Bipolar disorder (also known as manic depression) is a serious, life-threatening illness. It requires medication, maintenance, and most of all TLC from understanding, supportive people. In my two plus years on E2, I've run across countless people here who have been diagnosed with, or who love someone who has been diagnosed with, what can be a stigmatizing and debilitating disorder.
In keeping with dann's belief that Everything is a Family, I propose that we try to help one another. Bipolars will be a usergroup made up of people who suffer from this illness. Do you have a close friend or loved one who is bipolar? Then you're welcome, too. It's my hope that we can support, encourage, and enlighten one another as we all try to muddle through our day-to-day lives while coping with an illness that can be a really big pain in the ass.
I'd like to keep mailbox spam to a minimum, but understand that by joining any usergroup you're going to have to sift through a good bit of information, probably daily. This is no substitute for a doctor (duh) or group therapy, but maybe we can share what helps us get through the day. Let's try to keep it positive; I don't want an inbox full of Hallmark card-like daily affirmations (EW), but let's try to concentrate on what keeps us sane. Any tips on dealing with byzantine health-care systems, difficult parents/siblings/lovers, or the ups and downs of being, well, an up-and-down sort of person will be greatly appreciated. I want this to be a safe place where we can share the good things (as well as the bad), and where we can reach out to one another for a little help and hope when either one is a little hard to find. Welcome, friends.