor for her depression, but she doesn't go during these periods of elation, so I'm not sure they get the full picture.

is there anything i can do.? If you need more information just ask!Health Question & Answer

My best friend has been bipolar since childhood. We are both sophomores in college too! Though I cannot simply diagnose whether or not your friend is bipolar, her "periods of elation" certainly sound like the manic stage of bipolar cycling. The way you say that the change was a "flip of a switch" also says to me that bipolar disorder is a possibility. My friend and I are both Christians, but he does not act the way that she does about his faith. However he does struggle during his mania with making big plans, which in general is a symptom of bipolar. During mania a person with bipolar disorder experiences something called "grandiosity," which in essence is the person thinking they are "better" than they really are (i.e. a child that thinks they can teach better than the teacher). They often feel on top of the world and may speak quickly or seem like they have very racing thoughts. Other cases see out of control behaviors such as spending too much money or promiscuity.

I am not sure how close you are to your friend, but if you feel comfortable I would encourage her to see a counselor weekly or on a regular basis, not just when she feels down. This way the counselor could more easily see what she is experiencing. also, I was able to attend one counseling session with my friend, which really helped us and I think we will do more of in the future. I am also thinking of going on my own to get ideas for coping mechanisms to help both me and my friend.

One other thing I'm doing: my own research. Every chance I get, I am reading books, articles and blogs, watching videos; anything to find out more (that's how I came upon your question!). All of the information I have found so far has helped me to understand him much better and understand how to cope and help him cope. You said you are a nursing major; if you ever get the opportunity to write a paper on a disorder (or just want to research on your own) I would encourage reading more on this. I am a special education major and that is part of the reason I began looking into the disorder so in-depth.

I cannot say for sure if your friend is bipolar or not, but I hope that this information helps.

God bless you, and I will pray for you and your friend.Health Question & Answer

You know, I think I'd try to get her to go see her counselor. If you can't get her to go in then I'd call down there and try to talk to her doc; or at least leave a message outlining the possible manic phase.

Normally I wouldn't suggest going behind a friends back like this but in this situation I worry that they may give her meds that can possibly trigger mania when there's a real possibility that she may be bipolar.Health Question & Answer

My bipolar brainHealth Question & Answer

Deppression can cause things like OCD, ADD and bipolar disorder. I personally have deppression and can tell you that i have recently become very religous. It's a way of coping. As for being easy to upset... that's common too. Acting wierd in public and the loving issue... that is slightly unusual. If it gets "worse" i would let her know what you've noticed.Health Question & Answer

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