Might be getting diagnosed with bipolar in two weeks, but have questions?

Hypomania can look different on the surface from person to person. In my case, when I swing hypomanic, I start getting paranoid, arrogant, hostile, and have this seething anger that sits in my brain and just stews. That also comes with impulsiveness, hypersexuality, and severe irritability. I also can't sleep more than about 4 hours a night. I'm constantly awake, feel physically exhausted, but my brain just won't shut off.

That feels very similar to the time I slammed a Red Bull to wake up for a third shift. Just BOOM. Too much energy and no matter what I did it just didn't go away.

Something that helped me identify unhealthy behaviors attributed to my hypomania was comparing what my "up" times were like to emotionally healthy people. What was I experiencing when I wasn't depressed that was screwing up my life? It's not normal to not sleep and then not be tired. It's not normal to think that someone is going to break into your apartment so you lay awake at night and stare at the front door, waiting for them to come in for like six weeks. It really wasn't normal for me to think that I was better than anyone else. But all of these things and more were very normal for hypomania and my escalated cycles.

There's a lot of context that just isn't there when you read about these things on information pages and such. So, it's okay that you're not connecting with it. I didn't either when I was first diagnosed because most of what I read tended to focus on Bipolar people who experienced euphoria and brighter escalated cycles. I do not. Mine are basically all steeped in anger and dark, which people don't seem to write a lot of books, blogs, or whatever about.

Don't worry too much about trying to identify whether you are or are not right now. A better thing to focus on is preparing yourself to be as honest as you can with your psych during your eval. That's what will help them see the truth more effectively and hopefully get you closer to an accurate diagnosis.

/r/BipolarReddit Thread