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Conor Bezane

Five Tips for Juggling Addiction and Mental Health in the Wintertime

You are dually diagnosed. You have bipolar and addiction. It’s a nightmare. Naturally.

Alcohol makes you feel warm and fuzzy all over, especially in the winter, when all you feel like doing is cozying up to the fire and enjoying a glass of wine or a fine Scotch or bourbon. But you’re not drinking anymore — and don’t forget that you feel better as a result. Your medication is working again. And though it may be tough, you must resist the temptation to drink or do drugs. Your mental health is significantly more important.

Red, Red Whine: 5 Tips for Surviving the Holidays Bipolar & Alcohol-Free

It’s holiday madness. Everyone around you is getting smashed. You want a drink too. But you can’t have one. Why? Because you are an alcoholic. And you are bipolar. What should you do? I’ve survived five Thanksgivings and four Christmases sober and come out on the other end unscathed. In fact, they were some of the best holidays in memory, mainly because I can remember them because I was sober.

Fear Of Taking Pills

Artificial happiness. That’s what I thought I’d be getting into if I went on antidepressants. I have to admit I was scared to even go there. Would I become a zombie? Would my emotions be flattened? What about apathy? Turns out these fears were, for me, irrational.

But the circumstances were terrifying. My initial diagnosis of depression occurred in December 2007, after I was coming off a stressful situation in which I worked on a live television show, MTV’s Presidential Dialogue with John McCain.

New to Dual Diagnosis? – Five Critical Life Hacks

There are 5.7 million bipolar people in the US, and 60 percent of them are addicts, according to the Epidemiologic Catchment Area study. Co-occurring addiction is more common in bipolar people than in any other psychiatric group. We drink and use drugs to stabilize our moods or to replicate the feelings of mania.