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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,...

Mental Health Stigma: My Story (Article 4 in the Stigma Series)

I get stigma on a very regular basis. This in turn severely limits, or even extinguishes, the support that I need. I’ve learned most people are not even aware when they’ve said something hurtful, damaging, or founded solely on falsehoods. People assume there is enough...

It’s just a day in my life

I can hear movement in the house as I lie in bed, trying to convince my mind and body that it is time to get up. The front door opening and closing as my partner leaves to take his regular walk across to the local newsagents, music coming from my daughter’s room, her...

Running Bipolar—The Effort to Chase Away Darkness and Manage Mania

I don't like running. To be honest, I began running out of vanity. My ten year high school reunion was coming up and I refused to look as if I'd just bore two children when I walked through that ballroom door so I started running. Walking just took too long. Since...

A Song About Lithium

Today I am focusing on Evanescence’s song Lithium. Lithium is a drug sometimes associated with bipolar disorder since it has been fairly successful in helping stabilize manic and depressive episodes. Lithium was first used to treat mania in 1970. Kay Jamison wrote...

But the little beast is still with me

I recently had cause to look back at the first ever blog post I wrote about my mental health. It’s called A Tale of Two Beasts, and it’s an exploration of the interplay between the feelings of anxiety and depression I was struggling with in April 2011. I wrote it just...

Smile It Helps

Let me first start by saying I am writing this blog from the John Hopkins Psychiatric Unit, in Baltimore, Maryland. They allow the patients to have their, IPAD, cell phone, and laptop. I decided to submit this blog because daily I find that even those individuals who...

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...

Hypomanic Project Spending

I can always tell when I am dealing with renovation construction while in a hypomanic mood. It costs money, lots of it. My landscaping job started at $5000+-. Add a walkway and entrance pad of hand laid stone on a whim. $12,000+- total. Add an irrigation system...

A Conversation with Dr Black-Boot’s

“I shall be with you in a moment Henrietta”. Dr Black-Boot’s walks past, forced smile; giving others around her the impression, she is hurrying. I am not convinced.She enters a room to the right hand side of the waiting area, the small, claustrophobic duty room. I can...

Waiting Out The Storm: A Lesson From My Puppy

On a day filled with thunderstorms and torrential rains, we sit in the bedroom. Clementine, my 11 month old puppy, is curled in a ball at my feet. The television news warns viewers this storm could produce hail and possibly tornado activity. Stay inside! Take cover!...

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...

Shame

I was introduced to a song the other day that hit home, and brings tears to my eyes every time I hear it. The song (with some lyrics below) touches on something that is not discussed in detail SHAME.I cannot begin to tell you even 17 years after my Bipolar diagnosis...

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...

I AM NOT BIPOLAR!

How we define ourselves is perhaps far more important than we wish to believe and has far-reaching consequences.Many of us naturally define ourselves by our gender, religion or ethnicity, by social class, occupation or educational attainments. Others find the roles...

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...

Life before… Life After….and then After More

I was sitting around the other day thinking about how long it has been since I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder at the age of 18 and all that has happened since then. It’s quite interesting because I seem to remember my first inpatient stay still so vividly, but I...

How do I stop the slide?

Someone commented on the Scott Inside Out facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/scottinsideout2) a while ago that they’d like to know how to “stop the slide”. This is an excellent question! It refers the ability to stop from getting depressed when things are going...

Writing Angry

I don’t know about you but I have a serious problem, writing Angry. Doesn’t sound that bad right? Well for someone like me, a professed writer (blogger), it can be. It can put your life/career/hobby on hold for an extended amount of time. It can cause writers block....

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 treatment they...

Mother’s Day Tears

Mother’s Day Tears

I have the handprints in a frame. I have the popsicle jewelry box. I even have the photo calendar. What I don't have is my older son. But I can't have him. Not this year. For those of you who haven't been following my story, the short version is that my bipolar...

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...

How do I drag myself out of the mud?

 On the Scott Inside Out - Natural Mental wellness facebook page last week, I asked what tips people would like to learn about in terms of bipolar disorder. And also what would give them the most value. Someone responded by wanting to know how "to get going...

