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bp Magazine for Bipolar Summer 2019

bp Magazine empowers people with bipolar disorder to live healthy, fulfilling lives. bp delivers success stories of people living with bipolar, including celebrities. It also includes features on building healthy lifestyles—with topics like sleep, exercise, stress, treatments, relationships, and employment—and offers cutting edge news and research.

United States
BP Magazine
4 Issues

in this issue

3 min
what is bipolar?

Bipolar disorder is a treatable illness marked by extreme changes in mood, thought, energy, and behavior. Bipolar disorder is also known as manic depression because a person’s mood can alternate between the “poles”—mania (highs) and depression (lows). The change in mood can last for hours, days, weeks, or months. What bipolar is not Bipolar disorder is not a character flaw or sign of personal weakness. Whom bipolar disorder affects Bipolar disorder affects more than 5.7 million adult Americans and 440,000 adult Canadians. It usually begins in late adolescence, often appearing as depression during teen years, although it can start in early childhood or later in life. An equal number of men and women develop this illness. Men tend to begin with a manic episode, women with a depressive episode. Bipolar disorder is found among all…

2 min

When talking about friendship, English actor, comedian, writer and advocate for bipolar, Stephen Fry once said, “It’s hard to be a friend to someone who’s depressed, but it is one of the kindest, noblest, and best things you will ever do.” He further explained that just being there, being supportive and trying to understand a person’s hopelessness and loneliness can be life changing. For both sides. While some of us are fortunate enough to have a friendship that has endured a lifetime, we’ve all had friends pass through at different stages. As the saying goes, these friends come into our lives “for a reason, a season….” They do their job, help us grow—and then they go. Our cover story, “The Friendship Formula” takes a close look at these special bonds and what…

7 min
we hear you

STING OF STIGMA I REALLY APPRECIATE the article “When Stigma Strikes Close to Home” (Spring 2019). I have been stigmatized by family and friends for years. I have been accused of attention-seeking and having no faith and being lazy. Now they wonder why I avoid them. I have never been able to hold down a job, either. But I do have strengths. Despite severe mental illness, I have raised two successful young men, have a happy marriage, and I run a fairly organized household. All of that is a lot of work for anyone, but especially for someone with my diagnosis. When I start to believe the [crap] family and friends say, I try and remind myself of my successes despite my diagnosis and it helps. —Shay via bphope.com THANK YOU for…

1 min
meet nancy

AGE: 58 LOCATION: ANDOVER, MA OCCUPATION: STUDENT WITH MULTI-MEDIA MAJOR DIAGNOSES: BIPOLAR I YEAR DIAGNOSED: 2003 * * * QUALITY I MOST ADMIRE: Courage. PROUDEST ACHIEVEMENT: Putting a fine man on the planet in the form of my son Michael, and the children’s book (My Mother the Bipolar Bear) he inspired. TREASURED PET: Buddy was officially the best dog in the world, start to finish. I WISH I WERE BETTER AT: Keeping my bedroom clean, counting to ten, not procrastinating, and being more decisive. TOP HOBBY: Trash to treasure—transforming things I find on the side of the road. BIGGEST CHALLENGE I’VE OVERCOME: Accepting the fact that the size of my challenges will always vary greatly. For example, today, “writing the great American novel!” and tomorrow, “taking a shower!” MOST TREASURED ITEM: The baseball glove my son gave me for Mother’s Day when…

6 min
mental health headlines

Stigma remains in Indonesia May 26, 2019, YOGYAKARTA, Indonesia—Progress has been made in this nation of 264 million people but people with mental illness still often face discrimination and isolation because of stigma, due in large part to limited understanding of mental disorders that’s created a climate hostile to people who display unusual behavior. UK mental health spending up May 14, 2019, LONDON, United Kingdom —Mental health spending varies greatly across England, with a nearly twofold difference across the country, mental health charity Mind found in a survey. The charity said the differences could affect the quality of care, but said spending overall was rising everywhere. Ireland prisons last resort May 14, 2019, BELFAST, Northern Ireland —Northern Ireland’s prisons are being used as a last resort for people suffering from mental illness, the Northern Ireland…

9 min
new research in mental health

Depressive state linked with lower creativity June 1, 2019, SYDNEY, Australia—The depressive state of bipolar disorder appears linked with reduced creativity. Australian researchers looked at hundreds of people with the disorder, and found those reporting clinically significant depressive symptoms had significantly lower creativity scores than those in a manic or hypomanic state, and those with no current symptoms. “These findings suggest that there is a relationship between mood and how people with (bipolar) understand and experience creativity,” the authors wrote. They said more research is needed to better understand the role of creativity in the management of bipolar disorder, how this may be associated with well-being outcomes such as recovery, and how it may be incorporated into treatment. The study, which appeared in the journal Psychiatry Research, was entitled “Depression, mania and self-reported creativity in…