I knew something was wrong, even as I sat there shaking from the rage. This wasn’t normal. I hadn’t been this angry for awhile, not enough to shake and be numb and feel like I’m about to explode.

My bipolar disorder was rearing its ugly head again.

The slightest things set me off. More often than not, this sudden onset of rage is directed at my boyfriend. He never deserves it, though. But I’m only faintly aware of this fact. Afterwards, when I’m no longer in Hulk mode and I’m back in Bruce Banner mode again, the guilt is immense because I have my awareness back. So I cry, because I know I’ve hurt the person I love and that in those moments of unfiltered rage, I was a pretty terrible human being.

In many ways, my bipolar issues mirror my mother’s own issues much too closely. I see myself acting out towards my boyfriend the same way she acted out towards my father. The way I manipulate and use my words to hurt people is the same way she carefully crafted her own hateful, rage-filled speeches to hurt her own children and husband.

I don’t want to be her, but at this point, it looks like that’s where I’m headed.

Therapy is an “option” for me. I have access and the means to go, but right now, I’m too scared to go. In addition to having to spill out my life story in regards to why I suffer from depression and anxiety, I don’t know if someone would take a teenager seriously when they say “I think I have bipolar disorder.”

But I lived with my mother for 17 and a half years. I know what bipolar disorder looks like. I wouldn’t fake it just to get attention. It’s a terrible, nasty thing. Those years of wishing I wouldn’t turn out like my mother were for nothing. I still turned out to be a monster.

Maybe I’ll get better, maybe I won’t. Maybe I’ll be stuck by myself to handle this disorder for the rest of my life. But no matter what, I want to try and get it under control. I’m tired of hurting other people. I’m tired of being so angry all the time.

QwpYQ6H5Kelley Cardell is a writer who recently moved from a small town in the sticks of Georgia to a bigger, much more alive town in South Jersey. They’re a homeschool survivor, an avid reader, and they identify as a genderfluid, bisexual person. A bigger dream of theirs is to get back in the studio life and dance en pointe once again.

Kelley can be found on her blog and Twitter.

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