Category: Support

Therapy: How to get the most out of it

Is this your first appointment with a new therapist? If this is the case, it will take a while for you to get to know the therapist and their style, as well as for them to get to know you. Therapy is useless if there’s not positive energy both ways.  Evaluate...

LIGHT AT THE END OF THE TUNNEL

As I was sipping a hot cup of tea in a breezy evening, for the first time, I could feel the calmness in my soul as the wind touched my face. For so long, I had been struggling to feel this way. I had never felt this way. What was this calmness? I wondered. It was as...

I Have Bipolar Disorder

My name is Doreen. My psychiatrist says I have bipolar disorder. Some people say I don’t have bipolar disorder. Sometimes I believe them.I have had one full psychotic break, one manic episode with milder psychotic symptoms, and one short-lived manic...

My Bipolar Isn’t Severe Enough

When I got into advocacy work, public speaking, and blogging, I knew there would be people who disagreed with me and even disliked me altogether. I am familiar with pop culture references to “haters” and I know the comment section can be a difficult place to get...

Against the Odds

When I was in the beginning stages of being diagnosed bipolar most people wrote me off. They thought this girl’s out of school, she can’t keep a job and she certainly cannot contribute to society. I was a self-fulfilling prophecy in a sense I thought I was worthless...

THE FURRY ANTIDEPRESSANT

As of this writing, I will be welcoming a puppy into our home tonight. Our family is totally freaking out about our new addition in the best way possible! And now more than ever, I believe in “furry antidepressants”.  Please allow me to...

Bipolar Has Been A Blessing

I know many of you are scratching your heads and wondering if someone sane could actually make such a statement. But in my eyes, bipolar has been a blessing in many ways. I have learned a lot about myself and how to manage this illness well enough to be an author, a...

The Journey from Despair to Aware

May is Mental Health Awareness Month. It got me thinking about when I was first aware of my own mental illness.For me, it came on gradually. As a middle school kid, I battled waves of sadness. It didn’t help that I was bullied mercilessly. As I got older, the...

Relationships

Relationships are a difficult thing to navigate, especially when you suffer from depression. If you are one of the fortunate people that has found perhaps a handful of people that understand your pain, your mood swings, and your sadness, consider yourself...

It’s My Birthday

It’s my birthday. I’m 37 today. I have lived with the diagnosis of bipolar disorder for eight years. In that time, literally almost every permutation of the disease has been applied to my particular state. Early-onset but undiagnosed. ...

New Phone?

While my blog started out as a place to vent and rave I have discovered that by just regurgitating my daily events I am no longer getting much out of it. As a result I have decided to change my blog into a more ‘self-help’ place where I can share my...

That’s Not Bipolar

In my role as a mental illness speaker and blogger, I receive a lot of comments and questions. The one item that stands out is that there is a lot of confusion over what bipolar disorder is and what it isn’t.Many folks believe that bipolar disorder is just a more...

Medication Adjustments and Withdraws

I’m so happy it’s the middle of the week already! Nothing major or stressful has happened, but I’m looking forward to the kiddos having a three day weekend. No stress in getting everyone around in the morning for three days will be nice. Believe me, I’m happy I don’t...

Freaked to Meet with my PDOC

I never knew what “pdoc” meant until I was diagnosed with bipolar one disorder, and learned that it’s a shorthand term used for psychiatrists by those in the bipolar community.My pdoc is wonderful.  Out of the myriad of doctors I’ve seen...

I’m not Just Surviving, I’m living with Hope

        Good afternoon readers, I hope this entry finds you fighting to keep going. Because I truly believe with all my heart every precious life has such Value in this world, and I want to offer you as much encouragement as I...

End of the Day

For the past twenty years I’ve been a closet songwriter. During my first year attending the University of California at Santa Cruz, I was a regular at open mike night and I belonged to my school’s Concert Choir.  Our final concert was an exotic piece sung...

