A Father of a Son with Bipolar Disorder Speaks

 

by Julie A. Fast

I will let you in on a secret. Many of us with bipolar disorder feel like failures when the illness doesn’t allow us to have the high powered or super intellectual and/or creative jobs that we could probably do if this illness were not so difficult to manage. I’ve talked with parents for over 20 years now and have learned something important. Being a good person is far more important to parents than being a ‘successful’ person only through work and finances. Don’t believe me? I will let Don take over from here. He is writing a letter to his son Marcos.

Dear Marcos,

My son. Last week something happened that made me so happy I thought I would cry. You were the cause of his [ Read More ]

Ask Julie A. Fast Tonight: Bipolar Disorder and Medications

 

Ask Julie Fast Q&A tonight at 7:00 PM PST. Let’s talk meds and . Meds are half of our plan. Let’s get this part right. Join me on Facebook. I will answer your questions in real time. Stability rules!

I write daily on my Facebook page. I hope you can join me this evening. I also have a group for partners called The Stable Bed and a group for parents and family members called The Stable Table.

I love the interactive nature of Facebook. You [ Read More ]

Ask Julie A. Fast: How do I tell someone I have bipolar disorder?

A great question about talking openly about #bipolar a reader on my Julie A. FAst Facebook page: Julie, I know you mention a lot to share this with family and friends Julie A. so that they can be more supportive…and I have. But I have to say for myself that I usually regret it. I find that who ever I am telling either finds it too heavy or later they will use it against me somehow and then that compounds the emotional roller coaster that I may already be on. What am I doing wrong? First off, you are assuming you are doing something wrong. That means you tend to turn on yourself when others disappoint you. I am exactly the same. Work on that part of [ Read More ]

Do you Suffer from Bipolar Distortion?

There is a band called Social Distortion. There is distortion in engineering and music, photography and video. And then there is #bipolar distortion? Do you suffer from bipolar distortion? I do! I have a bad case of this nasty condition. 1. I truly believe that no one loves me when I’m depressed. 2. I feel left out and pushed aside in life when I am depressed. 3. I hear things differently- the words I hear are actually distorted by my brain. “I’m busy this week Julie.” turns into, “I no longer find you interesting as a person.” WTF! WTH! Really! 4. I believe that I’m a bad person and no one wants to be with me, so what is the point of trying to be a good person. I will [ Read More ]

Bipolar Disorder and Addiction

A few words on bipolar disorder and addictive behaviors. It’s normal for people with mood disorders to turn to another substance to feel better. Our illness sucks. The problem is that we only have so much brain space and addictive behaviors take up a large part of life that we need in order to manage our illness.

For example, my addiction is sugar. When it is not controlled, I will choose eating sugar over seeing people. I isolate and use food to feel better. I know this. I know it is not the smartest choice and yet it is always a challenge.

Addiction is helped by replacing the behavior with something that feels better. I have to focus on what feels better than ice-cream. Ice cream is the heroin of the sugar [ Read More ]

Daniel Bader: A Therapist who has Bipolar Disorder Talks about Self Forgiveness

Guest blogger Daniel Bader talks about life with bipolar and how learning to forgive himself for past behaviors helped him create strong relationships and a successful career as a therapist.

Like most people with bipolar disorder, I have done many things that I regret. Some of them involve harming other people: broken friendships, horrible things I’ve said, and even betrayals. Some of them involve harming myself: missed opportunities, lost jobs, and burned bridges. Looking back, it’s difficult to think about these events without cringing. I will often think self-abusive comments: “You’re an idiot!”, “Your so stupid!”. Sometimes, I even say them out loud.

In order to stop being so abusive to myself, I’m learning the art of self-forgiveness. I’m not perfect at it. Sometimes I’m not [ Read More ]

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