Hardest part of Bipolar Disorder is suffering in silence

by Jon Farrow

You suffer in silence out of constant fear of being persecuted. You bury your pain into the deepest obscure corners of your heart for fear of being labeled as crazy or insane. You try to fake it, to be strong, to be normal, all the while carrying this misunderstood weight on your chest.

Living with Bipolar Disorder can feel like driving a car and suddenly the steering wheel falls off. You can feel in control for days, weeks, or months at a time. Then suddenly you loose your steering and fall into the cavernous hole of depression.

Read more...

Mirror Mirror

by Paul Buskey

One of the first songs I could relate to is Pink’s Don’t let me get me. Listen to the lyrics closely.

It’s extremely difficult for me at times to be in my own body and mind.

Unfriendly hostile thoughts are repetitive and plague me most of the time. Escaping the inescapable for a moment many of us would jump at the chance to see what it’s like to have a quiet mind.

These lyrics here strike me the most.

Everyday I fight a war against the mirror
I can’t take the person starin’ back at me
I’m

Read more...

My mental illness feeds me lies about myself

by Paul Buskey

Many of us have heard the song “Praying” by Kesha on the radio.  Inspired by her lowest moments of her professional and personal life during which she dealt with depression and thoughts of suicide.

It’s very difficult to get others to understand what we hear from our own minds and the images we are fed from our mental illnesses.

You’re able to see her journey throughout the song with her lyrics and the imagery in the video. What you will miss just listening to it on the radio is her intro dialog.

This dialog is the hardest … Read more...

Bright lights and smiles get me through the holidays

by Paul Buskey

Christmas, birthdays and New Year’s Eve are three hard days for me.

Hardest isn’t quite the right word.  More like I don’t deserve to be happy days. It’s something that’s always been the case since childhood. Those are supposed to be the two best days of the year. I’ve never really given it much thought until now. Since writing experiences down it now comes to the forefront.

Birthdays have always been difficult for me to celebrate. Why? Why would you celebrate me being born? It’s just another day. I don’t deserve a gift. Christmas is the same … Read more...

Fighting and surviving your mind every day is exhausting

by Paul Buskey

Suicide. Most people cannot comprehend. You should be grateful if you’re one of them.

I’m happy for you but don’t throw words out like “selfish” and “crazy” to describe someone who has suffered thoughts of suicide. How are you able to comment and pass a judgment if you don’t understand? Have you lived in those shoes?  Thoughts of suicide are most often the result of an illness just as real as a physical one.

Let’s make something clear first. I’m not a danger to myself so please don’t call the cavalry. I’m not looking for sympathy or … Read more...

Scared But Hopeful

by Nancy Workman

My son is 22 years old and suffers from bipolar disorder (mainly depression), anxiety, ADHD and substance abuse. He was only 9 years old when he tried to jump off a balcony and we sought help. We actually had him as inpatient in a Baltimore top-rated hospital in the nation.

They sent him home a week later with parenting advice and a sticker chart.

I wish I were kidding. He was suicidal and they gave me a sticker chart? What? Are you serious? This was 2005. They did absolutely nothing to help us. Nothing.

I knew I … Read more...

Released from the stigma from Bipolar II

By Paul Buskey

Bipolar and struggles with self harm

I’ve been asked a couple of occasions why I speak out now about my diagnoses of Bipolar II and my struggles with self-harm.

At this point in my life I’m able to come forward because the stigma no longer holds me hostage. If my experiences help one person come forward and get the help they need, or changes someone’s perspective how they see mental illness, then it’s all worth it.

My tattoo of the semi-colon along with, “You’re not alone” has a lot of meaning to me. Since the age of Read more...

Battle Scars

by Paul Buskey

We don’t know as we go through life, how often we may or may not impact someone else. But our daily interactions, no matter how brief, can actually change a life and make a difference. I want to tell you a story about what happened and how it impacted my life.

I live in Richmond and was visiting New York with my family when I saw a young lady with noticeable scars. I stopped because I recognized what those scars were from and I walked up to her and directly referenced them but not in the way … Read more...

My First Tattoo. Covers my Scars, but Not my Journey

By Tammy Ozolins

Late one night I came home depressed. Living with Bipolar is difficult enough, but the depression was getting the best of me. So, I decided I had enough and I took a handful of my mom’s sleeping pills and was excited to be ending my life.

I then went to my bedroom and I remember the room spinning and I just laid down and the room went black. I woke up the next day and the first thing I said to myself, was “I am so stupid I cannot even kill myself right.” I went for several more weeks, still in … Read more...