I Need To Hold It Together

Recently my seven year old was rushed to the emergency room. In the past two weeks this kid has been poked with needles, had ultrasounds done, been seen by numerous doctors, and is scheduled for more tests to figure out what has caused her medical issues and how...

As a Bipolar Mom

As a bipolar Mom, I truly believe that parents that are coping with bipolar disorder have an extra obstacle that they must overcome at times. They must learn how to manage their own illness when they are symptomatic and still be effective parents. I think for most of...

Dogs: Your Baby, Psychiatrist, & Friend

Here’s a photo of my dog, Maggie. She’s one years old. I love her like she’s my baby. I can’t begin to tell you how much she has helped me and my Bipolar Disorder. One day last summer, the local weatherman said we were in the “dog days of summer”....

Point of Acceptance

I’m just going to babble here! For most of you that have read my blog posts you know I’m good at that!The last 2 years have been a battle for me and in the end, when I look at the big picture of it all I almost lost that battle. I almost gave in and gave...

Awareness through the Eyes of Van Gogh

We all know the importance of mental health awareness, and doing our part of erasing the stigma that still surrounds Disorders like Bipolar. As March 30th approaches which is World Bipolar Day, it’s also Van Gogh’s birthday who is a well known Dutch impressionist...

Mommy Has A Bug In Her Brain

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...

Getting Past Being Our Community Horror Story

On Presidents’ Day, a school holiday, I awoke to an unscheduled day. I needed something to do with my daughter Marilla, so I decided to take her to the park. (My other little girl, Avonlea, headed for her best friend’s house.) The weather was clear and sunny, but my...

Broad Minded People: Mental Illness in the Philippines

I was having an intellectual conversation with a credit card customer services representative located in the Philippines. I asked her how mental illness was perceived in the Philippines, particularly psychosis. I asked her if there was stigma associated with mental...

First Breakdown

I don’t remember all the details of that night or what inspired the events that were about to take place. I imagine my father and mother had gotten into some kind of tug of war match over me and it was the last straw that broke the camel’s back so to speak. I can...

Waiting For the Other Shoe to Drop

Ever since my bipolar depression lifted last year, I’ve felt I’ve been tumbling around in my dryer. Maybe that’s not the best analogy, but it has been a long, strange, emotional trip! I’ve been holding my breath both literally and figuratively. ...

Breaking the Window on Stigma

Before I knew that I have Bipolar Disorder, I barely knew what it was.  I thought I did, but now I realize I didn’t know much about it at all.  Since being diagnosed I’ve done a great deal of research and study on BPD for a book that I’m writing.  With...

Search for the Strength Deep within

Where is the strength? When did I lose myself in this madness? When I look in the mirror, I only saw sad empty eyes staring back at me. I didn’t recognize who I was anymore. I was afraid of being ME. It was only my reflection, but that’s all I saw, fragments of a...

About Me

About Me

Disclaimer: Any information provided in this blog is based on my own personal experiences and opinions. No information I provide should ever replace the opinions and advice of a professional. I am not a doctor, psychiatrist or affiliated with any Mental Health...

Ok, I’m Bipolar! Now What?

My girls were three and five the first time I was admitted to a psychiatric facility.  I had just crashed from my biggest manic episode and the fallout from my poor decisions had thrown me into a horrible depression.  The year prior to this, I had had a...

Grief

When you lose someone in your life that is close to you, there’s a part of you that dies as well.  As I was entering my 20’s, I knew that there would come a day when my parents weren’t with me anymore.  It still didn’t seem real.  It felt like if I just...

Remembering Those In Mental Health Facilities

Remembering Those In Mental Health Facilities

I am going to touch upon a subject in which I might offend someone I know. I’m willing to take this chance, however, for if I influence anyone who may someday take action if given the chance, I will be thrilled. If someone you know is hospitalized in a...

Birth of a New Brain: Healing from Postpartum Bipolar

After being a fan of the International Bipolar Foundation blogging community, it is an honor to share my perspectives about living with bipolar disorder with you. I wish to help you feel less alone in living with this mood disorder, and to emulate the I.B.F.’s mission...

