After over 20 years of living my life having Bipolar Disorder, I decided last year to start a blog about my life experiences and how it affects my life as well as others in my life. I decided that sharing my story would be helpful to promote a better understanding of mental illness. I started my blog for many reasons that I thought would help others learn more about Bipolar Disorder and how to seek help. My main reasons were:
- To inform others about Bipolar Disorder
- Guiding others to find the help they need to promote better mental health
- To fight stigma that can often be associtated with mental illness
- To help others to not feel ashamed of having a mental illness and how to find support
I thought when I started this blog if I could help just one person out there learn more about Bipolar Disorder than it was worth putting my painful feelings out there. Well after hearing so many comments and questions from others I know I have done that and such much more. I think of the Mom that wrote me about her daughter that had committed suicide 6 months prior to reading my blog. The doctors thought her daughter might of had Bipolar Disorder and that my blog helped her understand Bipolar Disorder better and she just wished she could of found out more information before that happened to her daughter. She told me she hoped that my blog would save other people's lives. I strive to do that each time I write a blog entry and to help myself from taking my own life. I still have many dark days but support helps me get through those times. My readers have also helped me find out new information that I was not aware of before I started writing and encouraged me on the rough days.
Now that I have been writing this blog for about a year, I am encouraged to keep writing because I have had so many people write to me that my honesty about my illness has helped them to actually seek treatment. So many people tell me that the stigma of having a mental illness stops them from seeking treatment. This is the one thing I am most passionate about and have always tried to do what I can to on my part to help others understand it and not run away from it. My dream is that one day Bipolar Disorder will be treated by the public, the media, and the medical community as just another illness that needs medical care and nothing more. I think that having a day set aside to focus on blogging for mental health is so important to fight this stigma. There is so much to be shared at http://www.yourmindyourbody.org/ and help others find out more about mental illness and promote better mental health. I encourage everyone to check this site out and share their own stories.