ECT Treatments for Medication Resistant Depression

I have Bipolar Disorder 1 with medication resistant depression. At one point, I was taking up to five different medications just to control my Bipolar Disorder. It was horrible. I’d take a medication for a few months, then have to have the dosage increased or even...

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...

Voltaire

 The most courageous decision you make each day is the decision to be in a good mood.I simply could not sleep last night. I tried, as we so often find ourselves doing, endeavouring to master and victoriously conquer the alluring and devilish seductress of sweet...

I Petcha I’ll Make You Feel Better

I Petcha I’ll Make You Feel Better

I have four cats. They are like my kids. I wake up every morning and go find each one and kiss them, after of course I kiss my husband! I grew up with dogs, and went through pets that taught responsibility, these were the guinea pigs, rabbits, and fish. Although...

A Mother’s Nightmare

I had been expecting the call. Finally, two and a half weeks ago it came. Not that I wanted it to come, but it didn't surprise me. Over the last couple years, I've expected it. And dreaded it too.When I first heard the news, I was remarkably calm. All business. What...

Happy Pills

Happy pills, I’ve got those happy pills…Recently I was fortunate enough to be interviewed by Philippa Willetts, a blogger and tweeter who has just launched a new podcast called Converge. Philippa plans to use podcasts to look at various forms of activism and, as a...

Mental Illness Stigma: Myth vs. Fact (Article 1 in Stigma series)

The hardest part of living with a mental illness is the stigma that is in the world today. This unfortunate attitude makes living with these health issues so much worse than it needs to be. It creates feelings of shame, inferiority, failure and brokenness for the...

How can you push the boulder today?

Last week I was invited to an event dedicated to human resources and mental health. The audience was composed of professionals with knowledge in the HR and employments law fields; I was invited as an “expert by experience” in the field of mental health. The event was...

Bipolar Emotions

I have found that I ran the range of emotions over time in my bipolar existence. Some of them occurred despite my bipolar illness and some were the cause of it.Of major concern to me was a fear or feeling of doom or dread that took over my psyche when I was depressed....

Fear

Fear, something that affects everyone at some point in their lives. One of our first fears in life is usually the boogie-man in the closet as a child, or the monster under our beds. Some say, “A healthy dose of fear is a good thing.” I’m not sure where I stand on that...

My Wish for You

My wish for you today and every day after isTo know your true worthTo value yourselfTo treat yourself like you do othersTo be kind and gentle with yourself because you know you deserve itTo feel peace from your inner painTo know how strong you truly areTo understand...

Understanding the Ball of Yarn

Those of us with some form of Bipolar, understand how our minds work. Most of us are gifted with creativity that drives us, especially during manic times. But for those reading this who do not have Bipolar, the creative aspect of Bipolar may be a bit of a mystery....

Oh, how is my Bipolar I hear you ask?

As I recall somewhat hazily, nine months ago I decided to take a break from writing. Initially it was only going to be for a few short months. Just enough time to steady my increasingly chaotic moods, have some much needed time to myself and to enjoy more of my now...

To Tell or Not To Tell?

***The opinions below are mine personally and the experiences that I have had, everybody’s own situation is different***Originally, when I started writing my blog I created a pseudonym, Bipolar Betty. There are folks I have told about my mental illness and some I have...

Worry

Worry

Okay, I admit it. Worrying comes natural for me. In fact I will actually admit that at times I am addicted to worrying. As I progressed from parenthood to grandparenthood my worrying accelerated. When my babies laed cuddled in the warmth of blankets, I worried that...

This Is Me

I’m taking a page out of the bp Magazine for this month’s article. I don’t know how many of you are familiar with this publication or if you personally receive it. I have a subscription and when I get mine in the mail, I read it from cover to cover.One of the sections...

Would You Choose to Opt Out of Bipolar Disorder?

Would You Choose to Opt Out of Bipolar Disorder?

I’m writing a book about my life. In my research I watched a documentary called The Stephen Fry Story – The Secret Life of the Manic Depressive (Click here for the documentary - 2 episodes of 1 hr. each). It’s a fascinating portrait of BPD. It can help those...

