More than Average Adolescent Turmoil — But What’s Wrong?

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Reader’s Question

I’m an adolescent female who is bisexual. I actually became aware of this late last year. Still, I don’t really understand what’s going on with me, whether something is wrong, if I’m going insane or what. Last year I had this little obsession to text a girl, tell her I liked her, and when she got really freaked out by me, I would move on to another. I think I might have been getting a “high” just doing this kind of thing.

Recently, I broke up with a girlfriend who meant the world to me, and I can’t stop loving her. Every morning I wake up with a really heavy feeling inside me and all I can think about is her. When I’m really down, I sometimes cut my wrist. I don’t do it very deeply, just enough for the cuts to bleed.

My moods are changing a lot and quite quickly. One minute I’ll be happy and then the next I’ll be depressed. Lately, I’ve been getting really depressed, and it is usually at its worst before I go to sleep and after I wake up.

More recently, I am having random visions of a sort in my brain. They last about one second and then I forget what they were.

I don’t really know what’s happening to me!

Psychologist’s Reply

Some of the things you report suggest it would be unwise to venture an opinion about what might be going on. Suffice it to say that although there is at least one condition that could account for all the things you report (e.g., labile mood, self-cutting behavior, sexual identity issues, intense but unstable relationships, etc.), there are many other possibilities. All the various possibilities, coupled with the fact that you report some very unusual symptoms, attest to the need for proper, comprehensive assessment and disposition.

My best suggestion: seek help from an advanced mental health practitioner. Be sure to be open and candid about all your concerns, and be aware that it often takes some time to complete a thorough assessment and plan of action.

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