Category: Acceptance

I Am More Than My Bipolar Disorder

I Am More Than My Bipolar Disorder

Author: Lesly Garcia I want to remind others that there are millions of us with bipolar disorder. I was diagnosed in 2019, at the age of 22 when I had my first episode. I think part of me knew a long time ago that I was bipolar. But I didn’t know what bipolar disorder...

Tradeoffs I Have Made in Bipolar Recovery

Tradeoffs I Have Made in Bipolar Recovery

Author: Violette Kay It has been two years since my last major episode, and although I will always push back against the notions that mania/depression/suffering in general magically makes people creative and that taking medication (or any other steps towards...

Work As a Life-affirming Meditation Practice

Work As a Life-affirming Meditation Practice

Author: George Hofmann Meditation can be a key practice toward coping with or avoiding episodes of mania and depression, but I’ve become increasingly troubled by proponents of mindfulness as therapy. From companies touting meditation as a means to help workers deal...

Seasons and Cycles

Seasons and Cycles

Author: Maria Jacobs Hello, I’m Maria Eva Jacobs, and I have lived with Bipolar Disorder my entire adult life.  The dark details of my life-long struggle, include a dual diagnosis and symptoms of schizoaffective disorder such as persecutory delusions, paranoia,...

Brokenness

Brokenness

Author: Sophia Falco I stole the wand of that magician to try to fix this embodiment of the feeling of brokenness. How can it be possible to embody something not whole? Unlike shards of glass that litters the ground, he hit his autographed baseball (the autographer...

Self Love & Lived Experience

Self Love & Lived Experience

Author: Grace Scarpello Oh, what I’d say to 24-year-old Grace now. I’d tell her that her body is perfectly fine and wonderful as it is. I’d tell her that movement makes her brain and heart feel better. I’d say that she doesn’t have to work three jobs to “make up” for...

The Adams Family: Triumphs and Groans

The Adams Family: Triumphs and Groans

Author: Curtis Hier Great success and great misery come with the bipolar life, and the Adamses had their share of both. John Adams is believed by many to have had bipolar II disorder. Thomas Jefferson described him as “sometime absolutely mad.” But Jefferson had a...

The Time is Now

The Time is Now

Author: Melinda Goedeke Every time I drive home, I have to decide exactly when to turn onto my street as that split second decision could be the difference between making it safely home or not.   My timing has to be perfect. I am sometimes forced (in my mind)  to cut...

Learning to Trust Instincts

Learning to Trust Instincts

Author: Stacey Isaacson Trust your gut. That’s what they say, right? But what if your gut sometimes leads you in the wrong direction? What if, in a spurt of creativity, you come up with a fantastic idea, only to find it less than fantastic when you carry it out in a...

The Power in Overcoming Self Stigma

The Power in Overcoming Self Stigma

Author: Emily Ellison “Please don’t be bipolar” I thought to myself as I sat in the waiting room for my first psychiatrist appointment. I feared this diagnosis. Having done my degree in psychology I understood bipolar clinically and I believed that this diagnosis...

Lithium and Dialysis

Lithium and Dialysis

Author: Natalia Beiser At the age of eighteen, I experienced my first full blown manic episode. I was not diagnosed with bipolar disorder at that time; it is not uncommon for bipolar patients to be misdiagnosed with schizophrenia. In 1990, there were few treatment...

Eternal Sleep 

Eternal Sleep 

Author: Melinda Goedeke  Sleeping is an event for me. 8:30 p.m. comes around, and I start thinking about sleep. I put on my oversized jammies and crawl into bed ready…..ready to shut down. To stop. To rest. My husband doesn’t do any “readying” and is asleep the moment...

The Dogwood Tree

The Dogwood Tree

Author: Bryson Hays Sometimes… I forget. I lose my memory of what it is like. I have forgotten what drowning feels like. Afloat on a lifeboat of medications, I forget what my world used to be. I barely remember the thrill of adrenaline that comes with inhaling...

Visionary

Visionary

Author: Sophia Falco There were no lightbulbs in his house only candles. I tiptoed around each room, and one by one blew them out until darkness engulfed it like a demon, and I exited the back door, but immediately regretted this. He did not deserve to be in the dark...

Theodore & the Roosevelt Bipolar Inheritance

Theodore & the Roosevelt Bipolar Inheritance

Author: Curtis Hier Kay Redfield Jameson, one of the leading experts on bipolar disorder and a sufferer herself, has described Theodore Roosevelt as “hypomanic on a mild day.” Mark Twain warned that “we ought to keep in mind that Theodore, as statesman and politician,...

How Carrie Mathison Changed my Life 

How Carrie Mathison Changed my Life 

Author: Stacey Isaacson It’s a recurrent theme in my life that I come late to popular tv shows. I had no idea why we were talking about couture choices in the town of Schitt’s Creek, how Don Draper smoked too much or what’s up with the girls in “Girls.” And I still...

