Bipolar Disorder or Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde Syndrome?

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Bipolar disorder is characterized by two poles forever in opposition and commonly referred to as mania and depression. My personal experience with this disorder is a sort of like Dr. Jekyll and Mr Hyde. Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde are two characters or technically one in Robert Louis Stevenson’s Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde. In Stevenson’s novella, Dr Jekyll takes a concoction of chemicals which transform him into the more brutish person of Mr Hyde. The two are polar opposites with Dr Jekyll being rational and calm whereas Mr Hyde is a brute who is quick to anger and violence. The two opposing poles of mania and depression in bipolar disorder come to represent more of a split in personality than in disposition sometimes. Depression or as I like to call it my Dr. Jekyll stage is my resting personality, my baseline if you will, and mania is Mr Hyde. This opposition can often feel like a split in personality or rather a split between my id and ego and superego as characterized by psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud.

The Psychology Book: Big Ideas Simply Explained breaks down the meaning behind “the id” in Sigmund Freud’s mind construct which comprises of the id, ego and superego: “The id “obeys the Pleasure Principle, which says that every wishful impulse must be immediately gratified: it wants everything now. However…the ego, recognizes the Reality principle, which says we can’t have everything we desire, but must take account of the world we live in. The ego negotiates with the id, trying to find reasonable ways to help it get what it wants, without resulting in damage or other terrible consequences” (Collin, 97).

The pull between bipolar depression and mania can often feel like the power struggle between Freud’s id  and ego and superego. Mania can feel like pure bliss because the mind has made its mind up to accomplish everything it wants and takes everything it can get. A common symptom of mania is hypersexuality which fits perfectly into the idea of the id obeying the pleasure principle. Manic individuals often seek pleasure sexually with several partners in a short amount of time, and in my personal experience even seeking several different partners in one day. The id essentially wants “to get off” regardless of the ego’s feeling for a more sensible solution such as maintaining a relationship with one individual resulting in multiple sexual encounters safely. When there is a break down between the id and ego consequences occur. Using the example of hypersexuality, one could end up with an unwanted pregnancy or sexually transmitted disease.

“The id, like a sneaky serpent, whispers to us to do what feels good” (Collin, 111).  Another symptom of mania is risky behaviors and my id was telling me to partake in them so I could “feel good.” I was starting to take drugs like mdma while on shift at work  and at one point during the summer, had over 5 sexual partners in one month. This is similar to how Hyde does what he wants, “…he had been in that night very late, but had gone away in less than an hour; there was nothing strange in that; his habits were very irregular, and he was often absent…” (Stevenson, 22). Hyde stays out late often and is often out so much chasing his id’s whim (such as murdering Sir Danvers Carew) that he is rarely even present. Mania can be compared to a Mr Hyde Complex in that it does what it wants to get what it wants.

In bipolar depression, it is common to reflect on the decisions made my the manic self and regret the behavior displayed during mania. I propose that this depression be referred to as the Dr Jekyll complex and mania as the Mr Hyde complex because of the infamous story written by Robert Louis Stevenson.  Dr Jekyll takes a mixture or rather potion to transform into the brute known as Mr Hyde. Hyde performs crass acts including the murder of the  well to do Sir Danvers Carew. He clubs him to death with a cane in the middle of the night. Dr Jekyll reflects on his time as Mr Hyde, ” When I would come back from these excursions, I was often plunged into a kind of wonder at my vicarious depravity. This familiar that I called out of my own soul, and sent forth alone to do his good pleasure, was a being inherently malign and villainous; his every act and thought centered on self” (Stevenson, 57). Bipolar depression can be compared to as a Dr Jekyll complex because much in a similar way to how Dr Jekyll reflects on the selfish actions of his alter ego, bipolar depression consists of a time of reflection following the high of mania. It is often a time to reflect on the behavior exhibited during a manic episode and this reflection is often one of the underlying causes of the depression itself. What goes up must ultimately come down, whether its gravity or a mood cycle.

