Why do I have bipolar?

Having a mental illness like bipolar disorder can be discouraging. Maybe you just found out you have it and you’re feeling helpless. Or maybe you’ve known for a while and you’re just having a really tough time right now. In moments like these, it’s natural to ask, “Why me?”

The first thing to keep in mind is that it’s not your fault. Nobody “deserves” to have a mental illness. It’s just something that happens, like any other illness. In fact, there’s no single cause of bipolar disorder. It’s a combination of the way your brain is structured and the environment you’ve grown up in. Those aren’t things you can control.

Take a second and give yourself permission to be upset. It’s okay to feel sad about having a mental illness. It’s okay to be scared too. Mental illness isn’t fair, and it sucks—there’s no way around that.

There’s lots of good news too though. Having bipolar disorder doesn’t make you a bad person. You can still live a good life. Bipolar disorder is just one aspect of your life—it’s something you have, not who you are. Bipolar disorder can be treated, and things can absolutely get better. Plus, there are lots of other people out there who also have bipolar and are struggling with the same questions. Finding people to connect with and learning more about what bipolar disorder is and how it’s treated are great places to start.

Treatment & Resources