Signs: Everywhere and Nowhere

Signs: Everywhere and Nowhere

Author:  Melinda Goedeke I’m often asked whether or not I saw the signs. What I hear in that question is blame and responsibility; assignment of fault. I didn’t see the signs because there weren’t many to see; I saw Laura – my delightful, radiant and complicated...
Haiku Train: Railways

Haiku Train: Railways

Author: Sophia Falco   existentialism may be the way live without street signs spelling out starlit sky does not equate to lit torches fire still seeing darkness energy to moon and back bursting with the blank possibilities verbalize rather not trip up tongue...
Lithium and Dialysis, Part VI

Lithium and Dialysis, Part VI

Author: Natalia A. Beiser I have been on dialysis since July 2021 and continue to take Lithium, which in some patients causes decreased kidney function. However, I continue to be prescribed Lithium because it is the only proven medicine to curb my personal experience...
Scott

Scott

Something I am Proud of: For the first seven years of my bipolar journey, only my family knew that I lived with this mental illness. I was very embarrassed and ashamed to be diagnosed with bipolar. I felt like I was weird and thought that nobody would like me if they...
Endurance

Endurance

Author: Catalina Bellizzi-Itiola Sometimes I look back at the timeline of my life’s volatile mood fluctuations, and it makes me worry about what on earth my future will look like. Will I hold a job? Will I have a child? Will I be able to survive more episodes? Even...
Rosario

Rosario

Something I am Proud Of: After my first and only hospitalization, I learned to be more mindful of my moods, what causes me distress, and to look after myself. Before my hospitalization, I was a “moody,” and “dramatic” person, and of course I still can be those things,...
How to Ensure You Never Run out of Meds Again

How to Ensure You Never Run out of Meds Again

Author: Cassandra Stout Running out of meds is the worst. If you’re regularly taking medication and you run out of pills and stop suddenly, this is terrible for your body and your mind. If you’re bipolar, you may end up tripping into a mood episode that...
Lifestyle Alters Brain Chemistry Too

Lifestyle Alters Brain Chemistry Too

 Author: Christina Chambers I firmly believe lifestyle factors are just as important as medication for living well with Bipolar Disorder. Sunlight, alcohol or drugs, nutrition, social connection, nature, repetitive thoughts, meditation and exercise are just a few of...
Earn This!

Earn This!

Author: Gregg F. Martin, PhD, Major General, US Army (Retired) Written in honor of the service and sacrifice of the US Military for Memorial Day, 2022   In the epic World War Two film “Saving Private Ryan”, Army Captain and Ranger John Miller (Tom Hanks) lies...
Lisa

Lisa

Something I am Proud Of: Despite my diagnosis of Bipolar I, and despite the highs and mostly lows I experience, I was able to earn a Master of Arts degree in Counseling Psychology which included a 6-month practicum of therapist training in a psychiatric hospital. This...
Sleeping and Circadian Rhythms

Sleeping and Circadian Rhythms

Join Chris Ching, from the USC Keck School of Medicine, for a webinar on sleep and circadian rhythms on July 26th, at 10 AM PST! Stay tuned for more details!
I wish that my mother would have had a therapist

I wish that my mother would have had a therapist

Author: Margaret Fitzgerald I wish that my Mother would have sought out therapy when I was a child. I know that this may have been somewhat unheard of in the 1970s. In recent years, we have learned that my Mother experiences post-traumatic stress disorder. I have...
I Can Help Myself (You Can Too)

I Can Help Myself (You Can Too)

Author: Neil McCarthy   Life experiences, including a regular meditation practice, have shown me that all life predicaments and mental states will pass in time.  But more than just meditation has seen me through tough times; music has served as a constant,...
Fatima

Fatima

Something I am Proud Of: I’m proud of how far I’ve come and how I keep pushing on. When I was first diagnosed I was really scared and I didn’t understand my diagnosis. There was so much internalized stigma going on. It’s taken time and effort but I’m finally at a...
What I Wish My Family Knew

What I Wish My Family Knew

Author: Margaret Fitzgerald   My family knew little about serious mental illness when I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder.  Hindsight is 20/20.  What follows are what would have best helped me be successful in life before and after my diagnoses.   Many...
Simplifying and Communicating

Simplifying and Communicating

Author: Sarah Ross   I find strength to persevere through challenging times by simplifying tasks as much as possible and through communication. If I keep my thoughts to myself, I will just end up spiraling. Once I reflect my thoughts to someone I trust, I feel a...
The First Time

