What does it mean to be Bipolar?

As a young kid growing up in Southern California, I was always encouraged to follow my passions. From school principles, to camp counselors, to even my own parents, adults who oversaw my upbrining would doggedly try to inspire me to do, to create, to be at one with the universe. Flash forward thirty years, and the exact opposite has just happened: people trying to reel me in, to put me inside of some kind of box. And the name of this box is “Bipolar.”

Being told that I am Bipolar was not easy. Having grown up in a Jewish household, our family primarily thought that the outside world was wrong about all kinds of things, such as money, relationships, and even religion. Because I was taught that most people outside our close-knit family of aunts, cousins, and uncles had no idea about how to live life, I inherited a winner-take-all view of the world. This stubborn philosophy makes rejecting a diagnosis like “Bipolar” very easy, and accepting it very difficult.

Now 35 years old, with two kids of my own and one on the way, I’ve realized that there are sometimes that you have to take other people’s advice. If God did not want me to accept the diagnosis of Bipolar, he would not have put so many people around me in my life, who truly care about me, who simply want me to be well. I realized that I let the stubbornness of rejecting other people’s ideas to infiltrate into my own relationships with my very own family members. This alienating sentiment started to erode even close family ties, especially when I was unable to admit that my pyschotic behaviours were wrong.

So I’ve decided to no longer run from a diagnosis that proves that I am not perfect. While God may have created us in his perfect image, he also allowed us to be born into this imperfect world, and sometimes the imperfections of this world can latch onto us and make us sick. Having an illness, especially one that there is no cure for, is a difficulty proposition to accept, especially for someone like myself, who has been in stellar physical health since birth. And understanding that the sickness may be more than skin deep is the tough part.

I would hope that many of my teachers from my youth would be proud of me for using my illness of bi-polar as an outlet of my creativity. After all, this site would not be created without the calamity of being diagnosed as Bi-polar. The purpose of this site is to examine how the symptoms of Bi-polar disorder, and the symptoms of the medications that people take to combat Bi-polar disorder affect our day-to-day lives. Life is all about finding your purpose. Don’t let Bi-polar get in the way of that!

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