The manic self is a selfish self much like the id in that it seeks purely pleasure. I remember spending all my nights partying and doing drugs so I could feel the pleasurable sensation of euphoria. My quest to feel temporarily good was in conflict with my overall health or my ego, if you will. I did not care about the detrimental effects of pumping my system with copious amounts of cocaine, ecstasy and the occasional mushrooms. I was living life blissfully or so I thought. However, when I came down from my high and became once again Dr Jekyll I would often reflect on my actions while living the night life as Mr Hyde. I would be embarrassed by my behavior at parties where I would become too rowdy and  actually initiate physical altercations with other individuals. I would reflect on the bad judge of character I had when pursuing sexual partners and ultimately regret performing the act of sex itself while on these drugs and the high that is mania.

In The Everyday Health Guide To Adult Bipolar Disorder, writer and Ph.D Jon. P. Bloch  states: “In the throes of a manic or depressive episode a person with bipolar says or does many things that seem senseless, destructive, or thoughtless to the onlooker -and to the self, once medicated.” (Bloch, 89). Coming down from a manic episode is a lot like coming off a shrooms trip, its painful and often full of remorse. There is a tendency to slide into a bipolar depression following a fit of mania. I call this the Dr Jekyll side of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde syndrome, a.k.a., bipolar disorder. Dr Jekyll acts more rational than Mr Hyde and has to come to terms with the actions taken when under the cloak of mania. In “Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde” Jekyll describes what its like to experience becoming Mr Hyde or rather manic: “It was Hyde after all, and Hyde alone, that was guilty. Jekyll was no worse; he woke again to his good qualities seemingly unimpaired; he would even make haste, where it was possible, to undo the evil done by Hyde” (Stevenson, 57). The depressed self often tries to “clean up after” the manic self and undo the actions performed during mania much like Dr Jekyll tries to “undo the evil done by Hyde.” One key example would be paying off credit card or loan debt acquired by the manic self during an episode of mania where overspending is a common symptom.

If left too long, bipolar depression can spiral into something darker which can be compared to the third element of the mind structure Freud proposes which is the superego. The superego can be broken into layman’s terms in The Psychology Book: Big Ideas Simply Explained: “the superego speaks through the language of guilt and shame, like a kind of internalized critical parent. We hear the superego when we berate ourselves for thinking or acting a certain way” (Collin, 111). It is common during bipolar depression to feel alienated with guilt and shame particularly if it follows a bout of mania. The individual is ashamed and guilty of the actions taken by the manic self such as spending sprees (where they spend a lot of money in a short amount of time) which are common in people with bipolar disorder. The depressed self may feel guilty that it spent all its savings or money shared with a spouse on most likely trivial things without clearly thinking. I personally felt shame by my manic self’s hypersexuality and was ashamed at how many sexual partners I had in a short amount of time and often the quality of my partner. I sometimes “slept beneath me.”

Bipolar depression akin to the superego can be compared to as a Dr Jekyll complex because Jekyll experiences depressive symptoms such as shutting himself inside and avoiding interactions with  even his friends. Dr Jekyll writes the following in a letter to his lawyer friend Mr Utterson, “…I mean from henceforth to lead a life of extreme seclusion; you must not be surprised, nor must you doubt my friendship, if my door is often shut even to you. You must suffer me to go my own dark way. I have brought on myself a punishment and a danger that I cannot name” (Stevenson, 29). He views Hyde as dangerous, and as a punishment for bringing him forth is secluding himself from the outside world. When a bipolar person comes down from mania they often want to punish themselves for behavior exhibited during that period of their life. Bipolar depression following mania may result in the individual “shutting themselves in” as a way to cope with the actions performed during the period of mania. They may feel alienated from their peers and choose to avoid them. Following a mania episode, I once “shut myself in” for a few months and would not leave the house let alone the couch because I was so embarrassed by my manic self’s decisions and actions.

I move that Bipolar Disorder also be referred to as “Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde Syndrome” because well it’s a sexier name and also because the characteristics of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde as compared to bipolar depression and mania. “Dr Jekyll complex” comes to represent bipolar depression in that Dr Jekyll reflects on the actions taken by Mr Hyde or rather mania. He represents symptoms of depression such as remorse, guilt and even shutting himself in from the world much like a depressed person hides in bed. “Mr Hyde Complex” comes to represent mania through Mr Hyde’s unusual and irrational behavior such as staying out at all hours of the night and ultimately the murder of Sir Danvers Carew. I also propose that bipolar depression and mania can be compared to Sigmund Freud’s id, ego and superego. The id representing mania in its quest for pleasure and pleasure alone. The ego and superego comparatively represents bipolar depression in its more rational approach to achieving pleasure and its qualities of guilt and shame.