The First Time

Author: Sophia Falco   the world was fake, merely a blue green marble that started to crack, the lines ran too deep the same day it rolled off the kitchen table after the argument that this marble was more than just a marble also a representation of the ocean and...
The Road to Healing

The Road to Healing

Author: Ambika Paul The road to healing has been like walking on a tightrope with no flashlight or map; and I don’t know if there’s an actual finish point. From my experiences with Bipolar disorder, I’ve learnt to not suffocate myself with expectations of what...
Ellie

Ellie

Something I am Proud Of: As of today, May 13th 2022, I am celebrating my One Year Out Of Hospital milestone. This is just incredible. Throughout the last seven years, I was treated with the wrong meds and misdiagnosed with BPD (which I don’t have) alongside my...
Racing

Racing

Author: Mallory Bockelman   When I race, I’m MetaMal. Meta meaning more, above, and beyond The race begins easy. Less sleep, more thoughts and energy. Beginning slowly but always building Becoming a force of ideas never ending   This race is not your...
Michelle

Michelle

Something I am Proud Of: I’m a mother. A good one. I practice intentional, positive parenting and try to be as patient as I can. I am always thinking of how situations affect my child. This is drastically different from what I had as a kid, where I was an extension of...
How I (Mis)managed my Bipolar Disorder During my Pregnancies

How I (Mis)managed my Bipolar Disorder During my Pregnancies

Author: Cassandra Stout Trigger Warning: This post contains a discussions of suicide. If you or someone you know is at risk of suicide, please: Call the U.S. National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255 Text TALK to 741741 Or go to...
Molly

Molly

Something I am Proud Of: I’m very proud of how far I’ve come the past year. I’m staying out of the hospital, spending time with friends and WORKING at a job I love (I’m a direct support professional for individuals with disabilities). Meeting these goals hasn’t come...
Therapizing

Therapizing

Author: Melinda Goedeke Dedicated, thanks and praise to my therapist.   I used to have a stabbing searing pain in my right shoulder. You couldn’t tell by looking at me as I winced silently until I simply could not.  At that point, I sought medical help and now go...
20 Things Only Someone with Bipolar Would Really Understand

20 Things Only Someone with Bipolar Would Really Understand

Author: Phil Cibicki Dedicated to Ian & Annie, who would most understand what I’m talking about here. Thanks for the time I had with both of you and for showing me how to listen, to be kind, and to have an open mind.   I can’t tell which drops come from my tears...
Finding Therapy That Fits Me

Finding Therapy That Fits Me

Author: Natalia A. Besier Therapy has benefitted my mental wellness journey by teaching me to reclaim my mental health “toolbox” by rethinking and restructuring my negative thoughts.  I find that I benefit most from cognitive behavioral therapy and this focus causes...
Mallory

Mallory

Something I am Proud Of: I was diagnosed with Bipolar Type 1 at age 19. Since then, I worked hard to educate myself on the illness and accept that it is not something to be ashamed of. I shared about my illness with friends and family knowing that I might need them to...
When Sorrow Stretches Across Too Many Days

When Sorrow Stretches Across Too Many Days

Author: Sophia Falco   These letters cannot spell what has been cast on me to that magnitude, they ask: “Where do you feel this in your body?” and with each breath my chest feels heavier these legs those stairs too much. I’m scared to write to you directly, to...
The Biggest Lesson I Ever Learned, Part II

The Biggest Lesson I Ever Learned, Part II

Author: Angela McCrimmon Read Part I here   In laying down my resilience, I found a new “normal”. I developed new routines and I learned what feels right for me in my body, mind and soul. 2021 was an awful year in many ways, but it was profound in the lessons it...
Stepping Beyond Self-Stigma

Stepping Beyond Self-Stigma

Author: Christina Chambers First of all, Happy World Bipolar Day! In light of this year’s theme “Bipolar Together”, I would like to talk about moving beyond self-stigma to find connection and support. For me, the biggest barrier to connection with others became...
The Biggest Lesson I Ever Learned

The Biggest Lesson I Ever Learned

Author: Angela McCrimmon   Anyone who shares a diagnosis of Bipolar, regardless of what “type” resides in your brain, is going to share a lot of similar traits and experiences. For example, our high and low moods are way more extreme than those...
Courtney

Courtney

Something I am Proud Of: I am most proud of how far I have come in my life, as a result of seeking a diagnosis and committing to my treatment. I never imagined I would make it this far into my life, let alone be in the financially, mentally, and physically stable...
Sharing My Story

