In cyclic mood disorders, depression alternates with an artificial euphoria.

Here is how one patient has described these states:

Hypomania : "At first when I'm high it's tremendous . . . ideas are . . . like shooting stars you follow 'til brighter ones appear . . . all shyness disappears, the right words and gestures are suddenly there . . . your marrow is infused with unbelievable feelings of ease, power, well-being, omnipotence, euphoria . . . you can do anything . . . but somewhere this changes."

Mania : "The fast ideas come too fast and there are far too many . . . overwhelming confusion replaces clarity . . . you are irritable, angry, frightened, uncontrollable . . . madness carves its own reality."

Depression : "When I get depressed I feel like a drained and a burden on my friends . . . I am exhausted, dead inside. I want to sleep, to escape somehow, but if I really could sleep I must again wake to the dullness and apathy of it all . . . my mind . . . is virtually useless . . . The wretched thing works only well enough to torment me with a dreary litany of my inadequacies and to haunt me with the total desperate hopelessness of it all." --Condensed from "Depression, Manic-depressive Illness and Biological Rhythems." a science report of the National Institute of Mental Health.