Chris Brown and Bipolar Disorder

The popular notion, that people are subject to unpredictable mood swings that represent a chemical imbalance of unknown origin, allows many media fans to speculate on what is going wrong with Chris Brown. In truth, the stories of childhood trauma and family violence may hint at some potential factors that might contribute to mood swings, or may  not. For many who live with a person with BPD the sheer range of emotion expressed is dizzying, the brittle sensitivity is overwhelming, yet it is almost always interspersed with loving charm – giving family members and partners hope and perhaps some guilt over being angry at their maddening behavior.

What isn’t being talked about

One thing that seems a common factor with BPD individuals is that they are incredibly sensitive to criticism, real or imagined. On close examination, one might notice that many episodes start with a casual comment, a tease or a challenge. Then suddenly there is chaos and accusations and everyone around gets a little bit of hell. This is all the equivalent of disturbing an animal that has the capacity to puff up to a large and ferocious appearing something when its’ size is actually quite small and it has little capacity to really defend itself. In psychotherapy, such a person would first be built up, strengthened and then be helped to identify those tender spots and then be assisted in developing more appropriate ways to handle them effectively. Then everyone can begin breathing a sigh of relief! Not to say that it’s that easy and quick.  Nor that it doesn’t include other forms of therapy. Nor that brief and mild medication to control anxiety might not be helpful, but in the long run many of BPD’s have problems with Metabolic Syndrome, diabetes and other metabolic disorders that cause the brain to short circuit from improper sugar metabolism.  More on this soon.