bipolar resources

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There are a shitload of lists of bipolar resources online, and here’s another one. Like all the other lists, I’m going to tell you that these are the things I wish I’d had access to when I was diagnosed, they’d have shortened the zomg wtf phase. I’ve curated a lot of info on this blog, so there are some links to my own posts. There are good documentaries and books linked on the other pages in the submenu.

I’d like to crowdsource this one; please comment with links to your favourite resources (including your own posts) of any kind. If any of the links are borked, please let me know.

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What is mental health? What is mental disorder?

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Diagnosis
Talking to your doctor about bipolar disorder – I don’t know about you, but hearing my diagnosis turned my brain to soup. This article gives comprehensive practical and emotional advice.
How a psychiatrist diagnoses and treats bipolar. It’s important to educate and empower yourself by understanding what you’re going through.
Being honest with your psychiatrist.

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Basic Psycheducation
Make this your first click – a very comprehensive site indeed.
Bipolar 1 & 2 – what’s the difference?
Bipolar You – the young person’s guide to bipolar disorder.
The young adult’s video guide to facing bipolar.
Psychosis: An introduction and links to further reading.

NIMH National Institute of Mental Health (USA)
Side effects of bipolar disorder medication index

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Buzzfeed’s absolutely everything you need to know about bipolar with animated gifs.

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Help & Advice
The best advice you’ll ever get – I’m serious about this.
Suicide Safety Planning
There’s an app for that – little digital friends to assist in various ways.
The mood tracking app I use is MoodDiary beta, which is customisable, freaking fast and simple to use, and it generates good graphs to send to my psychiatrist.
My memory and word skills have been eroding and so I also use SwiftKey, keyboard software that improves autocorrect and predictive text enormously.

Bipolar disorder: organizations & websites offering information and support for people with bipolar disorder and their family and friends. Some of these organizations can be found in: Australia, United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, Portugal, Brazil, Spain, Germany, Netherlands, South Africa.

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For family, friends & anyone who cares
Some advice for people who want to help people with bipolar.
Bipolar Lemonadeonline community.
Bipolar Caregivers – comprehensive site with info, advice, support and resources.
What not to say to people with bipolar.
Stigma – what it is and why it needs to stop.
27 ways to be an ally to someone who has a mental illness.
DBSA information and resources.
To Family and Friends: Don’t Challenge My Bipolar Diagnosis
To Family and Friends: Don’t Tell Me How to Get Over Bipolar Disorder
How Do I Love Thee (When You’re Bipolar)?

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Realistic Consequences (knowledge is power)
Side effects in the treatment of bipolar disorder.
Physical effects of bipolar disorder.
Cognitive deficits in bipolar disorder.
Everyone Assumes You’re Violent: Realities Of Being Bipolar. Mental illness is a lot like sex, in the sense that you hear about it all the time, but almost everything you hear is wrong. Just look at bipolar disorder — a seemingly straightforward disorder that causes wildly veering periods of mania and depression. For reasons of laziness, and the generally low number of practicing psychiatrists who are also screenwriters, it’s often portrayed by Hollywood as “generic crazy person’s disease.” As a result, people with the disorder are forced to deal with the double-decker suck-bus of a life complicated by mental illness, and having everyone around them think they’re a dangerous lunatic just waiting to bloom.

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Downloads
SafetyPlanTemplate Print it out, fill it in, keep it with you, hand it out to your support network (do whatever you like, but it’s useless as toilet paper). A big thank you to lily pup for this one. 
Bipolar Disorder info sheet. A brief overview.
DBSA wellness tools.
DBSA resources for family etc.
Download resources in other languages – there’s a lot here, expect loads of scrolling.
CBT worksheets, handouts and self help resources.
Download resources in English and Welsh from the Royal College of Psychiatrists:

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Blogging Communities
Bipolar Blogger Network
Mental Health Writer’s Guild
Top Mommy Blogs
PsychCentral Blogs

Follow that blog!
Bipolar Burble Blog – Natasha Tracy is a well known and trusted writer and if you’re way less of a slacker and more of a doer than I am, her article
how to become a famous mental health writer/blogger will show you the ropes.

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Miscellaneous
Resources for South Africans with bipolar disorder.

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