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 Mental health awareness is a term that we are hearing more and more these days- and May is an important month for us mental health advocates! In Canada, the first week of May is designated as Mental Health Week, which was first introduced in 1951 by the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) and has become a yearly tradition ever...
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Russ Federman, Ph.D., ABPP

For those living with bipolar disorder, the first few years post-diagnosis can be some of the most difficult in terms of one's relationship to the disorder.  Beyond the necessity of initial symptom management, the process of accepting and coming to terms with the reality of one’s bipolar disorder is among the more difficult tasks to be faced....
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The Power of Language

May 2, 2017

Jayson Blair

 I cringe anytime I hear someone talking about finding "the cure." It’s the same feeling that strikes me when someone walks into my office, where we help people with mental health problems, proclaiming how they just want to “fix” their loved one. Warm-hearted and well-intentioned, to be sure, we have adopted the language of the fight for...
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Long time married couple Ron and Beka Owens answer your questions about relationships and bipolar disorder.  

Q: My partner does not always seem open about sharing their experience with bipolar disorder. How do I speak openly with them about their condition and my concerns? I also frequently worry that I might unintentionally do something that might trigger an episode for them - how do I avoid doing something that might accidentally trigger them?Beka: For...
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Long time married couple Ron and Beka Owens answer your questions about relationships and bipolar disorder. 

Q: Besides attending couples’ counseling and individual therapy, are there any other specific strategies you use to keep your relationship balanced?Beka: To keep balanced, I make sure I take time for me (and we take time for US as a couple – i.e., date nights!).  I get massages regularly, eat well, exercise (this is huge for me), and make...
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My introduction to transpersonal psychology came in the form of initiation. I was no stranger to adolescent disturbances, assigned twelve-step meetings, and group therapy for my drinking after having wrecked my car, and there were many less outwardly consequential experiences that nonetheless ate at my soul. I could not wait to get to college,...
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Amanda Michaela

I woke up in a bed of steel, covered in snow white blankets. Drops of water were running down my face, but i couldn't tell tears from sweat. I rose up and looked around the room trying to get a grip of reality. It was just a dream… a bad dream. A thin little girl, barely one hundred pounds, was on her way up a hill, surrounded by the greenest...
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Long time married couple Ron and Beka Owens answer your questions about relationships and bipolar disorder. 

Q: How do you support your partner when, in the midst of a hypomanic episode, they tell you that they want to end the relationship and move out on their own? How can you tell if that’s what they’re truly feeling, or if it’s a result of their episode? Beka: From a bipolar perspective, he probably feels lost and confused.  For me, I’d...
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Moods Like the Weather

April 5, 2017
Seasonal Affective Disorder. This is the first thing that came to mind on the 2nd of April, when Namibia officially changed to winter time. The change in time signals the transition from summer to fall; nights begin to get longer while days are limited to few hours of sunlight. Various textures and colours take over and it’s like the world is...
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Farida Raj

 “My son needs help. He has bipolar disorder. Bipolar! How can a seven year old child have bipolar?”I, a Remedial Educator, was sitting with a parent who had recently relocated from Canada to Hyderabad, India. A pediatric psychiatrist had diagnosed her son as having bipolar. She was advised that her son needed remedial teaching to enhance...
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This is the seventh in a series of 26 posts covering a variety of stress management tools and techniques, starting with the letter A. For some background information on stress and bipolar disorder, the blogger recommends reading her three-part series, “Getting a Handle on Stress When You Have Bipolar Disorder,” starting with the first one. ...
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Long time married couple Ron and Beka Owens answer your questions about relationships and bipolar disorder. 

Q. Do arguments about issues in your relationship with your husband ever trigger manic or depressive episodes? How do you deal with any issues you may have if you feel that discussing problems will trigger an episode? Beka:  Sometimes arguments trigger episodes, but I have found that it is better to be honest with each other than to let...
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