What if they had connected the self-mutilation to the depression? What if they had ever recognized that I never had manic phases, just rage phases? What if everything hadn't depended upon the Lithium, which made me feel bad. Just like pre-flu, all the time. And when I wouldn't take it, they took me out of therapy and I didn't see another psychiatric professional until I was committed after a suicide attempt in high school. I stayed saddled with the "bi-polar" diagnosis until just a couple of years ago.
They started treating me with anti-psychotics about a decade ago experimentally. Then, while in a hospital, a Doctor who cared, and bothered to get me to communicate with him, rediagnosed me as having schizoaffective disorder and changed my medication appropriately. Finally.
I still have symptom break-throughs, where the meds don't cover everything. But for the most part I am what passes for stable for me. I can keep the house clean. That's a big deal. I couldn't keep my shit together to clean when I was younger. I credit the meds.