Friends-A Bipolar Perspective

Although I put family and my beloved spouse in a different place, I was just thinking of all my varied friendships so I thought I would comment on them and show how a bipolar lifestyle works in:Being a good Catholic boy, serving on the altar until eighteen, I looked...

Getting Past the “Put it Offs” and Back to Living

Does your life revolve around put it offs, “I’ll do it tomorrow,” “I’ll get to that next week.” Well for probably the past 8 months mine has. About 8 months ago I got out of my first relationship in over 5 ½ years. It had only lasted about 6 months. But it was a good...

Pregnancy and Mental Illness

This issue is close to heart. Mental illness/Bipolar vs. pregnancy. To conceive or not conceive? The odds of having a child also with a mental illness? What are the medication risks? Because of so many facts that go into these issues, and I could write for days, I...

You make it through this because you are me and I was you

Over the last 6 months I have been pondering a lot about coming of age in the mental health system. Many times I thought of how many different stages I went through and how I would have loved to know during each stage in my coming into adulthood and later that...

Valentine’s Day

A day of love.Flowers.Cake.Chocolate.But what does Valentine Day really signify?A day where you open your heart to someoneSomeone you admire.Someone you always wish the best for.Someone who has been there for you thin and thick.Why not this year, you open your hearts...

The Twists and Turns of Bipolar Disorder

Days are filled with ups and downs. At moments paralyzed from fear, anxiety and depressive negative thoughts. While at other times feeling driven and focused thanks to medication that appears to work for a few hours each day to pull me out of the darkness that I am...

How Forgiveness Changed Bipolar Disorder for Me

How Forgiveness Changed Bipolar Disorder for Me

This is the final article in, what’s turned out to be, a series on How Bipolar Disorder has Been Changed for Me. If you haven’t read the first three they are: 1. How Journaling has Changed Bipolar Disorder for Me 2. How Food has Changed Bipolar Disorder for Me 3. How...

Depression- The Misunderstood Mood Disorder

Depression- The Misunderstood Mood Disorder

Below is a link to a Depression Quiz. You might want to take it then come back here for more information about Depression - The Misunderstood Mood Disorder.Depression Quiz"Depression is one of the most tragically misunderstood words in the English language. Why? The...

5150 to Meet Britney Spears

When I saw Britney Spears on the news on a gurney with paramedics, sirens blaring, a team of policemen, two helicopters, chaos, and a lot of paparazzi and she was placed on a 5150 my heart was breaking and tears filled my eyes. I said to myself, “Oh my God! Even a pop...

MY experience with ECT

As far as I am concerned , electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is the most controversial treatment I have received. In 1991, I was hospitalized for six months. I am a very compliant patient suffering from rapid cycling bipolar disorder. If recommended by a doctor I am...

Conquest

In a week, I will begin my last semester as an undergraduate student.I am taking my last three classes to graduate with bachelors in chemistry.A degree that not only help me further my dreams of becoming a doctor, but the thoughts that I’ve conquered something.I have...

Approaching someone with Bipolar Disorder

I asked for topic suggestions on my Facebook page, and this one that came up. Someone asked, “How do you approach a person with bipolar disorder if you are non-bipolar”. I found this quite interesting. It makes me wonder, why would you approach a person with bipolar...

Health and the New Year

A person may set goals and resolutions for the New Year. It may be regarding a habit that they are trying to break. Sometimes it may be to make an improvement in physical well-being, such as healthier eating, weight loss, or exercise. Additionally, it may include...

A Swing in Time

In this new year, I am resolving to track my emotions better...Not because emotions are my enemy or anything like that. Maybe a better word to use is I want to appreciate the subtle changes in my emotions more.This is not a new thought of course, but it came to me...

2013: The Year of Intentions, Not Resolutions

In the United States, the New Year is traditionally a time to reflect upon aspects of self-improvement. Resolutions made as part of a commitment to a lifestyle change are often broken because they are not clearly defined and well-organized. According to a 2007 study,...

