Military Friend Needs to Get Help
[Home] [Bipolar News] [Bipolar Disorder] [Medications] [Treatments] [Bipolar Disorder/Job/School] [Disabilities] [Ask the Doctor] [Ask David] [Self-Injury] [Personal Stories] [Graham's Column] [Steven's Column] [Storm's Column] [Columnist Archives] [Suicide] [Community Support] [Family Members] [Expressions] [Greeting Cards] [Books] [Awards] [Links & Rings] [About Us] [Contact Us]


Q:  Military Friend Needs to Get Help

have a very very good friend who has bopolar disorder. The problem is he is in the military and if he seeks treatment for his illmess, he will be discharged from a profession he loves and the way of life that he has chosen. He loves our country and can't fathom the idea of being forced to leave the military.  however, his life is chaos. The bipolar is eatinghim alive. He rapid cycles, has severe issues with gradious behavior. A combonation of depression and the racing thoughts ahve caused him to turn to excessive drinking as a way to cope. He has great drive and potential. he is a great person who needs to find a way to get help with out the military taking action. What options does he have if any? Are there self help methods? herbal meds that help? Can you recogmend any clinics that he can go with confinentiality? Thank you

Dear Heather -- 
Sounds like without treatment his military career is in trouble anyway.  I do not have direct experience with treating active personnel in the military, so I don't really know how much truth there is to the idea that if he seeks treatment he'd be discharged.  I suppose he could get pulled of active duty or something like that.  I'll bet there's some inquiry you could do to see what exactly, from a valid knowledgeable (not hearsay) source, happens if someone in his position seeks treatment (e.g. call up or visit your local military post and ask in general terms what happens, theoretically, etc. etc.). 

Sounds like he might have bipolar II, the version without such severe mania that it becomes obvious.  Alcohol use alone could be a pretty severe problem for him in his position.  Read up about bipolar II so you can help him understand the bipolar I versus bipolar II distinction, which might help him move toward treatment on his own.  

Dr. Phelps

Published September, 2002


Bipolar World   1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Allie Bloom, David Schafer, M.Ed. (Blackdog)
Partners:  John Haeckel, Judith (Duff) 
Founder:  Colleen Sullivan

Email Us at Bipolar World


About Us  Add a Link  Advance Directives  Alternative Treatments  Ask the Doctor   Ask Dr. Plyler about Bipolar Disorder   Ask The Doctor/ Topic Archives  Awards  Benny the Bipolar Puppy  Bipolar Chat  Bipolar Children  Bipolar Disorder News  Bipolar Help Contract  Bipolar World Forums  Book Reviews  Bookstore  BP & Other mental Illness   Clinical Research Trials & FDA Drug Approval   Community Support   Contact Us  The Continuum of Mania and Depression   Coping   Criteria    Criteria and Diagnosis  Criteria-World Health Disabilities,  DSMV-IV   Dual Diagnosis  eGroups  Expressions (Poetry, Inspiration, Humor, Art Gallery, Memorials  Family Members   Getting Help for a Loved One who Refuses Treatment  Greeting Cards  History of Mental Illness  Indigo  Job and School  Links  Manage Your Medications  Medications   Medication and Weight Gain    News of the Day  Parent Chat  Pay for Meds  Personal Stories  Self Help  Self Injury  Significant Others  Stigma and Mental Health Law  Storm's Column  Suicide!!!  The Suicide Wall  Table of Contents   Treatments  Treatment Compliance  US Disability  Veteran's Chat  What's New?