In conclusion, I propose Bipolar Disorder be compared to Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde and so I ask you, my readers: “Bipolar Disorder or Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde Syndrome?”


Bloch, Jon P. The Everything Health Guide To Adult Bipolar Disorder. Massachusetts:

Adams Media, 2006.

Collin, Catherine, et al. The Psychology Book: Big Ideas Simply Explained. New York: DK

Publishing, 2012.

Fink, Candida, and Joe Kraynak. Bipolar Disorder for Dummies. New Jersey: John Wiley &

Sons, Inc., 2016.

Stevenson, Louis Robert. Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde and Other Tales.   

New York: Oxford University Press, 2006.


I Have Bipolar Disorder but I am NOT Bipolar.

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Please follow my new blog at

The following is my first blog post on my new blog BipolarMania:

Recently I decided to write a new blog – all things bipolar! This is my first entry in which I plan to outline my goals for this blog and of course introduce myself. It took me years to come to terms with my diagnosis of bipolar disorder, after several bouts of mania, hypomania, bipolar depression and even manic induced psychosis. I felt like the diagnosis labelled me as something “less than” and I really struggled with the concept that I have bipolar disorder but I am not my illness. I am so many more things than my illness: a lover, a fighter, a writer, a journalist and an avid gym goer (thought I would throw that one in there). It was hard to look past the label of a lifelong affliction with a mental disorder. It was hard to look past the fact that my brain worked on a level abnormal to the so called norm. However, a very small part of me was kind of elated because my life and its constant ups and downs finally had context – the cycle of mania and depression.

My intention with this blog is to educate more than anything on the personal side of bipolar disorder and the struggle one might face coming to terms with this illness, monitoring it, and hopefully, ultimately living your best healthy life while living with this affliction (which I am still getting a hang of!). This blog is also an opportunity for me to learn more about the disorder and the people who struggle with it. I intend to follow as many blogs written by bipolar people about bipolar and other mental health issues they may face. I also intend to research the disorder more thoroughly in hopes to further my knowledge and my reader’s on the topic.

Now about me:

My first serious manic episode occurred when I was transitioning into my final year at Carleton University. I had my first manic episode with psychosis and experienced my first ever hospitalization. I hallucinated a memory that I had been raped two years ago and truly believed in my delusional thinking that it was true. I also had paranoid and delusional thoughts centering around the company LaSenza which I was writing an expose on. I thought they were watching me via my webcam and were “on to me.” Lithium helped me come to my senses but left me with a feeling of apathy towards life and an inability to focus on my studies at the time. I returned home to the Niagara region and shortly after experienced my first serious bipolar depression where I laid in bed on average sixteen hours of the day. I developed a sense of anxiety towards the world and ultimately became an agoraphobic for months, not leaving the house and rarely using the front door.

Two antidepressants, Wellbutrin and Cipralex, led to me gradually leaving the house and becoming social once again. However, the combination of the two medications without a mood stabilizer (as I weaned off lithium) resulted in my second full blown episode of mania. I had mainly delusional thoughts in which I thought I was a celebrity with millions of dollars. I offered to buy all my friends cars and even tried ordering a bunch of mustangs by calling a Ford dealership from the hospital phone since I was ultimately hospitalized again. My psychiatrist prescribed lithium once again which resulted in a hard come down where I was extremely embarrassed by my actions. This time around thought I did not have a bipolar depression following my bout of mania. The doctors kept me in the hospital for about two months to ensure I transitioned back into everyday living smoothly. At the time I was very upset about this but am now very thankful.

I have been mania free for about two years now and finally found the right cocktail of drugs to keep me on the straight and arrow (an anti psychotic called abilify and recently a small dose of cipralex to help with my overall anxiety). I believe my experience with bipolar disorder make me a good person to discuss this illness via this blog and shed some light on the nature of the affliction and its fallout.  I will also be slowly releasing a book of fiction I am writing with the working title The Secret Diaries of A Manic Depressive Girl loosely based on my experience with bipolar disorder and hospitalization. I hope to ultimately self publish this book and share it with the world. The goals of this blog are simple: to educate and remove stigma surrounding the illness that is bipolar disorder.