2013 2nd Place Essay Winner

By Deirdre Zoe Bipolar disorder is a brain illness that causes unusual fluctuations in a person’s mood (Weinreb, 2013). However, as Weinreb notes the mood fluctuations that bipolar sufferers experience are sometimes so severe that it can impact their work performance,...

It is Always a War

By Parag Kappor Bipolar disorder is a challenge faced by people around the world. The stigma has already ruined too many lives. A great passage from the novel Ender’s Game, perfectly describes the situation: There is no teacher but the enemy. No one but the enemy will...

It is a NEW YEAR!

So, the New Year rolls around, and suddenly everyone’s talking about getting healthy. After living through another year of struggling to keep my moods stable, my side-effects manageable and my weight from spiraling, I have had to ask myself what “healthy” means to me...

Fresh and New

January... The month of new beginnings and fresh starts. The slate is wiped clean of all past doings and the hope for a better tomorrow is so thick you can slice it right out of the air and serve it for dinner! Then what? When the bloom of change begins to whither and...

The Word of the Year

Every year, instead of making a resolution, one of my good friends chooses a word to live by and grow with in the upcoming year. She inspired me to do the same.. . .Healthy [hel-thee] adjective: in good condition; a state of complete physical, mental, and social...

How Positive Thinking Changed Bipolar Disorder for Me

How Positive Thinking Changed Bipolar Disorder for Me

This is the third article in, what’s turned out to be, a series on How Bipolar Disorder has Been Changed for Me. If you haven’t read the first two they are:1. How Journaling has Changed Bipolar Disorder for Me2. How Food has Changed Bipolar Disorder for MeJournaling...

Flying Home with a Sinking Feeling

I'm so tearful. I'm embarrassed sitting here at the gate waiting for a plane that will take me away.I cannot even begin thinking, much less speaking, about returning to SO MUCH UNCERTAINTY...without eyes brimming and overflowing. People sitting around me must think...

Every Yin has its Yang!

While fishing through my old journals and day planners I came across something that I wrote on January 22nd of 2010:Every yin has its yang….literally!I just tested this theory out. I was looking for my coffee mug and was starting to become frustrated. I saw there was...

To The Max! – Extreme Living in a Bipolar II Mind

Everything in my life has always been to the max! I want sauce on my pasta, it’s gonna be sauce, with some pasta. If I’m gonna work out, I’m gonna run five miles in the blazing hot sun. Everything has always been to the utmost extreme and I’ve never been able to...

Inner-healing, Spirituality and Self-love

New Years is a time for a new beginning and a fresh start. It is a time to let go of the pain from our past and focus on today, now, and the future. I have a lot of pain from my past, depression, fear, psychosis, anxiety, emotional eating, and low self-esteem. 2013 is...

The End

We’ve finally made it to the end of the year.First of all, I want to congratulate you for making it through one more year.Glad you are alive.Glad you’ve made it through 2012.Having bipolar disorder… you really don’t know when you will just snap.Snap and just do what...

Opportunities, Resolutions, & Wellness in the New Year

As a New Year, 2013, is just days away there are two things that immediately pop into my mind. First is reflection of the past year and how I would like next year to be different. Second, it starts raining weight loss commercials on the television. For me, having...

Dining Out

Being bipolar we have a tendency to indulge. We indulge in shopping, adventures, hobbies, friends, worries, cares, causes and even eating out. Sometimes we eat out at very nice places. Often, we just eat anywhere. We swipe that card and then load up on what will...

Health and Wellness in the New Year

For me, 2012 has been a year of great success, immense loss, incredible opportunity and continual change. I accomplished things that I once doubted I could, lost people and things that I had expected to have for years to come, was presented with chances to do things...

The Mayans May Be On To Something!

The Mayans made a prediction about tomorrow 12.21.12. They claim this will be the "end of time". This is being interpreted as being the end of the world, or perhaps the end of the world as we know it. My question is, is this really a bad thing? Think about it. Imagine...

Untreated Mental Illness

An untreated mental illness can be difficult for not only the person who is suffering from the illness but also for the people who come into contact with the person, most commonly the people closest to the person. On the rare occasion a mental illness that a person is...

