Bipolar Disorder and My Religious Experience

I wrote a book last year about my struggles with bipolar disorder and my religious experience. I would like to offer it for free to my readers here on this glorious site. I have experienced several thankfully short-lived but very intense returns to religious belief during bipolar manic episodes, but other than those, I have been an atheist for 14 years now, and I plan on staying that way! Glory!

Bipolar Religiosity – Bipolar Disorder and My Religious Experience

http://alaskanatheist.me/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/Bipolar-Religiosity-Bipolar-Disorder-and-My-Religious-Experience.pdf

2 comments on “Bipolar Disorder and My Religious Experience

  1. My son (1 month shy of 27 years) has been diagnosed with rapid-cycling bipolar. If you wish I can tell you more about his symptoms but they include substance abuse (binge drinking and compulsive almost 24/7 pot smoking which begins at or immediately after the peak of his manic phase – I guess when he either is crashing and burning or is about to be).

    He has always been either reluctant or outright refused any real help maintaining that he can do it on his own.

    The last one of these was about 2 months ago so he was right on schedule. But this time my son who has been an ardent (actually extreme) atheist all his life BUT has for a couple of years now been getting more involved in believing alien conspiracy theories, illuminati type stuff) … overnight – literally in 3 days by his own admission, although he says he has somehow been “on this path” for a longer time … announced he has been saved by Jesus and believes that the world was created by God in 6 days, etc and that there is a global Satanist conspiracy which involves EVERY famous person – politician, singer, writer, etc.) and that we are living in the end times.

    I am trying to weed my way through this and am telling him as gently as possible that he is wrong.

    My quandary is this: If I push too hard, he could dig in his heals. If I don’t push hard enough these ideas may become embedded. Additionally I fear what happens if he suddenly realizes he has been believing a lie. Any helpful advice would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks so much,
    Barry

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    1. Barry,

      I apologize for not getting back to you sooner. I have been on vacation. I don’t really know how to advise you, but your son definitely needs professional help. The substance abuse has got to stop. Your son’s symptoms sound like bipolar mania, but also could be schizophrenic. Once your son gets appropriate help and medication, the extreme beliefs should fall away as his mental health stabilizes. That has been my experience with my own issues. I spent 15 years of my life swinging between bouts of extreme religious beliefs and bouts of extreme substance abuse. I wish you all the best!

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