• Yasmin Phillips

Money Management

Updated: Sep 3

A common issues for those living with bipolar is overspending and poor money management. I know this has been a major problem for me because of the impulsivity that accompanies hypomania and the good feelings associated with spending.

True shopping high; pupils dilated, heart racing and a sense of euphoria is something most living with bipolar can understand during manic episodes. Impulse buying is a huge issue and pressing stop is almost impossible when manic, you have to prepare in advance for manic episodes and mold it to you specifically.

In my experience, mania is like having an elastic view of reality, where regular limitations seem negotiable, including the balance in my bank account. (E. Stewart, 2018, "My Bipolar Disorder Makes Me Want to Spend Money I Don’t Have")

A good read, look it up.

"The disorder can also lead to impulsive spending sprees, usually during manic episodes. These can extend to cars, holidays and computers, costing thousands of dollars, as irrational decision-making takes hold. It may be wild “self-medicating” shopping sprees, unwise investments, extravagant gifts to family, friends or charity, or spending a fortune on gambling."(J. Collingwood, "Spending Sprees in Bipolar Disorder", Oct 2018)

Good Morning, Good Afternoon and Goodnight

Sometimes you feel every emotion possible in the span of a few minutes, as if the whole day is happening to you at once. I the the movie the Truman show, because in times of mania one can also have paranoid and delusional thoughts, like my whole life is a show layed out so why not give them a show (#Trumanshow). Being reckless, going on spending sprees, promiscuity, sleepless nights burning energy at 110 mph, is damaging to the mind and the body and often what following is a physically and emotionally painful depression that lasts and lasts and goes on even longer. I often have welcomed the mania until I remember what follows. Getting and staying "stable" is the number one goal, everything else falls to the wayside. Who gives a damn about putting the mask on first to save yourself and others if you planned to die after the plane landed. Just put it in perspective. Bipolar isn't something you can get over, pick yourself up from or even heal yourself by yourself alone. It will tap you on the shoulder and remind you, "I'm still here with you always."

In my manic state I can spend every dime I have plus some that I don't. At a low point I had to payday loans and a short-term loan that ate up my check every week and left me and my kids almost homeless. This is not an addiction, not an issue that can go away because your wiser now and follow all the rules. When mania takes old is when it comes back for me and the euphoria I feel from shopping at those times is in a way addictive. So in times of clearness, I plan for what can happen when manic and now have accounts with waiting periods before all money can be released r touched. Plan now for the bad days that may come ahead.


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