Happy New Year to Everyone!

Happy New Year to Everyone! I hope everyone had a good Christmas. If not I hope you made it through. This month we are suppose to talk about Heath. When I think of Health the first thing I think of is of course Mental Health. Probably the first thing to do to be...

On Motherhood & Mental Illness

 On Motherhood"You're a really good mother. Your son is very lucky to have such an attentive mom."These words were said to me yesterday by a pediatrician. Because I've been sick for most of my son's life, I feel insecure about the mother that I am most of the...

Health Tips and Resolutions for the New Year

I’m going easy on myself in the New Year because it will be the first of many in which I have admitted and will responsibly addressed my disorder. So here’s what I’ve decided to focus on: • TIP: Improve my diet by eating the colors of the rainbow. Remember that...

Sometimes the house is dirtier

Six days stuck to my bed resulted in a 4-hour wait for a med-check at Urgent Psychiatric Care (UPC) in downtown Phoenix. I resumed the same idiocy of pretending I was sick instead of admitting I was in a downturn. In my defense, at least it only took 6 days for me to...

Rejuvenate

This past year my world was filled with quite a few life altering events. Last January I was put on short-term disability at my job because of my bipolar disorder. While trying to get better, I struggled a lot with the decision of leaving my husband, who was in St....

Ups and Downs of 2012

Ups and Downs of 2012

2012 had been a rough year for me physically and mentally. I was in the hospital for psychiatric evaluation at least four times. I had a couple of endoscopes, a hospitalization for my back and even a couple of back procedures including a radio frequency ablation on my...

A Mixed Episode

A mixed episode…my latest road-trip from one pole to the other…with road foodFor extra fun these last three days--I've been experiencing symptoms of a mixed episode. I am wildly rosy and ready to take charge...and simultaneously weeping uncontrollably. And unable to...

Mental Illness & Addiction

I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder a few months after turning 18 years old in 2003. While that seems so long ago, one would think 10 years is enough time to figure out how to perfectly manage my illness and life. The truth of the matter is, I am still learning and...

My Letter to You

Some of us are so far from what we imagined our lives would be like; Some have exactly what they pictured; Some are trying to do everything they can to escape the constant reminder that we failed to meet our childhood expectations and dreams of adulthood. No matter...

The Best Life of My Life

As I lay in my bed in the early stages of a cold I cry. For about a year I have been trying to gain the strength to stay awake and be in the mood to go to a club in the United States with my husband, as my husband is new to the states as of February. Now this may seem...

Regaining Stability

The latest that has been going on with me is the tumultuous depression that has spiked in my life due to our (my husband and myself) living situation. I am thirty-one years old. My husband is twenty-eight. We are living in the basement of my parents’ home. This...

How Food Changed Bipolar Disorder for Me

How Food Changed Bipolar Disorder for Me

Controlling our Bipolar Disorder is a full time job, even during the good times. We have meds, psychotherapy, and other standard treatments. However, have you considered food as a form of treatment? I've discovered there are certain foods that help me keep the Bipolar...

“FINALS! FINALS! GET YOUR FINALS HERE!”

Finals are the dreading exams we take at the end of each semester that not only covers four months worth of material in 50 questions, but covers a large sum of our overall grades. The intense pressure to do well on finals is a nightmare for any college student, but...

It’s that Time of Year

This is the time of year that we become reflective and think about all the reasons why we have become thankful.I know I do it. I see it all over the Internet on Facebook and Twitter. People posting why they are thankful. The Internet by-ways are practically flooded...

Bipolar Lullaby

Counting sheepChase the thoughtsAnd shutdown my racing mind.Counting the flock just doesn’t stopThose endless thoughts of mine.Enter baa baa black sheepIn a small prescription form.He comes in twos, but I make him fourWhen I crack him always in half,Or grind him up in...

Don’t just do something, sit there

Several weeks ago I saw my psychiatrist and admitted that I had been indulging in activities that I knew were bad for me, because they supported or nurtured my hypomania. My psychiatrist reminded me that I was playing with fire (since for my, hypomania can be a...

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