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The Art of Giving Space

December 22, 2014
Recently I went to a private ward to be admitted just so I could sleep well for a few days. The irony was that it happened just a week after I had come back to Singapore to be with family – I had done that precisely so that I could have more stability in my housing situation and better sleep. I had been struggling for a few months with sleep...
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Recently, my daughter had to have heart surgery to close a hole in her heart that should have closed on its own shortly after she was born. She is 18 months old and is now 7 weeks post surgery, healed quickly and is now considered to be healthy and normal.  But the stress of the situation caused a relapse in the stability I was so proud of...
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Life Preserver

December 16, 2014
The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention’s (AFSP) logo is a life preserver. I think the idea is that the organization brings people together who want to preserve life and prevent suicide. For those of us who have tried to help a loved one who has to navigate life with a mental illness, the idea that you, personally, are a life preserver for...
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 We've all heard it before, or something similar, "This too shall pass". "Just puts your big girl panties on". "You've been here before, you can do it again". While our loved ones mean well, in the throes of depression, these are sometimes the absolute worst things to say to someone living in what seems to be the depths of doom....
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Why I Save My Dad's Voicemails

November 12, 2014
 I've been wanting to write about this topic for a while, but I kept putting it off.  It wasn't that I didn't want to do it, but more and more I found myself easily distracted. (Thank you social media!  I'm blaming you!) ;) I realized that the most inspiring time to reminisce would fall close to Halloween, my favorite day...
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Out of the Dark

November 4, 2014
Mental Health Awareness Week occurred from October 5-11 and on October 11 I participated in one of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention’s ‘Out of the Darkness Walks’ in Northern California. I was planning to go alone because I had attempted to persuade friends and family to join me, but I got the same response, ‘Susanna that is too...
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This is part three of a three part series: Part One: Planning for a Family When You Have BipolarPart Two: From Pregnant to Mommy Part Three: Returning to Work The next hurdle was returning to work. I’ve been back to work for almost 6 months now, and was quite surprised with myself that the transition went very well. It turns out...
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Genetic Overload!

October 15, 2014
I was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder over ten years ago. At the time, I wasn’t aware of any genetic component as I was an adopted child. Within my adopted family, there was a high incidence of alcoholism on my maternal mothers side, with most of her siblings having alcohol difficulties whilst her own mother and two of her siblings had suffered or...
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Tough Decisions!

August 2, 2014

Henrietta Ross

When I was a child, I always imagined myself living in the country when I was an adult. Living off the grid in a small cottage in the woods, completely self-sustainable surrounded by beautiful rolling hills and lush green fields and keeping a goat for company. As it turned out, as an adult that dream hasn’t come to fruition. Instead, I have...
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Dyane L. Harwood

I had great aspirations to write a high-quality bipolar-themed blog post last weekend.  I envisioned typing a few paragraphs filled with a pearl of wisdom or two that I’ve learned since I started recovering from bipolar depression.It ain't gonna happen.  I've given up.  I realized that I need a levity break.  Summer is in the...
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Stigma from the Source

April 21, 2014
"Stigma = a mark of disgrace or infamy; a stain or reproach, as on one's reputation"I was diagnosed with postpartum bipolar disorder in October of 2007, six weeks after the birth of my second daughter.  I was thirty-seven-years-old when I admitted myself into a locked-down mental facility at our local hospital. While there, a psychiatrist met...
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Nicole Lyons

Trying to explain Bipolar Disorder to a three year old and a five year old was one of the hardest things I have ever done. How was I going to put this into words that they could understand? Telling them that I was in the hospital because I was tired was more confusing to them. Everyday they saw me taking my medication, and everyday...
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