• advertisement

Our Mental Health Blogs

The Importance of Baby Steps in Bipolar Disorder Recovery

The Importance of Baby Steps in Bipolar Disorder Recovery

I often hear from people who are in the very nastiest, lowest, deadliest pits of despair in their bipolar depression. It’s natural to reach out during these times. You need help and you need help now. And what these people want to know is:

How can I fix my life?

The answer to this question is both good and bad. The answer is: baby steps.

Continue reading

Why You Can’t Give Up On Bipolar Treatment, Even If Your Doctor Does

Why You Can’t Give Up On Bipolar Treatment, Even If Your Doctor Does

When I was first diagnosed, I went through 18 months of medication trials without success. I initially tried a bunch of antidepressants thanks to misdiagnosis and then I went through mood stabilizers when it was confirmed that I had bipolar disorder.

And every medication was pretty much the same. I would take the drug, it would induce horrible side effects, I wouldn’t be able to tolerate the drug and then I would have to try something else. It was unadulterated hell.

After 18 months of that, I went to my psychiatrist’s appointment, sat down and looked at my doctor as he threw his hands in the air and said, “I can’t help you. You’re no longer my patient.”

My doctor had fired me.

Continue reading

Is Life Ever Normal for a Person with Bipolar?

Is Life Ever Normal for a Person with Bipolar?

A normal life is something I’m not very familiar with. I’ve never really had one. From the time I was a kid with an alcoholic father, to the teenage years I spent depressed, to my adult years dealing with psychiatrists, symptoms and medication side effects, I’ve never really enjoyed anything termed normalcy.

But the question is, does anyone with bipolar enjoy a normal life?

Continue reading

Will My Bipolar Son Be Okay?

Will My Bipolar Son Be Okay?

It’s devastating to get a diagnosis of bipolar disorder or another mental illness. It means many things to many people, but I know for me, it meant a lifetime condition and a lifetime of treatment. It honestly felt like a death sentence.

But a bipolar diagnosis doesn’t just affect the person with bipolar disorder. A bipolar diagnosis can affect their family and friends, especially if the person with bipolar disorder is younger. It’s completely understandable for a parent to wonder if bipolar disorder is a death sentence. It’s completely understandable for a parent to wonder if his or her child is going to be okay.

Continue reading

What Is a Bipolar Routine?

What Is a Bipolar Routine?

What Is a Bipolar Routine?

I have talked many times about how important a routine is in bipolar disorder (Limitations and Rules that Keep Us Safe). There are many reasons for this, but one of the main ones is because bipolar disorder is considered a circadian rhythm disorder by many medical professionals. Your circadian rhythm is critical to your functioning as a human as it tells your body when to sleep and when to be awake (among other things) and trying to go against it is like swimming upstream. Assuming bipolar disorder is, indeed, a circadian rhythm disorder, we should do everything we can to work to regulate our circadian rhythms in a healthy manner. Keeping a strict bipolar routine is one major way of doing that.

Continue reading

How Do You Know If It’s the Therapy or the Drugs That is Working?

How Do You Know If It’s the Therapy or the Drugs That is Working?

For many years, the psychiatric community has known that therapy plus medication is more effective than either mental illness treatment alone. It all depends on the specific therapy, medication and person, but that’s, generally, the rule.

But the question is, if you’re being a good patient and you’re working your therapy and taking your psychiatric medications as you should, how do you know which one is causing positive results?

Continue reading

The Problem with the “Faces of Mental Illness” Campaign

The Problem with the “Faces of Mental Illness” Campaign

On Monday, I wrote about the Faces of Mental Illness campaign run by the Canadian Alliance on Mental Illness and Mental Health. This campaign is part of the Mental Illness Awareness Week which is this week in Canada (next week in the U.S.).

I like this campaign, and what’s more, given by the number of people who have read and shared the article, you like it too. People like hearing from other real people who have faced real mental illnesses and come out the other side to create whole and satisfying lives for themselves. And there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that. People find it helpful and hopeful and inspiring.

But the campaign leaves out a huge segment of the mentally ill population. Where is the celebration of those who fight every day to beat their mental illness but don’t become published authors or start a non-profit?

Continue reading

Faces of Mental Illness – Recovery is Possible

Faces of Mental Illness – Recovery is Possible

This week is Mental Illness Awareness Week in Canada. (Mental Illness Awareness Week in the U.S. starts next week. Why the two countries couldn’t get together on this I’ll never know.) And in honour of this week, I thought I would feature the Mental Illness Awareness Week’s campaign – the Faces of Mental Illness.

The Faces of Mental Illness Focuses on real people with real mental illnesses who have faced the worst and still found recovery. If you’re looking for some hope, these are the people who will give it to you.

Continue reading

In a Bipolar Treatment Rut – Change Nothing and Nothing Changes

In a Bipolar Treatment Rut – Change Nothing and Nothing Changes

Treatment for bipolar can be a beast. You try medication after medication after therapy after cocktail after doctor and so on. It’s exhausting.

And at some point you stop. You just stop. Maybe some of your symptoms are controlled but not others. Maybe your symptoms are only partially controlled. Maybe you’re just too tired to fill another prescription. I understand, really. And this stopping can persist for weeks, months or even years.

But the thing is, if you change nothing, then nothing will ever change.

Continue reading

Bipolar and the Pressure to Get Better

Bipolar and the Pressure to Get Better

Hi. My name is Natasha and I have bipolar disorder. In fact, I have had bipolar disorder for at least 14 years. And many of those years I spent not really getting better.

Much to the chagrin of the doctors and those around me. After all, if I was taking pills, seeing a psychiatrist and psychologist, shouldn’t my wellness be just around the corner?

Sometimes I felt pressured to just say “yes, I’m feeling better,” when that wasn’t the truth of the matter at all.

Continue reading


Follow Us

  • advertisement

in Breaking Bipolar Comments

Mental Health Newsletter

Sign up for the HealthyPlace mental health newsletter for latest news, articles, events.

Mental Health
Newsletter Subscribe Now!

Mental Health Newsletter

Sign up for the HealthyPlace mental health newsletter for latest news, articles, events.

Log in

Login to your account

Username *
Password *
Remember Me