During the lead up to my manic episode I had begun to lose patience with a lot of people. I was arguing with them all the time and could not understand why they were not cooperating with what I wanted them to do. Friendships slowly fizzled out. The pressure mounted from final year studies, graduate job applications and extra circular activities so then I went into mania very quickly.
During my manic episode I spent every penny I had. I bought lots of champagne, Swarovski jewellery and many other luxuries you would not normally spend your student loan on. I also saw it appropriate to start flirting around with this guy my best friend really liked.
I was a member of a business society at university, which I absolutely loved and I really liked the people. I felt so happy to be in that society but I ended up creating some sort of conspiracy theory that they were going to try and take over the University, or something like that. So I recall having many heated conversations with the committee about some of the problems I had with them.
They weren’t listening so I took it higher. I sat in the Business School all night and wrote a presentation about this conspiracy theory. As people began to arrive for their day at university I sat totally frozen not sure what to do. One of my favourite lecturers walked past and saw me and we had a chat. He then spoke to the student support officer who called my parents. I was home that evening and was admitted to hospital very quickly.
Once I was out of my manic episode I felt totally ashamed of my actions
Once I was out of my manic episode I felt totally ashamed of my actions, so embarrassed, I felt worthless and just could not believe I had let it happen. I wanted to make amends with friends but I found it so hard to speak to anyone. I was so paranoid that they would not want to speak to me or that they would upset me. It was easier to speak to no one, not many people wanted to talk to me anyway.
I even struggled speaking to one of my closest friends who I have known for 8 years. If she did not answer the phone I would sit there for hours thinking she wanted nothing to do with me. It was a horrible place to be in. Another friend from home who was at the same university came to visit. We had a nice time but she had to leave to get back to uni. When she left I screamed and I through a bowl of nuts across the floor. When my mum got back she tried to comfort me but I was too busy screaming about how unfair it was that this had happened to me, that I could not go back to university till September, that I have to take 5 types of medication every day. I just could not stand it.
My once chatty self had just disappeared
I made it back to university in September. I was so tired all the time though and I had put on so much weight. My once chatty self had just disappeared. The medication I was on made me sleep for 12-14 hours a night so I was missing lectures. I did not even bother going to many seminars. Even if it was on a topic I loved. I did not have the time due to sleeping so much to read the articles required for the seminar. If I did have a good idea in a seminar, or a good answer I would say nothing. It would mean people would look at me and people would probably think my ideas were rubbish. So I just did not go.
I don’t think many people knew I felt this way. Occasionally random people who I knew would say "Oh hi Felicity great to see you how are you? We should meet up sometime!" These people probably did not care how I was at all. People say "how are you?" out of courtesy sometimes. Well that’s how I felt at the time. When people said we should meet up I would ask them to Facebook me. Far easier than me texting them because they would probably not reply so I would feel even more rejected.
I eventually made a few close friends from different modules
I had a lot of support from the Student Support Office at the Business School who were just brilliant. So were all the lecturers once they knew. I eventually made a few close friends from different modules but at times I struggled to maintain them. But we are still friends now so I think I did OK eventually and I ended up getting a 2.1 as well as one of the “Future Leader in Healthcare” awards!