guest post

When it comes to Mental Illness and Depression, Stigma Kills

→ January 16, 2014 - 21 Comments

When it comes to Mental Illness and Depression, Stigma Kills

The Bipolar Burble welcomes guest author Joshua R Beharry, a Vancouver, B.C., Canada-based mental health advocate.

I developed depression in silence.

I remember the months before I became severely depressed; it was the summer of 2009. Deadlines at work had me more stressed than usual and I was increasingly unhappy with my lack of social life. I noticed my thoughts becoming more erratic and desperate but I didn’t know what this meant or where it could lead. I was 22 years old.

When anyone asked how I was doing, I lied and said I was fine. I didn’t tell anyone I wasn’t sleeping well, that my appetite was down or that I felt weaker and more tired than normal.

I saw mental illness only as a label and I didn’t want to admit I may be having issues with my own mental health. I didn’t know enough about depression to see all the warning signs. I kept silent as my thoughts grew darker and I began to fantasize about ending my life.

Depression Overwhelmed Me

I remember the night I realized I could no longer hide my depressed thoughts. I lay in bed unable to fall asleep, my stomach cramped. I felt hot, sweaty and nauseous. It was one of the longest nights of my life.

Read more

Creating Art through the Manias and Depressions of Bipolar Disorder

→ November 20, 2013 - 8 Comments

Creating Art through the Manias and Depressions of Bipolar Disorder

The Bipolar Burble blog welcomes guest author somePlaywrights, a collaboration of two writers based in Annapolis and Brooklyn, who face, seemingly weekly, a struggle to succeed as a creative, bipolar collaboration.

On its own, the practice of creating art is bizarre: fusing this abstract feeling with that concrete image, trying to convince others of something only you can see, and all the while endeavoring to balance concept with content. With the addition of bipolar disorder, a condition that is just as, if not more, slippery, firm, and fleeting, the artistic process often teeters between genius and delusion, between coherence and disunion. It is in this realm, where mania meets medium and depression intersects with artistic production, that we, as bipolar artists, must carve and claim our collective space…

Read more

Loving a Paranoid Partner

→ October 3, 2013 - 16 Comments

Loving a Paranoid Partner

Today’s guest post on the Bipolar Burble blog is by Marion Gibson, author of “Unfaithful Mind “– a tale of what it’s like to love someone who has a paranoid disorder. To win a FREE copy of her book, leave a comment here.

I am married to a man with a mental illness.  High school sweethearts, we travelled the world and grew a family. We were just like any other couple. And then two years ago my husband woke up and believed I wanted him dead.

He thought I had no use for him anymore and I was going to poison him. He stopped eating food in the house and started drinking only store bought water from our emergency supply. He wrote a note and hid it in his chair explaining that I had poisoned him. He also believed I had been unfaithful in our marriage right from the beginning. He thought I had a way about me that I could convince men to sleep with me whenever and wherever I wanted.  He wanted paternity tests on all three of our children.

Read more

Surviving Depression and Death of a Loved One

→ July 30, 2013 - 1 Comment

Surviving Depression and Death of a Loved One

Today the Bipolar Burble is pleased to welcome author and speaker Hyla Molander. Hyla talks today about how she survived the death of her husband while already dealing with depression. Hyla is currently working on a memoir about her experiences. Check out her Kickstarter campaign.

Taking Zoloft throughout my second pregnancy was a decision my husband, Erik, and I made together. We’d sat with the genetic counselor and had come to the conclusion that my mental stability far outweighed the risks for the baby.

Of course, this was ten years ago—long before there was research on how Zoloft affects the foetus.

I’d been on and off of antidepressants for almost a decade. During those off times, I’d snap at Erik.  “Quit touching me. Quit telling me how great you think I am.”

After I repeatedly tried to sabotage our relationship, we finally agreed that I should stay on my meds. Popping that pill meant choosing happiness.

Depression and Death

Then, on Easter Sunday, 2003—a day that had begun with Erik and I discussing how blessed we were—our 17 month old daughter and I watched as he slid down the kitchen counter and died.

At 29 years old, Erik’s heart flicked off like a switch.

Read more

Suicide Survivor’s Story Aims to Save Others

→ May 13, 2013 - 5 Comments

Suicide Survivor’s Story Aims to Save Others

Today, the Bipolar Burble blog welcomes guest author Kevin Hines, a fellow mental health advocate. Kevin is one of only 33 people who have survived a jump from the Golden Gate Bridge. I met Kevin recently at a conference and I can tell you, his story is incredible and he uses it to help others.  

I always try to remember that life is but a state of mind and if that state of mind can be altered by an imbalance of chemicals, it becomes extremely hard to function. After all, I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder when I was 17 years old. Since that day, I’ve come to learn that life literally is a state of mind, and how, without the love and support of friends and family, life would be a lot more difficult.

I am so thankful for the support of family and friends who have helped me whether the hard times at are inevitable when one has– like I do – a mental illness. With all the years that have passed since I attempted to end my life by suicide, I have learned that we all make mistakes in life, but now it is time to put the past where it belongs, in the rear view mirror. We cannot control the future, but we can help one another – and ourselves – today and every “today” that follows.

After My Bipolar Disorder Diagnosis at 17

After my bipolar diagnosis I struggled, suffered, and attempted to understand the metamorphosis I was going through. I hoped that it was just a phase, maybe I was going to “grow out of it.” I was going through the motions of trying to find the right medications for my particular kind of manic depression. Some days the medication would feel like it was working, but on others, it would not.

Driven to Suicide

This lasted until I was 19-years old when thoughts of suicide unfolded. I wrote a suicide letter and the next day, I prepared for another day of classes at City College in San Francisco. But that was a blatant lie, even to myself. This morning my plan was to go to the Golden Gate Bridge to end my life.

Read more

Interview – A Carer’s Role in Bipolar Recovery – And a FREE Ebook

→ March 12, 2013 - 16 Comments

You might remember Karen Tyrrell from her last interview wherein she talked about writing her way to mental health wellness. Well, this time Karen gives us advice on recovery and insight into the role a carer can play in bipolar disorder wellness.

Leave a comment on this post to be entered to win a free ebook of Karen’s new writing.

Read more