I Gotta Feeling

Every time I hear “I Gotta Feeling” by Black Eyed Peas ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uSD4vsh1zDA ) I am instantly energized.  It brings me back to the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver which I was fortunate to go to.  I went to some events and heard this song...

The Give and the Take – Mental Health Group Support

Recently, I went to my first mental health support group meeting. I must admit I was nervous. What would people talk about? What would people think of me? Would I have to talk? If so, what would I say? Though I’ve never been afraid to speak my mind, this was...

Racing, Obsessive & Grandiose Thoughts

I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder eleven years ago. Over the years, I have become familiar with my symptoms and I’m actually good at recognizing them for what they are (which is a good thing) and addressing them. One of the main issues I have always had are my...

Story Tradition

What is it about stories of past episodes in our life. We all love to tell them. The amazing thing is we retell and retell the same stories to our family and friends as if they constituted a fresh audience every time.My in-laws are well into their seventies and,...

A Little About Hope

I’m often asked what gave me HOPE through my darkest years and what gets me through rough patches today. There are several key techniques and practices that have helped me throughout the years, and I’m not hesitant to implement them today when I need them. Aside from...

Who am I

Each of us finds strength in our own way. There are many different ways, reasons, places and/or people to get our inspiration from. Sometimes it’s faith, sometimes it’s music. Maybe you find your solace in nature. I find my comfort in my faith. But it hasn’t always...

The Lone Tree- Part 2

Scott Inside Out’s last post about the lone tree (http://www.scottinsideout.com/2013/05/the-lone-tree-part-1/) focused on support. When I look at lone trees I also see that of choosing to live and really fighting for it. Trees that are located in areas with high...

How to Help Your Teenager With Learning Difficulties

We all know that the teen years are difficult. From growing pains to deciding their personal identity, it is easy to say that teens have a lot on their plate. However, teens with learning disorders have that times ten. Most parents notice the struggle happening, but...

The Lone Tree- Part 1

Growing up, I would often notice lone trees by themselves while on roadtrips. I remember asking my parents how the tree survived on its own with no other trees around. And I remember feeling sorry for the tree! Kind of strange, I know, however kids come up with the...

Embracing Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder has been such a shameful and an incredibly misunderstood place for me. Full of false guilt, embarrassment and regret. Confusion, anger and sadness. And plenty of hurt. Until three weeks ago, it’s been my dark little secret for almost eleven years.I...

Keep On Trying

Ten years ago a dear friend of mine gave me a little book during my very first hospital stay called Keep on Trying which is centered around a kitten. I have been reminded of that book in many different ways over the last year through two dear friends. It has inspired...

It Gets Better

 I’ve been thinking a lot about my adolescence lately. This is partly because I’m continuing to delve into my past as I work on my memoir, and partly because both my children are now at ages at which I was battling bipolar pretty much single-handedly. It’s also...

What Mental Health Mean to Me

What Mental Health Mean to Me

Mental Health is hard to pin down. People with depression, anxiety, Bipolar, Schizophrenia, and such aren’t always as open as people with physical illnesses. For one reason, they don’t feel as comfortable talking about their illness because of the...

Blessing of Blind Spots

When a spouse, family member or friend points out something that you said or did wrong that you were not aware of, or a habit that does not serve you well (http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/emotional-fitness/201301/10-tools-change-hurtful-habits), how do you feel?...

Black Eye

Even though I was diagnosed as bipolar in the year 2000, it was something that I felt too embarrassed to talk about until fairly recently. It’s only in the past few years that I’ve been comfortable telling people besides family about my bipolar diagnosis. In my...

Almost at the finish line

I apologize for my lack of posts for the past month. My professors have a tendency to pack all the exams at the beginning of the month and then I lose track of the times I need to submit entries in. On the brighter side, I am four weeks away from graduation.May...

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