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Alexis Zinkerman

I went off my meds, and the result was not pretty. When I am compliant, my meds work well for me, affording me a relatively normal life. I stabilize on my meds. Then months and years pass, and I think I am cured. I think I don’t need them anymore. So, I stop taking them. At first, everything seems fine, but within a few days, I am paranoid,...
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I have tried to write this blog countless times over the course of the past few weeks, but the words would not come. Come to think of it, I’ve tried to do a lot of things over the past few weeks, until eventually I just gave up, sinking into my own private despair. Putting forth the effort to clean the house, to do my coursework for graduate...
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If you live with a mental illness like bipolar disorder, the holidays can be a tough time of year. Between crowds, dysfunctional families, and pressure to buy gifts, the holidays can bring bouts of depression, battles with mania, and huge helpings of anxiety. Here are twelve tips (kind of like the twelve days) of Christmas that can help you...
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(This is my digital painting illustrating my psychosis during the year of 2009.)“I am going to rule the world. I am the queen of Rome. Everybody here on Earth will be destroyed by God and I will be the only one left…” After I gave birth, I became the queen of Rome (this is why I use Rome Loyola as my pen name) – that is what I believed for many...
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Help us win Healthline's Best Health Blog of the Year! Vote for International Bipolar Foundation here. Traveling can be difficult for everyone, even more so for those that struggle with mental health conditions. Between packing, leaving your normal schedule, the crowds and hustle at the airport, the time change (when applicable), and the...
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Remission and recovery from any mental illness, addiction, or both, bring with them, for most of us entirely new gifts. Some of us are fortunate enough to find a whole new way of living, one which we have never experienced or imagined possible. Not all days are easy, but as we get stronger, we find sometimes that many doors open. They may come in...
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Learning to Be Present

November 17, 2016
It’s been months since my last full scale manic episode. However, the road to today has been paved with mixed episodes, depression, and frustrating medication changes. Some days I despair that life is passing me by whilst I wrestle with the utter exhaustion of having bipolar. Then there are other days I get a glimpse of life beyond the walls of...
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Bipolar Disorder and Work

November 17, 2016
Help us win Healthline's Best Health Blog of the Year! Vote for International Bipolar Foundation here. Having been diagnosed with bipolar disorder in the year 2009, I have struggled with coping, not only with my mood and personal life, but also with my professional life. I was asked to resign from my previous job in fashion retail because of...
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Editor’s Note: The views and opinions in this blog are the author’s and do not represent those of International Bipolar Foundation. The 2016 US election has been stressful for many people, and our bloggers often write about stressful events in their lives and how they cope with them. We recently published a blog on this topic from someone who...
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I have been very open about my diagnosis and journey to recovery and acceptance. I started my blog to chronicle the ups and downs that I experience during my journey. Recently my friends were open enough to ask me questions they have always wanted to know about living with bipolar II disorder. I answer these questions below: How was your mood...
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People who live with bipolar disorder grow used to – or at least familiar with – the cycle of manic highs and depressive lows. But what happens when the highs and lows come closer and closer together? What happens when they both occur at the same time? There are various answers to that, depending on whom you ask. Closely spaced highs and...
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Diagnosis and Self-Identity

November 11, 2016
What does it mean to me, in terms of self-identity, to have a dual-diagnosis of bipolar type II disorder (classified as a “mood” disorder) and borderline personality disorder (classified as a “personality” disorder)? I looked up the (psychology) definition of the word “personality” on dictionary.com and found that they define the term in two ways:...
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