To my readers, I hope you take something away from reading my blog even if its simply the feeling that you’re not alone in this.

That Time I was Diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder

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I arrived at the hospital and immediately went to emergency explaining once again that I needed a physical to prove I had been raped two years ago and that I feared I may have bipolar disorder. They told me to wait in the waiting room and this was when I experienced my first visual hallucination, however, my delusional brain thought it was a memory. I saw the club assistant manager “in my memory” forcing my head down to give him oral sex. I felt drugged and like I could not refuse and ultimately performed the act. I snapped back to reality and immediately fell to the hospital floor rocking back and forth saying, “It’s ok, it’s ok, you’ll be ok.” The emergency staff noticed my strange behavior and immediately admitted me for a psych consult. When the doctor realized I was not under the influence of drugs or alcohol, as I insisted it had been over two months since drugs were in my system (which was true), she admitted me into the psychiatric unit for a three day observation.


Stay Tuned for the whole story of how I began to exhibit manic symptoms and was ultimately diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder


Fiendish Fiend.

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The first time I did speed was on a photo shoot for Fiend Clothing Apparel. The Photographer and her husband offered me the pills and I thought, “why not?” So I downed the drugs with a bottle of water. I would never regret that decision. Speed is a wonderful drug. It made the photo shoot somehow livelier but that may also have been due to the six palm bays I had had. I was on a serious high, and not just the sugar kind.

The photo shoot was awesome and the photographer was great at making you feel comfortable. The shoot was an absolute pleasure, I enjoyed every minute of it. The speed made everything feel more intense and electric. And what would you expect from a 4/20 brand? Would you expect the models to be sober?

The poses came so fluid to me, I felt great in my skin for the first time in awhile. Not to mention the clothes I modelled were really cute and something I would actually wear in real life, which I actually do! Great thing about modelling is the freebies, like new clothes! The pictures from this shoot are some of my favourite pictures that I have ever taken.

I don’t know if I can really explain what it felt like to be high on speed. It just felt like you’re on top of the world and everything feels nice. You get excited and focus on things with much more clarity which is why a photo shoot was the perfect thing to do for my first speed high. You can channel all your creativity into something with extra energy.

The photographer and her husband are still great friends to this day. We bonded over something I like to call creativity. The relationship between model and photographer is unique and often ends in a power trip. At the end of the day I loved this brand and will continue to wear their kickass clothes!

OK Cupid Fails…Miserably.

So I’ve been on the dating site OK Cupid for a few years now and am beginning to give up all hope on dating sites as a general means to meet anyone normal. But then again what is normal? I had the pleasure of meeting someone with a foot fetish and I am ashamed to say I let him suck on my toes. It tickled might I add, quite terribly. This guy had not only a foot fetish but a smelly feet fetish. He wanted me to wear my vans sans socks so that my feet would purposefully smell extra smelly. As he sucked my toes, he proceeded to smell my feet then he admitted to getting a huge erection from doing it. I wish I could say that was one of the weirder dates..

On Valentine’s day I had another Ok Cupid date and it went rather horribly. After stopping at the local timmies, we drove out to Dufferin Islands where we walked his dog. We then got back into his car where he proceeded to take his pants off and said “blow me.” I said I wouldn’t then he insisted that he had gotten the wrong idea and that I would have enjoyed giving him a blowjob. Then said “If you get me this once , I’ll get you back next time.” To which I replied, “please take me home.” That was the most awkward car ride of my life! And not more than a week later the same thing happened to me with a different guy from Ok Cupid who took me back to his apartment, took off his pants and said “please give me a blowjob.” I said I was not interested in doing so and to please take me home.

The latest date was probably the worse cause it left me stranded in St. Catharines. Another guy from Ok Cupid took me all the way to Missisauga for some Indian food, which I personally cannot stand. As we were driving back to the Niagara region, I explained I had to be home soon since my niece was having a recital soon. He said no problem, and that he would take me straight home but instead he took me back to his apartment where he tried to force me to have sex with him. When I refused he kicked me out of his apartment and said find your own way home so I walked out and caught the next bus home. Lucky for me I know the niagara regional bus system like the back of my hand but I could have ended up seriously stuck.