Sharing My Story

Author: Courtney As a child, I was always very hyper and recognized that I was different from many of my peers. It wasn’t until the first couple years of high school that I started suffering from depression. I did not recognize that what I was feeling...
Not a Surprise

Not a Surprise

Author: Claire Gault   I didn’t recognize my ableism until I began meeting others who have mental illness, like myself—all people that didn’t fit my perception of “that kind” of person. Through movies and television, I’ve grown to build a stereotype of what...
Kathy

Kathy

Something I am Proud of: When I look back on all my achievements and accomplishments since my diagnosis at 17, what fills my heart with the most joy is being able to help others who are currently struggling with their mental health, by using the insight I gained from...
How To Stop Should-ing Yourself

How To Stop Should-ing Yourself

Author: Cassandra Stout   When you’re depressed, forget about thriving – you’re in survival mode. Which means you need to be especially gentle with yourself. If you’re telling yourself that you should get everything done on your impossibly...
Amanda

Amanda

Something I am Proud Of: I thought if people knew how I felt, I would lose everything. As a kid I experienced trauma, abuse and struggled with addiction. At 14 I was admitted for psychiatric care after a suicide attempt. After that I felt like I needed to pretend...
#Bipolar Together

#Bipolar Together

Author: Sharnisha Stokes   #BipolarTogether is a hashtag that’s been needed and will continue to be. To provide hope in times where none can be found. Resources when coping mechanisms that are detrimental have been exhausted. Education for those caring for...
The Two Very Different Sides of Me

The Two Very Different Sides of Me

Author: Ambika Paul   Mania is your favorite song on repeat, an explosion of energy that brews in your mind with saturated ideas all coming at you in a single shot. Gradually consuming your whole body. Mania always feels like a creative journey for me but also...
How Writing Helps Me Feel Less Alone in my Mental Health Journey

How Writing Helps Me Feel Less Alone in my Mental Health Journey

Author: Ann Marie Elpa Like many others, when I first heard the word, ‘bipolar’, I associated it with rapid mood swings and instability. I didn’t have a proper understanding of what the disorder encompassed as someone who grew up in a household that seldom discussed...
Understanding I’m Not Alone

Understanding I’m Not Alone

Author: Ashley Sievewright This years theme of Bipolar Together for World Bipolar Day reminds me of when i was first inspired to talk about my mental health after watching the television documentary Stephen Fry – The Secret Life of the Manic Depressive back in...
Just Being There

Just Being There

Author: Jessie Bucci   Feeling alone and even misunderstood can be one of the hardest realities of experiencing a mental illness, and living with Bipolar disorder. I remember driving somewhere with a friend and passing a psychiatric facility which prompted her to...
Hope with an Accurate Diagnosis

Hope with an Accurate Diagnosis

Author: Ellie Chiorino In this article, to celebrate World Bipolar Day, my deepest hope is to make you feel less alone if you were ever misdiagnosed and/or have encountered an incapable psychiatric provider along the way. I see you. I hear you. Your experience is...
Remembering Tom on World Bipolar Day

Remembering Tom on World Bipolar Day

Author: Kim Joy Barnett   In my early 20’s, almost 20 years ago, I was nearing the end of my 5 year college journey to obtain my Bachelors Degree in Sociology at Cal State University, Northridge. What should have taken me 4 years to complete, according to my...
Connecting to What Heals Me

Connecting to What Heals Me

Author: Neil McCarthy   Living with bipolar disorder often means I keep a layer of separation between others and me.   Some close friends and family might know details of my illness, but not even my eight-year-old daughter knows why I spend 15 minutes every...
What I Wish People Knew About Bipolar Disorder

What I Wish People Knew About Bipolar Disorder

Author: Sarah Ross   Bipolar Disorder is a complex mental illness, and it often gets categorized into solely consisting of sudden mood changes. But it’s not as black and white as that. Although we do experience mood changes, our days don’t involve our emotions...
World Bipolar Day: Here’s Some of What I’ve Learned…

World Bipolar Day: Here’s Some of What I’ve Learned…

Author: Gregg F. Martin, PhD, Major General, US Army (Retired)   World Bipolar Day is on 30 March. This is a day to focus on a serious mental/brain illness that afflicts 60 million people worldwide; and even more because statistics for children are not counted...
Bipolar Disorder is My Superpower

Bipolar Disorder is My Superpower

Author: Dayna J.   In celebration of World Bipolar Day on March 30, I want people to know that I do not see this mental illness as a disability — it is my superpower!   So many see a bipolar disorder diagnosis as a frightening and negative experience that...
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