I was diagnosed Bipolar II in 2008, though looking back I now know I suffered from it since childhood. It was difficult starting treatment, my wife was the only one on board with it, the rest of my family was not supportive, most denied the disorder even existed, some to this day. Things got worse before they got better. I went through the various trials of medication treatments, the associated side effects and trying to figure out what works and what doesn’t, changing health plans frequently, and therefore doctors, did not help matters.
Ultimately I lost my marriage and the blessing of being able to live with my children in 2011. I determined that, in this treatment of Bipolar Disorder, I am merely a crash test dummy. It’s like “We want to save your life, so get in this car and head for that wall and we’ll see if the airbag will work”.
This blog is dedicated to all those crash test dummies out there. The ones who hang on for the ride, and even the ones that get out early, God forbid. My aim is to discuss real “rubber meets the road” topics and share some of the crash test results with people who might be able to put it to good use.
The words “plan” and “impulse” seem contradictory, especially to someone like me. I love my impulsivity, it can bring me great excitement and therefore, quality of life. The last minute road trip to the coast, seeing that special gift in the window when there’s no occasion, deciding to go out to eat when dinner is cooking on the stove. These things can wreak havoc though. Obviously a significant other could be effected by impulsivity, but if you may know that I’m not the best one to talk about relationships. So I want to talk about personal finance.
If you’re like me, managing personal finances can be difficult when that ever-loving impulsivity decides to flare up. I often find myself with more month than money and that can lead to depression, especially when I can’t answer the impulsivity call. I’ve seen and tried various budgeting programs but the one thing missing for us crash dummies is an “impulsivity” budget category. We have Rent, we have Groceries, Insurance, blah blah blah. It’s out of those categories that my impulsivity money comes from so naturally at the end of the month I often find myself short.
Now, how much to set aside in the impulsivity category of your budget depends on you, your finances and perhaps your significant other might have some input. Nonetheless, plan for impulsivity. It’s going to be a lot easier to avoid reaching over in those other categories if you have something set aside, a lot easier to say no to further impulses when you’ve got some out of your system, and a lot easier to avoid depression triggers relating to money. Plan to be impulsive, in my humble opinion it should be the first step in straightening out a bipolar victims finance.