Serious advice needed.

Hi Guys,

Currently undergrad on the path to investment banking. I have the internships, the gpa, etc. There is however one thing that I am scared shitless of, myself. I have come to realize lately that I am bipolar. I get these episodes of extreme optimism like I want to conquer the fucking world and become president, and then these episodes of suicidal depression, anxiety, and depersonalization (this one is the worst). I have no clue how I have made it so fucking far in terms of academics and finance. The worst part is that my depression is triggered by the slightest feeling of stress in my environment, I fall into this pit and my brain goes numb - I can't use excel, remember to eat, or do other very simple tasks. I used to get real panic attacks almost everyday at my boutique internship... I seriously have no clue how I have suffered so much and still stuck it out, but I am starting to think coming this far might have taken a psychological toll on me. I don't know if I can even manage banking being the way I am, especially pulling 100 hour weeks and doing stressful work. I absolutely hate having these episodes and I feel both myself and others have high expectations for me and it is all on the brink of completely falling apart because of my extreme episodes of depression, anxiety, stress.. I don't even know what I will do if I get a full time offer and a few months in get fired for being paralyzed to work - something I think might very likely happen. This stuff isn't limited to banking either, it happens with me in general.

Some of this shit like depersonalization is honestly the most confusing and painful thing ever, its almost not describable. I wouldn't wish it on anybody. Like sometimes I forget where the fuck I am and start looking around like where the fuck am I or what the fuck is my name? Like kind of a matrix. Don't judge my by the tone of this article, currently in a stable state as I write this.

Also this depression stuff isn't new, just hasn't been this bad. Depersonalization is new, I feel like it comes around every time I think about the concept itself. Sorry if I mess up your mood with my shitty post.

Comments (9)

May 20, 2016 - 12:21am
corporatefinanceanalys, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Yea I don't blame you for assuming that since it seems like it happens a lot on this forum. But no this isn't a troll. I think that's good advice, it definitely helped finding things online because I felt like it was something common whereas something that was happening only with me. I have made my first appointment ever to see a doctor for this, but I'm hoping something good will come out of it. Don't usually trust doctors for anything

Best Response
May 20, 2016 - 3:44pm
XSX82, what's your opinion? Comment below:

You may not be able to eliminate these, however, there may be a way to minimize the amount of episodes you have. I would say explore what options you may have in doing so.

I feel like I have sudden mood swings, but not to your degree. I can still work. These mood swings are generally a result of high stress levels. I have found having a routine in something you enjoy to be helpful. For example, waking up early and going to the gym before work really gave me a positive mindset going into work. I felt like stress was lifted off my shoulders because I at least got one important thing of my list before the unpredictable life of banking starts, and that was my health.

I do not know what your trigger may be but I suggest you find one. I would still suggest seeing a psychiatrist/psychologist (whichever is appropriate) to help you.


May 20, 2016 - 3:54pm
IncapableChimp, what's your opinion? Comment below:

See a professional. I have a long history of bipolar in my family and have had mental health issues myself. Bipolar swings are often protracted over days / weeks / even months rather than regularly changing from depressed to mania. When it comes to mental health, always seek out a professional, the symptoms described online are typically far too ambiguous to diagnose oneself. If you aren't comfortable, see a mental health specialist first who isn't able to prescribe drugs. I've found that route much more useful than dealing with some doctor whose "treatment" doesn't go beyond prescribing SSRIs or similar.

May 20, 2016 - 5:17pm
corporatefinanceanalys, what's your opinion? Comment below:

After starting to really suffer and understand what is going on with me, I realized that my father has similar signs of what I go through. Are you in finance now? How do you cope? Sucks because my trigger is the stress itself, whereas when everything is going well and I am not stressed at all, I am in a super optimistic and crazily energetic mode. Also I realized that the swings happen over weeks and I have the swings within days/hours too while in a phase. Super stupid and annoying and I am starting to not trust myself in making long term decisions because I might be too optimistic or to depressed to make a balanced decision in something that would affect me long term.

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May 21, 2016 - 8:39pm
IncapableChimp, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I'm not in finance as of now, I start as an Analyst in July in a well-regarded mid-market firm, my knowledge is limited to the extent that I've successfully converted 3 internships (1 IB SA). I know what is involved in the role, what is expected of me, and how to deal with it when I'm in a situation where I'm out of my comfort zone. From my experience, the only way to deal with the stress is an understanding of the situation / role (emotional intelligence) and an end goal (PE for myself). The trigger can be anything, ensure you thoroughly research what this trigger is and how to deal with it. Even for the most mentally healthy, IB is a tough gig. For those of us who suffer from mental health issues, IB is even tougher. It is very important to remember why you're doing what you're doing and keep the end goal in sight.

May 22, 2016 - 2:00pm
corporatefinanceanalys, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Definitely see where you're coming from, always keeping the long term end goal in sight instead of concentrating on the short term shit patches that I have to keep stepping through will help me get through. Thanks for all the advice man appreciate it

May 22, 2016 - 11:32am
Cruncharoo, what's your opinion? Comment below:

If your trigger is stress look into Mindfulness, figure out some breathing techniques/meditation.

You also 100% need to see a doctor to get this sorted out, you are on the right track if you are asking for help. Just know that you'll be okay and work from there.

This to all my hatin' folks seeing me getting guac right now..
  • 1
May 22, 2016 - 9:16pm
tlkjs543, what's your opinion? Comment below:

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