And now we're going to toss it over to Bipolar Expert Answers Lisa Sundstedt. Lisa?
Welcome back to Bipolar Expert Answers. I'm your host Lisa Sundstedt. And I'm in studio with Dr. Marianne Gillow, noted psychiatrist. We have question from Darcie.
She says, "I'm 23 years old and bipolar. I'm currently in a serious seven-year relationship with my boyfriend who I dearly love.
The problem is I can't control my sexual attraction towards others. I just can't seem to stop no matter what I do. Do you have any advice? It would be greatly appreciated."
As a physician, what I have to say is it sounds like you may be going through a spell of what we call hypomania.
What hypomania is, is it means less than manic. It's literally descended from the word Latin hypo for less than and mania for manic state.
It's very common in a hypomanic state to have more energy than usual, not need that much sleep, be very productive, flirtacious, expansive and with that often comes a high libido.
So, as a doctor, I'd had to recommend you check in with your doctor. Make sure your medications are straight.
Make sure that you get to whatever your best baseline can be. Well now, I have to address this as a female tribal elder. Darcie honey, you're only 23, okay?
And she's been in the relationship for seven years.
Darcie, you have a lot to learn. You need to learn about yourself and you need to learn about men. I have to recommend that you get a psychotherapist. I think it's essential for you.
If you spend some time learning about yourself, your identity, you really look at the issue of, "What do I want in a man? What do I want in a lover?
What's right for me romantically? What's right for me sexually?"
Also, Darcie I'm bipolar and it helped a lot to go to a Twelve-Step Program called SLAA which is Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous.
It helps you deal with relationships and sexuality. And if you tend to be hypersexual, you can really get a lot of support from this group.
So, in that sense, what we're telling you Darcie is number one, look at the medical angle. Check out your medication and how this is doing.
Number two, get some psychotherapy to really try to understand yourself and what you're looking for in a man. And number three, 12 steps support groups might have a lot to offer you. Good luck.