Blogging the highs and lows
A grassroots community of bloggers with bipolar disorder has sprung up online in recent years. These blogs make for fascinating reading—maybe there's something to the link between bipolar disorder and creativity, after alland they also provide people with bipolar disorder (and depression) a great opportunity to connect, learn from each other’s experiences, and offer encouragement.
In this slideshow, see who’s behind some of the best bipolar blogs on the Web. And check out the links to some of their must-read posts.
The Secret Life of a Manic Depressive is the online diary of Seaneen Molloy, a 23-year-old Irish woman living in London. Officially diagnosed with rapid-cycling bipolar I disorder. Molloy writes about her ups and downs in a lively, no-holds-barred style that will have you clicking the bookmark button.
Her blend of humor and candor has made her something of a minor celebrity in the U.K. Playwright Louise Ramsden adapted selections from Molloy’s blog into a radio play, Do's and Don'ts for the Mentally Interesting, which aired on the BBC in May 2009.
Liz Spikol is the executive editor of an alternative weekly newspaper in Philadelphia. She also happens to have been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and dissociative disorder not otherwise specified.
Her addictive blog, The Trouble With Spikol, grew out of an award-winning column of the same name that she writes for the Philadelphia Weekly. With a pro’s touch, Spikol covers health insurance, prescription drugs, and other important mental-health issuesbut, like any good blogger, she also leaves plenty of room for kitten photos.
The bipolar mom
Amy, a 34-year-old mother of four who lives in Tennessee, blogs at All About Bipolar under the handle “atorturedsoul.” (Amy, shown here with her husband in a recent picture, does not use her last name online.)
On her very professional-looking blog, Amy writes about family, her experience with bipolar I and psychosis, and the portrayal of mental illness in movies, among other topics. Best of all, she’s a truly dedicated blogger, usually posting once or twice a day.
While most bipolar blogs tend to read like a diary, Philip Dawdy’s Furious Seasons is more like a newspaper or magazine.
An award-winning journalist from Seattle who has lived with bipolar disorder for 20 years, Dawdy trolls the Web for the latest mental health news and publishes documents related to the pharmaceutical industry. Study results, TV-news segments, and even the latest drug-company advertisements are all fodder for this newsy blog.
(Dawdy himself prefers to remain in the background and—citing death threats from his days as a print reporter—doesn’t allow photos of himself to be posted online.)
John McManamy is the dean of bipolar bloggers. A mental-health journalist who was diagnosed with bipolar disorder in 1999, at the age of 49, McManamy has maintained an encyclopedic website, McMan's Depression and Bipolar Web, for nearly a decade. He writes about everything from treatment options to research news.