Mental Health Stigma

Mental Health Stigma

Author: Nikta Niazi I have very much faced mental health stigma as a female. Actually I have come to the consclusion that each gender has their own obstacles when it comes to mental health issues. I was reading one of the blog post on the website; a psychiatrist...

She Would Want Us to Talk

She Would Want Us to Talk

Author: Melinda Goedeke Enraptured in a riveting discussion about The Crucible in my junior lit. class, I vaguely hear a threatening buzzing. And then I spot it – a killer bee swiftly flying around the room darting over heads and under desks, coyly, without...

Gratitude

Gratitude

Author: Angela McCrimmon I have often reflected on the question “If someone could completely cure me of bipolar disorder tomorrow, would I accept the treatment?” Anyone who is reading this in the middle of a depressive episode will believe with all their heart...

I Am Bipolar Strong

I Am Bipolar Strong

Author: MB When it comes to being bipolar, the word strength takes on a whole other meaning. After over 10 years of experience with bipolar type 1, I can finally say that bipolar in itself is my strength. You may be thinking, why has it taken you so long to figure...

Go Forth

Go Forth

Author: Sophia Falco I created a tragic collage of a vicious wolf cut out from an old National Geographic Magazine, and I juxtaposed it with hopeful words I deliberately found. I arranged these words just so that the lone wolf (sometimes I feel so lonely) could devour...

Being Kind to Myself

Being Kind to Myself

Author: Kassy Nguyen When was the last time you have practiced self-kindness? Often more than I am sure most of us would like to admit, we are quite self-deprecating and harsh on ourselves. Although, it is often time normalized by the media to be self-deprecating and...

What I Wish Others Understood About Having Bipolar Disorder

What I Wish Others Understood About Having Bipolar Disorder

Author: Alexis Crase Nobody ever said having a mental illness is easy. But when people talk about mental health, they talk about just that – mental health. They focus on self-care and exclude the real-life aspects of having a mental illness like bipolar disorder, such...

Self-love & Mental Wellness

Self-love & Mental Wellness

Author: Nikta Niazi Imagine a watering can being empty while the garden, the plants and flowers life all depend on this can; but ridiculously the can is empty. It refuses to contain water inside and nourish the plants. Or the sun, getting dark and gloomy one day and...

Emotions Aren’t the Enemy

Emotions Aren’t the Enemy

Author: Stacey Isaacson When I was a kid, long before my bipolar II diagnosis, I was known to be emotional. Over-emotional, as it was termed. Many a time was I given the sage advice “don’t jump in with both feet,” as I was known to fall instantly into new friendships...

To The Ones Who Got Better

To The Ones Who Got Better

Author: Valery Brosseau I used to wonder if I’d ever get “better”. I used to wonder what “better” even really meant. I assumed it meant the emotional pain would stop, the debilitating lows would disappear and the dangerous highs would be tempered. As someone diagnosed...

Trapped Light

Trapped Light

Author: Sophia Falco Those lovely fireflies are prisoners in a glass jar on her kitchen table. Their trapped light on display like the diminishing light within my being. Depression is trying to extinguish my light, but I hid the fire extinguisher under my bed whereas...

Mental Wellness Month

Mental Wellness Month

Author: Nikta Niazi Do you have a plan for how you’re going to work on mental wellness this month? I do. And I am motivated to set a goal for my mental health every month. It is actually what I considered as my 2021’s resolution. I thought it is the best if I develop...

Mental Wellness: Positive Psychology for Bipolar Disorder

Mental Wellness: Positive Psychology for Bipolar Disorder

Author: Cassandra Miasnikov Tips to Cultivate Inner Strengths and Lessen The Risk of Relapse Pessimism can sneak up on any of us. But if you’re someone living with bipolar disorder, there’s a higher chance that you see the glass as half empty. Positive...

Reflecting Back on My Initial Diagnosis: Part 4

Reflecting Back on My Initial Diagnosis: Part 4

Author: Scott Walker During my final five months living in Japan I definitely had varying degrees of depression for most of that time. Different mental health professionals in the psychiatric hospital in New Zealand told me there was a good chance of this...

Crystal Clear

Crystal Clear

Author: Melinda Goedeke Contingency plans rule my world because I see the glass as half empty. My kids used to sarcastically call me the beam of optimism because I was always preparing for the impending disaster. It’s one of those special gifts I learned in...

Everyone Suffers

Everyone Suffers

Author: George Hofmann Last summer, with people crying out in the streets, I learned about the need to pause and listen to each other in the midst of uncertainty and upset. As we begin 2021, with Covid-19 shutdowns dragging on and polarizing political unrest, people...