In conclusion, dating sites suck. It is far more gratifying to meet someone the natural way. My experiences with Ok Cupid have been fraught to say the least. When I’m not getting messages to “Choke on my cock soon?” (true story), I am getting consistent offers to do pornography, as well as offers to have a sugar daddy which I do not want nor need. Maybe I am a little jaded, if you’ve have positive experiences with online dating feel free to comment and let me know, maybe it will cure my cynicism , but I doubt it . After long consideration I have decided to delete my Ok Cupid account and I do and will have no regrets about it. No more foot fetishes, attack blowjobs or offers to choke on some stranger’s cock. So to Ok Cupid, I say “Adieu!”

LaSenza, Am I Good Enough for You Now?


A few years ago, I made one of the most detrimental decisions of my life which was to tell a LaSenza scout to basically go fuck herself (not in so many words). What she didn’t nor I knew was that I was also experiencing my first manic episode of a now life-time illness I struggle with – BiPolar Disorder.

It started with a response to an expiring Ad I had on kijiji to a modelling inquiry I posted:

”My name is Julie from LaSenza Model Management, we’re currently seeking 2 female models for an underwear advertising poster. The 2 models we are looking for will have their back to the camera for the poster and their face will not be revealed. Please let me know if you are interested in this shoot and if you can reply with any portfolio describing the stance above. Best Regards, Julie.”

Of course I responded affirmatively and excitedly, saying I would send in shots from previous photo shoots I had done as well as the amateur shots she requested in my lingerie. The best part was more than 95% of my underwear came from that retailer, as well as, my clothes.

My friend Emma Davidson got together that weekend and took hundreds of test shots: all of which looked amazing and I still thank her to this day for being tasked with taking boudoir and nude shots of her good friend, A.K.A. me.

What happened next is embarrassing for not only my career for but me as a person since I lost complete control of my mental faculties and started to experience paranoid delusions (a sure symptom of my disorder).

I asked Julie for a waiver to send nudes via the internet on advice from a well meaning friend who now looking back had no clue how the modelling industry really worked. I asked for a waiver to ensure the photographs were kept private and only for the selection process. She misunderstood me and assumed I meant I already expected a contract:

I am not quite sure what to offer you in terms of a waiver as we are only in the prospect stage but I will contact our management. Any model who performs for a professional shoot that is placed on display for La Senza is usually paid by contract $9,500.00 (before tax) but does NOT establish a modelling career with La Senza unless we feel your work may be beneficial to us throughout several seasons. I’m currently attempting to fill the last three tryout spots in the final submission, please keep in mind these contract terms are only if we feel you are someone who fits what we are looking for.”

My brain started to spin out, jumping from one thought to the next and becoming oddly extremely feminist. How dare this woman try to take my image? (not that she was but in a manic paranoid delusion I thought she was attempting to) And then I began to think of the nature of the shoot and how she only was interested in basically my ass (a great feature but come on!) I felt a duty to womankind everywhere to reject this notion: that woman are only good for their bodies. So I responded in anger that I was worth more than just a “fine ass” and that I would never ever wear LaSenza underwear again (which I didn’t).

I was so angry I went to the school newspaper and decided to write an Op-Ed on the exploitation of people like me and interns at major corporations who are expected to give their work over without rights to it and without compensation. They were really excited to run it until they realized it was a potential lawsuit waiting to happen. I felt like my voice needed to be heard.

I became so paranoid that at one point when I was at my sickest I had left my web camera on from taking a selfie, and thought it was “them” i.e. LaSenza watching me to track down the dirt I was collecting on them for this potential story.

Long story short, I was admitted into the Ottawa Civic hospital and was diagnosed with BiPolar disorder. The reason I was so angry was I was coming off heavy drugs like cocaine, MDMA, marijuanna and speed which I had become accustomed to seeing on set at the various shoots I was doing in the city. I had officially spun out. I think LaSenza approaching me made me realize how NOT ready I was for this industry and I am actually thankful.

Today, I am proud to say Ive been clean ever since and never intend to do drugs like this ever again in my life. And if LaSenza were to approach me I know I am good enough and I am the type of role model they would want working for them: someone who has faced adversity, fallen, conquered and rose from the ashes like a phoenix.

So LaSenza I ask you, Am I Good Enough For You Now?