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Personal Story

Twenty-Four

May 13, 2015
When I envisioned myself at 24 I always thought I would be a huge success. I would be on the front page of fortune magazine, I would have a nice car, a nice house, nice family and nice job. I assumed I’d be out of the house and on my own. I’d be working a career I loved and I’d be on pace to making millions. But life isn’t as picture perfect as I...
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Ashley Washington

What does someone with bipolar disorder tend to look like? Are they blonde, have curly hair? Do they talk differently or walk slighter faster than the average person? Much of the time you can't tell by just merely looking at someone's outer appearance.Eleven years ago, at the age of sixteen, I was diagnosed with Manic-Depressive Disorder also...
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Continuing Recovery

March 11, 2015
“Hey, how are you?” Oh man. Yikes. Whoa. Here we go again. I pause and consider my options in response to this question. If you have bipolar or experience any other form of mental illness, you probably understand why this question can be so tricky to answer. Do I answer honestly? Do I lie and say fine? Do I tell them my depression is flaring...
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My Manic Summer

February 27, 2015
The summer of 2013/2014 was magnificent, exhilarating and glorious. It was also a manic summer. I had just come out of one of the darkest winters of my life, where I was hospitalised and everything had ground to a halt for months. Spring came around, and with it hypomania. I was extremely speedy and productive at work, I had countless energy...
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The best part about having bipolar disorder, is knowing you have bipolar disorder. There aren’t any other tangible benefits, but there are definite ways to cope. Even though I had hundreds of friends and thousands online friends, life after my diagnosis was particularly lonely. I had been diagnosed during a depressive state- a very intense...
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('Changes' song lyric sample from David Bowie, album "Hunky Dory" 1971)When the seasons change, I often have a bipolar relapse, one that starts small, like a snowball, gathering speed and size as it rolls down the hill, exploding on the impact of hitting bottom! Boom! On September 24 this fall I had to admit, as anhedonia and thoughts of throwing...
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I didn’t realize it, but I have been on a quest for the past 20 years. At first, it felt like I was just trying to figure myself out. I wasn’t happy with my life as it was laid out for me. So like many people in their late teens and early twenties, I bounced around from place to place, trying on different “personality outfits” to see which...
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Friends

December 23, 2014
“Only solitary men know the full joys of friendship. Others have their family; but to a solitary and an exile his friends are everything." WILLA CATHERI discovered I had bipolar disorder in May 2014. The diagnosis was delivered roughly 12 hours after I had called 911, on a night when I was terrified of my immediate surroundings. I was under the...
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We Need to Talk

December 22, 2014
First of all, I just want to say I am excited about making my first official post for the International Bipolar Foundation. I never thought the need for an outlet would bring me here. It means a lot to me to have this opportunity. I have Bipolar Disorder. Bipolar II to be exact; with rapid cycling (yay). I also battle with General Anxiety...
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Nine years ago this December, my mental illness erupted through the surface of my otherwise regular life. Work was a snowstorm of activity with the holidays approaching, and I remember feeling super stressed out trying to keep all my end-of-the-year meetings with my many clients. This, on top of buying gifts for everyone on my list, which had...
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Getting Help

November 19, 2014
Getting help for my bipolar disorder was one of the hardest and best things I’ve done. I’m a pretty proud and independent person so opening up and making myself vulnerable was extremely daunting. I was in my third and final year of university when I knew something wasn’t right. The familiar feeling of dark hopelessness had started to creep...
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Losing My Best Friend

November 18, 2014
About a month ago we were at a party. It really wasn’t a special night, like every party I have been to in the last few years, milling around sipping pints of microbrew, looking at walls lined of prints of post modern art and pictures of different adventures that the owner had embarked on. There was an interesting mix of people some young,...
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