Therapist by Day, Bipolar Caregiver by Night

Therapist by Day, Bipolar Caregiver by Night

Author: Cory Anderson As a therapist, I thought I would be well equipped to handle anything marriage threw my way, including my wife’s bipolar II diagnosis. Well, I was wrong. Even our journey of getting this diagnosis was long and fraught with potholes. I imagine a...

“Everything’s Not Lost”: Song Review

“Everything’s Not Lost”: Song Review

Author: Sophia Falco “Everything’s Not Lost”, this wonderfully optimistic song, by Coldplay came into my life when I discovered I needed it while in the midst of a challenging depression. These lyrics spoke to me because of their duality of the rawness and the pain...

A Warrior in Sheep’s Clothing

A Warrior in Sheep’s Clothing

Author: Bryson Hays How far away I feel… From everything. From family and friends, from doctors and patients, from myself and I. Every day feels the same, I wake up, take my doses of medication to keep the demons at bay, and continue to live my life. But what if...

Penpaling for Mental Health 

Penpaling for Mental Health 

Author: Claire Gault Those diagnosed with bipolar disorder can be more susceptible to loneliness, as our condition feels isolating from the world around us. With the government issuing restrictions on socializing, loneliness can be intensified more than ever before,...

A Letter to the Lonely

A Letter to the Lonely

Author: Trevor Simonson Are you experiencing feelings of loneliness? Do you feel forgotten, like you are falling through the cracks? Are you missing somebody? This letter goes out to you. This is for those who live with bipolar disorder. This is for the caregivers....

The Time is Now

The Time is Now

Author: Sophia Falco When I was in the depths of depression I decided, I needed a higher power to lean on though I understood it was up to me to improve my mental health, and I am so grateful for my support system in my life. Furthermore, this year was a mark in time...

Gratitude

Gratitude

Author: Nikta Niazi Lately, more than any other time, I felt attacked by my obsessive thoughts and my critical inner voice. At nights, I can’t go to sleep. I spend hours reassessing the past, things I’ve done, decisions I’d made, all the memories I had with those who...

Showing Gratitude

Showing Gratitude

Author: Alexis Crase Having a support system when you have a mental illness is essential, but leaning on others can often mean feeling burdensome, or worrying about burning others out. Practicing gratitude is a powerful way to help alleviate these feelings, as well as...

A Mother’s Marathon

A Mother’s Marathon

Author: Melinda Goedeke I remember when Laura was little staring at me with a mix of defiance, confidence and spunk refusing to walk without her doll stroller. She was 16 months old and could most definitely walk. She knew walking solo meant moving to the “big kid...

My First Experience with Mania

My First Experience with Mania

Author: Natalia Beiser I experienced my first full blown manic disorder, as experienced by those with bipolar 1 while in my last year of high school.  Prior to being sent for inpatient treatment, my behavior had been sporadic and I had many angry verbal outbursts. ...

My Story

My Story

Author: Kim Barnett I was born in 1982 in a small city in Ventura County. I had two loving parents, two siblings, and we all lived in a nice house. We were one of the first black families to move into this predominantly white and Hispanic city. As a child this was a...

Gathering the Light from the Stars: A Guided Imagery

Gathering the Light from the Stars: A Guided Imagery

Author: Sophia Falco Find a comfortable position where you can either sit or lay down for about 10 minutes. If you feel it’s appropriate to close your eyes, then please do so, and if not keep your gaze downwards—this is totally fine too. First, get in tune with your...

The Power of Just

The Power of Just

Author: Melinda Goedeke When my beautiful daughter was 23,  she was asked to be in one of her best friend’s wedding. Running towards me with her infectious smile, she shared the news with me talking so quickly I barely understood. What I did understand is that she was...

How Bipolar Disorder Has Prepared Me for Unpredictability

How Bipolar Disorder Has Prepared Me for Unpredictability

Author: Christina Chambers Lately, I have noticed a pattern emerging and re-emerging. It weaves itself through my life like vines climbing a lattice. That pattern is chaos. There is a consistent inconsistency, predictable unpredictability, and almost an order to the...

Comforting Affirmations for Bipolar Disorder

Comforting Affirmations for Bipolar Disorder

Author: Rebecca James The bipolar mind is often a chaotic place. It can be scary, lonely, sad, or wild. In the center of it, we all need some moments of peace. I’ve found that affirmations, or easy, reassuring sentences, help me navigate the bipolar mind. Here are a...

Embracing Gratitude

Embracing Gratitude

Author: Sophia Falco I delve deep into the dreamland of my imagination. I embrace envisioning light flowing throughout my body, and soothing my mind edging out the darkness that has taken up residency for far too long. The beauty of the natural world speaks to me in...

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